The main palace is an L-shaped building, with a long facade along the Bosphorus that accommodates, from west to east:
- Selamlik ( Men’s administrative section ): Selamlik is where state affairs take place and the most important and also prominent section in terms of function and splendor. That section has a highly symmetrical and formalized plan consisting of four major halls on two floors, linked by a monumental staircase at the center.
- Grand Hall / Ceremonial Hall in the Middle : Ceremonial Hall is situated between Harem and Selamlik, is the highest and the most magnificent section of Palace as a large square hall of monumental proportions, over 2.000 square meters of area and 36 meters high ceiling and also this hall is distinguished from other part of the Palace with 56 columns.
- The Harem: Harem is the private house of sultan and his family. That section was connected to the Selamlik section by a long corridor decorated with paintings from famous painters of that time. Harem was strictly prohibited by any man to go in, except the sultan himself of course and the eunuch servants. After the end of the Ottoman Empire, Dolmabahce served for a time as a state residence and was used to entertain visiting royalty and other distinguised visitors. When Ataturk visited Istanbul, he used Dolmabahce Palace as his residence. On 10th of November 1938 Ataturk passed away in this palace after a long period of sickness.
After the end of the Ottoman Empire, Dolmabahce served for a time as a state residence and was used to entertain visiting royalty and other distinguised visitors. When Ataturk visited Istanbul, he used Dolmabahce Palace as his residence. On 10th of November 1938 Ataturk passed away in this palace after a long period of sickness.
In 1984 it was converted into a museum. The Dolmabahce Palace Complex is administered by the National Palaces Trust under the TBMM (auspices of the Turkish Grand National Assembly).
Monday and Thursday is closed
Dolmabahce Clock Tower – Dolmabahce Saat Kulesi
Dolmabahce Clock Tower is a clock tower situated between Dolmabahce mosque and Dolmabahce Palace. The tower was designed in neo-baroque style by the architect of Sarkis Balyan between 1890 and 1895, ordered by Abdulhamid II (1842-1918). The clock tower stands a square along bosphorus coast. The four-sided, four-storied tower stands at a height of 27 m. Its clock was manufactured by the French clockmaker house of Jean-Paul Garnier, and installed by the court clock master Johann Mayer. In 1979, the original mechanical clock was converted partly to an electrical one. On two opposite sides of the tower, the tughra of Sultan Abdul Hamid II is put on.
Bezmialem Valide Sultan Mosque – Bezmialem Valide Sultan Cami
Bezmialem Valide Sultan Mosque is located on the Bosphorus in the southern part of Dolmabahce Palace. Because of its proximity to the Dolmabahce Palace and being a part of the Dolmabahce Palace it is also called Dolmabahce Mosque. The mosque construction ordered by Bezm-i alem Valide Sultan in 1853, mother of Sultan Abdulmecid. Upon her death, it’s construction was continued by her son Sultan Abdulmecid (1823-1861) and open for prayer in 1855. The mosque was designed by Garabet Balyan.
The mosque has rectangular shaped two-storey royalty section and an obvious geometric structure with its 25 x 25 m base. It is one of the rich decorated Baroque and Ampir styles, which are reflected in the architectural design of that period. The emergent architectural modernity in the mosque is its circular window design which had not ever been used in mosque architecture until this time. The niche and pulpit of the mosque are made of porphyry marble and decorated with european designes. The mosque has two fluted minarets, similar to Corinthian column capitals each with a single balcony.
The forecourt of the mosque and the fountain were torn down when the road widened. The time keeping room was carried to the seaside.
The Dolmabahce Mosque between 1948-1961 partly converted to the Maritime Museum by Lutfi Kirdar, the Governer of Istanbul.
Dolmabahce Palace on Google Maps