Discovering The Tourist, a beautiful and surprising mag founded by Tabitha Karp, for all who loves traveling.
I always associate the word tourist with embarrassing hats, backpacks and too large bermuda. Who keeps taking photos with the flash at the same monument? Oh, yes, a tourist. They used to swarm the cities during the summer, sitting in the expensive cafes just to take one selfie and order a bit of everything from the menu. I work as a waitress in the weekend and they often make me laugh with strange requests, but, hey, we are all tourists when we visit a new place, are not we? Well, maybe without bermudas or fanny backpacks.
The tourist is a stereotype, and when I found the online mag, I was curious to know more about it,
especially because it looks like so anti-tourist actually.
Amazing pictures of trips to different parts of the world: Istanbul, Sydney, Paris, Tuscany, California. They are like stories inside the heart of that place, topped off with fabulous limited edition clothing pieces you can shop on the website. If that’s what the tourists do, I want to be like them, right now.
So here my lil chat with the boss behind the project, Tabitha Karp.
A sweet girl who takes planes, discover new realities and live in a tons of (amazing) cities.
Sofia. Hi Tabitha, tell us something about yourself, your story and job.
Tabitha. Like everyone in this industry, I’ve found myself to be doing everything, but lately I can summarize it like this: photography, travel, creative direction… and the boss of The Tourist. The longer version? I studied French in university as Paris was always somewhere I wanted to live, it was a total fantasy… so I sort of planned it that way and lived out my fantasy. This led to a stint as an assistant at LV (my French at this moment was “acceptable”), whilst working in the Arab food market on weekends. Then I had a whim, after 6 years in Paris, to move to Istanbul and work for this int. creative platform, Istanbul74. It was such a crazy experience, and I had the chance to meet so many well-regarded artists and creatives from all over the world. This ultimately led to a stint heading up a new arts/fashion magazine in Istanbul, and that was totally another frantic experience. In terms of lifestyle I was travelling so much within Europe & to Australia (my family are a bunch of nomadic gypsies…we cannot seem to decide where to move next….inside joke) and I knew it was time to move into a new phase life, and this is how I came up with The Tourist.
Sofia. Today the tourist is considered a stereotype, but your mag looks completely different. What is the philosophy behind The Tourist?
Tabitha. Actually that was the idea behind the name…. the word Tourist is a corny stereotype, and I thought it would be ironic to use this as the official name. Either way I wanted to create a rolodex of tourist addresses by myself and other like-minded women who are becoming the new creative vanguards in art, design and fashion. I wanted it to be a little less Condé Nast Traveller and well…more The Tourist (essentially a collection of eclectic travel photos and addresses from just us creative gals).
Sofia. Not only a mag but also a shop of special handmade pieces. How this relationship is born?
Tabitha. After living in Istanbul, I got sick of looking at Zara, and I am tired of seeing the same shit over and over. It is not like Paris, but even Paris is becoming same old, same old…. So I decided it would be cool to use traditional tailors and craftsmen that still exist everywhere in Istanbul, with the textiles I source from my travels. It took a lot of research and experimentation, in another language that I do not really know….. and I am still experimenting!
Essentially The Tourist label consists of small editions that are not dictated by seasons. The first edition was based on the iconic Trench Coat in leather and patent leather, and the second edition is a collection of summer pieces to be travelled with. I want people to realize how clothes use to be traditionally made, and I don’t want to lose this traditional familiarity that once was, when growing up (it was my Russian grandmother who made my clothes).
Sofia. I know you’ve just been in Italy. Did you enjoy your time here? Will we see a dedicated post on the magazine?
Tabitha. I love Italy!!! We have a place in the lake district North of Milan, and I will be spending more and more time there, especially this summer! I have taken a bunch of photos with my film camera, so I am waiting to have those developed…so yeah I will definitely be doing a dedicated post about that!
Sofia. How do you usually plan your vacation?
Tabitha. Poorly!! I am not much of a planner. I usually buy my ticket a few days before I’m set to fly out…and then packing is usually done a few hours before I leave (my boyfriend is completely dumbfounded by my organizational skills). After that, I usually travel to where friends and family are, otherwise, if not, hotels are also booked at the last minute… I am hopeless at finding cheap deals…but I have been trying the past month. Right now, I am in Bretagne, in France, and I know I have to leave in 3 or 4 days, but I’ve yet to plan train tickets etc. I do not recommend this… As for what I pack? Well actually my summer edition has actually become apart of my wardrobe…I mean I’ve designed it in the hope I can be better packed, and have cool clothes to wear!
Sofia. What’s the best place you ever visited?
Tabitha. That’s an impossible question! In terms of hotels, Hotel du Cap in Antibes (what can I say, there is no other place like this), otherwise in regards to actual places to travel to, I love Morocco! A roadtrip is the only way to see this country, and it is sooo easy!! The people are so cool, and the colours! After that, I’d have to say Australia, the East Coast (my home) specifically. If you love the beach, then Australia is the place to go to…best beaches in the world.
Sofia. What will be The Tourist next stop?
Tabitha. In the next few weeks, Paris, Milan, and Lake Orta in Italy.
Sofia. Here at SoapOpera we define ourselves #busysexyeasy. Well, at least we try. What’s your hashtag?
Sofia. And for all the tourists out there, check out the Tabitha’s guide for your next Istanbul trip (You’re welcome!)
Tabitha. It took place on the Princes Islands, just off Istanbul, with Tourist muse @bircekirkova. The day was long, hot and humid. But we both managed a story that was fun, whilst exploring the island of Burzgada.
For drinks right on the Bosphorus in late afternoon…
Bebek Bar. This place is hidden behind a hotel and it has the best views to chill and have drinks…you can also eat and have lunch or dinner here. It’s situated in a small Bosphorus village called Bebek, which is very typical of Istanbul.
After drinks on the Bosphorus in Bebek you wanna have dinner at….
Lucca. Just across the road from Bebek Bar, you have an institution for serious people watching… This place even stops traffic literally. This is a great place to eat lunch or dinner… the food is great! You can continue to have drinks here, and then on weekends it turns into more of a bar late at night. Get here at 6pm to get a spot on the terrace.
Address: Bebek Mh., Cevdet Pa?a Cd 51/A, 34342 Sariyer/Be?ikta?/?stanbul, Turkey
Before all of this…
I would definitely get a taxi early morning to Tarabya (get the taxi to take you to Paella. You can eat breakfast here, directly on the BosphorusAddress:
Tarabya Mahallesi, Haydar Aliyev Cd. No:23 D:1, 34457 Sar?yer/?stanbul, Turkey. +90 212 223 68 22).
Afterwards, walk along the Bosphorus towards Yeniköy. Take your time here, and explore all around, go down the little side streets directly on the Bosphorus, and the interior. This is a great walk. After Yeniköy, get a taxi to Bebek. If it is too early to get drinks at Bebek Bar, explore the back streets of Bebek (there are a few boutiques here), then walk towards Arnavutköy (15 min walk) to explore around there. Head towards Any Cafe. There is a small Turkish slop shoot to eat a little something called Adem Baba in the same street. Explore the backstreets again…don’t be shy! Afterwards walk back, or get a taxi to Bebek.
Cashmere In Love. A Turkish cashmere label.
Address: Küçük Bebek Caddesi No:2 A, Bebek Mahallesi, 34342 Be?ikta?/?stanbul, Turkey.
Simple Life. You can find a few beautiful ceramics here and sleep ware…beautiful Turkish textile. It is situated in an apartment building.
Address: Cevdet Pa?a Caddesi Koru Apartman? No.17/2 Bebek.
For morning breakfast and coffee, if you wanna just chill in a garden:
Soho House Istanbul. Go to the hotel part, and just chill in the garden. They have great breakfast and coffee!
Address: Evliya Çelebi Mahallesi, 34430 Beyo?lu/?stanbul, Turkey
You are in the old city and near the spice market and looking for lunch…
Pandeli. Super old restaurant. It first opened in Eminonu in 1901 by a greek. Great typical Turkish food. Definitely recommend. Interiors also typical of the Istanbul and the use of turquoise blue!
Address: Hoca Pa?a Mahallesi, 34110 Fatih/?stanbul, Turkey. Phone: +90 212 527 39 09
For views of the old city and Golden Horn plus drinks….
Cachi Lokanta Bar. This is on a rooftop of a hotel called Adahan. The food is just okay, but the views, terrace and interior are all beautiful. Just get a drink towards sunset, and if you are tired, you can also catch dinner here.
Address: Asmal? Mescit Mahallesi, General Yazgan Sk. No:14, 34430 Beyo?lu/?stanbul, Turkey. Phone: +90 212 243 85 81
You want really good meze food in beautiful interiors…
Karaköy Lokantas?. Nothing to say, except this is a great meze restaurant, and you will see another type of Istanbul.
Address: Kemanke? Karamustafa Pa?a Mh., Kemanke? Cd. 37/A, 34425 Karaköy/Beyo?lu/?stanbul, Turkey. Phone: +90 212 292 44 55
You wanna take the boat to the asian side, and visit another beautiful Bosphorus village and drink tea watching the sunset, then have a traditional meze and raki dinner….
Ismet Baba Fish Restaurant. This is situated in a very old Bosphorus wooden house, right on the water. It’s a must that you drink Raki here! Next to it is a small tea garden. All the locals come down to watch the sunset and drink some tea….as they always do. It’s situated in a beautiful village called Kuzguncuk, which can be explored just before tea and raki…. Book ahead! Get the ferry boat from Be?ikta?.
Address: Kuzguncuk Mahallesi, Kuzguncuk Çar??s? Cd. No:1, 34674 Üsküdar/?stanbul, Turkey. Phone: +90 216 341 33 75
You wanna go to the Princes Islands for the day…..
Head to the Island of Burgazada. The first boat is at 10:30am. Get the IDO boat from Be?ikta? (it’s quicker). When you get off, there is a great coffee shop hidden away called Four Letter Word (get off the boat and its towards the left side, a little towards the interior), owned by some locals of the Island. Here you can get a feel of the island, get some breakfast (they have a kitchen next door), sit in their deck chairs…. it is super chill. There is also a beautiful handmade local ceramics shop in more or less the same street…just ask. After this, start walking! Take a walk along the coast (stop first at Ergün Patisseria & Cafeteria for their great patisseries) towards Harrison Cafe (great place to get refreshments) and go a little further…. Then head back towards Four Letter Word. After that head up to Gönüllü Cd…..this is a beautiful road. There is also an old greek church along the way. This is also in the direction to Kalpazankaya Sahili where you can swim, and then afterwards go the the Kalpazankaya Restaurant that has spectacular views across the sea (if you are going in the evening to eat here around 6pm…book).
Four Letter Word.
Address: Burgazadas? Mahallesi, 34975 Prince Islands/?stanbul, Turkey
Kalpazankaya Restaurant. Address: Kalpazankaya Mevkii, 34975 Adalar/Prince Islands/?stanbul, Turkey. Phone: +90 216 381 11 11
Ergün Patisseria & Cafeteria. Address: Burgazadas? Mahallesi, Gezinti Yolu Cd. No:3, 34975 Adalar/?stanbul, Turkey
Delicatessen. This place is gorgeous. Great for breaskfast, lunch and dinner, and drinks.
Address: Harbiye Mahallesi, Mim Kemal Öke Cd. No:19, 34367 Ni?anta??/?i?li/?stanbul, Turkey.
You wanna head to Delicatessen, because there is a great boutique in the same street…
Fey. This is a beautiful boutique. All tailor made pieces, which are designed by the former editor of Marie Claire. She also has curated vintage pieces mixed into the boutique.
Address: Harbiye Mahallesi, Mim Kemal Öke Cad. No:9, 34367 ?i?li/Istanbul – Europe, Turkey
After this…..you wanna see a very typical Istanbul neighborhood…
You wanna get a taxi to Cuma (where you can have great homemade lunch!). Walk around all the streets here, as you will find antique shops etc. Next start walking towards Journey cafe and explore around the neighborhood within the back streets etc. If you are wanting to eat dinner in this neighborhood go to Jash ?stanbul. I believe this place has a long history, with an Armenian background, which is so intwined within the story of Istanbul. You can sit outside…..the settings are typical of this hood. Definitely recommend! Book ahead!
You want Russian food in Istanbul for dinner…as you do..
Ayaspa?a Rus Lokantas?. It’s not Turkish food, but given the white Russians came to Istanbul during their exodus after the revolution, it is ingrained within the stories of Istanbul. This place has a great vibe, and you will essentially see Istanbul people drinking and eating up here, getting a taste of what Istanbul is…. Book ahead!
Address: Gümü?suyu Mahallesi, ?nönü Cd. Ankara Palas Apt. D:59/A, 34437 Beyo?lu/?stanbul, Turkey. Phone: +90 212 243 48 92
All the images courtesy of The Tourist.