Don’t we all just love a great story? Stories, where the people start feeling like friends and the journey, is so special it is engraved in your memory. This is what happened when restaurateur and businessman, Gokhan told us his and his wife, Vanessa’s story. I was completely immersed in every nuance and break so passionately told by Gokhan. How he ended up in South Africa as a young Turkish man, how he met his wife Vanessa and how their dream of a Turkish oasis finally became a reality.
Yadah Castle, where you’ll find Ala Turka, now also home to Hammam Spa. Vanessa and Gokhan have transformed the castle next to the R21 into a one-stop retreat for an authentic Turkish experience. The utmost care has been taken to ensure that everything is perfectly comfortable as well as aesthetically pleasing.
I was invited to attend their opening and guided tour through the new spa and my, oh my, it is impressive! The guys and gals from Salt and Pepper and Yadah Castle sure know how to throw an opening, making it both dramatic and personal all in one.
The spa is a sight to behold. Luxury and glamour trump clinical in Hammam. True to Gokhan’s roots they have designed the spa to be the perfect sanctuary where business and relaxation can be done in a relaxed and mind cleansing space. The spa has a big selection of skin and beauty ranges handpicked by Vanessa to ensure only the best for her spa guests. Wander through all the unique spaces, each one decorated according to its function (no duplicates here!), float lazily in their fantastic, very blue, semi-indoor pool and have a glass of bubbly on the rooftop. The spa is even fitted with a hair salon so that you don’t have to leave sporting a frazzled look!
A couple of years ago when Ala Turka was still in Irene Village Mall we spent an evening dining at Ala Turka. To be perfectly honest before a few weeks ago I had only had their Chef’s Choice because that was the very first dish I ordered upon Gokhan’s recommendation and that’s what I had every single time I went there after that. Since then Ala Turka has moved and grown tremendously, it is still its wonderful self only bigger and with more private spaces. As a favourite for various diplomats and celebrities, be sure that your hosts will make you feel extra special with your choice of cosy and secluded, cool with a view or discreet and plush. Upon visiting Ala Turka be sure to expect delicious food, skillful belly dancers and a fantastic view of flickering city lights.
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