Black Sea Tourism Planning and Architecture of 60s and 70s. Case Study: Romania and Turkey - the diary (2)


morning walk around the city - departure from Trabzon 12.10am, saturday 26th of October --- express coastal way --- arrival to Sinop the same day at 8.10pm (495km)

Big parts of old neighbourhoods in Trabzon are demolished, while in their place, the local authorities are creating parks and green spaces. In the same time new neighbourhoods are built around the cities mainly in the shape of big blocks of flats.

old neighbourhood is being demolised

old neighbourhood

new park where an old neighbourhood was before

new park where an old neighbourhood was before

the new neighbourhoods


the new neighbourhoods

Τhe city of Trabzon has lost its connection with the sea in-between them there is the express-way. The project of the coastal express-way in the area started in 70's and it's still a "work in progress". On all our way till now we noticed that the work sites are open 24/7 building new parts of the express-way, opening new tunnels, demolishing parts of the cities or towns. It's a large scale state intervention part of the process of modernisation of the area which started several decades ago. This intervention is in contrast with the small scale, ephemeral wooden structures build by the locals trying to re-establish the connection with the coast.

 the city disconnected from the coast

coastal express-way and pedestrians' coastal walk

pedestrians' coastal walk

 the tunnel entering the city of Trabzon

 the city disconnected from the coast

 the city disconnected from the coast

the express-way

 the locals are re-establishing the connection with the sea


different models of bridges made by the locals in order to cross the express-way



morning walk around the town - 
Melia Kasım Hotel -  Ada Hotel - departure from Sinop 13.00am, sunday 27th of October --- coastal way --- arrival to Amasra the same day at 8.00pm (321km)

Sinop is another historical town on Black sea and has the fame of a tourist destination for years. It has an atmosphere of a Mediterranean fishermen town. We start our day trying to find traces of modernism. The few hotels in the center of Sinop are all built in 50's in the popular modern idiom but most of them have been renovated in a more traditional way since then.


The Melia Kasım Hotel, is the only one that still keeps it's modernist character. It was built between 1958-1960 and its still very close to its original shape. Only the reception is transformed in a rustic-oriental style.

Melia Kasım Hotel - Sinop

Melia Kasım Hotel - Sinop (1958-1960 - from "Sinop Tarihi, 1940-1960'lı Yıllar, II Cilt, Sinop Belediyesi Kültür Yayınları")

Melia Kasım Hotel - Sinop (reception)

Melia Kasım Hotel - Sinop (interiors)






Our next stop is at the abandoned Ada hotel and restaurant, placed over Sinop with a nice view.






Our way to Amasra is long and picturesque, a combination between mediterranean paysage with vegetation of central europe. 


morning walk around Amasra - departure at 12.10am, monday 28th of October --- arrival to Zonguldak at 1.45pm --- arrival to Ereğli at 4.00pm --- arrival to Akçakoca the same day at 6.00pm (206km)

After a long, tiring but picturesque journey, we stopped in Amasra, a very beautiful town to spend a sunny winter's morning. It is more touristic than any other place we visited until now. We find no organized tourism of the period and few traces of hotel infrastructure since the '60's, the oldest hotel (Belvü Palas) built in 1960 and a lot of the new ones. The Black Sea towns, though extremely beautiful, picturesque and with plenty of history to show, were never a destination for mass tourism in Turkey. The whole coast line was mainly seen as an industrial area and as source for migration to Istanbul and West.








Our day will be long and it has to include visits to two more cities and Akçakoca as final destination of the day. Zonguldak is a port city nearby coal mines. It is very crowded, noisy and smoggy. In this chaotic city the military club (Asker Gazino) catches our attention as it has a typology of a 70's hotel. Big infrastructure projects are under construction in Zonguldak.






Asker Gazino 




In Ereğli a business hotel (Eken Hotel) built in 60's will be our modernist find. Small rooms with common toilets and old furniture offered and is still offering an low price stay in Ereğli on the port. On the old pictures at the reception walls, modernism meets tradition for the ceremony of the opening of the hotel.



In Ereğli, ERDEMIR the largest integrated flat-steel producer of Turkey, internationally acknowledged, founded in 1967. 



morning walk around Akçakoca - departure at 10.30am, tuesday 29th of October --- drive through Kocaali and Karasu --- arrival to Istanbul the same day at 14.30 (255km)

Akçakoca is a small town transformed into a touristic destination with low cost hotels, cafes and bars. We are approaching Istanbul and the "anatolian" spirit is fading out. We can find again coffee and alcohol though we got used to good black tea and tasty hazelnuts. A modernist housing complex overlooking the sea comes in our way  at the edge of the town. It still has an airy and open feeling despite the numerous modifications and alterations made by its inhabitants over the years. On such a small and remote scale, these are clear examples of the different and complicated path the ideals and forms of modernism took on the shores of the Black Sea.




The last seaside locations we will pass by, Kocaali and Karasu, are developed with summer villas, destinations probably preferred and chosen because of their proximity to the Istanbul metropolitan area.



We leave the ghost summer towns and we are on our way back to Istanbul. For the rest of the day we will take a breath enjoying the Bosporus. We left back the Black Sea, in Turkey, but we would like to return.


Thursday 30th of October:

It is always a pleasure to be in Istanbul. It is a pleasure to be in Istanbul and visit the central bookstores, the SALT gallery and meet again with our friends-architects Pelin Derviș (curator and independent researcher), Alper Kurbak (Faculty of Architecture, Maltepe University Istanbul), Meriç Öner (Associate Director of Research and Programs SALT Istanbul). We write down in our calendars that we will meet again in October 2014. We are looking forward.


A research initiated by skaarchitects and art historian Alina Șerban
Support for this research has been provided by the Romanian Cultural Institute in collaboration with SALT Research, Istanbul


The Romanian Cultural Institute cannot be held responsible for the content of this material.





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