The extraordinary building with the high domes supported on six stone piers situated at the top of the hill at the end of the row of small hotels in the narrow street immediately behind St. Sophia was orginally built, more than a thousand years ago, as a cistern. Until recently it was used as an automobile repair shop.
But, it is no longer so.
The Turkish Touring and Automobile Association, which converted the old houses in the same street into a row of small hotels, has also repaired and restored the cistern, converting it into a "Roma Tavern".
The Cistern Tavern is a great and dramatic synthesis a witness, a document of the three thousand years old history of Istanbul; the capital of three Empires.
A restaurant of the Republican period in a Roman cistern
at the end of an old Ottoman Street:
Concept and Decor: Çelik Gülersoy