Best friends and creative design team behind luxury fashion label Ayesha Somaya, Ayesha Sohail and Somaya Adnan took a trip to home of two continents and culturally stimulating Turkey this spring. The beautiful young women share everything from their work to their social lives and even their holidays, a collaboration that has led the team to become one of the top leading designer brands in town. Ayesha and Somaya each shared exclusively with Secret Closet insights and photos from their exciting trip through exotic Istanbul and their individual holiday wardrobe and shopping on vacation! Take a look and if you haven’t already been you will surely be convinced to plan your next holiday at the cross roads where east meets west.
Selfies in Turkey!
Q) How did you end up deciding on Turkey for a group trip?
Somaya: It was a total surprise for me! They did not let me find out till the very last day that both Ayesha and Adnan (my husband) were planning this trip with the rest of our closest friends for my birthday surprise. I was thrilled!
Ayesha: Adnan had been planning Somaya’s surprise birthday since January. So,when he found out that I had been dreaming of going to Turkey as well he made me his partner in crime. We love to travel with our group of friends so it was inevitable that it panned out the way it did. It was a little tricky organising our crazy work schedule without Somaya’s knowledge but we managed!
Evil Eyes at the Grand Bazaar
Ayesha street style in killer tan boots
Q) How did you pack for the trip?
Ayesha: I always travel light,so that I can shop till I drop wherever I go! My most essential items were my boots, jeans and jackets.
Somaya: Weather was on the colder side in March-April so we took the essentials jackets, boots, scarves. We travelled light and decided to save space to splurge on shopping!
Ayesha outside Reina, a must visit restaurant and club on the Bosphorous river
Somaya enjoying the local cuisine in a rockstar biker jacket an monochrome print
Somaya at the Grand Bazaar
Q) Where did you stay?
Rixos pera on Istaklal street. Stunningly beautiful hotel if you ever plan to visit.
Enjoying the road side food
Q) Recommended places to eat?
Somaya: Sauda on the Bosphorus and Konak on Istaklal street were my favorite
Ayesha: Sauda , Ulus 29, Konak on Istiklal street, and Kumpir in Ortakoy is a must.
Q) Recommended sights to see and which one was your favorite?
Ayesha: Istanbul is inspiringly beautiful, full of colour. From the Bhosporus cruise to the sights of Hagia Sophia you can get lost i the ancient Turkish culture. Visiting the harem gives you a glimpse of the Sultans way of life in the palace which is beyond interesting. I loved the sprawling grounds and the intricate designs of the Topkapi palace.
Somaya: I loved Ortakoy, the Topkapi palace and just walking around the beautiful city.
Q) Recommended places to shop?
Somaya: The Istana mall for luxury wear and roadside boutiques for fun local statement pieces.
Ayesha: Istanbul is a shoppers paradise from high end designers to their local products.There is a taste of vintage combined with modern in terms of inventiveness and edge. The Nisantasi area is like landing in Paris and the multiple stalls for decorative items, home accessories, jewellery, and souveniors at Grand Bazaar is addictive.
At the hotel
Q) Places to stay away from (if any)?
Somaya: Grand Bazaar… overrated and a complete rip off if you don’t haggle!
Ayesha: Thats difficult…I would highly recommend that you not spent time in your hotel, and just stay outdoors to enjoy the culture.
Loving the Mango tweed blazer with Bottega weave hobo on Somaya
Q) What did you splurge on while shopping?
Ayesha: I purchased a gorgeous black jacket with gold chains from a local Turkish designer Quzu at Istaklal street. A few layered chiffon dresses at Lefon and suede tan boots from Poletti in Nisantasi .I love my evil eye bracelets from Grand bazaar.
Somaya: I got beautiful jackets and boots from there.
Q) Would you recommend Turkey on your top 5 places to visit? What are the others?
Ayesha: Yes definitely. I loved my unforgettable trips to Paris, Bahamas, Krabi, South Beach Miami.
Somaya: Ofcourse!! Italy, South of France, Maldives, Interlaken
Thank you Ayesha and Somaya for sharing your experience with us!
Photos courtesy: Ayesha and Somaya
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