25 May 2014

Hamam, the Historical and Luxurious Art of Bathing

Some rituals never change. That's what AyaSofya Hurrem Sultan Hamami says. I say it's challenging to even have a quick shower, when you have small kids. And if you decide to do so, chances are you have company, kids running in and out of the bathroom, asking questions and acting like they always do. Well, the company is there also in the hamam, but it's just quiet grown ups your gender, because hamams are separated by gender.

It can feel kind of awkward having somebody give you a bath, after tens of years of doing it yourself. But once you let go and just be present there, it's a real luxury. The package you are opting for may contain a body scrub, a clay mask, a bubble wash and aromatherapy massage. It's the best and most traditional treat you can give yourself in Turkey.

The AyaSofya hamam was built in the 16th century (1556-1557 AD), where the ancient public baths of Zeuxippus (100-200 AD) used to stand, between the Blue Mosque and the Hagia Sophia. The area is also particularly significant as the site where the Temple of Zeus once stood. I definitely felt pampered like a goddess and relaxed as a cat when I left it.

Have a long, relaxing bath tonight, wherever you are!

P.S. my room with a view and more of Istanbul through my eyes

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