7 Exclusive Entertainment Activities in Istanbul for Your Devconnect Guests

by Micaela Navarro, 04 August 2023
by Micaela Navarro,  04 August 2023
7 Exclusive Entertainment Activities in Istanbul for Your Devconnect Guests

Oh, Istanbul! It's a city that has captured the hearts of many with its mesmerising blend of history, culture, and modernity. But did you know that Istanbul also offers a treasure trove of exclusive entertainment activities?

From the adrenaline rush of speeding down a world-class racing circuit to the grace and elegance of a traditional Turkish night, Istanbul has something for every discerning traveller.

These aren't just activities; they're experiences that connect you with the soul of the city, each one offering a unique perspective on Istanbul's rich heritage. Ready to explore? Let's dive into some of these incredible experiences that await you in this captivating city. Trust me, you're in for a treat!

1. İstanbul Veliefendi Racecourse

Veliefendi Race Course Event Entertainment in Istanbul via Facebook

Our first suggestion for your corporate entertainment in Istanbul is a classic: horse racing. Imagine it. The thundering hooves, the colourful jockeys, and the stunning, well-groomed horses. Whether your Devconnect 2023 guests are seasoned betting experts or complete newcomers, the thrill of picking a winner is unlike anything else.

It's a symbol of class and exclusivity. The venue itself is a masterpiece, with lush gardens and stunning architectural designs. They even have luxury lounges where you can watch the race in style. Ever tried enjoying a gourmet meal while watching the race from a panoramic window? It's an experience you won't soon forget.

It's a gathering place for the elite, the fashionable, and those who appreciate the finer things in life. Whether it's celebrities or business tycoons, you'll find yourself rubbing shoulders with some of the most interesting people around.

What really sets Veliefendi apart is the fusion of tradition with modern luxury. Horse racing has a long and rich history in Istanbul, and Veliefendi manages to capture that historic charm while still offering all the modern amenities you'd expect from a top-tier entertainment venue.

2. Istanbul Helicopter Tour

Istanbul Helicopter Tour Corporate Entertainment in Istanbul via Istanbulhelicoptertour

What better way to top off your side event at Devconnect than with a VIP experience in Istanbul that takes place up in the sky?

You need to take advantage of where you are. The rich history and stunning landscapes offer an unforgettable experience from the ground. But seeing it from the sky adds a whole new - exclusive - dimension.

Helicopter tours over Istanbul provide unmatched views of iconic landmarks such as the Hagia Sophia, the Bosphorus Bridge, and the Topkapi Palace. From the comfort of a state-of-the-art helicopter, the sprawling city lays itself bare, revealing a unique blend of ancient and modern, East and West.

But a helicopter tour over Istanbul isn't just about the view; it's a luxurious and exclusive experience in itself. Professional pilots and guides are there to ensure a smooth and educational tour.

And, of course, don't forget to bring a camera, because the photography opportunities from this vantage point are truly one-of-a-kind.

3. Prince Islands' Sailing Day Trip

Prince Islands' Sailing Day Trip Exclusive Entertainment in Istanbul via Viator

If you prefer the sea to the sky, our next idea for your luxury entertainment in Istanbul is a sailing experience to the Princes' Islands!

These enchanting isles off the coast of Istanbul offer a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, and there's no better way to explore them than by a sailing day trip.

Setting sail, the city's skyline gradually fades into the distance as you glide across the gentle waves of the Sea of Marmara. The sea breeze, the soothing sounds of the water, and the warmth of the sun create an immediate sense of relaxation.

The Princes' Islands consist of nine islands, four of which are open to the public: Büyükada, Heybeliada, Burgazada, and Kınalıada. Each island has its own distinct personality and attractions. With no cars allowed, the islands maintain a tranquil atmosphere, and the only sounds you'll hear are the clip-clop of horse-drawn carriages and the songs of birds.

Once you arrive at the islands, the day is yours to explore. You can wander through the narrow streets, discover beautiful Ottoman-era wooden mansions, visit historical monasteries, or simply relax on one of the many beautiful beaches.

The sailing experience itself is often the highlight for many. The captains and crew on the sailing trips are usually experienced and knowledgeable, providing insights into the islands' history and ecology. Whether you're an avid sailor or a first-timer, the crew is often more than happy to let you take the helm and feel the thrill of steering the boat through the waves.

You can choose to join a group tour or even charter a private yacht for a more romantic and secluded experience.

4. 1200 Degree Glass Workshop

1200 Degree Glass Workshop for Your Corporate Guests in Istanbul Via Facebook

Perhaps you’re looking for exclusive team-building activities in Istanbul where you not only learn a skill but leave with a keepsake.

Well, the 1200 Degree Glass Workshop in Istanbul is an entirely different, yet equally fascinating experience! This workshop is where creativity meets craftsmanship, providing a unique hands-on adventure for those looking to delve into the world of glassmaking.

Named for the intense heat used in the glassblowing process, the 1200 Degree Glass Workshop is more than just a studio; it's an educational centre and an artistic hub. Upon entering, you'll be met with the warm glow of the furnace and the mesmerizing sight of molten glass, shaped and manipulated by skilled artisans.

You'll be guided by these same professionals, all of whom are not only masters of their craft but also passionate educators. They begin by explaining the history of glassmaking, the science behind it, and the various techniques used to transform raw materials into beautiful objects.

You'll have the opportunity to create your own glass masterpiece. From choosing the colour to blowing, shaping, and moulding the glass, it's an exhilarating process that allows for personal expression and creativity.

The workshop isn't only about creating something tangible; it's about connecting with an ancient art form, understanding the delicate balance between strength and fragility, and experiencing the satisfaction of creating something beautiful with your own hands. The objects created here aren't just souvenirs; they're personal tokens of an unforgettable experience.

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5. AyaSofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam

AyaSofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam Exclusive via Timeout

On the other hand, perhaps you’re looking for entertainment activities in Istanbul that are the opposite of hands-on. Well, look no further than the Hurrem Sultan Hamam. The home of pure relaxation.

This is not just a place to cleanse the body but a delightful immersion into centuries of tradition, providing an indulgent experience that pampers both the body and soul.

Located in the historical Sultanahmet district, near the magnificent Hagia Sophia, the AyaSofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam is a striking piece of architecture. Built in the 16th century by the renowned architect Sinan for Roxelana (Hurrem Sultan), the beloved wife of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, the Hamam has been meticulously restored, preserving its historical charm while offering modern comforts.

The stunning marble interiors, adorned with domes and intricate carvings, echo with whispers of the past. Traditional Ottoman music playing softly in the background sets a soothing and mystical tone.

Guests are welcomed with warm Turkish hospitality and are invited to partake in a ritual that has been practised for centuries. The hamam experience begins in the hot room, where the body is warmed, pores are opened, and muscles are relaxed. A skilled attendant, known as a "tellak," then exfoliates the body using a special mitt, removing dead skin and stimulating circulation.

The next phase involves a bubble massage, where the body is enveloped in a cloud of soft, fragrant soap bubbles, followed by a gentle massage that eases tension and promotes relaxation. After a rinse with warm water, guests are guided to the cooling room, where they can unwind and savour a refreshing drink.

Beyond its architectural and historical significance, the AyaSofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam stands as a symbol of Turkish culture and a sanctuary for rejuvenation.

6. Intercity Istanbul Park

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Intercity Istanbul Park Event in Istanbul via Intercityistanbulpark

Now then, here is some live event entertainment in Istanbul that is wildly loud, and guaranteed to have your heart bursting through your chest. A race track!

Meet Intercity Istanbul Park, where the thrill of motorsports comes alive in Turkey's captivating city of Istanbul. With a selection of high-performance vehicles, you can get behind the wheel and feel the rush of speeding down the track, all under the guidance of professional instructors.

Designed by the famous German engineer Hermann Tilke, Intercity Istanbul Park opened its doors in 2005. It quickly became known for its challenging and exciting layout, including the renowned Turn 8, a high-speed, quadruple-apex turn that challenges even the most seasoned drivers. The track hosts various international racing events, including the Formula 1 Grand Prix, attracting fans and celebrities from around the world.

For those who prefer to be a passenger, there's an option to ride along with a professional driver. Feel the G-forces as they expertly manoeuvre the car around the circuit, providing an up-close experience of what it's like to race on a world-class track.

From exquisite dining options to exclusive VIP areas, guests can enjoy the race day in comfort and style. Corporate events and private parties can also be hosted at the venue, providing a unique backdrop for gatherings that are sure to impress.

7. Sultana's Dinner and Belly Dancing 1001 Nights Show

Sultana's Dinner Live Entertainment in Istanbul via Viator

And finally, if you’re looking for something a little more after-hours for your corporate guests in Istanbul, you need to go to Sultana's Dinner and 1001 Nights Show.

It’s an unforgettable evening of enchantment, history, and indulgence. This exclusive experience transports guests back to the opulence of the Ottoman Empire, combining fine dining with world-class entertainment.

The décor pays homage to the splendours of the Ottoman era, with plush furnishings, gilded accents, and intricate tapestries adorning the walls. It's a setting that immediately immerses you in a world of elegance and mystique.

The evening commences with a sumptuous meal, offering a feast for both the eyes and the palate. Guests can indulge in an array of traditional Turkish delicacies, from succulent kebabs to flavorful mezzes, each course is a culinary delight, complemented by fine local wines and traditional drinks.

But the real magic begins as the lights dim and the 1001 Nights Show commences. The stage comes alive with a vibrant array of performances that celebrate Turkey's rich cultural heritage. Skilled musicians playing traditional instruments set the tone, their melodies weaving a sonic tapestry that transports guests to another time and place.

Their performance is not merely a dance; it's a storytelling art form that conveys emotion and captivates the audience. The show also includes other traditional Turkish dances, each with its unique style and significance, performed by artists who have dedicated their lives to mastering their craft.

Wrapping up

Well, we hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to the most exclusive entertainment activities in Istanbul.

After your work is wrapped up for Devconnect, we guarantee that one - or more - of these VIP experiences in Istanbul will leave their mark on a week you won’t forget!

And, before you go, here’s one final piece of expert advice from us: our guide to the top event photographers in Istanbul. Because if you’re building an event to remember, you’ll need photos to cherish!

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