The Halet Çambel Manor is Preparing to Host the Archaeological Community

The historic Halet Çambel Manor in Arnavutköy is being restored under the aegis of Boğaziçi University’s History and Cultural Heritage Research Projects, run with support from the Ministry of Development. The manor will host academic studies in the fields of archaeology and architectural history under the name of the Halet Çambel and Nail Çakırhan Center for Archaeology and Traditional Architecture Studies. 

Restoration work on the manor began last year, and was also featured in a piece in the newspaper Sabah on November 4, 2014.The news report noted that renowned archaeologist Prof. Halet Çambel, who passed away last January at the age of 97, donated the “Red Manor”, which she had lived in for over half a century with her husband Nail Çakırhan, recipient of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, to Boğaziçi University in 2004, and that thousands of works and documents in the manor were now under protection.

Mesut Altun’s report also included the views of Asst. Prof. Paolo Girardelli, who is one of the coordinators of the restoration project, which is expected to cost $ 2 million.Girardelli said that they were diligently working at the manor, inventorying all of its items and materials, including the plants in the garden.

The Halet Çambel and Nail Çakırhan Center for Archaeology and Traditional Architecture Studies is a unique example of the style of manor that showcases the western architectural characteristics that began to emerge in the 20th Century against the floor plans, architectural culture, and landscape organization of the late Ottoman era. The Manor holds the personal archives and documents of Halet Çambel and Nail Çakırhan, as well as materials, plans, sketches, and photographs left over from the Karatepe digs and Halet Çambel’s sister Leyla’s library.Efforts to sort, catalogue, and digitize this archive are still ongoing.