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ISTANBUL, Turkey, December 19, 2007 – Those still looking for an exotic New Year’s Eve getaway should consider celebrating in the only country in the world situated on two continents: Turkey.  Steeping with culture, history, and most importantly, fun festivities, Turkey is a fabulous destination to ring in the New Year. 

In a country immortalized by tradition, yet flourishing in modernity, New Year’s celebrations in Turkey are as characteristic as they come.  Dining on New Year’s Eve with a feast of none other than a turkey dinner, the Turkish celebrate the holiday with close members of their family in an intimate home environment that is typically decorated with pine and a New Year’s tree – an evergreen similar to a Christmas tree.  Family and friends exchange gifts in celebration of a good year and new beginnings before heading out to revel in the night’s New Year’s festivities. 

~New Year’s Eve in Istanbul~

Situated within Istanbul’s modern environs on the city’s European side, Taksim Square is the heart of New Year’s Eve celebrations in Istanbul.  Fireworks light the night skies over the Bosporus and techno music explodes through the streets, as visitors from near and far come to enjoy the most exciting night of the year, which is widely celebrated through large public festivals in the Istanbul’s Beyoğlu and Nişantaşı districts.  Before reveling in the streets, visitors can head to hip restaurants like the famed Cezayir in the Beyoğlu neighborhood, where the restaurant offers a special New Year’s dinner overflowing with Turkish specialties for around $92. 

Those preferring to spend the stroke of midnight indoors in the lap of luxury can consider the luxe Ciragan Palace hotel.  This extravagant property offers a “Palatial Splendor” package for the New Year that includes a two night stay in a Superior Sea View room.  The hotel’s delectable open buffet breakfast at the renowned Laledan Restaurant is included in this special offer for two, along with a fabulous New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner at the restaurant, with spectacular views of the Bosporus fireworks at midnight.  Rates start at $1,600, exclusive of VAT.  

            The Ritz-Carlton Istanbul also offers a New Year’s weekend package that includes three nights deluxe room accommodations, a Laveda Signature Body massage, New Year’s Eve dinner prepared by Executive Chef Marcel Nosari at Çintemani Restaurant - with its sweeping views of the Bosporus and live music – followed by New Year’s Day brunch with unlimited sparkling wine.  Rates start at $1,682, exclusive of VAT. 

For travelers on a smaller budget, Istanbul’s Conrad Hotel offers a three-night deal for the price of two nights, including breakfast and a bottle of sparkling wine upon arrival.  Rates start at $159, exclusive of VAT. 

~New Year’s Eve on the Turkish Riviera~

            Looking to spend your New Year’s holiday relaxing in the sun near the sparkling sea?  Many hotels along the Turkish Riviera award visitors with wonderful packages that allow guests to both relax and live it up for the New Year. 

            Located along Bodrum’s charming coastline and close to the fashionable hot spot of Turkbuku, the Kempinski Hotel – Barbados Bay offers guests a special New Year’s package that comprises a four-night stay from December 28, 2007 – January 2, 2008, in a standard sea view room with a balcony.  Packages start at $1,615 and include airport transfers to and from Bodrum’s airport, a welcome drink upon arrival at the hotel, daily gourmet breakfast, and free wireless internet.  On New Year’s Eve, guests are treated to a six-course gala dinner at the hotel’s ballroom that includes local drinks and entertainment. 

            Further south in the Mediterranean region of Turkey, the attractive port city of Antalya also awards visitors with stunning scenery, historical sites and leisure activities.  Another Kempinksi property, The Dome Belek-Antalya, offers visitors the chance to revel in what was named Turkey’s #1 Golf Resort in 2007 by the World Travel Awards.  The hotel’s package for the holiday includes three night accommodation in a Superior garden or golf view room, daily buffet breakfast and dinner, a welcome drink upon arrival,  New Year’s Day breakfast by Sunchoice, and a five-course New Year’s Eve gala dinner that includes live music and unlimited local beverages.  Furthermore, golf-lovers are treated to two green-fees per person (1 PGA Sultan Course and 1 Pasha Course) at the Antalya Golf Club.  Prefer to hit the health center?  Guests can substitute a day of golfing with a spa treatment at The Dome SPA & Thalasso, valued at $130 per person.  Valid from December 26, 2007 – January 3, 2008, the New Year’s Package at The Dome Belek-Antalya starts at $1,286 (single occupancy) and $1,880 (double occupancy). 

For information about travel to Turkey, call 1-877-FOR-TURKEY or contact the Turkish Culture and Tourism Offices in New York at 212-687-2194, in Washington D.C. at 202-612-6800, or in Los Angeles at 323-937-8066 and visit or

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