As a child I would remove the stones covering the constantly-bursting-pipes of the neighborhood’s Turkish bath. The reason I was doing it was to allow for the pipes to be repaired. After the repair I would put the stones back in their place. This was how I earned my first money. Back in those days I would have never imagined that one day I’d own the company that first comes to mind today when the word Turkish bath is mentioned.
Our marble work began in Çatalzeytin, Kastamonu. Most of the people living there work in the field of marble. Stones prepared in Marmara Island would arrive in Istanbul after traveling on the sea for three days. Istanbul was the place from where these stones were sent to various places. The barges arriving at Küçükpazar would bring marbles prepared and cut in several sizes. Craftspeople, artisans, and traders of the period would receive their raw materials there and turn them into building stones, which sprang to life as kurnas and stairs or sometimes as special fountains.
My grandfather who was our family’s first marble artisan worked in Dolmabahçe Palace in that era. His work described as varnishing was requiring great efforts back in those days compared to the present day when technological machines came into use. A great floor workmanship, this work offers the final touches to decoration. After a while my grandfather expanded his business using an Italian-originated machine, which was of high technology back then. My father also learned about building elements from my grandfather and founded his own studio in 1974 to continue this business. Back in those days, the top marble designs included spiral marble staircases, which were made using one-piece marble stones in particular and can be seen today in old buildings.