• Discover Istanbul’s hippest neighborhood, filled with vintage stores and trendy eateries
  • Browse antiques and accessories, leather-bound notebooks and stylish sunglasses
  • Try famous fritters, classic slow cooked beef and the best baklava in the world

Not long ago, you could pull up a stool at Karaköy’s fish market and feast on dirt-cheap seafood with complementary views of the Old City. These ramshackle market restaurants were recently bulldozed to make way for a controversial cruise port, and most of the hardware stores in the backstreets have morphed into cocktail bars and concept stores. But Istanbul’s hippest ’hood (a 15-minute taxi ride from the Conrad) is still delightfully rough around the edges. Shop for vintage sunglasses at Fashion At Eye in the French Arcade, leather-bound notebooks at Ece Ajandası, and antiques and accessories at Mae Zae, a basement “life store.” Namli Gurme is the Zabar’s of Istanbul, packed to the rafters with pistachios, olives, and pastırma (cured beef). It’s also a hugely popular breakfast spot, if you can navigate the arcane ordering system. (Make your selection from the glass display counter, a smorgasbord of cheeses and charcuterie, and ask about the daily specials. Or just order a traditional Turkish breakfast, which includes a wonderful house-made sour-cherry jam.) The lines can be crazy at Karaköy Güllüoğlu next door, but you won’t regret the wait: this is undoubtedly the best baklava in the world. Connoisseurs go for the emerald-green pistachio varieties.

Begin your experience by heading to Karaköy, which is just a 15-minute cab ride from Conrad. You can start at Fashion at Eye, which is on a small backstreet that connects Kemankeş Caddesi and Mumhane Caddesi. Explore the neighborhood on foot to find the best concept stores and cocktail bars.

FASHION AT EYE: Kemankeş Mahallesi Rihtim Caddesi, 53 Fransiz Geçidi C 9; fashionateye.com

ECE AJANDASI: Kemankesh Mahallesi Necatibey Caddesi No:30; +90-(0)212-522-5544; eceajandasi.com

MAE ZAE: Hoca Tahsin Sok. Akçe Han 16-A; +90-(0)212-288-7768; maezae.com

KARAKÖY LOKANTASI: Kemankeş Caddesi No: 37A; +90-(0)212-292-4455; karakoylokantasi.com

NAMLI GURME: Rıhtım Caddesi, 1 Katotopark Alti; +90-(0)212-293-6880; namligida.com.tr

KARAKÖY GÜLLÜOĞLU: Rıhtım Caddesi,No: 3-4 Karaköy; +90-(0)212-293-0910; karakoygulluoglu.com