For many expats away from their families this might be a trying time, while for those fortunate enough to be with their mothers it is a prime time to pamper them and celebrate their existence. Luckily, there is the best of both worlds: lavish brunches to feast on together or activities on the day with the expat community to hopefully alleviate homesickness a little. Either way, Istanbul has you covered for celebrating mums, creating community and enjoying the great outdoors together.
Mother's Day brunch
One of the longest standing traditions for Mother's Day is enjoying a long and leisurely brunch together. This Sunday, May 12, the Mövenpick Hotel in Levent will be offering a lavish Mother's Day Brunch at their AzzuR Restaurant. Taking place from noon until 3 p.m., there will be a buffet serving breakfast and brunch classics, including pancakes and waffles as well as homemade pastas and pizzas prepared by their Italian Executive Chef Giovanni Terracciano. Don't forget Mövenpick's famous ice cream, which will also be available at the buffet. The brunch will be accompanied by live piano music, and there will also be a cake decorating class and clown show held on the sidelines for the kids. The price for this unlimited brunch is TL 180; however, mothers eat for free when accompanied by two paying adults. Kids aged seven to 12 receive a 50 percent discount, and children six and under are free.
On Sunday, May 12, the Hilton Istanbul in Harbiye will be holding a special "Five O'Clock Tea Time" event in honor of Mother's Day. This fancy afternoon tea will take place from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Lobby Lounge and will have live music, unlimited tea and coffee accompanied by scrumptious sweets for a fee of TL 90.
Upcoming events for expats
Tidy Turkey in Forest
Tidy Turkey, a community and blog started by an Australian expat that gets together to clear litter from various areas in Istanbul, will be hosting a cleanup event and a BBQ party this Sunday, May 12 in Belgrade Forest. Titled "Cleaning Up and Horsing Around," this event will be a fun day in nature in which participants will clear litter and afterwards dine, relax and socialize while also getting the opportunity to interact with horses.
Participants will meet up at the Gümüşdere Muhtarlık bus stop at 12:45 p.m. and head to the cleanup site, which is a popular picnic destination in nature. Following the cleanup, which will take place from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., there will be a potluck picnic at the Istanbul Atlı Okçuluk ve Tarihi Atlı Savaş Sanatları Kulübü, which is a horse riding and historical archery and equine martial arts club. Participants are encouraged to bring a dish to share and after the lunch, opportunities to go horseback riding will be available at a discounted price.
Workshop by Istanbul&I
Istanbul&I, which is a volunteer youth community with hundreds of members from all over the world, will be organizing an interactive workshop that will get people out of their shells and connecting on Sunday, May 12. Entitled "Out of your comfort zone: Let yourself play!", this event will be facilitated by Martina Pavone, an Italian expat and professional coach, who is also the CEO of ONAR Istanbul and the founder of WonderFULL Women - a program for Women's Empowerment. But you may know Martina from her improvisational theater performances, as she performs in Turkey and throughout Europe. This interactive workshop will consist of various activities intending to challenge the tendencies to expect worst-case scenarios in life and will guide participants to learn to embrace change for a more successful life. This workshop will take place from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Istanbul&I's center in Karaköy.
Istanbul&I hosts a number of educational and beneficial events, including their weekly community iftar program taking place during this holy month as well as holding a number of speaking clubs. Later this month, they will also be holding a talk on "Personal Finance in Turbulent Markets," which will be in English on Sunday, May 26 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Yabangee's Potluck Picnic
On Sunday, May 26, Yabangee, which is a volunteer-run website and community geared toward foreigners in Turkey, will be holding a "Potluck-Style Picnic at Maçka Park." Starting at 4 p.m., participants are encouraged to bring a dish to share and blankets to relax on. A great opportunity to take part in the expat community while enjoying flavors from all over the world.