Dolmabahçe Palace was built in neo-baroque style between 1843-1856 in the rapidly growing northern section of the city, at the Marmara outlet of the Bosphorus strait, to replace the Topkapi Palace which was out-fashioned. The architect of the palace was Karabet Balyan, head architect of Sultan Abdulmecit. It has 3 floors including the basement with a symetric design, with 285 rooms, 43 halls, 6 Turkish baths. The pier is 600 meters long and the palace has two beautifully decorated monumental gates giving access to its courtyard. The huge ballroom has a 4,5 tons crystal chandelier hanging from its 36 meters high ceiling.
Dolmabahce housed Sultans and their families before the Republic, and then it was used by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk during his visits to Istanbul. Atatürk died here on the 10th of November, 1938. The palace now serves as a museum and a guest-house used for receptions for important foreign statesmen during their official visits.