Turgut Cansever has practiced architecture in Turkey since 1946. Trained in Turkey, he developed a conceptual approach based on a search for regional expression in architecture. Among his best known projects are the Anatolian Club Hotel (1951-1956) and the Demir Holiday Village in Bodrum (1971). As a planner, Cansever has headed projects in Istanbul on preservation and restoration, pedestrian zoning, and metropolitan development.
(Source: Architcture and Community: Building in the Islamic World Today. The Aga Khan Award for Architecture. Millerton, NY: Aperture. 1983.)
Recipient of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 1992.
The first phase of the development of Demir Holiday Village, 9 kilometres north of Bodrum on Mandalya Bay, consists of thirty-five vacation houses designed for middle-class Turkish families, constructed on 2.7 hectares of a 50 hectare site sloping upward toward a national pine forest reserve and downward to a Mediterranean beach. If a proposed airport is built nearby, further development of the 50 hectare site may comprise hotels, 500 houses, conference and exhibition facilities and shopping centres.
The architects of Demir Holiday Village are Turgut Cansever, Emine Ögün, Mehmet Ögün and Feyza Cansever. The land was acquired by architect Turgut Cansever who is also the developer and executor of the village. The quality of the project lies in the unique and comprehensive view of architecture that Cansever brings to it. He has a simple objective: to combine excellence in layout and building with commercial viability. In constructing the first thirty-five houses he sought variety of form and massing, the orientation of each villa toward the sea and a common architectural language based upon Greek, Byzantine, and Ottoman precedents. Construction materials consist of local stone, wood and limited use of exposed concrete, a modern contribution to the architectural heritage of the area. Since its inception the village has been shaped by environmental concerns - namely conservation of trees and soil, exclusion of cars wherever possible, protection of the shoreline from erosion and the sea from pollution. The jury found the village "refined yet simple. The well crafted, beautifully sited houses set a high standard for architectural design, craftsmanship and commercial land development."