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Hillside Beach Club
Fethiye, Turkey | hillsidebeachclub.com

Tucked away in a dimple of land in Turkey’s southern coast lives a small secret: a bustling hillside community of savvy Istanbullus, travel aficionados and middle-European aristocrats, neatly organized into terraced suites, bikini uniforms and late-afternoon spa appointments. Officially known as Hillside Beach Club by the world, and Hillside bliss & cure to those who dwell for an average of 5 days during the high summer season.

Abi and I arrive late Wednesday afternoon, thoroughly worn out from a grubby day’s travel and one twisty car-ride from Dalaman airport closely bordering 1) the edge of hills and 2) seasickness (yes, in a car). Alas, the vehicle is sent from the mother ship and has free-Wi-Fi, for which we reward 100 brownie points. We’re ushered through the reception building as our luggage disappear on a golf buggy with a handsome Turk at the wheel. We don’t mind this at all. He could’ve been a luggage pirate from the local town.

After a breezy check-in another handsome Turk begins the tour (100 more points for Griffindor). Like all 330 rooms at Hillside, we get a full ocean frontal, the resort is built so that all rooms are treated to the money shot. Our third-floor room opens into a private terrace and is a medley of timber, sand and slate grey. The rest of the resort is a collective of buildings and beaches, punctuated with cream lounges and powder-blue fixtures. Relaxed and sophisticated, despite the flock of goggled children padding around the heated pool.

The sun melts into a golden sea as we into our duvets on the first night at Hillside. A promising day lurks behind the hills…

Yellow dress – ASOS. Cardigan – The White Company (Similar here)

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08:20am
My travel buddy is fast asleep and doesn’t budge a muscle as I flutter around the dressing table chanting BREAKFAST BREAKFAST. She’s an owl. I’m a pig. A pig with big plans to ravage everything on the menu. A generous buffet offers irresistible breads, deep bowls of crumbly feta, fresh walnuts and figs. My tip? Go light on the savoury and finish with a breakfast dessert: crêpes with a slather of Sarelle, which is like Nutella but heavier on hazelnuts. Top it off with strawberries that taste gloriously, and nostalgically of themselves.

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Bag – L.K. Bennett Rosamund Mini

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09:45am
Pass the early birds calling dibs on sunbeds and setting up a towel-camp for the day. Not sure if their breakfast was shovelled in with haste at 7am or they’re planning on ordering a liquid version via the sun-bed app, but both thoughts are equally amusing.
The climb to our third floor room has never been this laborious. I decide that I’ve done the work-out for the day and mentally schedule in burgers for lunch. I’ve earned it.

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Swimsuit – Seafolly via SimplyBeach. Sunglasses – Karen Walker. Espadrilles – Next. Compact – Chanel. Sun Spray – Nuxe
10:30am
The vista of deep green pines and turquoise water revive me from a sit-down that nearly slips into post-breakfast nap. I load sun-things into a straw bag and descend the hill via stairs (two burgers maybe) towards the adult-only sun deck. The ‘adult-only’ sign excites me and I feel like a freshly-turned 21 years old again at the liquor store.
After reading the same paragraph in my book three times I decide its time for a dip in the insanely clear water.
10:34am
Realise why I never swim and ponder how many calories I’ve burnt just floating and reward myself with burger number three.

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1:00PM
Jolt up from the nap (which finally happens after the mandatory dip) at the first clink of lunch plates being set up. I scoop up my belongings and follow the smell of marinated vegetables, lamb köfte and meze wafting down the deck. I grab a plate and attack one end to the other with a spoon/ladel with no consideration to the person behind me – you snooze you lose, bro.
We ferry our plates over to where the sailing boats are lined up and decide to eat ‘lap top’ with both feet dipped in the water. I love this eat-anywhere policy, and make a mental note to implement this once home.

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3:00 pm
The only appointment to keep, booked the evening before with leftover pragmatic city-brain, which slushy holiday brain thanks profusely as we step into the cool, shaded haven that is Sanda Nature Spa. Smells like Bali. After a core-refining ginger & lemon tea, Abi and I follow our masseuses (masseusi?) into cabins. Sounds like Bali too.

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4:40pm
Every single muscle in my body is pulled to a happy face. There’s a new smell about town and it’s Turkish tea + snacks being set out. I love this place.
Top – DIY (Find the tutorial in the Adorn book). Trousers – Zara. Clutch – Next.

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5:00pm
Time to catch up with a couple emails, we catch boat shuttle to Serenity beach, another adult-only beach and delightfully far away from everything that it feels like I’m on another mini holiday. (Holiception?) I ask for a smoothie, and then a plate of fruit, I slump lower in the sun bed… emails answered = zero. Who am I kidding.

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Dress by ASOS. Shoes – Birkenstock Arizona. Sunglasses – Karen Walker
6:50pm
As the sun dips lower, we catch the last shuttle back to change before dinner. Yes we’re about to eat again.

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Burberry Fresh glow radiance No.01

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8:15pm
The beams of our private terrace frames the sunset like no other, everything turns into golden liquid. We dive head-first into an evening of fruity cocktails, dinner (mind-blowing buffet) and a film at the amphitheatre.

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Photos by Park & Cube; photos of me by Abi; Park & Cube was a guest of Hillside Beach Club as a member press

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64 Comments

  1. As always, the photos are stunning! I’ve always wanted to visit Turkey. Looks like you had lots of fun! x

    Nerve Wires

  2. Your photography is so beautiful! I love the washed out, dreamy feeling of your photos! Such a big inspiration for me and my blog! And the writing is so funnily cute :)

    Its great to know about a place in Turkey to stay that is not Istanbul.

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  3. I’m in love with your photos <3 Looks like you had a great time!

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  4. Loooove this! <3 Looks like a perfect place on earth! x

  5. You have such a good eye! Love the pictures!
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  6. Beautiful pictures! Turkey looks amazing!

    Sophia
    http://sophiebysophia.blogspot.com

  7. Julie

    I see a man’s ass in the picture before the one of the beach volley game. Please tell me I’m just hallucinating!

  8. Bahahaha you’re absolutely right!! Going to have to mosaic that…

  9. I know that I probably say the same thing whenever I comment on your posts, but… DAMN WOMAN! Your photos are amazing! By the way, for someone who speaks of herself as an avid eater, you got a great figure. Great post! ^^ <3

  10. amazing capture!

    http://monkeyshines-monkeyshines.blogspot.com

  11. What a gorgeous photos, you look amazing! I always love reading your post with your perfect and funny writing style about what sounds like a wonderful day!

    Love, Rachel
    http://www.herheadintheclouds.com

  12. You’re killing me with these gorgeous photos. Ugh, I need a vacation.
    xoxo
    The Accidental Mama
    http://www.theaccidentalmama.com

  13. Such beautiful pictures Shini! All really just beautiful!!!

    A Weekend in Paris

  14. Wow… Just amazing photography. Making me itch to travel again!
    littlepinkcactus.blogspot.com

  15. I recently stumbled upon your blog and thought I would finally comment. Your pictures are so beautiful and I love the thoughtfulness of your posts. Thanks for sharing and for having such an amazing and simple blog.

    x

    http://www.pacifictopark.com

  16. Absolutely love these photos and the little timeline you put together. :P

    http://www.jeffreychung.net/blog

  17. It looks like heaven! The photos and write up are so beautiful.

  18. Nicole

    Oh my, these pictures are amazing! Great post, as always!

  19. I love your photography, and how you tell your story through your photographs <3 you are so beautiful too :)

  20. the photography is just impeccable as usual ;)

  21. Dreaming about my next vacation….. Lovely pics!
    V.
    http://lavsphere.blogspot.fr/

  22. Your photos are beyond! Love love your foulard/scarf tied as boobtube top, very chic.

  23. I really, really love your review style how you do it with times of day. Looking forward to more like this!

  24. Phenomenal travel report! And always love your stunning photos!

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  25. great pics !!http://intelligently-fashionable.blogspot.com

  26. I’m just back from my holidays, stuck in a gloomy office… so this post just makes me want to kill myself. Sigh. i want to be on holidays again… and eat as much as you did. I’m always hungry!
    Great pictures, as usual.
    xx,
    E.
    http://www.theslowpace.com

  27. I lost the ability to concentrate after reading BREAKFAST DESSERTS! oh man, gonna be totes craving crepes slathered in nutella now (zero point for the cafe closest to me, the best they can do to satisfy my cravings is a chocolate chip cookie). My god, these pictures are stunning and i loved reading your mini diary describing everything in perfect detail, take me with you next time, yeah? xx

  28. Very intreesting post and nice pictures. You have a great style!
    Sacha
    http://sachadaybyday.blogspot.fr/

  29. These photos are brilliant! The food looks amazing, perfect water, perfect looks… *sigh* http://www.thepaarblog.com/

  30. These photos are brilliant! The food looks amazing, perfect water, perfect looks… *sigh* http://www.thepaarblog.com/

  31. These photos are brilliant! The food looks amazing, perfect water, perfect looks… *sigh* http://www.thepaarblog.com/

  32. These photos are brilliant! The food looks amazing, perfect water, perfect looks… *sigh* http://www.thepaarblog.com/

  33. Absolutely love love love all your photos. Big fan.

  34. These photos are breathtaking.
    Totally yearning for a beach holiday right now!

  35. Damn, you make traveling so chic. I just look like a frumpy cow when I’m overseas. (lets forget how I look on the beach too.)

    On a random note, I love that yellow frock! Does it come with an inner lining? I know Summer’s nearly over, but that looks close to my dream Summer dress (for 2015 I guess). lol

  36. amazing photos. i need a holiday!

    reckless abandon

  37. The Place is so Beautiful. I Trying to visit the place. Beside Photography are Awesome.

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  38. As always your photos are stunning with the subtle lens flare, and I must say you look amazing in that yellow dress from ASOS with that delicate back details !

  39. I love this post Shini and thanks for coming back to the blog – we’ve missed you!!

  40. Wow, what a piece. Beautiful photography, and such a fascinating way to read how your day was. Very luxurious indeed!

  41. […] Hillside Beach Club, Turkey {Park & Cube} […]

  42. suxh great photos! this place looks amazing!

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  43. Eliza Bennet

    I have stayed there for seven nights and thought maybe this is what heaven will be like.
    Not only the rooms and beaches are excellent but the staff is top notch and I literally never wanted to leave the place.

    Next time take a Turkish bath special at Sanda – wonderful experience especially if you include a bubble massage.

  44. What the heck! This looks INSANE Woah woah WOAH

  45. Sarah

    One of my favourite places in the world, I have been going for 15 years! Lovely review.

  46. Beautiful pictures and the way you describe your day is so fascinating :) Thank you for sharing :) I definitly have to visit this beautiful place :)

  47. What an amazing and stunning photo-diary! The journey sounds and looks amazing!
    A small question: how come your laptop has a marble cover? Did you order it especially? It’s a Mac, right?

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  48. Ah the ‘marble’ cover! It’s an adhesive I bought off eBay, comes in a roll and you can cover any flat surface with it ;) SO perfect cover for my Samsung Laptop!

  49. Thanks, Shini! I’ll browse through Ebay to find it, it looks amazing! Maybe it will be a good fit for my Dell, it’s all scratched by now :S If you happen to still have a link to the seller where you got it, I’d appreciate it ;)

  50. WOW!!! I am breathless these pictures are so gorgeous and relaxing, summer is almost over and I have yet to take a vacation. mywhiteT.com

  51. Shini, this looks absolutely incredible… Looks like such a lovely getaway! You look beautiful too.

    Tweet Tweet xx

  52. You, Shini! Inspire me to want to go and take more photographs and improve on my photography, as well as give me the travel bug! Beautiful yellow dress and photographs! I look forward to your next post.

    Cynthia
    http://www.pinchofchic.com

  53. After having owned a home in Turkey for a few years now, I think the beauty and the friendliness of the country simply cannot be overstated.

  54. Incredible pictures.

  55. Absolutely love this post. and that laptop cover. Turkey looks gorgeous. Again, such a pleasure to have met you at Aubaine’s blogger yard sale :)

  56. MD

    I wish I’ll have a great vacation in such an amazing place.
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  57. wow I love it!!!♥

  58. This place looks crazy beautiful. Another to add to my Travel list.
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  59. […] go home, if I were to hit the road again I’d want to travel to this hidden gem in Turkey! This guide and these pics are […]

  60. Beautiful photos!! I didn’t know such a place exist. I must visit one day!

  61. Amazing photos as always !

  62. Amazing shots!

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  63. N.

    Your blog is one of my all time favorite!!!:)

    anyway I’d like to ask where did you get your Macbook case from?
    It’s very lovely

    Thankyou.

  64. We’ve been visiting Hillside with my family for years now and to see this space through your perspective felt like i am exploring a new hotel. Just beautiful.

    Have a nice day.

    Love,
    H.