Turkish President Erdoğan's wife Emine: Inside her lavish life, including a €280 million home and more

Emine Erdoğan lives first and foremost lavishly. A look behind the conservative-religious scenes.

Emine Erdoğan: Who is the wife of the Turkish President?
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Emine Erdoğan: Who is the wife of the Turkish President?

Turkey's First Lady Emine Erdoğan was born in Istanbul on February 16, 1955, the fifth child and only daughter of Cemal and Hayriye Gülbaran. Emine spent a lot of her early life working on social projects, and she met her future husband through her Idealist Women’s Association in the 1970s. Emine and her husband, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, have two daughters and two sons.

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Emine Erdoğan has an expensive passion

One of her favourite pastimes seems to be shopping, Business Insider reports. Emine, when accompanying her husband on a state visit to Belgium, gave instructions to close an entire shopping mall in order to shop undisturbed.

And when she shops, it gets expensive: Emine has a strong preference for old objects and invested 44,000 euros in an antique store. The pro-government newspaper Yeni Akit mentions that her favourite tea is white tea from the province of Rize, with a kilogram costing about €1,800.

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The Erdoğans live in a splendid residence

According to Business Insider, the ruling couple's home is also quite impressive: The palace is said to be the size of five whole soccer fields and cost around €280 million. But that's not all. The carpets that are supposed to make the house more liveable cost over €8 eight million.

Emine likes to present herself in public as a benefactor and is remarkably traditional when it comes to gender relations. However, in 2016, she caused a stir with her supportive comments about being in a harem. During the Ottoman Empire, sultans had harems that housed their wives, concubines and female family members.

Emine said harems were 'educational establishment that prepared women for life', and this caused a huge reaction from Turks and international observers alike. While many acknowledged that women were indeed given an education in a harem, they were not allowed to leave the palace and were effectively trapped there. According to Turkish media, Emine said women who had lived in this system over centuries were an 'inspiration'. Her comments came just after a controversial talk her husband gave for International Women’s Day where he said that 'a woman is above all else a mother'.

While Emine seems to live quite the life of luxury, the Turkish people, on the other hand, face difficult challenges: freedom of the press is in constant danger, and people are fearful to speak out against the current status quo.

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This article has been translated from Ohmymag DE.

Sources used:

Business Insider: 'Von wegen streng gläubig? Das verschwenderische Luxusleben von Erdoğans Ehefrau Emine'
handelszeitung.ch: 'So luxuriös lebt die Ehefrau von Präsident Erdogan'

BBC: Turkey's first lady praises Ottoman harem

A look inside the world's biggest home now on sale for £250 million A look inside the world's biggest home now on sale for £250 million