Ecclesia’s story starts in 1970 at a time when very few foreigners visited the coast. On hearing of a paradise beach with a hidden lagoon, the young Gurkan family was intrigued. Risking the journey down the steep mountain road they headed to Oludeniz - it was love at first sight!
Bands of turquoise stretched over the sea into the horizon, Pine-clad mountains framed the bay with its long stretch of beach. Housing only a handful of buildings and the ramshackle cabins of travelers. Along the shore, just meters back from the beachfront, was what appeared to be the ruins of an ancient church, mostly buried in sand. Enchanted by the ruins, the Gurkan’ s dreamt of one day breathing life back into the church and making a home in the bay. They bought the land that very year and started their first business, Deniz Camp, in 1971.
From these simple beginnings the bay evolved. In 1985 the Gurkan’ s opened Buzz Bar, one of the first beach bars and restaurants in Oludeniz. It quickly became a success, growing into the well-loved establishment that it is today. 2011 saw the opening of Mozaik, a select array of swim-up apartments and rooms located in the centre of the bay. Later that year permission to make a feature of the church was finally received.
In 2015, with excavations on St. Demetrius well underway and the church safely sheltered under a roof, the old Buzz Bar came down and construction on the new bar and Ecclesia began. The new look Buzz Bar and Ecclesia Hotel opened the Summer of 2017. What's in store? A better, brighter and more contemporary bar retaining the essence of the original, well-loved Buzz, and a unique hotel in keeping with a 3rd Century church – with a few unexpected twists!