Alacati Town in Izmir, Turkey

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A mere two decades ago this rather unassuming erstwhile Greek village some 10km southeast of Çeşme was known predominantly for its excellent olive oil and world-class windsurfing. But thanks to some forward-thinking hoteliers, who transformed many of its dilapidated taş evleri (stone houses) into high-end boutique accommodation, Alaçatı has become one of Turkey’s hottest destinations for the free-spending middle class. A walk along Kemalpaşa Caddesi in Merkez (the centre) showcases the town's main attractions: world-class boutique hotels, restaurants specialising in Aegean cuisine, sleek cafes and high-end boutiques catering to glamour pusses of both sexes. In the high season (May to September), it's a crowded, often-chaotic and always-chic place to spend a few days.

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