İstanbul Helicopter Tour
Edit Content
İstanbul Helikopter Turu Logo (5)

Tevfik Bağcı: The Labor Path from a Receptionist to a Tourism Empire


Tevfik Bağcı: The Labor Path from a Receptionist to a Tourism Empire

Written by Tourism Professional Deniz Emin Tüfekçi: Tevfik Bağcı: We respectfully publish the article titled “From a Reception Officer to the Traveler of the Road to the Tourism Empire with Labor” after Bağcı.


I will write a magnificent success story here, not a lament after a death.

morning of March 24 dear Serhad Uslan. Brother Tevfik passed away! When you said, I spoke only two days ago! I was left alone with the fact that my speech was our last conversation.

The year is 1975, 4 friends from Heybeliada are hitchhiking around the Aegean. We got to know our country sometimes by visiting parks, sometimes by the beach, and sometimes by staying in cheap hostels. He said that we first met there when he was working at the reception of Akdeniz pension in Kuşadası, in the late 70s, when I was running operations at TMGT and he was the reception manager of Martı hotel, he was hosting many of TMGT’s groups or finding and recommending places for our groups to stay. In those years, there were many tourists but no hotels. The four important hotels in Kuşadası were Tusan, İmbat, Kısmet and Martı. His help was very valuable to us.


In the second half of the 80s, after the 1980 coup, when elections were held and tourism boomed, finding a place for the groups again became a problem. Every time I called, Tevfik would solve the problem and find room for our groups in newly opened hotels. One day, he asked if we could rent a hotel and give it to our groups. Of course, “take as many groups as you can and place them there!” I said. He made everyone and every agency friend happy in the facilities that provided very good service.

Hotel rental businesses pushed him to cooperate with foreign tour operators. He built a hotel by taking an advance from the Irish people and gave them a guaranteed place at the best price next season, and the foreign tour operator was filling in its passengers at affordable prices and without experiencing any space problems.
One day, operators who needed hotels started knocking on Tevfik’s door. Due to the advances he received, he was unable to make a profit from the rooms he gave to tour operators at affordable prices, but he was able to rent hotels without putting any money out of his pocket. He decided to provide the money not from the hotel, but through the agency that the tour operators would set up for their tours. He did what he said. He set up his agency and started making money by taking hotel guests on tours.

He would honestly tell the tour operators how he made money and get even stronger support from them.

The risks he took in the 90s and later, either due to bombs or terrorism, affected him as much as they affected the entire industry. He lost jobs and experienced difficulties, but he never compromised on his work ethic and hard work. He played according to the rules. Over the years, we have visited city after city, country by country, travelling, visiting agencies, hotels and tourism fairs together, many times, both at home and abroad, with a suitcase in one hand and a bag in the other. It is rare to find a tourism professional who values ​​his staff as much as he does. They had many staff who had been working for an average of 30 years.

As Peninsula Tourism, it opened Bodrum, Marmaris, Antalya and Istanbul offices in addition to its Kuşadası head office, and made significant contributions to the tourism of the region in each province and district where it established an office.

I think he had 5, multi-star hotels and employed more than 2000 people in his agency. He couldn’t sleep wondering how he would pay the salaries during the pandemic period. Banks were not giving 5 cents of loans during the pandemic, nor were they postponing the loans. There is no need to explain the point of view of banks in Turkey to tourism professionals here. If they give you a loan by valuing your 100 lira property at 20 lira, and you have difficulty paying, they will try to buy your facility for 10 lira in return for the 1 lira loan. One of those who experienced this was Tevfik.

He resisted all of them, he succeeded, he did not fall prey, but he sacrificed his health in order not to leave his employees in need.

We have collaborated a lot for 45 years. We would call each other and chat in good times and bad times and at the most unexpected times.

We sent a “man”, a good person, on his way

He contributed a lot to Turkish tourism with his agency and hotels, and was one of the leading unsung heroes who contributed to Turkish tourism in the 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond. He contributed more from his pocket than the state to open the Kuşadası Congress Center (KOMER). With his mind and ideas, he became a leader and one of the firsts on many issues.


His employees, whom he has been with for years, dozens of friends from other provinces, a former minister of tourism, Mr. Atilla Koç from AKP, CHP deputies, especially the enlightened CHP deputy Bülent Tezcan, current and former district governors, representatives of chambers of commerce, CHP’s Kuşadası mayor, Former presidents, hoteliers, owners of travel agencies, especially in Kuşadası, the transportation sector, and hundreds of friends did not leave him alone on his last journey. The flowers of those who could not come spilled out of the mosque courtyard. I would like to see TÜRSAB together with its management on the last journey of such a valuable member.

Tevfik Bağcı has taken the place he deserves in the tourism community with his good deeds and works. Tourism professionals and their friends will not forget him, I have no doubt about that. The institutions and organizations he established will continue to work properly from now on.

I tried to tell the story of how he honestly built a tourism empire with his efforts from a hostel / hotel reception, and to commemorate him on this occasion. I hope he will be an excellent example for young people.

I pray God’s mercy to my beloved brother, friend, and friend.


Let’s consult your valuable business now.