The aim of the present study was to discuss an emerging trend in Istanbul housing - a trend of essentially copying urban identity and pasting it on housing- in an effort to test the reaction of potential users to these environments. The present study includes research regarding a possible divergence in opinion of these environments among laypeople and experts in the field of architecture. Sample sites selected were themed "San Marco Square, Venice" and "Bosphorus, Istanbul." It was hypothesized that a difference in opinion would be present among groups regarding the description of and preferences for visual attributes of the sample sites. Twenty architects and 20 non-architects were asked to describe the selected buildings. A "Visual Evaluation Test" featuring images of the buildings was included in the questionnaire. Significant differences in opinion were present among the groups of respondents. Architects generally held a negative view of the sites, focusing primarily on design and context. Non-architects evaluated the visual attributes positively, focusing primarily on "function-units" and quality. They were uninterested in Venice or the Bosphorus as housing concepts, but were largely impressed by the newness of the sites, their social and recreational facilities, and their planned organization, features consumers are deprived of within the city center.