Museum is composed of two structures as Main building(Old structure) and Outbuilding(New structure). Architect Aleksandre Vallaury constructs main building by the order of Mr. Osman Hamdi at the end of 19th Century, and construction of Imperial Museum is completed in 1891, 1902 and 1908 in three stages.
Section,where Sayda sarcophaguses are located, is opened for public visits under the name of “Museum of Sarcophaguses” in june 13, 1891. This structure is the first Turkish museum.
Building has two floors and its exterior front is made by being inspired from Crying Woman Sarcophagus. It is one of the most beautiful models of neoclassical structures in Istanbul. Alexander Sarcophagus, Crying Woman Sarcophagus, Satrap Sarcophagus, Lycia Sarcophagus, Tahnit Sarcophagus, situated in Sayda King Tombs; Sidamara Sarcophagus, Erosus Sarcophagus, brought from other ancient cities and regions and other Sarcophaguses and also architectural elements, sculpture and reliefs, tombstones, altars, mosaics, beloning to various temples are exhibited in a chronological order from archaic age to the end of Byzantine period in the ground floor of the main building.
Some of important artsa re Head of Alexander the Great, Marsyas, Goddess Tykhe , Nymphe, Ephebos sculptures and busts of emperor Marcus Aurelius and empress Faustina. Small sized stone pieces, pots and pans, earthenware statuettes are exhibited in the second floor. Also there are treasury department and Non Islamic and Islamic coin cabinets, containing approximately 800000 coins, stamps, signs, medals, and coin casts; and a rich library, including about 70 000 books in this floor.
Outbuilding is adjacent to southern-east of main building. It is composed of six floors. There are old art depots in the second floor under the ground. Kid’s Museum is located in the ground floor and also some architectural structures are exhibited here. Thrace, Bithinia, Byzantine(Surrounding Cultures of Istanbul) Works are exhibited under this ground floor. Works of Istanbul For Ages are exhibited in 1st floor, Works of Anatolia and Troia For Ages are exhibited 2nd floor and Works, containing various periods belonging to Anatolia and Surrounding Cultures(Cyprus, Syria, Palestine) are exhibited in 3rd floor.