The future of eco-tourism in Dubrovnik region as viewed by Srđ Portolan

In this post Srđ Portolan will examine the success of the eco-tourism in the region of Konavle and what are other potential areas on Dubrovnik region where this model of tourism can be improved.srđ portolan

Srdj Portolan has told us that the so called farm household tourism which offers their guest the unique taste of the local way of life is on the rise. Srđ tells us that the guests are eating organically grown food . Portolan further adds that when the season permitts they get involved in local farm works like picking up the olives or grapes.Srdj Portolan continues that this trend of relaxation is well known among the European countries and in particular those in the Scandinavia. Srdj also says that this type of holiday has an educational connotation as parents teach and offer to their children first hand experience about the food making process, for instance olive oil production. Srđ Portolan believes that Dubrovacko primorje apart from capitalising on the cultural aspects, the village of Ljubac is a typical example of seeing a traditional celebration of Easter, natural remedies routes ought to be established. Like that of Konavle region Srđ adds and following example of Peljesac region where the wine road has been routed and posted, Srđ Portolan belives that the same ought to be done for the so called “Natural Herbes” routes. Srđ states that in modern age of living more and more people turn to alternative methods for treatment especially when it comes to headaches and lighter form of aches. Srdj Portolan suggests that the tourists would love the opportunity to pick up their own St John’s Worth plant, dry it and make their own tea out of it.

Srđ Portolan believes that cultural aspects always need to be taken into account. It is true that for Scandinavian tourists the sun is the central piece of their holiday combining with the cultural visits to places like Mostar. However the same cannot be said for the guests from Middle Eastern oil rich countries. Portolan adds that a small luxury hotel in the rural countryside Konavle will do well for the fact that it close to river Ljuta. It is precisely water that they are fascinated aboutSrđ Portolan  water for the simple shortage of it in the Middle East. Srdj Portolan states that it is a common misconception that a guest from Middle East is interested in visiting Mostar, architecturally it is a Turkish legacy a story seen millions times over in Istanbul.

Srđ Portolan believes that the scope for eco-tourism growth is large and it is there to be explored with the right marketing tools in your hands.

Srdj Portolan te kako se razvijao dubrovački turizam nakon Domovinskoga rata

Tvrtka Intercon Dubrovnik prošla je dugačak put razvoja od svojih skromnih početaka kao rent a car agencija davne 1995. do današnje renomirane turističke i pomorske agencije. Pitali smo Srđa Portolana, člana uprave Intercona Dubrovnik, koliko se toga promijenilo u razvoju turizma otkada je njegov otac također Srđ Portolan hrabro odlučio krenuti u rent-a-car poslovanje, netom nakon završetka

Srdj Portolan

Domovinskoga rata. Srđ nam je objasnio da je njegov otac znanje i iskustvo stečeno kroz dvadesetogodišnji rad na raznim razinama poslovanja u turizmu jednostavno primjenio u njihovoj tvrtci. Portolan mlađi nam nadalje naglašava da je u svakoj vrsti poslovanja imperativ imati viziju. Srdj je tu viziju imao za luksuzni korporativni segment turizma.

Srđ Portolan dalje elaborira da je u vrijeme odmah nakon završetka rata veliki broj stranih državnika posjećivao Dubrovnik i Hrvatsku te je njihov dolazak predstavljao zlatnu priliku za oblikovanje cjelokupne usluge servisiranja njihovoga dolaska. Srdj nam je rekao da je u to vrijeme imao ono što se u svijetu „biznisa“ zove “zlatna koka” u djelatnosti rent-a-car-a te da se mogao usredotočiti na razvijanje luksuznoga korporativnoga segmenta. Srđ Portolan nam je priznao da se dubrovački turizam, po njegovom mišljenju, razvija u smjeru omasovljenja, odnosno kvantitete a ne kvalitete, te da nije siguran u njegov krajni ishod. Srđ nam dalje objašnjava da su male agencije prepoznale mogućnosti u segmentu rent a cara i krenuli kopirati jedni druge. U toj konkurentskoj borbi „malih“ veliki igrači namirisali su priliku te su svojom jačinom u količinskoj sposobnosti da ispostave auto bilo gdje poklopili male konkurente i to s najpresudnijim čimbenikom: cijenom.

Iznenada Srđ je bio suočen s gašenjem jednoga segmenta turističkoga tržišta koji mu je omogućavao da se usredotoči na razvijanje svoje tvrtke u drugim smjerovima tj. da pronađe najprofitabilniji segment. Srdj nam kaže da se u danome momentu, poučen uspjehom servisiranja korporativnoga diplomatskoga segmenta, odlučio razvijati u smjeru kvalitete i luksuza. Srđ nam dalje predočitava kako je dolaskom diplomata i političara nastupio i dolazak slavnih i „jet seta“. Srdj se nadovezuje te nam govori kako se naglo javila potreba za pomorskim agentima budući da su se slavnSrdj Portolani vozili morskim putem. Srđ nam dalje objašnjava kako je Intercon Dubrovnik od rent-a-car agencije postao pomorska agencija. Srđ je također uvido da je pojava branda u luksuznom turizmu presudna za daljnji razvoj njegovog poslovanja. Tako su i nastala dva branda: “Dubrovnik Luxury Travel” za putnički dio te “Adriatic Yacht Services” za pomorski dio agencije.

No Srđ Portolan se tu ne zaustavlja. Srdj obožava sport, tenis, trčanje, ronjenje i sve adrenalinske sportove. Srđ je veliki motivator te rado osobno provjerava usluge koje plasira na svojim web stranicama. Na nedavno održanome incentivu kojemu su prisustvovali svi djelatnici “DLT-a” i “AYS” Srdj je bio oduševljenSrdj Portolan slobodnim padom niz kanjon rijeke Cetine dok je priključen na sajlu pod adrenalinskim naponom izbacivao svu nakupljenu negativnu energiju smišljajući pritom kako bi bilo idealno uvrstiti ovaj pad kao dio incentiva za nadolazeće grupe. Prema nekim slobodnim procjenama sve je veći broj mladih profesionalaca koji žele obići pojedinu zemlju i upoznati njene prirodne ljepote i kulturnu baštinu kroz ovaj oblik turizma.

Srđu poželimo sreću u njegovim nadolazećim poslovnim aktivnostima u nadi da će i ovaj segment turizma doživiti svoje luksuzno izdanje u novim podvizima Srđa Portolana

Portolan Srđ and some of his viewpoints on Dubrovnik luxury travel market

Portolan Srdj
Srdj Portolan, a member of DLT management board

In the previous blogs we have written a lot about Srđ Portolan and his viewpoint on the development of the nautical tourism in Croatia. Srdj for his part was fascinated by the so called “French” model who were among the first who have recognized the need for the construction of mega yacht marinas like the example of “Billionaire Dock” in St Tropez which Portolan Srđ in his capacity as a member of Dubrovnik Luxury Travel management board visited

Portolan Srdj
Srđ Portolan & DLT Management Team

back in March 2013 on the incentive trip Srđ took part in together with Portolan’s colleagues from DLT and its sister company Adriatic Yacht Services. Talking to some of the yachts’ captains Srdj was perplexed by the lack of the knowledge captains had about the Albanian, Montenegrin and Croatian side of the Adriatic and marina facilities that were available to them on their trajectory to Venice.

The importance of branding was another issue Srđ Portolan stressed about when Srdj talked about the development of luxury tourism in Dubrovnik as Croatia’s top destination within the destination itself. As Portolan Srdj junior learned from Portolan Srđ senior the recognition of the moment like in any business cycle curve prove to have been the secret ingredient in the winning formula of success in the story of Dubrovnik and for that matter in the wider context of Croatia’s tourism as well. Portolan Srđ prompted that the saturation of the rent-a-car market simply strengthen his belief that the servicing of luxury clients within the destination, providing that this service is of the highest possible quality, is the future of his brands positioning within the luxury segment of the market.Portolan Srdj

Even within this particular segment, Srđ sees the future in the close co-operation of the owners of luxury villa accommodation and the providers of the luxury services. For instance as far as Dubrovnik is concerned, the Old City will always attract visitors for its preserved beauty. However, for the luxury guests who are accustomed for the high level of service facilities Dubrovnik is not in the league of the top French Riviera destinations. On the other hand many would argue that it is not cost effective to invest in the so called additional value determinants. Portolan Srđ understands why entrepreneurs are discouraged to invest in the high class luxury villa accommodation

Portolan Srdj
Luxury Dubrovnik Villa

because it is difficult to achieve ROI let alone its reasonable rate. Portolan Srđ believes that this is due to short length of the season. That is why Srdj states many opt out to restoring residence houses and present them on the market as villas. We support Srđ’s theory as generally speaking everyone works in its full capacity in the tourism sector in Dubrovnik for the period of 60 days which is not enough to make it till the end of the year. Srđ is a firm believer that the short duration of the season is off putting the investors in general as for starters the opportunity cost is high. We understand Srdj’s statement as it does not make sense to open a luxury restaurant which is going to remain empty for the rest of the year.

Portolan sees strong MICE sector in Dubrovnik as Croatia’s top destination as something that might save the day. Furthermore, Portolan Srdj sees marketing issues as many travel agencies lack the adequate marketing funds to promote themselves on the exhibitions around the world. Srđ for his part realizes that the support of the airline industry plays a pivotal role in making the MICE story a success.

Watch out this space for Portolan Srđ views on the current developments in Dubrovnik and Croatia luxury travel market news.