Tag Archives: Dubrovnik Old City

Dubrovnik a winner in the Europe’s MICE destinations category.

 

Prague, Istanbul, Dubrovnik. This last has won indeed the third place in the MICE destinations category. We have written before about Croatia as a MICE destination and have recognized Rovinj and the so called Green Riviera, Zagorje Hill Region. However, it is the setting of Dubrovnik’s Old City that keep attracting the Dubrovnik MICE settingbusinessmen from around the Europe. Dubrovnik’s gastronomy and in particular enology offer is second to none. After all what better than to visit Konavle and Peljesac wine region and enjoy the oysters from Mali Ston Bay after a hard day of conferencing. The global climate change has affected Dubrovnik’s tourist season for the better, hard to believe that a negative can turn to positive. Now it is perfectly normal to organize a dinner for conference people in October at sea, hiring the imposing 15th century replika Karaka boat. Twenty years ago this Karaka shipwould have been unheard of as the beginning of September really meant the end of the season for that year. These days the cruisers are known to have docked in November. I personally OK this phenomenon despite the fact that I would imagine that these type of package deals in November are cheap and perhaps do not attract the luxury destination clients.I would love to see more small cruisers companies with luxury ships visiting destination in the same way as I see the development of the golf project as an ideal opportunity to attract businesspeople with deep pockets.

I would also like to focus a bit on the domestic clientele. During the off season time would it not be profitable to offer a month stay in the luxury hotels on full board. I guarantee that this would attract Zagreb’s creme de la creme to Dubrovnik who perhaps would become new Biarritz.

Srdj Portolan

Dubrovnik and its future perspective in tourism industry.

Before I embark on writing these lines I would to point out that by no means am I an expert in the field that is to say that I hold no masters degree in tourism management. What I do have is first class information, gathered through association with people who work in Dubrovnik tourism industry, present and those who have done so for the past 30 years.

The so called new economy has developed at the speed of light, accompanied with the new technologies and the internet has made the planet Earth a rather small globe.

As the author of these lines, throughout my life, I have lived in London, Barcelona, Aix en Provence and Moscow at the end of the last century. Every time when I was asked where did I come from and when I answered Croatia what would follow would be that famous question which would resonate for me in the annoying way : “where was that?”. On the contrary, when the answer was Dubrovnik what would follow were the nods of approval and smiles on people’s faces with that famous sentence.” Oh I was there”, “Beautiful city”. Say noDubrovnik Old City Carmen more I thought to myself as I was admiring the power of panel advertising on London Underground tube stations. Only these days at the beginning of the 21 century there are millions of Dubrovnik panels on the internet and with direct channels of selling planes, hotels, villas for holidays, the scopes are enormous up to the point that the people as far as Brazil jump on their planes and come holidaying to Croatia and Dubrovnik.

The opinion of the locals regarding the future of their city is divided. While some recognize the need for progress and see imminent the construction of new five star hotels, real estate villas and apartments others strongly oppose it. A typical example was a golf project on Srdj Hill overlooking Dubrovnik when the calls were being made that this was an eco genocide which had the makings of a luxury villa real estate project. For all I know the owners of the “pastures” were paid promptly, in other words someone invested their time and money and personal reputation not only to earn money but to bring money to Dubrovnik. Golfers are people with huge disposable income and they choose to stay in modern urban accommodation. Now when I think that there are only six golf courses in the whole of Croatia and four of them are in Istria my maths is telling me that we are lagging behind. Golfers are also highly educated business people and they more often than not choose to host their incentives and business conferences in places where they can play golf. I am not a member of golf lobby but I just follow the logic that arrival of rich clients would make space for quality content in the Old City. Think of all high quality restaurants, Dubrovnik Old City St Mary'sart galleries, clothes boutiques, jobs in the construction industry, jobs in the service industry. And let me get this straight to you. If anything we need high quality real estate projects if we are to sustain the development of our tourism industry in the future. As I have outlined above, times have changed. With the arrival of globalization and new technologies the competition has increased and people with high disposable income got used to being “pampered” around the globe. So even if they are to fall in love with views over the island of Lokrum and the Old city while they are staying in the hotels such as Excelsior, Argentina or villas such as Victoria, Agave, Glavic,Dubrovnik and Sheherezade these rich clients cannot purchase a modern urban villa so that they can repeatedly return to Dubrovnik and Croatia.

Dubrovnik Luxury Travel  has teamed up with Spes Estate, Dubrovnik’s most reputable real estate agency.

Srđ Portolan, DLT’s member of the management board has signed business co-operation agreement with Mr Frano Bezić of Spes Estate Dubrovnik. Mr Bezić stressed out that luxury travel and real estate go hand in hand as they complement each other. Clients arriving to view houses on sale and apartments on sale in Dubrovnik are serviced by the likes of Dubrovnik Luxury Travel and vice versa. Currently there is a huge land development in Dubrovnik’s most favourite quarter Ploce on sale, 52 000 m2 with planned construction of modern day villas. Mr Bezic stressed out that among luxury travel holidaymakers there are always successful businesspeople, potential real estate buyers and investors alike.

Advice on where to book your hotel in Dubrovnik: Old Town vs Lapad

Holidaymakers are starting to gather their ideas which destination to choose for the forthcoming 2015 holiday season. Croatia is continuing to rise in its popularity and Dubrovnik is a must see destination on holidaymakers’ lists. Looking at the hotel accommodation Dubrovnik is growing in its luxury accommodation segment offer. In my view in order to taste Dubrovnik in its most “organic” way then Adriatic Luxury Hotels is your best bet for the simple fact that both hotels Excelsior and GHV Argentina offers

Hotel Argentina
GHV Argentina

spectacular views over the Old City and the island of Lokrum. Many would go automatically for Excelsior,personally I would prefer Argentina because in my view it is more cosier. Both hotels are situated in Ploce area of Dubrovnik and are a pleasant walk to the Old City where all activity during the summer season takes place. You will not regret if you even pay a bit extra but then again if you are an early bird you are bound to find a really good bargain.

One thing you ought to bear in mind is that Dubrovnik is a small city and that the public bus service works well. On the other hand Dubrovnik Palace is situated in a very secluded spot of Lapad

Dubrovnik Palace
Dubrovnik Palace

peninsula. What is more bus no 4 will get you in less than 15 minutes to Pile Gate. Uvala Lapad promenade is just a 15 minutes stroll where all the restaurants and bars are situated. So if you book Dubrovnik Palace what you get are the best of the both worlds. You came to Dubrovnik to visit Old City, you are staying in a five star hotel that is positioned in the best part of Lapad peninsula. You will get a better bargain than at Excelsior or Argentina and you still profit from the spectacular views of St Andrews lighthouse and Elaphiti islands.

The author of this article is Srdj Portolan, a founding member of Intercon Group of Companies, a board director at Spes Real Estate and Dubrovnik Luxury Travel.

How to book an apartment in Dubrovnik Old City?

If you are decided to book an apartment inside the city walls then dubrovnik old city mapyou have decided to be the part of the local experience although you have to bear in mind that out of 4000 citizens who lived in the Old City before the war, there are only 1000 remaining. This means that your neighbor might easily be a fellow tourist like yourself. First and foremost it’s the timing of your holiday. The most ideal timing for families is the end of May because  the school holidays have started, the Old City is relatively busy during the day because of the tourists from cruisers but it is peaceful during the evening hours which is great because it allows you to dine quietly al fresco in one of many local restaurants with your family. The only drawback is that sea is still a bit chilly so swimming as option might be ruled out although the recent climate changes have warmed the sea quicker than before.
In my opinion early September is the best time to enjoy the Old City as there are less crowds in the city, there is plenty of sun, sea is excellent for swimming. Needless to say that price wise you can get a better deal. Couple of things to consider when booking your accommodation. The Old City is pedestrianized zone. There are two main entrance gates: The Pile Gate and The Ploce Gate. In 90% of the cases is that you will end up at the Pile Gate which is also considered to be the main entrance. Make sure your luggage suitcase has wheels. In my opinion any accommodation booked as you enter the main street Stradun and you go in the first and second street on the left around caffe bar Festival will suit you perfect, in other words beginning of Prijeko Street as you enter Stradun. Also anything north of Ulica od Puča my favourite corner being around St Rocco church, this is where you will find the best pizza in the town in pizzeria Mea Culpa. If you prefer lively yet placid atmosphere then I suggest anything around Bunićeva Poljana. For your sunbathing and swimming I suggest Lokrum, 15 minutes ride by boat from the Old City port. You can read my blog on the island. Enjoy!!!

The author of this article is Srđ Portolan, a founding member of Intercon Group of Companies, a board director at Spes Real Estate and Dubrovnik Luxury Travel.

As Scotland decides on the referendum about its fate, we have asked Srđ Portolan what impact this may have on the tourism industry in Croatia ?

 

Srđ Portolan answers that there is no place for politics in any business and that the referendum on the Scottish independence is no exemption. Srđ Portolan, privately has a degree of sympathy towards those Scots who are in favour of the yes vote because he himself is a patriot and he has been involved in the creation of the Croatian state.srđ portolan scotland New countries such as Scotland believes Srđ Portolan if it happens should maintain neutrality. Dubrovnik had excellent charter and regular flights with Edinburgh and Glasgow. However, Portolan believes that new Scottish State if it happens could trigger a new wave of referendums across Europe. First on the map may be Catalonia and South Tyrol whose independences could possibly have dual consequences. New Scottish state must apply to join the European Union although Portolan sees no reason why they should do so as they hold large reserves of British oil and gas. However, the disappearance of the Great Britain as it once were, would mean possible uncertain political power future of that country which might turn the rest of the British economy towards the recession in which case people would travel less. The European travel sector becomes more competitive than ever Srđ Portolan continues as Spain are Greece have recorded substantial increases in the revenues generated according to Croatian daily newspapers Slobodna Dalmacija whereas Croatia’s growth has been minor, that of 1.9%. Srđ Portolan sees this twofold opportunity because if Scotland goes its own way and Catalonia follows, this may shift the attention of investors towards Catalonia itself and elsewhere, Croatia included. Independent Catalonia may stand the srđ portolan croatialittle chance of entering EU because of the Spanish vetto. In a strange way if one takes this angle of analysis the Scottish vote of independence is important for the future of Europe, possible new economic crisis would make citizens of Europe more cautious when it comes to travelling abroad on holidays which might have serious effect on the recovery of the Croatian economy as it is closely linked to the tourism industry. Although Srđ Portolan is very optimistic when it comes to Dubrovnik and its Old City. Srđ states that crisis or not this would not stop rich clients from travelling and as Dubrovnik is orientated towards the luxury segment of the market, it is safe for now. Furthermore, Portolan concludes that Dubrovnik as an international tourist destination brand should be looking more in the direction of the Far East and both Americas,as new markets, especially the Latin one which is reinstated by the fact that his companies had a 50% increase of enquiries from countries such as Mexico and Brazil.