Tag Archives: Srdj Portolan

Uloga elitnih (luksuznih) brandova u budućem razvoju hrvatskog turizma;DULUX u suradnji sa Srđ Portolan

Srdj Portolan
Srdj Portolan, a member of DLT management board

Ovaj članak nema znanstvenu vrijednost, već u svojoj cjelini predstavlja stručni osvrt na potrebu i funkcionanost razvoja luksuznih brandova u turističkoj destinaciji. U tom kontekstu je i njegova povezanost s daljnjim razvojem luksuznih brandova u okviru razvoja hrvatskoga turizma. U materijalnom svijetu “opipljivih” stvari pozicija branda je kristalno jasna. Ona se temelji na sinonimu kvalitete. Reci čokolada i pomisao je na Dorinu, reci voda i misli te vode na Janu. Bajadera je s druge s trane sinonim za luksuzne čokoladice. Svi ovi izlazni brandovi imaju u osnovi kvalitetu i tradiciju.

U uslužnom sektoru situacija je znatno drugačija. Tradicija odnosno njen nedostatak kočnica je razvoja pružanja usluga kad se govori o luksuznim brandovima u turizmu Republike Hrvatske.

Strategija razvoja turizma u Hrvatskoj prije rata prvenstveno se odnosila na razvoj masovnog turizma. Danas, u vrijeme izrazito visoke elastičnosti turističke potražnje i potrebe za detaljnom segmentacijom turističkog tržišta, nedostatak luksuznih brandova ponovno vodi k omasovljenju turizma.

Pitali smo Srđa Portolana, člana uprave Dubrovnik Luksuznih Putovanja, o čemu je zapravo ovdje riječ. Srdj Portolan nam je objasnio da smo u prošlosti u okviru planske ekonomije imali vrlo jaki ulazni brand podpomognut državnim poticajnim sredstvima. U bivšoj Jugoslaviji Yugotours je kao turoperator bio nenadmašivo ime jugoslovenskoga turizma. Srđ Portolan nam dalje tvrdi da danas u Hrvatskoj ne postoji domaći luksuzni turistički brand jedinstveno

zbog tržišne ekonomije koja sama po sebi donosi segmentaciju tržišta. Upravo iz tog razloga, u okviru luksuznih putovanja, pojavile su se segmentirane marketing agencije. Portolan nam u produžetku otvoreno kaže da agencija čiji je Srđ član uprave u svom luksuznom izdanju nije ništa drugo nego produžena ruka agencije koja za brand ima svakodnevno radno izdanje. Srđ Portolan naglašava da je Srđ Portolankvaliteta luksuznoga branda na zaista visokoj razini. Srđ tvrdi da je vrlo teško od početka pokrenuti luksuzni brand, a iz razloga optimizacije stranice i teškoće izbora zvučnog imena. Razlog zašto se on opredijelio za ime Dubrovnik Luxury Travel je upravo zbog optimizacije. Portolan ukazuje da se zapadni model luksuznih brandova u turizmu temelji na imenu pojedinca. Kao primjer navodi Wandu Radetti, jednu od najboljih američkih agenata za hrvatsko tržište koja je sama po sebi luksuzni brand.

Srđ Portolan
Srđ Portolan & DLT Management Team

Srđ Portolan nadalje smatra da će se razvoj luksuznih brandova u okviru hrvatskoga turizma vrlo vjerojatno odvijati kao produžena ruka radnoga branda.

Ostaje za vidjeti tko će biti nova hrvatska Wanda Radetti.

The importance of Adriatic Sea as a yachting destination in the Mediterranean basin, viewed by Srdj Portolan.

Srđ Portolan
Srdj Portolan on business trip in Monaco

Puerto Benus and Portofino, the first one near Marbella, the second one near Genova have been the playground of the rich and famous in the yachting world. Add the dosage of St Tropez and Sicily and the circuit of the yachting world for the rich and famous is closed. Srđ Portolan, a member of the Adriatic Yacht Services executive board explains that after the yachting season finishes around St Kitts and St Lucia and when another one starts in the Mediterranean basin, the Adriatic sea comes at the bottom end. Srdj Portolan, Darijan Portolan and Kristian Vrbanic, all three members of the Adriatic Yacht Services were shocked to realize Srdj Portolanwhen they went on their French Riviera business trip back in 2013 that the vast majority of the captains take the Italian coast route to Venice and back. Srđ tells us that lack of marinas and in particular the lack of super marinas for mega yachts prevented the captains to use Croatian coast on their way to Rovinj and making that last bit of trajectory journey to Venice.

Portolan stressed that captains are unsure of what to expect in Croatia, Srđ continues to tell us that he utterly understands their concerns. Srđ Portolan is among those who believes that one of Croatia’s most profitable state companies ACI Marinas, needs to privatize even larger slice of the share capital.

Srd Portolan
Srdj Portolan

Furthermore, Srdj believes that such measure would lead to the construction of mega yacht marina something Portolan and Co witnessed on their visit to French Riviera’s Billionaire Docks. Srđ Portolan states that the state’s involvement into promotion of Croatia as Europe’s next must visit yachting destination would play a primordial role in steering the captains’ attention towards Croatian marinas.

Srdj Portolan
Srdj Portolan, a member of Intercon’s management board.

Not everything is black as it seems to be as the Adriatic sea marina sector is growing rapidly. Porto Montenegro in Tivat, Montenegro is a typical example of the theory “ When there is a will, there is a way” In true adage of an ex-soldier Srdj Portolan concludes “Who dares wins”. Remains to be seen whether something like Porto Ragusino is on the horizon that in the eyes of many would turn Dubrovnik into new Monte Carlo. Watch out this space!

 

Srdj Portolan advises you on how to explore Croatia on budget and travel in luxury style.

Everyone talks about Croatia as this beautiful country with 1000 islands. Srđ Portolan, a member of Dubrovnik Luxury Travel

Srđ Portolan
Srđ Portolan

management board tells us that you do not have to be rich and travel in style. Srđ has recently worked with four Brazilian clients who wanted to have fun in the sun and to enjoy Croatian food and wine. Srđ has managed to include visits to Elaphiti islands, Korcula ( this is where Portolan surname originally comes from ) Hvar and Vis.

Interestingly enough Srdj who is a keen diver, managed to squeeze a diving session for the Brazilians off the island of Vis,

Srđ Portolan Vis
Srđ Portolan Vis

near the world famous Blue Cave. It was a lovely day out with a speedboat from the island of Hvar. Portolan explained to us that a common mistake that people sometimes make is to try to link their journey from starting point, Dubrovnik to Split via the ferry. Srdj Portolan continues to tell us that a journey from Dubrovnik to Korcula in a luxurious mini van is equally pleasant one and that on the way to Hvar you can

Srđ Portolan in Hvar
Srđ Portolan in Hvar

always go via Trpanj and then Drvenik to Starigrad on Hvar and continue your journey to Hvar Old City on the island of Hvar. We asked Srdj could this be a bit tiresome. He answered back that we should not forget the fact that the Brazilians had two days out with a speedboat, one on the Elaphiti islands and the second one on the island of Vis which proved a true winner because it was a unique opportunity to dive in the Blue Cave. Srđan told us that this itinerary included a visit to Krka National

Srdj Portolan NP Krka
Srđ Portolan NP Krka

Park, the town of Split and for the true lovers of oysters on the way back from Split, they stopped in the medieval town of Ston.

So we agreed this was the true luxury tour for a 7 days tour for a price of EUR 9980 for four people and considering that the accommodation was a five star one ( except Korcula and Hvar, an excellent four star one ) this is indeed a true winner.

Added value determinants in Croatia luxury market segment as viewed by Srdj Portolan

Dubrovnik is Croatia’ s the best known destination and as such it has a scope to achieve great potential in the luxury market segment. The appearance of added value determinants would have a huge impact on Croatia’s tourism industry at large. First we need to clarify what do we mean by added value and how does it translate in the terminology of the luxury market language.

Srdj Portolan Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik at night by Srđ Portolan

Firstly by basic definition this is a free bit that adds to the value of the actual service. To illustrate by example in the luxury market if we book a room with a five star luxury hotel, their courtesy car free airport pick up would be a classic example of something which has further justified the value, in other words the price of our booking. If each five star hotel in Dubrovnik is to employ such a service measure how would this affect the transportation companies in Dubrovnik ?

Srđ Portolan,  a member of Dubrovnik Luxury Travel management board states that five star hotels cannot offer such a service alone. Furthermore, Portolan believes that if hotels are to decide to subcontract those services to the transportation companies, this sector would be segmented accordingly. Srđ says that now there are transfer companies and agencies which do everything, luxury transfers and ordinary transfers in the same car but different price. Srđ continues to state that if luxury five star hotels are to offer a free excursion as a added value to the booking of their accommodation, the same applies and would lead to segmentation of travel agencies sector. Srđ Portolan states that in the luxury sector travel agencies must offer by default value added service. Srđ has devised DLT’s concierge service to the hire of luxury villas. Portolan has explained to us that free incentives are a must have service in the luxury market sector.

Srđ Portolan
Srdj Portolan at Antibe Port on the French Riviera

It appears to us that the introduction of added value determinants is a must when it came to the prosperity of Dubrovnik luxury travel sector.

Srđ Portolan is a winner of the Best Entrepreneur award for the year 2003, 2006 and 2013 according to Croatian Institute of Business Intelligence.

Srđ Portolan Award
Srđ Portolan The Golden Book of the Best Croatian Entrepreneurs

Srdj Portolan’s view on the development of the nautical tourism in Croatia

FerretiThe country of 1000 islands, the total revenue of the tourism in the whole of the world amounts to 100 billion euros. Nowadays Croatia gets 6% slice of the tourism cake. Before the war, tourism in Croatia was the main economic drive which was filling in the coffers of the National Bank of ex- Yugoslavia. The war has put Croatia as destination on hold but now this beautiful country is in again and everyone is buzzing about Croatia as the top European destination.

Srd Portolan
Srđ Portolan

Croatia has a great potential in this economical branch. However as in every business the key is in the strategy. To revert back to the first sentence of this article, “the country of 1000 islands”, it seems to me that the answer to question regarding the strategy is self explanatory. Croatia needs to follow the example of Montenegro and it needs to create positive investment climate for the construction of mega yacht marinas. We have asked Srdj Portolan, a member of Adriatic Yacht Services management bord his viewpoint. Srđ has told us that we should follow the model employed by France. Portolan was the part of the Adriatic Yacht Services incentive trip which took place in Cap d’Antibe in March 2013. Srđ told us that he was amazed by the scale of marinas and especially those reserved for megayachts. Srđ also explained to us that the quality of the infrastracture services was second to none. Srđ Portolan stressed that this French model is what Croatia lacks.

Srdj Portolan
Srđ Portolan, a member of Intercon’s management bord.

Here in Croatia, Dubrovnik if we are to examine only two of these factors, we have failed the exam. Naturally we have to follow the example of our neighbors, Montenegrins. Porto Montenegro in Tivat, a luxury marina complex, an Anglo-Russian investment project is a success story to the point that oil struck Azeri investors are investing a serious money for the development of a new luxury marina in Kumbor. Having been to Porto Montenegro I was amazed at the scale of infrastructure, restaurants, luxury shops, luxury travel agencies, yacht dealership representative offices, car dealership representative offices which to me only highlighted the seriousness of the whole story.

Srdj PortolanAt the end of the day, the conclusion one can draw is a simple one, Dubrovnik as Croatia’s top destination must find asap a solution for the construction of a marina for mega yachts before is too late. So if you get on your yacht in Porto Montenegro in Tivat and it is logical that your next stop is Dubrovnik. However if you do not have marina for megayachts let alone accompanying infrastructure and services, it is highly unlikely that you as a country read destination, are to raise this slice in the cake to let us say 8% and speed up your economic recovery.

Interview with Dubrovnik Luxury Travel Operations Manager Mr Kristian Vrbanic

Could you tell us more about Dubrovnik Luxury Travel and your role as Operations Manager?

dubrovnik luxury travel operations manager
dubrovnik luxury travel operations manager

Dubrovnik Luxury travel has been a market leader in the luxury segment for the past 15 years, here in Croatia and in the region. We are proud that we have served the world’s most powerful clients. Each year our base of luxury clients is growing.

If I were a VIP client, what would be your best recommendation to explore Dubrovnik and Croatia?

Croatia is a country of over 1300 islands. There are many National Parks like the world renown Plitivce Lakes, Krka waterfalls, National Park Brioni, president’s Tito ex-residence, National Park Kornati, an ideal destination to charter a yacht or perhaps do a spot of sailing. In one word, Croatia is a country of many beautiful spot. My recommendation to explore Croatia is the sea way from Dubrovnik to Split. I would charter a yacht from Dubrovnik, I must say that the both, Dubrovnik airport and Split airport are well connected with the rest of the world. En route from Dubrovnik to Split there are many beautiful towns like Cavtat, picturesque Mediterranean town close to Dubrovnik Konavle wine region. The next one is the medieval town of Korcula on the island of Korucla, a birthplace of Marco Polo. I must say that Korcula has excellent gastronomy and white wines, Posip. I like diving and the island of Vis is my favorite. There are so many wrecked ships from the Second World War and would you believe sunk airplanes. Sea next to the Blue Cave just like in Capri, has the best sea visibility in the whole of the Adriatic. There are no sharks.

Croatian sailing at its best
Croatian sailing at its best

What about this island of Hvar. Is this a must see island?

Oh, Hvar is simply amazing! This is a must visit destination for all those chartering yahct, sailboats, catamarans and this is also party island, it’s Croatian version of St Tropez. Carpe Diem, Croatian best known night club and lounge bar.hvar

Tell me about this upcoming destination, Split?

diocletian palace
diocletian palace

Split is originally a Roman city, the remains of the Diocletian palace are still there. It is the second biggest town in Croatia. What I like about Split that its Old City is quite unique, good choice of restaurants, good shopping. Transportation wise, it’s a hub for islands, ferries run from Split port to the islands of Hvar and Brac. Split Airport is well connected to all European destinations. Krka National Park is nearby and the towns of Sibenik and Skradin.

Where do you see the development of Croatian luxury market ?

I see Adriatic as a destination not only Croatia, but Montenegro as well. Adriatic has a pristine clear sea, islands, it is only two hours away from London and Istanbul. Top investors have recognized this. Dubrovnik is building a golf course and luxury villas. At the moment there is a shortage of luxury villas in Dubrovnik and the whole of the Adriatic. I have clients contacting me on daily basis to enquire about the hire of luxury villas. Luckily I have few on the books. Continuing on this subject of investing, in Montenegro for instance, there was a British-Russian investment into marna project Porto Montenegro. There is even bigger marina being planned. Montenegro will be a starting point for the luxury yacht cruises and this would include Dubrovnik, Split, Sibenik, Zadar. I really see the future of the Croatian tourism on the whole and in particular the luxury market segment in the nautical tourism.

When I, Srdj Portolan and Darijan Portolan went for a business trip in France we saw a true example of nautical tourism model with a supportive infrastructure and this is what we lack.

skradin

Mr Kristian Vrbanic, thank you very much for taking your time to talk to us.

Dubrovnik’s best kept secret: Rappers, Japanese and Dubrovnik Luxury Travel.

This is rather interesting story which I am about to retell. Although it would be pompous to state that Dubrovnik Luxury Travel is Dubrovnik’s best kept secret, indirectly this is the case. Well, I jokingly have this expression in Croatian that would roughly translate into English as being “romantic-semantic”. I use it often to describe myself as someone who does“ have a gift of a gob” when it comes to talking about romance but as always action speaks louder than words. So when Dubrovnik Luxury Travel’s GM Kristian briefed us that a famous US rap star visiting Dubrovnik and Croatia decided to propose to his girlfriend my semantic panic button started blinking red, red,red.dubrovnikyachtsunset

I honestly don’t know if this rapper is famous in Japan but he has to thank to Japanese that his girlfriend read fiance read wife was overjoyed about his marriage proposal. For some reason every Japanese tourist has it written in his bible of a tourist guide that a must visit to Croatia are Plitvice Lakes and Dubrovnik and in it, the hill Srdj. Dubrovnik Luxury Travel organizes half day trips from Dubrovnik to this picturesque hill. When Srdj Portolan came late for this brief, he is never late, but on this occasion he was excused as the previous night he was “entertaining” a group of American guests whom he took up on the Srdj hill (rest assured this is not Srdj Portolan hill ) as there is an excellent restaurant serving “peka” traditional Croatian roast potatoes and lamb cooked under the bell and when he mentioned that last night before the dinner the whole hill was occupied by the Japanese tourists, Kristian just uttered with a grin on his face: “That is it”

Dubrovnik sunset
Dubrovnik sunset

Dubrovnik Luxury Travel key word on this occasion was sunset as Kristian sussed it out the reason behind Japanese invasion to hill Srdj. They were just staying in touch with their homeland ,from this spot there is a magnificent sunset view over Elaphiti islands. And now Kristian had this idea for our couple to enjoy themselves ,speeding with a fast boat into sunset around Elaphiti islands followed by a dinner in a restaurant which is exactly situated on the sea and when he suggested that we can hide a ring in a oyster from Ston Bay, the rapper management team approved it all and we knew that we had winning formula.

http://www.dubrovnikluxurytravel.com/yacht-charter-dubrovnik/yacht-cruise/

Meet me at Dubrovnik airport

Dubrovnik airport is by far the most sophisticated airport in Croatia. The drive from the Dubrovnik airport to the Dubrovnik city is a half an hour transfer. Dubrovnik Luxury Travel Darijan explained to me why is it better to make a pre-advanced booking. Buses are out of question as they are old and not consistent. There is no uniformed company that looks after the transport from and to Dubrovnik airport. Then there are taxi drivers. Unlike in the other European cities where taxis are easily recognizable this is not the case with Dubrovnik and what is more sometimes they can charge you an arm and a leg.Dubrovnik luxury travel transfer

With pre-booked transfer from Dubrovnik airport to your hotel destination you are met and greeted by your driver who follows Dubrovnik Luxury Travel philosophy of being always professional, speaking fluent English, discreet yet at your disposal. And there is a question of reliability because Dubrovnik Luxury Travel luxury transfer vehicles are reliable, safe so this 30 minutes transfer passes in no time. If you happen to visit Dubrovnik with a group of friends then there is no other solution but to book Dubrovnik Luxury mini van. However, Dubrovnik Luxury Travel flexibility comes at work especially when the top luxury clients are involved. On one occasion Darijan was supposed to meet a wealthy businessman from Macau and his wife. They were supposed to stay at one of Dubrovnik’s top boutique hotels. When they were met by Darijan the wife was not pleased at all. The husband explained to Darijan that she insisted to arrive to her hotel via the sea. Darijan was cool as a cucumber and said yes. He transferred the couple from Dubrovnik airport to Cavtat, took them to Cavtat’s top restaurant for a brunch and organized a sea transfer from Cavtat to this luxury hotel before you knew it.searay

So next time when you “meet me at the airport” do request to arrive to your hotel from Dubrovnik airport by a helicopter, Dubrovnik Luxury Travel team will ensure that your wish comes true.