Tatjana and Domagoj Balja, owners of OPG Balja (family farm Balja) from Garešnica, came up with an original idea to promote honey products made on their farm and to include outside parties in the process of beekeeping. The aforementioned hotel is a fancy title for beehives located in the idyllic nature at the family's estate, where interested individuals can try their hand at apiculture by contributing with their own hive. They can choose to leave the whole manufacturing process to the owners, but everyone is more than welcome to visit their bees and participate in honey extraction.
Investing an amount of about 1500 kuna will get you a three-year period of your beehive being taken care of by the professionals at the farm, as well as half of the profit for all sold products that were made using the honey harvested from your unit. As every new beehive produces 10-15 kg of honey in the first year, there's a good chance of turning a profit as soon as the second year comes around.
Apart from being a business-savvy move of searching for potential investors with an entertaining twist, the project of the bee hotel aims to preserve apiculture in Croatia and protect the native bees, whose population has been slowly decreasing over the years.
For those who want to actively participate in the business, the owners are offering a two-day education about the basics of beekeeping including lectures on bee anatomy and a field workshop at the apiary site. Accommodation is provided in a charming apartment at the estate. For more information, take a look at the OPG Balja website.