Tuesday, 6 August 2019

San Canzian - A New Boutique Hotel and Restaurant in Istria

We have seen significant investment in the development of high net worth tourism in Istria, with a proper eighteen hole golf course in Savudrija, San Rocco hotel and restaurant in Brtonigla, the new Roxanich hotel at Motovun and many gourmet level restaurants. Some of the finest wine in Europe is produced around here.

The latest boutique hotel to grace Istria, San Canzian/Noel, from the same people who have the Michelin starred Noel restaurant in Zagreb, combines all of these quite wonderfully. 

The hotel itself comprises a number of beautifully restored stone buildings either side of its own village street, in a sheltered lush green valley that looks out towards the sea, just South of the hill town of Buje, off the old Trieste-Pula road.

As I drove into the car park, I was greeted by a member of staff who phoned through to reception to announce my arrival and take my bag. We walked across to the main building into reception, where I was made welcome and given my contact-less key-card. The bedroom was more like the floor of a cottage, opening out onto the street, albeit decorated and fitted out to a standard that the previous owner of the building would not have recognised!

There was a spacious sitting area, which gave out onto its own private terrace, from which to sit and watch the setting sun. The air conditioning,  LED satellite TV, safe, well stocked minibar, lavish snack box and fluffy dressing gowns(ideal for the infinity pool) were all of a high standard. The large double bed was set in its own area and had pillow options including cooling (a NASA design), memory and aromatherapy ones. This area included a work table with convenient power points for a laptop (WiFi is complimentary) and on which could be found a half bottle of the excellent award winning Fakin Teran, glasses, a kettle and a Nespresso coffee machine with a selection of capsules, teas and crockery to restore the weary traveler. 

The bathroom was no less spacious, with a large walk in shower and had a wall hung WC, wash hand basin, hair dryer and a complimentary selection of Molton Brown toiletries.

On returning to the main building, I was offered chilled flannels, which were most welcome on a hot evening and a cocktail on the bar terrace. 

Dinner was due later, but in the meantime we were given a series of gourmet bonne bouches, including spiced beef on bone marrow, deep fried cod balls with scampi and truffled cream cheese with beetroot, interspersed with glasses of Prelac's Blanc et Noir Brut and Kabola's Re Brut sparkling wines. 

Noel has been fortunate to secure the services of top sommelier, Filip Savic, and his wine choices were extremely good. Instead of just serving up the usual suspects, he has reached out to other lesser known local wine makers, all of whom produce very good wines and carefully selected memorable wines from each of them. Most of the wines served were from grapes grown within 10km and only one more than 20km from the restaurant.

Dinner was served in the restaurant, on the floor below. The building is on a hillside and both bar and restaurant open on to terraces with wonderful views. The atmosphere was relaxed and casual, complimented by well trained and attentive staff.

The menu claimed six courses, but extra ones also appeared, as Chef Daniel Tschachler and his equipe showed off their talents, and the presentation was impeccable. The olive oil was a blend of Leccino and Buza and came with Welsh salt and Szechwan spices. The resident baker did us proud with a variety of breads. We started with foie gras, sweetbreads, rhubarb and cherry accompanied by the Fakin 2018 Malvasia that had won a gold at Decanter, in London.

Next came Frankovic's 2018 one, which went well with the bacon, caviar, beurre blanc and lentils.

This was followed by cuttlefish, lardo and a smokey bouillon acompanied by Degrassi's 2015 Terre Blanche, from his vineyard down the road. We then had a vegetable course, of mixed sauted and pickled vegetables, which had an oriental feel, paired with Valenta's 2018 Sauvignon Blanc.

Ivan Damjanic's 2013 Clemente cuvee made the most of the Scottish lamb, clams and salty herbs.

The next course was described as tomato,black olive and strawberry. The tomato was actually a crisp red shell, inside which was a mascarpone cream containing the other elements. It made for textural interest and Georgio Clai's 2017 Tasel cuvee was a good choice.

By this time it was midnight and after a final glass of bubbly on the terrace, it was off to bed. I was glad I didn't need to drive home!

In the morning, there was breakfast and I enjoyed freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice, from fruit that I had selected, fresh apricot yoghurt and scrambled eggs and bacon, although I could have had egg in glass with smoked foie gras or boiled egg with truffle with prosciutto crumble, but you can have too much of a good thing!

Overall, I was impressed by the attention to detail and the enthusiasm of the staff who were all keen to make the hotel and restaurant a success.

Sonja Jelaca, the Manageress, Filip Savic, the Sommelier and  Daniel Tschachler, the Chef, have created a good team to make the most of this stunning new establishment in gorgeous Istria.

For more on establishments in Istria, wine and food from Istria and travel tips for destinations across the country, follow our dedicated travel page.

Friday, 28 June 2019

Pula Airport Making Excellent Progress, Experiencing Growth in 2019

As Glas Istre/Duska Palibrk writes on the 27th of June, 2019, Pula Airport is experiencing some excellent growth and progression this year, which can be owed to intense cooperation between Pula Airport, the Istria County Tourist Board and local people working in the hotel and tourism industry.

''As of yesterday, when compared to last year, we recorded sixteen percent more passengers. The biggest increase we had was in April, by about sixty percent, in May, there was an increase of 35 percent.

That's exactly what we were working hard on throughout last year along with the Istria County Tourist Board and the hotel industry, boosting the pre-season and the season. Of course, we're not expecting such growth in July and August, but again in October, we'd like thirty percent more passengers. This year, we set a goal of 770,000 passengers. Yes, that would be a new record,'' Pula Airport's director Svemir Radmilo stated.

The low-cost airline company easyJet has opened up two new seasonal lines for Pula, Geneva, and Amsterdam. 

Flights from Geneva arrive at Pula Airport on Wednesdays and Saturdays, the very first of which landed last night, and from Amsterdam, flights arrive on Tuesdays and Sundays, and it will continue on like that until the end of August.

According to the flight schedule, the flight from Geneva to Pula arrives at 20:00 and returns back at 21:15. The seasonal line between Pula Airport and Amsterdam opened on Croatian Statehood Day (June the 25th), landing on Pula Airport's runway ten minutes ahead of schedule, at 19:30. On the first flight from Amsterdam there were 110 passengers, and upon departure from Pula Airport, there were 94.

EasyJet has thus become the number one carrier at Pula Airport. This year will see a total of twelve lines and about 150,000 passengers will arrive thanks to the ''wings'' of this popular low-cost carrier.

In addition to Geneva and Amsterdam, the aforementioned air company will connect Pula Airport with ten more European destinations. Until the end of August, EasyJet will fly to Pula Airpott from Paris on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, from Milan on Mondays and Fridays, from Berlin (Schönefeld) and Basel on Tuesdays and Saturdays, and from Bristol in the UK on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Until October the 13th, on Wednesdays and Sundays, there will be a direct Liverpool-Pula line, on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays until October the 20th, there will be a direct route between Pula Airport and Berlin (Tegel),, and until Thursday the 26th of October, Thursdays and Sundays will see a direct connection between Pula Airport and the British capital of London (Southend and Gatwick).

As far as flights are concerned, the director of the Pula Airport says that only the month of October has a question mark over its head, especially with regard to the UK, as the 31st of October is meant to be the country's new EU exit date. However, whether or not that means anything at all, as it hasn't so far with any previous planned exit dates - remains to be seen.

"We were concerned about Brexit during the pre-season, too, and nothing happened, so far, we haven't felt a bigger drop in the number of passengers, everything that comes from the United Kingdom is very full, all flights so far have been over 90 percent filled and we hope to continue this trend,'' said the director of Pula Airport, which can now proudly boast of more than seventy direct flights to Europe, of which 70 percent are with "low-cost'' airlines.

It isn't just EasyJet has just opened new lines for Pula Airport. Laudamotion has connected Pula and Stuttgart this season, Voltea has been connecting Pula Airport and Bordeaux since earlier this month, Jet2 connects Pula with Birmingham, and TUI UK connects it with Doncaster.

Asked how much Pula is recognised among Croatian travellers, as well as those from within Croatia's closer region, as the starting place to get to all of the aforementioned European destinations, Svemir Radmilo says he sees more and more Italian and Slovenian registrations parked at the airport, there are also those from Zagreb, Rijeka, Karlovac, and some remain parked there for days at a time.

''We're a tourist destination, people work during the summer season, seventy percent of people in Istria are working in tourism and they're not travelling during this time of year. The number of Croatian passengers using Pula Airport to travel abroad is greatest in April, September and October, but they make up only ten percent of our passengers. All the rest are international travellers who're coming to visit Croatia, ninety percent of them remain in Istria, others continue to other destinations. There are also those who fly to Dubrovnik, rent a car, and go in the opposite direction, towards Pula,'' concluded Svemir Radmilo.

Make sure to follow our dedicated travel page for much more.

Sunday, 23 June 2019

42 Percent More Tourists in Pula Than This Time Last Year!

Pula is one of Istria's more heavily fequented gems, attracting tourists from across Europe and the rest of the world for its mixture of culture, heritage and history, as well as its ease of access to other parts of beautiful Istria in the northern Adriatic, as well as its connections to nearby Italy and Slovenia.

As Borka Pertrovic/Glas Istre writes on the 23rd of June, 2019, more than 11,500 tourists are currently staying in the Istrian city of Pula, which, compared to this time last year, has seen an increase in tourists of as much as 42 percent, as was announced by the Tourist Board of the City of Pula.

Just how crowded with tourists Pula currently is could be witnessed easily on Saturday, during a somewhat cloudy time, when the first drops of rain saw all of the tourists leave the beaches and head into the city creating crowds both in terms of road traffic and within the city itself.

Most of the guests, as we now know, come from other European countries, including Germany (3,378), Croatia (1,404), the United Kingdom (1,020), Austria (979), Slovenia (797) and Italy (622), and they're mostly accommodated in smaller renting facilities in which there are currently 4,793 tourists, and they're from other parts of Croatia as well as from abroad. There are also 1,913 such guests staying in Pula's hotels, 1,765 in various tourist resorts and apartments, while the smallest number of them are located in camps - a total of 1,693.

The pre-season, from the beginning of the year to the 15th of June, there were 2.5 percent more tourists, which is as has been stated from Pula's tourist board, satisfactory, especially considering that May was an extremely rainy month and that Easter fell later this year than it did last year.

Make sure to follow our dedicated travel page for much more on tourism and travel in Croatia, in Pula and beyond.

Saturday, 15 June 2019

After Promising Pre-Season, Poreč Ready for Excellent Tourist Season

As Glas Istre/Davor Sisovic writes on the 14th of June, 2019, a good pre-season is a cause for the expectation that the main tourist season in Poreč will be excellent, said Poreč Tourist Board's Nenad Velenik, announcing that next season, in summer 2020, will be prepared for and run more differently than ever before.

As the post-Easter Catholic holidays during which tourists typically come to Istria in a larger number decreased back in May 2018, falling similarly once again this year in June, the results of tourist traffic in most Croatian tourist destinations for the first five months of this year have been worse than they were during the same period last year. Poreč has recorded 130,000 tourist arrivals and half a million overnight stays from January to the end of May, which is 17,000 overnight stays less than were recorded during the first five months of last year.

While this doesn't necessarily sound very promising, this is in fact very good, as a worse outcome was actually expected.

''We expected a worse result given the fact that last year, Poreč enjoyed a record 3.4 million overnight stays. Easter and May the 1st were excellent, and the beginning of June has also been very good, better than it was last year, said the director of the Poreč Tourist Board, Nenad Velenik. The total registered accommodation capacity in Poreč is 32,000 beds, of which 17,000 beds per day are full during the pre-season.

Although half a year ago, warnings about a lack of seasonal workers was being warned of as an acute and serious problem, the Istrian town's numerous tourism companies haven't been complaining about their lack of a workforce in recent weeks. Velenik believes, therefore, that the area's hoteliers were properly prepared for the tourist season and brought in their workforce from other countries on time.

''We're a multicultural environment and everyone who wants to work here is welcome to,'' said Velenik.

On the ''eve'' of 2019's main tourist season, a major public tourist investment was completed in Poreč: Materada beach was renovated and restored to its full glory, a project worth 5.7 million kuna, out of which 1.5 million kuna was settled by the town's local tourist board.

There are plans for several more investments in Poreč's overall tourist infrastructure, which will not be completed this season, because no major works can be completed during the main season. By the end of this year, the plans to have an adrenaline bike park in Poreč's bathing area worth 750,000 kuna, in the future the plan is to build an outdoor playground for children, also located in the same area with a price tag of 300,000 kuna, and the Poreč façade will continue to be renovated this year, with an investment of 250,000 kuna, which also contributes positively to the public image of Poreč as a tourist destination.

In addition to all of the above, 5.2 million kuna has been allocated for various manifestations due to take place in Poreč.

Make sure to follow our dedicated travel page for much more.

Monday, 3 June 2019

Istria: Koreans Interested in Culture and Tourism Cooperation

As Glas Istre/Andjelo Dagostin/Gordana Calic Sverko writes on the 3rd of June, 2019, last week, a visit of foreign delegations to Istria took place. Istria's Zminj municipality was visited by a high delegation from South Korea, led by a personal envoy of Korean Culture, Tourism and Sports Minister Shin Kinam. Along with his colleagues, they were hosted by Željko Plavčić of Žminj, on the occasion of the fifth Assembly of Čakavian poetry that was held in Žminj last weekend.

The previous delegation held meetings with Minister of Culture Nina Obuljen Koržinek and President of the Croatian Olympic Committee Zlatko Mateš, and after Žminj they visited Pula. Among the delegation was a film producer and university professor Baek Hak Gi, journalist from the United Press International Lee Sang Bong, president of EZ Entertainment and university professor Na Jungyoon, and visiting coordinator, translator and member of the American Association of Architects, Redden Soonyoung. Žminj and Istria were visited upon the recommendation of the Croatian Ambassador to South Korea, Damir Kušen.

In Istria, more specifically in Žminj, members of the delegation discussed the establishment of economic, cultural and tourist co-operation with Plavčić. Direct investment was not discussed because this was just an initial visit, however, Kinam expressed the desire to concretise cooperation at the next meeting in Seoul. Kinam himself personally joined the celebration of Čakavian poetry by bringing up Korean poetry. Kinam has spent four mandates in the South Korean Parliament, is an experienced writer and author of the contemporary novel "The Person I met in Dubrovnik" (Osoba koju sam sreo u Dubrovniku).

The meeting in Istria highlighted the fact that Croatia was visited more than 560,000 Koreans last year, contributing to the quality of traffic connections between Seoul and Zagreb, which is certainly a prerequisite for Žminj to become a ''station'' for Korean tourists, as well as artists who could find inspiration in this very quiet and picturesque region of Istria, with its rich gastronomic offer and cultural heritage.

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Monday, 25 March 2019

Gastroposao Portal Helping Pula Find Waiters and Chefs This Season

As Morski writes on the 25th of March, 2019, the specialised portal Gastroposao, which was launched last year, and the City of Pula are continuing their cooperation this year, too.

The portal's aim is to tackle the problem of the lack of quality seasonal workers in hospitality and tourism, which is one of the biggest problems Croatian tourism has faced in recent years.

Following the good results of last year's pilot cooperation between the Gastroposao portal and the City of Pula, when during May and June, Pula's small and medium entrepreneurs in the fields of hospitality and tourism were greatly helped in terms of finding a quality workforce, this year the project is also including Istria, Rovinj and Medulin, as well as the town of Novalja on the island of Pag.

The City of Pula is the first city to recognise the need to create much more simple and exact measures of employment assistance in the field of hospitality and tourism, and has decided that all restaurants from the City of Pula can use incentives in the amount of 90 percent to finance their search for a quality workforce by announcing their search on Gastroposao.

''We're witnessing just how challenging it is to find a quality workforce today, especially in tourism. The tourist season is knocking at the front door and our intention is to quickly and easily "connect" the supply and demand on the labour market and this is why this project is important. If we continue to want to develop and make steps with our [tourist] offer, then it's crucial to have a high-quality workforce,'' said Pula's mayor, Boris Miletić.

Pula will provide direct assistance to all those in the tourism and hospitality sector before the tourist season kicks off, allowing them to easily and quickly find high quality seasonal workers from all over Croatia and beyond, without having to pay extra cash, and with minimal amounts of paperwork.

This means that those looking for staff only pay 100 kuna in costs when publishing an ad on Gastroposao, while the rest will be subsidised by their local government. This approach helps those in the hospitality and tourism industry because a great many small and medium-sized businesses are struggling to be able to get hold of the necessary resources needed for such moves otherwise. The only condition they must fulfil is that they are beneficiaries of measures in the areas of the cities of Pula, Rovinj and Novalja, or in the municipality of Medulin.

It's important to mention that Gastroposao cuts out the middle man and allows employer and employee to communicate directly to each other without any third parties. Employees don't need to write out any job applications and resumes, and they only need to fill in a prepared questionnaire on the Gastroposao portal which has been tailored to the professional terms and written language rules that chefs, waiters and other employees in such fields understand.

Otherwise, the Gastroposao project is co-funded under the IPA Local Employment Promotion Initiative - phase II of the European Social Fund, in the amount of 178,938.00 euro. Gastroposao is the only specialist portal in the Republic of Croatia for employment assistance in the tourism and hospitality sector.

Make sure to stay up to date by following our dedicated lifestyle and business pages for much more.

Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Pula's Arena Hospitality Group to Invest Almost 100 Million Euro by 2022

Pula's Arena Hospitality Group, which refers to itself as one of the most dynamic hospitality groups in Central and Eastern Europe, currently offers a portfolio of 26 owned, co-owned, leased and managed properties with more than 10,000 rooms and accommodation units here in Croatia, as well as in Germany and Hungary.

As Marija Crnjak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 5th of March, 2019, the total investments of the Arena Hospitality Group in 2018 and 2019 amount to 447 million kuna in hotels and camps in both the Republic of Croatia and over in Germany, plus the 190 million kuna that the group plans to invest in the reconstruction of the much loved Hotel Brioni (Brijuni). 

This was stated in the presentation of the Arena Hospitality Group's very impressive business results. The company claims it is also now ready for yet more new acquisitions across Central and Eastern Europe. As is already known, through public offers, the group collected a massive 788 million kuna back in 2017, and since then, they have invested on average three times more than before the public offer.

The Arena Hospitality Group is currently operating in the aforementioned three countries, under four brands, including Park Plaza and Art'otel, last year the company earned 758 million kuna in total revenue, an increase of 5.6 percent when compared to their record back in 2017, accompanied by healthy growth in all segments, hotels, tourist resorts and camp sites. In Croatia alone, they experienced handsome revenues of 503.8 million kuna.

After 2018's big investment in Glamping Arena One 99, worth 70 million kuna, this year, an investment of 128 million kuna is planned in Kažela camp, 60 million kuna is the planned amount to invest in Verudela Beach, a tourist resort, which should be completed by the year 2020, when the beginning of the works at Hotel Brioni (Brijuni) are planned. In the reconstruction of Art'otel Berlin Kudamm alone, the company will invest 53 million kuna.

Make sure to stay up to date on investments in Croatia, doing business in Croatia and everything in between by following our dedicated business page.


Click here for the original article by Marija Crnjak for Poslovni Dnevnik

Monday, 4 March 2019

Are EU Rules Limiting the Traditional Lives and Work of Croatian Fishermen?

It goes without saying that the EU has more positives than it does negatives, at least for most countries, but what of its ultra-stringent rules when it comes to fishing policies? Dalmatian and Istrian fishermen have some vastly different experiences when it comes to carrying out the task at hand, but they share one thing in common - EU rules seem to be unfairly pushing Croatian fishermen towards tourism and away from fishing, making a workforce more and more difficult to come across, and to keep hold of.

''In 1998, I asked some of my elders how I should distribute my earnings. They said: Fifty percent goes to the company, fifty percent goes to the crew. I still stick to those rules today, I've never deviated from them, so I don't have any problems with my crew,'' says fisherman Ante Juran from Vrsar.

As Morski writes on the 3rd of March, 2019, while fishermen in Istria have managed to keep their heads above water (no pun intended) for now, some alarming data has arrived from down south in Dalmatia, some boat owners are complaining that they can't find fishermen to work for them for love nor money. In Tribunj in Šibenik-Knin County, claims suggest that as many as ''fifty fishermen'' are missing. The crews are difficult to find, meaning that more often than not, there is an unskilled labour force working on the ships, compiled with people from all parts of Croatia simply looking for employment, and there is also a workforce from neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia present.

The media say that one Ugljan entrepreneur invested 2.9 million euros in a new fishing vessel, and is now "desperately seeking twenty fishermen'' to work on board. It has been claimed that nobody will fish even for a guaranteed wage of one thousand euros per month, at least according to a report from Glas Istre. Is that possible? In these paradoxical times - probably.

In Istria, everyone is reluctant to talk about the matter, but they all solemnly confirm that there are less and less available fishermen wanting to work, that is, there is no qualified or even unskilled labour willing to go fishing on these vessels. Vessels specifically built for ''commercial'' fishing are plagued by this issue. Only one such boat can be seen along the Rovinj coast, other places are occupied primarily boats that take tourists back and forth in the summer. Robert Momić, chair of the fishermen's guild at the Croatian Chamber of Trades and Crafts, says that the EU's often highly stringent rules don't leave much leg room, and they actively encourage fishing boat owners to focus mainly on tourism, leaving fishermen with little choice but to stray from this traditional industry, too.

''The system limits the fishing trade and more and more fishermen are finding that real profit lies in the transport of tourists. It's easier to make money driving tourists around to record how dolphins jump around in the open sea than to fish with respect to quotas and various other restrictions. The EU's operational programs should help fishermen stay at sea, and this doesn't go without boosting investment in new ships. Given the restrictive measures, there are fewer fishing days and, consequently, it's harder to pay workers and to keep up with tax obligations properly. One thing is certain: The fishing industry remembers better days, in today's legal environment, only big fishing vessels (ships of about thirty feet in length) can make money and offer decent salaries to each crew member, and a large vessel like that requires an average of nine crew members. The problem with us in Istria is that this season coincides with the height of the tourist season, when it's even more difficult to find crew members,'' says Robert Momić.

Make sure to stay up to date with our dedicated lifestyle and business pages for much, much more.


Click here for the original article by Ello Velan for Glas Istre

Monday, 26 November 2018

Pula Riva Tram: The Answer to Istrian City's Summer Crowds?

As Glas Istre writes on the 26th of November, 2018, calculations show that almost a million people per year can be found on Pula's riva (waterfront), with the highest concentration naturally being in the tourist season, during the warmer summer months. Could the introduction of a Pula riva tram be the answer to a silent yet pressing question for the city?

These high concentrations of people are all potential users of the historic Istrian city's future tram. Rather than driving cars into the city and its roads, a tram could be a much better option. Ultimately, the benefits of such a move would be multifaceted. Pula would have the opportunity to put its abandoned resources back into proper use, namely the railway line, and solve a good part of its traffic problems in an environmentally friendly manner.

Can the introduction of an electric tram along the Pula riva significantly reduce the traffic and crowding during the summer, and eliminate the proverbial tourist suffocation on the streets of Pula? Yes, it can - claim Livio Nefat and Ivan Skol, who are completing their project on the introduction of an electric tram in Pula, by reactivating the neglected railroad tracks which already exist in the popular Istrian city.

Instead of going back into the past, the Pula riva tram project introduces us to the future, just like in the film. We imagine that it would be able to travel along the entire Pula Bay, where there is already a line from older times. To be able to take a tram to go swimming at Punta Krišto, Štinjan and Hidro on one side, or go shopping in Max City on the other. And how would it be, during the summer, to be able to sit on a tram that would take you under the tunnels below the Montezaro park all the way to the exit not far from Elektroistra? It sounds unreal, but it isn't an impossible task.

The above is the vision of the Pula locals, who have been steadily and enthusiastically engaged in the Pula riva tram idea for the last four years.

''Thousands of tourists a day, from the nearby tourist zones, from settlements, camp sites, and hotels from various places across Istria, come to the centre of Pula during the summer in their cars and on buses to see its sights, to embark on a boat tour or to go to one of the evening performances at Pula Arena. They go and park wherever they arrive in the city centre, and more and more are parking at large car parks at the entrance to the city - at Mandrač, on the outskirts of the riva in the north, on Marsovo polje, and at the former Industrokema in the southern part of the city. There are no adequate, targeted means of transport now. Walking in the summer at 35 degrees is a problem for everyone. After all, they want to be comfortable, most aren't bothered about walking, but they'd be happy to drive,'' Livio Nepat states.

According to his idea, the Pula riva tram would initially run from the car park at Mandrač, near the railway station, and then along the waterfront all the way to the Forum. If the line ended up being extended as planned, and then realised, the southern part of that same symmetrical line would see a tram take tourists and other travellers from the Forum to the future garage located at Marsovo polje, where there are other larger car parks. Therefore, the tourists would leave their vehicles in the aforementioned parking areas, at Mandrač and Marsovo polje, in order to get into the city by public transport, more specifically by electric tram. This smart solution would significantly relieve Pula's burdened roads of the overwhelming crowds during the summer, according to the authors of the planned project.

According to the business plan they have developed, the first phase of the investment is worth about five million kuna, and that could be paid off within a three year period. These calculations show that almost a million people can be found on the waterfront per year, where they then embark on ships, excursion boats, buses on the waterfront, or go to concerts and other various events held at Pula Arena. These are, as stated, all potential users of Pula's future tram.

Ultimately, the benefit of the introduction of such a tram service in Pula would be a multifaceted one. The city would put its unused and abandoned resources back into proper use, such as the railway line, and thus solve at least a good part of the traffic jams in an environmentally acceptable way, explained Ivan Skol.

As far as the second phase of the project is concerned, the proposal is to use a railroad that runs along Pula Bay as a whole. The track already exists on one side all the way to the cement factory (alternatively, the old route from back in 1904 could be restored) not so far from Muzil, Max City, the Naval cemetery and the church, and on the other side, to Punta Guc at Valellunga, where a cruise terminal is planned. So, an even greater influx of tourists who need transportation to Pula Arena, the Forum, the market etc is expected. By extending the line from the cement factory to Muzil, it could also even reach an important future tourist area, as well as a new shopping centre.

On the other hand, the railway line towards the north, from the railway station to the military airport, already exists. With the addition of the section to the civilian airport, the Pula riva tram would be able to offer an elegant transfer service for thousands of passengers from the airport to the city, as well as to the future cruise terminal.

''I've been working on this tram north-south simulator for four years now. So far, a lot has been agreed. After lengthy negotiations, (with particular emphasis and thanks to the professional staff of the traffic section of Pula and Istria) HŽ confirmed to us that it's technically possible to use two tracks that are not being used at Pula railway station. The licensed company from Zagreb, authorised to design the railway infrastructure, has been working on completing the entire design process over recent days. We got a CD from the City of Pula with all the necessary geodetic substrates of the Mandrač - Forum route for the project, for which we're especially grateful to the Administrative Department for Spatial Planning of the City of Pula,'' noted Livio Nefat.

The author's desire is to present the "Tw" Pula riva tram project to the City of Pula when all of its loose ends are tied up. It is the City itself which will decide whether or not the project will come to life. Without the green light from them, it is impossible to realise, among other important things, the availability of a funding channel through European Union money. With EU cash behind it, the whole project would be easier to kickstart and then later continue to elaborate.

The two Pula locals have said that their desire to bring this project to fruition comes from their wish to make a contribution to the community as citizens of Pula, for the citizens of Pula, and in cooperation with the City of Pula, with the help of EU funds, ITU mechanisms and other forms of financing to realise a self-sustaining entrepreneurial venture, from which everyone would benefit.

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Click here for the original article by Jasna Orlic for Glas Istre

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

Large Tourism Investment Coming to Novigrad

An enormous investment cycle will bring Novigrad to the forefront.

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