Sunday, 12 June 2022

Future ACI Marina Rijeka to Transform Entire Kvarner Region

June the 12th, 2022 - The Kvarner of the Future conference was held in Rijeka recently, where the upcoming extremely modern marina, ACI Marina Rijeka, was discussed.

As Morski writes, a large conference was held at the Rijeka terminal where experts from the maritime industry, shipbuilding, digitalisation and other key people in Croatian tourism and maritime affairs gathered. They were led by representatives of the Lurssen Group and ACI, who presented projects whose implementation will change the face of Kvarner in the next few years.

One of the most important topics was the future ACI Marina Rijeka, which will be the largest investment in nautical tourism in the Republic of Croatia so far and which will create more than 130 new jobs within the functioning of the marina itself.

The first panel paid special attention to the digital age and the impact of the introduction of digital technologies in the maritime industry, as well as the impact of technologies that are being rapidly implemented, and need to be mapped, analysed and implemented in good time.

The second panel opened up some other important issues related to the use of hydrogen and the benefits of developing the potential of a hydrogen economy that is in line with the objectives of the European Hydrogen Strategy. The key topic was the establishment of the Northern Adriatic hydrogen valley by Croatia, Italy and Slovenia with the aim of developing the potential for the production and use of renewable hydrogen.

''The realisation of a cross-border hydrogen valley will represent a transition to an integrated energy ecosystem that will include the energy, industry and transport sectors. Cooperation on joint innovation projects will lead to the accelerated development of hydrogen technologies and the creation of value chains,'' said Stephen Taylor, coordinator of the Working Group of the Hydrogen Valley IT-HR-SLO and Deputy Director of Area Science Park in Trieste, Italy.

The Kvarner of the Future conference was concluded by the third panel, which focused on the future ACI Marina Rijeka. The president of the management board of ACI, Kristijan Pavic, and member of the management board for Investments, Marketing and Retail of ACI d.d., Josip Ostrogovic, both emphasised that the future ACI Marina Rijeka will set new standards in the entire region when it comes to building nautical tourism ports. One of the key development potentials in this regard is certainly the development of new technologies.

The future ACI Marina Rijeka will be a green and fully digitalised marina and a centre for the development of new technologies that will be applied in the future in nautical tourism, both on board vessels and in the marinas themselves.

Provided that everything goes according to plan and without any unforeseen circumstances cropping up, the start of construction work could be in the middle of next year. The sea part of the marina could be opened in 2024, and the entire marina in 2026.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Saturday, 11 June 2022

Construction Permit for Ucka Cable Car Expected by End of 2022

June the 11th, 2022 - The construction permit for the Ucka cable car should be obtained by the end of this year, and a brand new tourist attraction should provide a boost to the Ucka area.

As Morski writes, the total investment in the Ucka cable car is now estimated at around 35 million euros, representatives of the project's expert team said recently. Members of the team, Mladen Blazevic, Milorad Stanic, Zeljko Kuis and Ingo Kamenar spoke at a recently held press conference about the state and future of the Ucka cable car project, which should be operational in five years at the most and have the longest route among all European cable cars.

As they pointed out, it is likely that by the end of the year, a building permit could be obtained for all elements of the future Ucka cable car - a departure station at the bottom of Camp Medveja, the final station below the top of Vojak, the route and pillars with all of the accompanying access roads, an access road to the departure station and a water supply and drainage.

According to the data, the total investment is now estimated to stand at around 35 million euros, of which the value of access roads is estimated at five million euros, and the construction of a panoramic restaurant within the Ucka cable car peak station is estimated at 1.5 million euros, according to a report from HRT.

More will be known about potential investors after obtaining a building permit. European Union (EU) funds have been mentioned as one of the financing options, with the additional participation of businessmen, local communities and individuals also expected.

The Ucka cable car will be 4696 metres long from the departure to the final station, with a height difference of 1310 metres, and the arrival station will be located at a height of at 1355 metres. It will have five pillars, the maximum driving speed will be 10 metres per second, and the road speed will be seven metres per second. The ride will take eight and a half minutes, and the cabin capacity will be 60 people, ie 310 passengers per hour.

The feasibility study predicts about 320,000 visitors per year, so it is expected that the tourism sector will have an economic interest in this project, especially in the pre- and post-season expansion, and they're as such likely to participate in co-financing the project. The idea of ​​the Ucka cable car was conceived a whole 139 years ago, it was updated in the 1970s, and the current project was launched about 10 years ago.

In more recent years, there have been delays, mostly due to amendments to the project documentation, the preparation of a study of the main assessment of the acceptability of the project for the ecological network and amendments to the cableway route itself.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 10 May 2022

Opatija Tourism Figures Make it Most Successful in Kvarner Region

May the 10th, 2022 - Opatija tourism figures are encouraging indeed so far, placing this beautiful coastal town dominated by stunning Austro-Hungarian architecture at the top as the most successful destination in Kvarner.

As Morski writes, so far, the year 2022 has marked by domestic guests, but also visitors from nearby Austria and neighbouring Slovenia, which recorded a significant increase in terms of the number of overnight stays compared when to 2019. Overall, every fourth night in Kvarner over the past four months was realised in Opatija, which is fantastic news for Opatija tourism figures this year.

The best tourist results in all of Kvarner in the first four months of this year were achieved by Opatija, which was the most frequent choice for people wanting to spend holidays in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County. From January the 1st to April the 30th, Opatija recorded 71 thousand arrivals and 190 thousand overnight stays, which is 23 percent of the total number of overnight stays spent in all of Kvarner. In other words, so far in 2022, every fourth night in Kvarner was realised in Opatija, as reported by the local portal RIportal.

Of the total number of overnight stays, 58 thousand or 30 percent were realised by domestic guests, who, according to this criteria, are in the first place. Compared to pre-pandemic 2019, the number of overnight stays realised by domestic guests increased by 13 percent. Foreign guests realised a total of 132 thousand overnight stays, and the largest share in this number were visitors from Austria. Having realised 43,300 overnight stays, they "improved" their 2019 result by 6 percent.

After the Croats and Austrians, the neighbouring Slovenians came third in share with 19,000 overnight stays realised and growth of 16 percent when compared to the same period of the last "pre-pandemic" year (2019). A significant increase in the number of overnight stays for Opatija tourism figures was achieved by guests from the USA with growth of 33 percent, Switzerland with growth of 11 percent and neighbouring Hungary with growth of 10 percent.

When it comes to the choice of accommodation, Opatija's guests mostly chose hotels, which hold an impressive 83% share in terms of total overnight stays realised, equal to a massive 158 thousand overnight stays. With 28,000 overnight stays realised, Opatija's private accommodation "incorporated" a 15 percent share into the town's total score, while the rest fell on non-commercial accommodation.

''We can be more than satisfied with the current part of the tourist year, which has shown that Opatija is a sought-after destination and one which operates throughout the year. The interest of guests, along with our natural beauty and rich cultural and historical heritage, we've managed achieved through targeted promotional campaigns, as well as already known programmes from Advent, Valentine's Day, and then Easter. We're optimistic about the summer season, because the announcements so far are good, and the abolition of epidemiological measures has allowed us to reorganise large and well-attended events such as RetrOpathy, which is set to return in late June,'' said the director of the Opatija Tourist Board, Suzi Petricic.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Wednesday, 9 March 2022

Opatija Tourism Breaking Records Set Back in Pre-Pandemic 2019!

March the 9th, 2022 - The beautiful town of Opatija which is situated along Kvarner's dramatic coastline is breaking records it set back in pre-pandemic 2019, offering a more than encouraging insight into Croatian tourism recovery as a whole. Opatija tourism figures certainly don't have much to complain about so far in 2022 as we move forward.

Opatija tourism numbers are looking excellent for the month of February 2022, and this beautiful town which boasts stunning Austro-Hungarian architecture, beautiful views and an ease of connectivity to many places across the rest of the country, including Rijeka and Zagreb, looks as if it has a promising tourist year ahead of it.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, after a record January, Opatija tourism only continued to record excellent figures during the month of February according to data obtained by the Opatija Tourist Board.

In the spirit of Valentine's Day and as a town that is undoubtedly romantic, Opatija tourism did very well. Opatija, sometimes referred to as Abbazia in Italian, attracted an impressive 14,413 guests who realised an even better number of 34,108 overnight stays, thus surpassing the pre-pandemic 2019 result. In February 2022, there was an increase of 11 percent in the number of overnight stays in Opatija, while compared to last year, this growth is at a very encouraging 141 percent.

The most numerous guests making up these Opatija tourism numbers were guests from the rest of Croatia, followed by tourists from Slovenia, Austria, the United States of America, Italy and Germany.

Back in February, Opatija's guests most often chose hotels for their holidays, and 86 percent of the total number of overnight stays registered were spent in hotel accommodation, with 12 percent being recorded in private accommodation.

For the second month in a row, Opatija was the most visited destination in all of the gorgeous Northern Adriatic region of Kvarner and among the most visited in all of Croatia.

For more, check out our dedicated travel section.

Friday, 18 February 2022

2022 Kvarner Tourism Presented to Czech and Slovakian Agencies

February the 18th, 2022 - 2022 Kvarner tourism has been presented to the Slovakian and Czech markets from which Croatia typically sees a lot of tourist traffic. Although the pandemic is likely to still affect many travel plans this year, the country is hoping for a good season.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, with a virtual presentation for representatives of Czech and Slovak agencies, the Kvarner Tourist Board, the Croatian National Tourist Board (CNTB/HTZ) and the CNTB Representation for the Czech Republic and Slovakia started a new cycle of presentations, which will probably continue in virtual form this year, as has been the case for many such things since the spring of 2020.

The presentation which showcases 2022 Kvarner tourism for the aforementioned markets was attended by about 30 representatives of varying Czech and Slovak agencies.

"We used the presentation as an opportunity to introduce agents to the novelties for 2022 Kvarner tourism with an emphasis placed on the large investment of Czech capital in the construction of Hilton Rijeka Costabella Beach Resort & Spa and the continuation of the ultra-popular railway line of the Czech carrier RegioJet," said Kvarner Tourist Board Director Irena Persic Zivadinov.

Guests from the Czech Republic realised more than 100,000 arrivals and almost 700,000 overnight stays back in 2021, which was very encouragingly at the record levels set back in pre-pandemic 2019, while guests from Slovakia achieved twice as much traffic as they did back in 2020.

The Kvarner region has been enjoying the status of one of the most popular foreign tourist destinations on the Czech and Slovak markets for years now, and the presentation of 2022 Kvarner tourism will likely draw many more people back.

In addition, the favourite car destinations for guests from the Czech Republic are Croatia and Slovakia, and for guests from Slovakia, those destinations are Croatia and the Czech Republic, which speaks of the traditional connection between them all.

For more, check out our travel section.

Friday, 28 January 2022

PHOTOS: Snowy Riversides and Magical Mountains of Croatia in January 2022

January 28, 2022 – The snowy riversides and magical mountains of Croatia in January 2022 show a spectacular and all-natural winter wonderland.

Snow finally stuck to the streets of central Zagreb for a couple of days this week. Early morning temperatures dropped to the lowest yet of this winter. Despite the chill, clear skies and sunshine days were enough to see the snow soon melt away.

But, far from the city, the snowy riversides and magical mountains of Croatia in January 2022 have kept their white blanket for longer. These all-natural landscapes look epic after the snowfall. For winter walkers and climbers – or even just lovers of photography – these images are way more spectacular than the bright lights and theatre of the Advent season.

Let's take a closer look at the winter wonderland of snowy riversides and magical mountains of Croatia in January 2022.
Gorski Kotar
Delnice, Lokve, Fužine, Stara Sušica, Ravna Gora

261435205_280374700697029_6373214118916472871_n.jpg© Turistička zajednica Gorskog kotara

Delnice2345678.jpg© Turistička zajednica Gorskog kotara

Vladimir_Franolić.jpgFrom above, Dvorac Stara Sušica © Vladimir Franolić

GorskiBranko_Lautar_Višnja_Bolf.jpg© Branko Lautar & Višnja Bolf

Gorski_Fužine_Jezero_Bajer_Marino_Kirinčić.jpgJezero Bajer near Fužine © Marino Kirinčić

GorskiGorskiBranko_Lautar_Višnja_Bolfrtghbn.jpg© Branko Lautar & Višnja Bolf

Japlenški_vrh_Forest_Park_Delnicedfghjmn.jpg© Turistička zajednica Gorskog kotara

GorskiBranko_Lautar_Višnja_Bolfsdfghjmn.jpgAnother view of Dvorac Stara Sušica © Branko Lautar & Višnja Bolf

Risnjak National Park and Snježnik Hrvatski

Risnjak.jpg© Risnjak National Park

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentil.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentildfgbhn.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentildfghbn.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentilfgt.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentilftgyh.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentilgfyhn.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Snježnik_hrvatskiĆuća-Žentilrftgvb.jpgSnježnik hrvatski © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

For more about Risnjak National Park, look here

Velebit
Northern Velebit National Park

VelebitNPDejan_Delač.jpg© Dejan Delač

VelebitNPDejan_Delač4rtgh.jpg© Dejan Delač

VelebitNPVedran_Katalinić.jpg© Vedran Katalinić

For more about Northern Velebit National Park, look here

Velebit Nature Park

Ljubičko_BrdoIvan_Cuca-Zentilxdfghnm.jpgLjubičko Brdo © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Ljubičko_BrdoIvan_Cuca-Zentilrtyh.jpgLjubičko Brdo © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Ljubičko_BrdoIvan_Cuca-Zentildrtyhgbn.jpgLjubičko Brdo © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Ljubičko_BrdoIvan_Cuca-Zentil.jpgLjubičko Brdo © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Ljubičko_BrdoIvan_Cuca-Zentilrf.jpgLjubičko Brdo © Ivan Ćuća-Žentil

Paklenica National Park

PaklenicaMario_Jurina.jpg© Mario Jurina

BojinacPaklenicIvanCoric.jpgBojinac © Ivan Coric Photography

BojinacPaklenicIvanCoricedfgvb.jpgBojinac © Ivan Coric Photography

For more about Paklenica National Park, look here

Kloštar Podravski, Podravina and Koprivnica-Križevci County

IvanN.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanN4rfghjn.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanN1234.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanNdfghjmk.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanNt5yhj.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanNtghb.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanNtyuhjnjk.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanNtgh.jpg© Ivan Nemet

IvanNsdfghjkm.jpg© Ivan Nemet

For more about the Drava river in Koprivnica-Križevci County look here. For more about the area of Podravina containing Kloštar Podravski and Đurđevac, look here

Slavonski Brod

BrodMirna_Šikić.jpg© Mirna Šikić

Oriovac_na_ribnjacima_Slavonski_BrodAntun_Lukšić.jpgThe wetlands and ponds in Oriovac near Slavonski Brod are not only home to fish - over 50 species of birds visit these waters © Antun Lukšić

For more about Slavonski Brod, look here

Žumberak-Samoborsko gorje Nature Park

ZumerakSvetiGeraDomagoj_Novosel.jpgThe high peak of Sveti Gera, on the western edge of Žumberak-Samoborsko gorje Nature Park © Domagoj Novosel

The author would like to thank each of the photographers who kindly loaned their work to him for this article

Thursday, 18 November 2021

Kvarner Leading Way to Making Croatian Maritime Industry Strong Again

November 18, 2021 - The Croatian maritime industry wants to return to its place as one of the strongest by establishing a global center for innovation and maritime skills in Kvarner. 

The MarInn Association - Maritime Innovation Cluster was presented at the Ambasador Hotel in Opatija, marking a big step forward for the whole destination, but also Croatia, reports HRTurizam.

By establishing this cluster, Croatia wants to return to the map of the strongest maritime countries. One of the main goals is to establish a global center for innovation and smart skills in the maritime industry in Kvarner. Thus, MarInn will become the backbone of the development of the maritime sector in the Republic of Croatia, and the priority areas that the cluster will develop will be autonomous vehicles, clean technologies with an emphasis on hydrogen, transformation of waste into energy, and smart, green, and self-sustainable marinas.

Through a unique and innovative event, new technologies in the maritime sector, goals, and areas of activity of the Maritime Innovation Cluster were presented. In addition, a new online platform will serve to connect partners and achieve cooperation on projects in the maritime sector.

A green and digital vision of the future of the maritime industry

The founders of the Cluster are Lürssen Design Center Kvarner d.o.o., Maritime Center of Excellence d.o.o. and Gitone d.o.o. while the partners are Jadrolinija, ACI, University of Rijeka, ERNAFA, Novatech, BrightDock, FER, regional development agency PRIGODA, AVL, City of Rijeka, and Primorje-Gorski Kotar County.

"By establishing this cluster, the Lürssen Group wants to bring together the entire eco-innovation system, from academia, the business sector, local government, and non-governmental organizations, and strengthen cooperation in the maritime industry and position itself, both in Croatia and in Europe, as a center of excellence for the development of new technologies and smart skills in the maritime sector. Furthermore, by joining the cluster partners, we enable work on already existing commercial projects, but also on future EU projects related primarily to innovation, research, and development in the maritime industry," said Peter Lürssen, co-owner of the Lürssen group behind the cluster.

MarInn is a platform for preparing research and development projects and the development of research infrastructure that will be available to all cluster members. By establishing and expanding the cluster, Croatia has the opportunity to show how it has the people and potential to achieve top results in the maritime industry, especially in the development of the vessels of the future, clean technology, autonomous platforms, and many other technologies.

"Our idea is to bring together all the Lurssen Group's commercial projects, but also new EU projects, to help us solve innovation challenges so that our technologies, these ships, are as green as possible, as clean as possible," said Ana Odak, President Maritime Innovation Cluster for the RI Channel.

The maritime innovation cluster will be located in the Innovation Arena, which will soon begin construction on the Rijeka campus.

Also, the construction of the most modern marina Porto Baroš will soon begin in Rijeka as one of the most significant investments in nautical tourism. This year, ACI d.d. and GITONE Kvarner d.o.o., part of the famous Lurssen Group, founded a joint company ACI-GITONE d.o.o. The combined company applied and won the tender for the concession for the construction and economical use of the nautical tourism port Porto Baroš in Rijeka, the future ACI marina Rijeka, which is also the largest and most important maritime project in the history of the Republic of Croatia.

The marina will have 260 berths and become a new Adriatic center for megayachts, and the estimated value of the project is 363.7 million kuna. It is planned to employ 132 workers.

The beginning of the sea part of the marina is planned for 2024, and the beginning of the land part of the marina with the main building is expected in 2025. With the new marina, Rijeka will be side by side with the most modern marinas across Europe.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Saturday, 5 June 2021

Kvarner Tourism Doing Well in Overnight Stays When Compared to 2020

June the 5th, 2021 - Kvarner tourism is showing some encouraging results when compared to this time last year, as the eVisitor system's data shows a 30 percent increase in overnight stays in 2021's first five months.

As Barbara Ban/Novac writes, according to the Croatian eVisitor system, more than 600,000 thousand overnight stays were realised in Kvarner in the first five months of 2021, which is 30 percent more than were recorded back during the same period in 2020. It is also equal to 40 percent of the overnight stays recorded for Kvarner tourism compared to the record, pre-pandemic year of 2019.

The highest number of overnight stays were realised by Croatian guests (234,000, which is 75 percent of the realised overnight stays for Kvarner tourism when compared to 2019), followed by guests from Germany (more than 126,500 overnight stays) and guests from Slovenia (66,000 overnight stays).

The island of Krk, the Opatija Riviera and the Cres-Losinj islands were the most sought after destinations for Kvarner tourism, and if we're to talk about the type of accommodation facilities sought, from January to May, most overnight stays were realised in family/private accommodation (216,000 overnight stays), hotels (157,000 overnight stays) and camps (126,500 overnight stays).

"In mid-May, with the gradual calming down of the epidemiological situation, many European countries began to ease their anti-epidemic measures. In Kvarner, we began to record a stable and significant growth of overnight stays during the month of May - for example, in the first week of May we realised about 36,000 overnight stays, while that number rose to almost 120,000 overnight stays in the last week of May. Over recent days, about 20,000 guests have been staying in Kvarner every day, and we're very happy that loyal guests from Germany have returned in large numbers and in May they hold the first place in terms of the number of overnight stays (104,000 overnight stays, a 36 percent share in total overnight stays),'' stated Kvarner Tourist Board director Irena Persic Zivadinov.

Numerous studies tell us how guests want and now even need to travel following such a long time of being restricted, and this is especially the case during the hot summer months. For example, the European Travel Commission (ETC) says as many as 56 percent of Europeans plan to travel within the rest of Europe by the end of August. TUI analyses also confirm that guests will choose destinations that are easily and quickly accessible by car, while "last-minute" bookings and the ability to change the date of stay at any time without additional costs will be almost crucial in the decisions of guests.

Analyses from the Booking.com platform also show that 79 percent of respondents are looking forward to being able to travel elsewhere again after a period of isolation and numerous restrictions placed on movement, while 64 percent of respondents say that travel is now even more important to them than it ever was before the pandemic.

“Since the beginning of 2021, we've done a series of virtual presentations. The participants of these presentations, whether they're representatives of tour operators, agents or media representatives, confirmed to us that guests want and need to travel. That's why the Kvarner Tourist Board continues to present the region throughout the month of June through presentations and advertising campaigns. Thanks to the EU digital COVID certificates and the growing vaccination of the EU's population, we believe that movement between countries, especially at the EU level, will be greatly facilitated and encourage guests to travel again. In cooperation with the County Teaching Institute for Public Health and the Health Centre, we'll continue to organise locations for conducting COVID-19 testing.

Additional tourist clinics will soon be open, where guests will also be able to take tests, and many accommodation facilities - hotels and camps - will conduct tests on COVID-19 only for their guests, right there on the spot. In this way, we'll try to ensure a carefree and safe stay for guests in Kvarner. Guests are always looking for quality, which also gives them a sense of security and protection in their destination, at all levels. In addition to all that, the proximity and accessibility of Kvarner will certainly remain our important imperative in 2021 as well,'' pointsed out the director of the Kvarner Tourist Board.

For more, follow our travel section.

Friday, 16 April 2021

Brand New Opatija Riviera Hotel Being Constructed in Autumn

April the 16th, 2021 - Yet another beautiful Opatija Riviera hotel is set to be constructed in autumn this year, bringing yet more luxury to this picturesque part of Croatia.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, although there are still a lot of challenges ahead of this Opatija Riviera hotel project, the construction of a brand new luxury hotel next to the marina in Icici should begin this year. It marks an investment from the Hungarian entrepreneur Lorinz Meszaros worth a massive 50 million euros, which may bring a new global hotel brand to Kvarner.

Optimism despite the ongoing coronavirus crisis

Denis Sikljan, the owner of the DDG Group, which developed the project on the land of a former hospital, which covers 20,000 square metres next to Marina Icici, confirmed that the main project has faced delays because of the pandemic.

The new Opatija Riviera hotel will be a five star facility with 180 rooms and 12 villas, next to which a square for public use will be built, and the project includes the construction of an access road, a pedestrian bridge to the sea, and a new rainwater drainage system from Ucka. Fountains, shopping facilities and complete horticultural landscaping are planned on the public square, which will become the new center of Icici.

"We're very optimistic about it all, although we do still have a lot of work to do, precisely because a number of public institutions are involved in all of this, from the state to local government and public companies, and it involves a series of permits that must be obtained for implementation.

For now, everything is going according to plan, although slower because the pandemic has slowed down the administrative processes, and part of the property status of some of the land needs to be resolved. Once the works start, and we expect them to begin to be right after this summer season, everything should be completed within two calendar years.

It would have been earlier, but we have to take into account the ban on such work during the tourist season, which automatically takes away eight months of work,'' revealed Sikljan, who took over the project from Karlovacka banka after the bankruptcy of Industrogradnja, which initially purchased it from KBC Rijeka. There used to be a hospital for lung diseases on the land, and it end up being left totally neglected for a long time.

The investor, Meszaros, is known to the public as the owner of NK Osijek, and he connected with Sikljan, a well-known developer of luxury tourist projects in Kvarner, mostly on Krk, through sport.

The investor profile

The company that is implementing the project in Icici is Rivas Hotels & Resort, registered back at the end of 2019 in Rijeka, and its founder is the company Talentis group, owned by the family of Lorinzo Meszaros.

The company has 30 hotels in its portfolio in Austria, Hungary, Romania and Montenegro, and soon plans to develop a strategy for its expansion in Croatia, with Icici as the first hotel project.

Meszaros is also the owner of the company Mirno more, which owns Vila Maria in the bay of Ceprljanda in Ugljan, and reached the eyes of the media when five years ago a group of hooligans shot at the windows in the house where national team member Ivan Rakitic was staying with his family.

The Talentis Group points out on its Linkedin profile that it is one of the most prestigious investors in Hungary, which is currently developing a new innovative city on 5,000 hectares, with more than 300 real estate projects in the western suburbs of the capital city of Budapest.

Over the last few years, they have completed projects worth more than 100 million euros in total, and in addition to hotel facilities, they have also developed a shopping centre and logistics centres.

For more on upcoming business ventures and projects in Croatia, follow our dedicated section.

Thursday, 25 March 2021

Development of Health Tourism: High Priority for Croatian Tourist Offer

March 25, 2021 - Both the Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports and Croatian tourist boards recognised the development of health tourism as a high priority for Croatia.

To discuss the development of health tourism in Croatia, a branch that is becoming one of the more important Croatian tourist products, Croatian Tourism and Sports minister Nikolina Brnjac met with Kvarner Tourist Board director Irena Peršić Živadinov, Kvarner Health Tourism cluster president Vladimir Možetič, and Zagreb Tourist Board director Martina Bienenfeld. As life expectancy and healthy lifestyle trends increase, the value of health tourism grows. The novel coronavirus only made that growth even more rapid.

"Over 80,000 tourists in 2020 visited Kvarner (well-known for Lošinj Island and its hospital for respiratory issues) for health services. Today, many people are recovering from the consequences of the novel coronavirus there," said the Kvarner Tourist Board director Živadinov.  

"We have all the advantages for further development of health tourism: a good reputation of health services, qualified staff, natural richness of thermal sources, good climate, and long tradition of tourism," said minister Brnjac. Her goal is to pull Croatia out of the perception of a country only good for the summer season.

Croatia offers health services in wellness and medicine tourism. Health tourism is most associated with the regions of Kvarner, Istria, northern Croatia, and Zagreb, but the goal is to include other regions that have the potential for health tourism and to achieve the goals of a strategy that needs to be accomplished by 2030.

Martina Bienenfeld said that the Zagreb Tourist Board is working on the City's recognition as the centre of medical excellence. She pointed out good traffic connections, a mixture of the Mediterranean and mid-Europe climate, as well as good prices of health services as great advantages of Croatia's capital to the international clientele.

The Health Care Bill and Services in Tourism Bill now allow hospitality and health tourism services in hospitals and medical centres. These legal changes are also significant in attracting further investments in the field.

For more about travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

 

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