Sunday, 8 March 2020

European Capital of Culture Title Brings Record Rijeka Tourism

Rijeka tourism is booming, and this often overlooked Croatian city, known for its industrial past and perhaps what's most interesting of all, the invention of the torpedo, is experiencing a great start to 2020.

Rijeka isn't always that high on the lists of foreign tourists keen to explore Croatia. With central and southern Dalmatian cities like Split and Dubrovnik always firmly placed, sometimes even Zagreb doesn't get a look in. Things appear to be changing, however, now that the city that flows in the Northern Adriatic area of the country has taken the European Capital of Culture Title for 2020.

As Novac writes on the 6th of March, 2020, in February 2020, Rijeka ranked impressively in third place in terms of tourist turnover earned in family accommodation units with 2,650 realised arrivals, and ranked eighth in total tourist turnover in the Republic of Croatia with 20,037 overnight stays achieved.

Novi list reported on the above announcement issued by the Rijeka Tourist Board, who also noted the first two months of 2020, Rijeka tourism was doing more than brilliantly as the city recorded an excellent tourist turnover of 37,943 overnight stays, which marks impressive growth of thirteen percent when compared to the same period in 2019.

The highest number of overnight stays in Rijeka was realised by Italian citizens, and then tourists from the USA, who realised 2,765 overnight stays, which is of significant interest. The average stay of foreign tourists in the period between the 1st of January 2020 to the 2nd of February 2020 is 3.48 days and the average stay of Croatian tourists is 2.21 days.

The excellent Rijeka tourism result is supported by the tourist turnover for February, which recorded 20,052 overnight stays, which is fourteen percent more than back in February 2019, long before Rijeka took the title of European Capital of Culture.

The rich programme of the Rijeka Carnival certainly also contributed heavily to the largest number of overnight stays recorded in February in the City of Rijeka.

Last month, the European Capital of Culture shined adorned its vibrant carnival colours and generated tourist turnover of 4,358 overnight stays, seventeen percent more than were realised back in 2019 during the Rijeka Carnival weekend, which ran from February the 21st to the 24th, 2020.

Guests and participants of the International Carnival Parade contributed to the increase of tourist traffic not only in Rijeka, but also in all nearby destinations in the Kvarner region.

According to data from the eVisitor information system, the largest number of overnight stays in February were spent in private accommodation, which accounts for 45.27 percent, followed by hotels, non-commercial accommodation and hostels.

Make sure to follow our dedicated travel page for more.

Saturday, 15 February 2020

JTH Costabella Rijeka: Opening Of Hotel Will Not Be Delayed

As Novac/Dora Koretic writes on the 14th of February, 2020, although the deadline for completing the landscaping works in front of the future Rijeka Hilton was extended yesterday until August the 31st, 2020, for JTH Costabella at a government session, Costabella said the hotel would definitely still be ready to receive its first guests this summer and that the extension would not delay the opening this valuable investment.

Specifically, as evidenced by a document discussed yesterday at the government level, JTH Costabella's landscaping work, for which a concession was granted back in November 2015, was due to be completed by October 2019, having already made use of one extension of the deadline for the submission of the operating permit.

However, in a letter sent to the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure from JTH Costabella, they clarify that they want to extend the works because, by signing a branding agreement with Hilton, which was signed back in April last year, they received additional conditions for the quality and the construction of the resort, and therefore the beaches are also implied.

In addition, JTH Costabella said that the completion of the works, among other things, was made much more difficult for them because of the ban on maritime work in the Rijeka area from June the 15th to September the 15th, as well as the fact that the contractor only submitted an extension request on October the 31st last year.

"The opening of the hotel will not be delayed. We expect to open it during the summer, but unfortunately not sooner. The deadline for August the 31st is defined as the deadline, but we believe that both the beach and the hotel will definitely be completed before that date,'' stated JTH Costabella, they also noted that the beach would be even more luxurious than originally planned due to Hilton's requests.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for more.

Thursday, 5 September 2019

European Capital of Culture in Focus: New York Times, BBC in Rijeka

September 5, 2019 - What’s cooking in Rijeka these days? A New York Times report and a show that will be broadcast primetime on BBC One. But that's just part of it.  

Namely, Alex Crevar, an experienced journalist who regularly collaborates with The New York Times, National Geographic Travel and Lonely Planet, is currently visiting the 2020 European Capital of Culture, reports Novi List.

Crevar is exploring the city before it takes on the title of the European Capital of Culture next year. During his stay, Crevar visited all the major sites and institutions that will host and be part of the Rijeka 2020 program.

Crevar is apparently enjoying his visit so much, he extended his stay by three more days and will carry on in the Croatian city until the opening of the Porto Etno Festival on Friday.

Alex Crevar is hosted by Edi Jurković, chief communications officer for Rijeka 2020, who revealed everything that Rijeka, its residents, and all guests can expect in the year ahead, as well as the hidden and undiscovered charms of the city. The journalist was particularly impressed with the Croatian National Theatre Ivan Zajc where he enjoyed browsing the ceiling paintings and the time capsule.

Crevar also spoke with Idis Turat, a well-known local architect, not only about the specifics of the city's architecture, but also about the program direction of Sweet and Salt Rijeka 2020. Crevar also visited Tito’s ‘Galeb’ ship, whose story he found particularly interesting. The Galeb’s new life as a museum ship should surely be a draw for tourists, especially from America.

During his stay, Crevar will also speak with the city's Mayor Vojko Obersnel, Culture Manager Ivan Šarar, and Rijeka 2020 Director Emina Višnić.

However, the New York Times is not the only foreign media in the city. We must not forget of the five-member British production team led by producer Ewan Chamberlain, who is reporting on Rijeka for one of the UK's most important television channels, BBC One, and the Gateway TV show. 

“The report will be broadcast primetime on BBC One, followed by a replay on BBC Two which is visible in Northern Ireland and Scotland, and will then be available on their web platform. They arrived in Rijeka organized by the Croatian National Tourist Board, and of course, their main focus is Rijeka as the European Capital of Culture 2020,” said Dino Matešić of the Rijeka Tourist Board.

The British TV crew stayed in Rijeka for two days and visited many attractions including the Croatian National Theatre Ivan Zajc, the ‘Galeb’, Korzo, the Trieste fortress, Rijeka cathedral, and the Governor's Palace to see the original Titanic vest. They also visited the unique Peek&Poke computer museum and the Astronomy Center.

“They even visited the future Art Quarter, that is, the ex Benčić complex, and a really special experience was the trip to the fish market and the plaza,” says Matešić , adding that they plan to visit Krk and Opatija.

In mid-August, a major report was published by Die Welt, one of Germany's most circulated dailies, and French Le Monde and Italian Rai also have plans to visit, focusing on the large exhibition 'D'Annunzio’s Martyr', which will open in mid-September in the Maritime and History Museum of the Croatian Littoral, that is, the Governor's Palace, which thematizes D'Annunzio’s occupation of Rijeka, which happened exactly one hundred years ago.

All in all, as the year 2020 approaches, or the takeover of the prestigious title of the European Capital of Culture, numerous foreign journalists, bloggers, and tourism professionals are increasingly visiting Rijeka. This is the result of intensive work on the international promotion of Rijeka 2020, joined by the Croatian National Tourist Board, the Tourist Board of both the City of Rijeka and Kvarner, and the Rijeka 2020 company.

Thus, in the past year, Rijeka has been visited by media teams including Irish Daily Mirror, The Times, National Geographic Traveler UK, Le Télégramme, The Mail on Sunday, Magazin Catholic Digest, Magazin Auto Touring, Giornale Sentire, Daily Telegraph and Sunday Times.

To read more about travel in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Friday, 30 August 2019

Rijeka Company Already ''Carving Out'' Skating Rinks for Advent Joy

As Sergej Novosel Vuckovic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 29th of August, 2019, although winter still seems somewhat far away, things are going full speed ahead at a Rijeka-based company to provide thousands of citizens and tourists across Croatia with one of their favourite activities for the advent period.

They are the only ones in the country and in Croatia's immediate region who actually make skating rinks, design and realise every conceivable idea of ​​their clients, and they're leaning more and more towards exports.

This Croatian company is the only ice rink creator in the entire country, namely, in this coastal city, the European Capital of Culture for next year, Arctic is developing a type of domestic business without which there is virtually no Advent joy. Since 2003, they have been consulting, manufacturing, renting and selling mobile and fixed ice skating rink equipment. And, just like with the majority of the ''best'' things - it was all a complete accident.

"It's all a product of spontaneity and the desire to provide something new and unprecedented in our city where we live and work. This is what we did by installing the first Croatian mobile ice rink sixteen years ago, and to this day, we're constantly happy to be making new mobile ice rinks in many cities across Croatia and the wider region,'' explained Denis Ventin.

Although their products are used practically only (or at least most of them) during the winter season, their summer in Rijeka was not passive, either. On the contrary, Ventin pointed out that their last few months have been quite busy indeed.

"In order for everything to function flawlessly, it's necessary to keep the equipment in good working order. We mainly deal with such operations during the spring and summer and this period is important for maintaining the quality of our rental equipment,'' stated the head of this Rijeka-based company, who is the only one in Croatia who can provide such complete services like these, from consulting to designing, manufacturing, renting and servicing equipment, all carried out entirely according to the needs of that particular client.

These, however, are usually public sector clients (read: municipalities, cities, etc), although they're also hired by those in the private sector. So, if you find yourself ''on the ice'' in a shopping mall or even at a hotel, you will know with certainty that the skating rink there was "made in Arctic".

Since several years ago, almost every city or a small town organises Advent festivities when winter rolls around, they always boast an ice skating rink, and accordingly, there is more and more work knocking at Arctic's door.

"So far, we've designed and installed more than 250 mobile skating rinks of various dimensions. The requirements of our clients are really different, often related to the size of the cities and municipalities and the population. Lately, a number of them have been looking for an ice skating rink with a skating track added to it, and then the performance of skating takes on a different dimension,'' noted Ventin.

With the famous ice skating rink as a symbol, the Croatian capital firmly earned its placed on the winter tourism map with Advent in Zagreb, repeatedly proclaimed the best in Europe.

This Rijeka company is naturally proud of what their ice rink in Zagreb has created.

"The Tomislavac Ice Park in Zagreb is our project, designed, engineered and executed with the knowledge of our experts, and we're certainly proud of its performance because it's still attractive enough and attracts the attention of many visitors even from beyond the borders of Croatia,'' Ventin said.

They have achieved export success in other European countries, for example in Austria, Germany and the Netherlands, where they carry out ice skating and ice park projects. In terms of overall quality, they're not far behind their European competition at all, having been selected in significant bids, including one in Sarajevo.

This Rijeka company's production capacity allows the production of smaller skating rinks, with an area of ​​up to 200 square metres, within just one working day.

"All the skating rinks are designed in offices in Rijeka where there are production facilities in which we make the components. The finished skating rinks are then transported from the warehouse directly to the client's location," describes Ventin, detailing the entire process.

The prices of the skating rinks are personalised for each client and depend on the length of use, the size and the amount of equipment installed. It requires people, and qualified ones, to create them, because "designing a rink is a process that requires, in addition to all of the necessary skills, extensive experience from numerous projects."

Currently, the company has thirteen employees with a range of educational achievements.

"Our design team includes multiple members, each in charge of a particular segment. The project manager is involved in the design, bringing the skating rink to life according to the client's wishes and presenting the idea to the client via 3D illustration. The employees go through certain stages of training in which they're narrowly focused and trained.

Some processes of training certain professions take one to two years. It's not easy to find employees with previous experience and knowledge in performing our highly specialised jobs. We're constantly monitoring the increase in the volume of work and the increased need for hiring and training new employees,'' Ventin pointed out, adding that despite a tough economy, Arctic is seeing continued business growth, with revenue and profits increasing.

"We have built a quality product recognised by many foreign customers and for which the demand is growing daily, which motivates us more and more," concluded Denis Ventin.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business and Made in Croatia pages for much more.

Saturday, 2 June 2018

Second Construction Phase of 60 Million Euro Costabella Resort to Begin

The luxury Costabella resort in Rijeka is entering its second phase of construction.

Saturday, 31 March 2018

Is Rijeka Croatia's Next Big Cruise Destination?

Rijeka is often referred to as an overlooked coastal gem, but does this Northern Adriatic city have what it takes to draw in the large cruise crowds?

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Tourism: Tehnika to Construct Costabella in Rijeka

A new tourist feature for Rijeka is on the horizon despite Tehnika's woes.

Friday, 8 September 2017

Excellent Results in Tourism in Rijeka With Annual Growth of 20%

This year will be a record one for tourism in Rijeka in every aspect, continuing the successful stride – an annual increase of 20% in revenue from tourism was reported in every of the last six years.

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