Mark Thomas - The editor and big chief of The Dubrovnik Times. Born in the UK he has been living and working in Dubrovnik since 1998, yes he is one of the rare “old hands.” A unique insight into both British and Croatian life and culture, Mark is often known as just “Englez” or Englishman. He is a traveller, a current affairs freak and a huge AFC Wimbledon fan.
The Dubrovnik-Neretva County tourist board is currently presenting the tourism attractions of the region at one of the most important travel exhibitions in the world. The Destination Holiday and Travel Show in London opened yesterday, the 4th of February, and will continue until the 7th of February. This is the UK's biggest and longest-running travel show and has hundreds of leading and independent tour operators as well as over 70 tourist boards from across the globe.
This is the County tourist board sixth appearance at this travel exhibition and this year they are sharing a stand with the County tourist boards of Split, Sibenik, Zadar and Lika. The Destination Holiday and Travel Show attracted around 37,000 visitors last year and this year there will be over 300 exhibitors from all over the world at the fair in the Olympia Centre.
The British market has long been the most important one for the Dubrovnik region. The most numerous tourists in Dubrovnik last year, in terms of nationality, were from Great Britain. In 2015 around 14 percent of all of the tourists who visited the Dubrovnik-Neretva County were British. Of course the number of flights to and from Dubrovnik and the UK is the main reason for the growth in British tourists. British Airways even operates flights through most of the winter months to Dubrovnik.
Our partners at LMT Studio have created a video to mark the Day of St. Blaise. Yesterday Dubrovnik celebrated the day of the patron saint of the city for the 1044th time. As ever the Stradun was awash with colours and sounds as the main procession made its way in front of thousands of people.
If you were unable to be at Dubrovnik’s biggest day of the year catch a glimpse of the atmosphere in this new video from LMT Studio.
The mayor of Dubrovnik, Andro Vlahusic, received at visit from the mayor of the German city of Bad Homburg Alexander Hetjes, one of Dubrovnik’s sister cities, yesterday.
Alexander Hetjes has been the mayor of Bad Homburg since September 2015. Dubrovnik and Bad Homburg signed a memorandum on mutual cooperation in 2002 and since then the two cities have cooperated on a number of important projects.
Speaking of the previous cooperation between the two sister cities mayor Vlahusic stressed the pivotal role of Mrs. Olga Stoss, the president of the humanitarian organization Kroatienhilfe and winner of an award from the City of Dubrovnik.
Alexander Hetjes arrived in Dubrovnik to celebrate the Day of St. Blaise and the Day of the City.
The 1044th day of the patron saint and protector of Dubrovnik, St. Blaise, was celebrated today the 3rd of February. After the mass that was held this morning at 10.00am the procession started down the Stradun in the heart of the Old City of Dubrovnik.
Banners, flags, costumes and music filled the historic Old City as Dubrovnik celebrated its patron saint.
Check out our photo gallery by Niksa Duper of today’s procession.
TOP FIVE DUBROVNIK “I NEVER KNEW THAT”
Lokrum saved a King - Richard the Lionheart was cast ashore on Lokrum after being shipwrecked in 1192
Heaven on earth - George Bernard Shaw, visited the city in 1929 and said: "If you want to see heaven on earth, come to Dubrovnik."
Old drug dealer - The third oldest pharmacy in Europe is located in the Old City, it dates from 1317
Gardens from the past - The Arboretum Trsteno, is one of the oldest arboretums in the world, dating back to before 1492
The Dubrovnik Synagogue - The Dubrovnik Synagogue is the second oldest in Europe established in 1352
MOL is planning to reduce investments and focus on assets closer to Hungary that can still generate cash after a plunge in oil prices and Croatia is on the radar as an investment possiblity.
MOL owns almost 48 percent of shares in the Croatian oil company INA and has expanded into Norway and the U.K. in the past two years.
“Our priorities for this year are focusing on what we have, extracting value from the assets,”said Berislav Gaso, the chief operating officer in charge of the exploration and production division. He added for an interview in Bloomberg that, “I like barrels but I like dollars even more and in a $30 environment it is all about dollars when you operate in upstream.”
MOL is the second-largest listed company by market value, and operates in 40 countries, is betting on lower spending as oil prices slumping to the lowest in more than a decade force industry players worldwide to rethink strategy to stay afloat. MOL will cut operating costs and will only invest in projects that can break even at an oil price of $30 a barrel, according to Gaso.
The company is intensifying production in Hungary and Croatia, which together account for close to 80 percent of the group’s overall output as “there’s still a lot of value to be extracted from these assets,” Gaso said.
As a result, production in Hungary rose in the last three months of 2015 from the previous quarter and Croatian onshore oil production rose on an annual basis, he said.
The Dubrovnik Times has teamed up with Soundset Ragusa for a new project, the Voice of Dubrovnik Weekly Review.
With the growing number of foreigners living in Dubrovnik on a year round basis The Dubrovnik Times and Soundset Ragusa have joined forces to produce a weekly radio show to better inform the international community. The Voice of Dubrovnik was launched as a daily radio program four years ago and has proved to be a valuable source of information for tourists through the summer months. The show, which is broadcast twice a day through the tourist season, features news, information, weather and events and many restaurants, cafes and hotels tune in so that their guests can catch up on the news from the city. The Voice of Dubrovnik is produced by the editor of The Dubrovnik Times, Mark Thomas.
“We have the Voice of Dubrovnik through the season for the visitors, but now we broadcast a weekly review for the Dubrovnik international community,” commented Mark Thomas speaking to the Soundset Ragusa radio station. He added that “We will broadcast every Saturday, in the morning and again in the afternoon, and will roundup the week’s news in Dubrovnik, along with upcoming events.”
The international community is slowly increasing year after year and now there are between 300 and 500 foreigners who live in Dubrovnik. When you consider that there are more foreign owned hotels in the city, and that foreign nationals are often employed, that number could be even bigger.
The Voice of Dubrovnik Weekly Review will be broadcast every Saturday on Soundset Ragusa at 10:50am and repeated at 16:50pm starting from this Saturday the 6th of February. You can also listen to the show on The Dubrovnik Times and Soundset Ragusa websites.
It isn’t only in Dubrovnik that the day of the patron saint of the city, St. Blaise, is celebrated. On the day of the reopening of the restored Church of St. Blaise in the Old City of Dubrovnik, on Saturday the 30th of January 30, the Day of St. Blaise was marked in New York. The Dubrovnik Club in New York celebrated the 1044th day of St. Blaise and at the same time marked the 75th anniversary of the club.
The celebrations, which were held in the Chart House Restaurant, were attended by the Croatian Consul in New York Spomenka Cek who read a message from the Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic.
After the national anthems of the US and Croatia, and of course most importantly the hymn of St. Blaise the entertainment program began.