New challenges in tourism, and especially in hospitality, are ahead of us this summer season in Dubrovnik and one restaurant has got extremely creative to handle these unparalleled times. It feels about as far away from the Covid-19 pandemic as you can get, although it is within touching distance of Dubrovnik. Surrounded by the scent of centuries-old pine trees and with the sea glinting on every horizon the Villa Rose restaurant on Koločep is an island escape, a corona-free island.
These days the iconic Villa Rose is reopening its doors to the public and they have certainly gone that extra mile to make sure their guests are safe. Social distancing on Koločep these days isn’t really that difficult. Robin Crusoe would probably feel at home on the island to be honest. And on a spit of land jutting out onto the sea lies the already isolated Villa Rose.
Danijela Vitez, the executive chef at Villa Rose, actually moved from her home and birthplace of Zagreb four years ago and has now made Koločep her home along with her young family. “We expect another successful season, of course we are well aware of the global situation with Covid-19, but I believe that we will win and come out of this whole experience stronger,” said Vitez. She added that for this season the restaurant has created special menus that are designed to attract more local guests and that the prices of these menus will reflect the overall financial situation. “We have also tried to rediscover some menus and dishes that people might have forgotten over the years and the reaction has been positive.”
And adapting to the challenges is certainly something that the Villa Rose has done, by making the most of modern technology. “To reduce the amount of social contact and to maintain social distancing with have introduced a system whereby guests can order directly from their tables via WhatsApp, Viber, email and just by calling us,” explained Ivo Sabljić, the General Director of TUI BLUE Kalamota Island Resort, of which Villa Rose is part of. “Guests can order directly via a mobile that we will place of every table, and of course we have a large outside space that can easily accommodate up to 150 guests so social distancing won’t be a problem. Just last year we held over fifty wedding ceremonies here, proving we have enough space and that Villa Rose is one of the most romantic locations in the wider area,” added Sabljić.
The "new normal" at Villa Rose restaurant is both creative, safe and romantic, an ideal combination.