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.
Robin Hood is making changes all over the Old City as the set keeps growing bigger every day. Construction of the set started back in December and it's now really intense, since the filming is supposed to start in six days.
One of the biggest differences nowdays can be spotted in the Old Port. As you can see from the photos, almost all the boats have been moved because of the filming. It's quite strange, since this part of the City is usually overcrowded with boats.
View without Robin Hood
View with Robin Hood
In the last three years consumption in Croatia on Valentine's Day has increased by 27 percent, mostly at restaurants (almost 80 %), whilst the most desired destinations for this day were Venice and Ljubljana, according to various surveys on the so-called ‘sentimental consumption’ on the eve of Valentine's Day.
The “MasterCard Valentine’s Day Index” on shopper behaviour in more than 200 countries around the world, including Croatia, showed that in the three-year period from 2014 to 2016 global consumption increased by almost 50 percent.
The fact that Croatia also follows such trends was confirmed by data that in the same period the consumption in Croatia rose by 27 percent, whilst the number of credit card transactions increased by 67 percent, particularly in the last minute like everywhere else in the world i.e. on the 13th of February.
On the other hand, there was a slight decline by 15 percent in the sale of flowers and cards in comparison to the same period three years ago, whilst restaurants recorded almost 80 percent bigger interest than in the previous years.
''Even though the way we say ''I love you'' has changed over the past years, to express love on the 14th of February has become more popular than ever before'', commented Sanja Zigic, the director of MasterCard Croatia, adding that despite the growing online shopping, almost 95 percent of shoppers made purchases in-person.
When it comes to romantic travel destinations on Valentine's Day this year, the latest data from the FlixBus company show that the number of romantic travels has increased by almost 30 percent compared to last year, mostly to Venice, Ljubljana, Budapest and Vienna.
Today is a beautiful day for romance. Not only because it is Valentine's Day, but because it is also sunny and warm. A perfect day to relax and take it easy, especially with your loved ones. Many tourists and locals decided to take a walk or sit by the sea. Some of the ladies were happy enough to get roses. But most of all, everybody seemed really happy – and that's the point, isn't it?
The Japanese are so delighted with Kali, the famous fishing village on the island of Ugljan, that they not only took over the Kali tuna factory but have even decided to built another one this year, announced the CEO of Jiro Kamba.
Kali Tuna is the first and the largest tuna factory in Croatia. It uses a specific farming technology; they catch tuna of 8 kilograms in weight, which is then farmed for two and a half years to gain fat, and it seems that this is a winning combination that the Japanese love.
So far, almost all of the tuna has been exported to Japan, but the new factory would enable processing tuna to the final stage in Croatia thus supplying consumers from sushi restaurants to shops not only in Croatia but also throughout Europe.
Robin Hood:Origins set seems to grow bigger every day! Something new pops up every time we walk pass it. All those who were commenting that the movie could be filmed anywhere because growing instalations that seem to cover the beautiful City can now be pleased – it seems like the set is slowly starting to mimic Dubrovnik stone.
Surely there will be much more surprises, since the set should be finished in the next 7 days. We'll see what tomorrow will bring!
Just a reminder – Dubrovnik will be Nottingham in the newest Hollywood blockbuster. The Leonardo DiCaprio produced Robin Hood will start filming in Dubrovnik on the 20th of February and is expected to last for two or three weeks. We are impatiently waiting for celebrities such as Oscar winning Jamie Foxx and Fifty Shades of Grey superstar Jamie Dornan. Robin Hood: Origins is set for release in the U.S on the 28th of March 2018.
According to a recent interview by Drazen Hrastic with The Korea Times, Croatia is to open an embassy in South Korea this year.
The Croatian ambassador to Japan, Drazen Hrastic, announced the opening of the Croatian embassy in Seoul this year in order to intensify cooperation between the two countries in the field of business, trade, investment and tourist industry.
Hrastic also added that South Korea was the largest Asian market for Croatia's tourist industry and had great potential, ''Despite the fact that we have had an impressive increase in Korean tourists, Croatia is still less recognized here," explained the Croatian ambassador who covers South Korea from Tokyo.
According to data from The Korea Times around 33,000 Koreans visited Croatia in 2011, whilst that number jumped to 264,000 in 2014.
"We have a number of high-quality products we would like to offer on the Korean market, especially wine, olive oil, meat products and fish products," concluded Hrastic.
It was a weekend of glorious weather in Dubrovnik, rather unusual for the middle of February, and locals and tourist made the most of the warm sunshine.
The historic city centre was busy with people sightseeing, the Robin Hood crew constructing the set on the Stradun and al fresco coffee drinkers.
Check out our Sunday sunshine photo gallery by Zeljko Tutnjevic
The Dubrovnik region is in for a week of calm weather with rising temperatures, a week of sunshine. Blue skies and bright sunshine will dominate the week’s weather with temperatures between 13 and 16 degrees Celsius.
Monday is predicted to be the worst day of the week with scattered clouds and even the chance of a few drops of rain, temperatures will reach 12 degrees. However after this sticky start to the week the weather will improve on a daily basis and Thursday is predicted to be the best day of the week with highs of 16 degrees and bright sunshine all day.
The coming weekend should have a great start; Saturday will be warm and sunny, although on Sunday there might be a little rain in the afternoon.