Thursday, 07 July 2022
Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas

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 negative trend of the Croatian population is continuing to show disturbing indicators. According to data from the Croatian National Bureau of Statistics in 2015 the number of deceased last year was 16,702 more than the number of births. When you also take into account that around 18,000 people more than in 2014 emigrated to work in other European Union member countries, the decline in population is more alarming.

In overall this new data from the bureau of statistics shows that the population of the Republic of Croatia noted a decline of nearly 35,000 in 2015 in comparison to the year before.

The birth rate per 1,000 inhabitants was 8.9 percent whilst the death rate per 1,000 inhabitants was 12.9 percent in 2015.

On several occasions social and political experts have warned about the negative effects of this decline on the economic growth of Croatia.

According to data from the Croatian National Bureau of Statistics (DZS) the average net monthly salary for May 2016 was 5,706 Kunas or around 760 Euros. In comparison to April 2016 there was a small increase of 1.1 percent whilst compared to May 2015 the increase was 2.1 per cent.

The highest average net salary in May was paid in oil refining in amount of 13,466 Kunas whilst the lowest average salary of 3,364 Kunas was paid in clothing production.

On the other hand, the highest average net salary for April was paid in the financial services sector, excluding insurance and pension funds, and amounted to 9,993 Kunas. The lowest net salary of 3,291 Kunas was paid in the production of clothing.

After the recent positive news from the Dubrovnik City Tourist Board on the increasing number of tourists who visited Dubrovnik in July comes news from the County Tourist Board. In the first seven months of this year a total of 889,449 tourists arrived in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County, almost a million tourists from January to the end of July, which is a healthy 12 percent increase on the same period from last year.

The majority of these tourists came from the United Kingdom, Germany, Bosnia and Herzegovina, France, Poland, Slovenia and the United States. July seems to have been a very successful month for the county, with 359,058 tourists arriving or a 16 percent increase over July last year.

From the beginning of January until the end of July a massive 3.77 million overnight stays were recorded, again an increase over the same period from 2015 this time by 11 percent.

Dubrovnik was visited by more than hundred journalists and their teams this year and the visits were mostly organized by Dubrovnik Tourist Board. During March, April, May and June journalists from UK, Germany, France, Spain, Belgium, Netherlands, Poland, Italy, Turkey, Finland, Australia, USA, Japan, China, Korea, Canada, Argentina and Brazil came. The biggest group was made of 36 journalists on the press trip which was organized by Turkish Airlines and Dubrovnik Tourist Board, with support of the Croatian Tourist Board.
Evertyhing that was published after those trips is the strong contribution to promotion of Dubrovnik.
'GEO SAISON', magazine published monthly on German in 92 thousand copies, with over 600 thousand readers, brings some sort of guide of our town, which Natalie Schweiger made after her visit in April.

After the visit of 36 journalists in May, they were many reports, such as last weeks article by the Japanese journalist Aisha Takasa on the website Many texts were published before, for example in papers and website Hankook Iibo by the Korean journalist Lee Sung Won, on the Kookmin Iibo by Nam Ho Chul with the title  „Blue beyond Orange … Jewel of the Adriatic Sea“. In daily newspapers Chosun Ilbo, article about Dubrovnik was titled „ Red wave welter in alleys meeting sea“, by Heo Yoon Hee.

In May, Dubrovnik was visited by French journalists of the Air France Inflight magazine Cécile Balavoine i Tadzio Pacquement who described Croatian sounds on interesting way.  Air France Inflight magazine is distributed in more than 4 million copies every month, which includes over 930 thousand readers from Europe and 398 thousand French readers, and estimated value of the article about Dubrovnik and Croatia is about 390 thousand Euro.

„A DAY IN  IN THE LIFE OF Dubrovnik“, report of the author Lars Collin with photos by Mauro Rongione, who have visited Dubrovnik in 2015, has been published in the SAS Inflight magazine Scanorama in June, on five pages, with the interview with Jadran Gamulin, famous Croatian sailor and shipbuilder from Dubrovnik. Scanorama has around 2 million readers mothly and it's distributed in the planes of SAS airlines.
These days it's also quite dynamic in Dubrovnik, many bloggers and freelance journalists are coming. At this moment Judith Servin, journalist from Mexico is in Dubrovnik, as well as the bloggers from USA, the owners of the blog ''Just a pack'' and many others, whose articles we expect during the autumn.

While everybody seems to talk about the 'bikini ban' in Dubrovnik these days, the new trend is on the rise. To take your picture, looking at Dubrovnik – naked. Sam Lyons has posted a photo on his Instagram profile, not trying to hide anything - it seems that Dubrovnik has litteraly blew his pants off.
If there wasn't the similar case of 'nakedness' last month, we would think that this is some sort of protest to the new law that will make you pay a fine if you walk around the Old Town of Dubrovnik in bikini or showing your torso.
Well, we guess this is some kind of promotion for Dubrovnik too. Good or bad, you decide!

The spectacular new passenger terminal at Zagreb Airport ''Franjo Tudman'' which is to be opened in March 2017 will soon get an equally impressive hotel in its neighbourhood just opposite the main entrance of the new terminal, reports Jutarnji list.

Branko Kincl and Velimir Neidhardt, the architects and the designers of the awarded urban and architectural design of the new passenger terminal have revealed to Jutarnji that they have just completed the preliminary design of the airport hotel for their client Zračna luka Zagreb Ltd. and that they are waiting for the building permit to be issued.

According to the words of Kincl, the new four stars medium-sized hotel will have 150 rooms (standard, de-luxe, suites, special rooms for the disabled and a presidential suite) with a maximum of 300 beds. The hotel will also have a congress centre, shops, wellness facilities and an indoor parking garage.

The ground floor of the hotel will have a restaurant with a bar, shops and a wellness centre. The first floor is intended for business purposes; there will be office spaces, several multi-purpose halls for large meetings and a few smaller function rooms for smaller meetings. A terrace for organizing receptions in the open air is also planned with this project.

The roof of the hotel has been designed as a terrace for recreation – an open space for exercising and sunbathing with a fresh juice bar and hydro massage facilities.

''The plan is also to connect the hotel to the airport building by an underground pedestrian tunnel and an elevated 200-metre pedestrian walkway. A corridor for railway or tram rails construction between the hotel and a road is also planned with this project'', said Velimir Neidhardt.

The total investment of the hotel is estimated at around 15 million Euros and currently partners are being selected to undertake the project.

The latest addition to the ACI Marina group will open tomorrow. ACI Marina Slano, or “Veljko Barbieri,” will open its doors to the public tomorrow. The marina was planned to be opened on the 1st of July this year, but due to a lack of agreement with the head of the Borough of Dubrovnik Primorje, Nikola Knežić, the grand ceremony was called off.

The PR representative of ACI Marinas, Gracia Krainer, has confirmed for the local media that the ACI Slano marina will open tomorrow and officially become the 23rd member of the ACI family. Krainer added that no special ceremony was planned but that sailors who arrived in the marina tomorrow would be welcomed.

ACI Slano's planned opening on the 1st of July was cancelled after a disagreement as to the construction of the access road to the marina.

aci marina slano

Costume designer Ieva Immertreija from Latvia fell in love with Croatian nature, warm and kind people and their true respect for art and fashion last year when she came to work with the Dubrovnik Summer Festival. This year, Ieva got an opportunity to come back to the Dubrovnik Summer Festival and in addition, to make a photoshoot with young and talented photographer Doris Raguz, who is known in Dubrovnik for her beautiful fashion photographs.

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                                                                                                                                                                      Doris Raguz

This photoshoot is made in honor of hast 21st Century, because people nowdays forget what they are and where are they coming from. They are living on pavement and are always in a hurry.Women are becoming more and more grounded, more and more business ladies in man's suits..

Magic island of Lokrum where 1000 rabbits are running around your feet and peacocks are screaming at the beautiful sunset is great for the role of  Fairy and Pixie land where magic can happen. There is no rush,  there you can feel unconditional love and be gorgeous as you are. And also: wear Fairy dresses and Pixie crowns!

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                                                                                                                                                                     Doris Raguz

Ieva Immertreija is an ex dancer who is not dancing for two years now, but at the moment she owns a ballet studio "Baleta Klase" located in Riga. As ex dancer she was interested in costume art and that's the reason why she finished University of Fashion art and style. In several years of working in Latvia National Opera as technical costume designer and other Opera houses in Europe she were making costumes for ballets and operas and worked with a lot of famous choreographers, producers and costume designers as: Mauricio Wainrot (Argentina), Aleksandr Titel and Vladimir Arefjev (Moscow), Marcello Lomberdero and Luciana Gutmane (Argentina), Demiss Volpi, Bridget Breiner, Thomas Lempertz (Stuttgart ballet), Hanss van Manen and Jean-Paul Vroom (Amsterdam) and Valentina Turcu and Leo Kulaš ( Slovenia ).
Beside work with ballets and operas she have her own fashion line with beautiful lace dresses that have a hint of stage art.


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                                                                                                                                                       All photos by: Doris Raguz

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