Wednesday, 29 January 2020
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.


Croatia Airlines have published few changes in their winter timetable, including direct Dubrovnik – Frankfurt flights again, additional Munich – Split and Rome – Split flights and also extra flights between Copenhagen and Zagreb.

The winter timetable, that lasts from 30th of October 2016 to 25th of March 2017 will connect Frankfurt in Germany with Dubrovnik. Direct flights are starting from 167 euros (Dubrovnik – Frankfurt) and 169 euros (Frankfurt – Dubrovnik) and will depart on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays troughout the winter.

These winter changes will improve 2016 numbers – Croatia Airlines have already have the growth of 4 percent by the end of August, compared to the same period last year and will most likely to grow even more.

From the 20th until the 23rd of October Dubrovnik will once again play host to the Good Food Festival. This interesting gastronomic festival is organised by the Dubrovnik Touirst Board and features presentations of culinary specialties typical from this region.

Here is the full program of the 2016 Good Food Festival

20 October, Thursday

9:30 am - Tourist Information Centre (TIC) at Pile

“Three Golden Apples”
Program for children as part of World Apple Day. Short program by students of the third grade from the Marin Getaldić primary school and storytelling of the fairytale ˝Three Golden Apples˝

10 am - Lazaretto, Deša Association

˝Žrnovo Macaroni˝
Workshop on preparing traditional dishes as part of the Year of Saint Blaise

6 pm - Klarisa Restaurant

“A Taste of Tradition”
Presentation of the gastronomy offer of Karlovac County and the Guinness Book of World Records strudel

21 October, Friday

10 am - Lazaretto, Deša Association

˝Mljet Macaroni˝
Workshop on preparing traditional dishes as part of the Year of Saint Blaise

12 pm - Sesame Restaurant

How to make homemade pasta?
Presentation and tasting
Marina Žibert Ercegović, chef

6 pm - Hotel Lapad

˝Joie de vivre” of charming Graz
Presentation of tourism and gastronomy offer of the Austrian city of Graz

8:30 pm - Škar Winery, Lapadska obala 17

˝History and Passion˝
Wine tasting and story of Dubrovnik shipbuilding, winemaking and the family tradition of the Krile family

22 October, Saturday

9 am - bus departure from Pile

Workshop – strawberry tree picking and cooking in Majkovi

10 am - Lazaretto, Deša Association

Workshop on preparing traditional sweets as part of the Year of Saint Blaise

10 – 11:30 am - Amfora Restaurant

˝Passionate Raw Pleasures˝
New trends
Workshop on raw food
Mihaela Devescovi, workshop leader

12 pm - Hotel Palace, Restaurant Lenga

˝Spice Indian Style˝
Short seminar about spices and tasting of Indian dishes
Chef: Stephen Lobo
Presentation of tourism and gastronomy of India
with the support of the Embassy of the Republic of India to the Republic of Croatia

7 pm - Hotel Hilton Imperial Dubrovnik

Dinner with a famous chef – Andrej Barbieri
Five course dinner with selected premium wines

23 October, Sunday

9 am - bus departure from Pile
Workshop on edible herbs in Majkovi

10 am - Lazaretto, Deša Association

˝Fave dei morti˝ (bobići)
Workshop on preparing traditional sweets as part of the Year of Saint Blaise

11 am – 12 pm - Stradun

Traditional Dubrovnik Table

Traditional event where numerous Dubrovnik restaurateurs, hoteliers, winemakers, bakers and confectioners present their creations on a long table that spans the entire length of the main street of Stradun.

11 am - Sponza Palace atrium

˝Legend of the Lumblija˝
Presentation of the town of Blato (island of Korčula) with a Kumpanjija program (traditional sword dance)

7 pm - Hotel Rixos Libertas Dubrovnik

˝Gala Dinner of the Land of Legends Theme Park˝
Promotional five-course charity dinner with an entertainment program

Healthy and homemade goods fair
100 kuna festival menu in thirty Dubrovnik restaurants
Wine tastings in Dubrovnik wine bars
Gastro tours
Sweet afternoons at the Imperial Dubrovnik Hotel

Why travel with two wheels or even four wheels when you can travel with two! These two English tourists, or maybe adventurers is a better description, were spotted today cycling through Dubrovnik on their way to Greece.

These two hybrid bikes had made the long journey from the UK to Croatia and with their dog in one of the trailers they were slowly but surely making their way further south.

uk bikers 2

uk bikers 3

uk bikers 4

Once again Croatia has found its place on the world list but this time it is in the field of medicine.

In the past twenty years around 700 cochlear implant procedures have been carried out in Croatia which puts the country in 12th place in the world.

A cochlear implant is a surgically implanted electronic device which provides a sense of sound to a person who is profoundly deaf or severely hard of hearing in both ears.

Last week with the co-organisation of one of the leading Austrian manufacturers of cochlear implants, Split hosted the 14th European congress about cochlear implants and hi-tech hearing aid devices which marked the 20th anniversary of the first cochlear implant surgery in Croatia which was conducted on a child patient.

The congress hosted the most eminent experts in the region with exceptional knowledge and experience in the field of cochlear implants, and provided a platform for the exchange of ideas, discussions on the professional development and for encouraging cooperation among countries.

According to data from the Austrian company, there is an increasing need for hearing aids in the world. Less than 5 percent of those who suffer from hearing loss receive appropriate treatment or implant. In Central Europe, 25 cochlear implants have been implanted per one million people. In other areas of the world, that number is five times smaller.

In Croatia around 450 cochlear implants surgeries were conducted at the Sisters of Mercy hospital in Zagreb, whilst the rest were conducted at other Croatian hospitals.

A necktie, or more common – tie is an accessory that doesn't go out of fashion. It's worn for the bussiness and formal purposes, but did you know that it comes from Croatia? International Necktie/Cravat Day is celebrated on October 18 in Croatia and in various cities around the world and we bring you the background story. 

The modern necktie traces back to the time of the Thirty Years' War when Croatian mercenaries from the Croatian Military Frontier in French service, wearing their traditional small, knotted neckerchiefs, aroused the interest of the Parisians.

Due to the slight difference between the Croatian word for Croats, which is 'Hrvati', and the French word 'Croates', that small piece of clothing got the name "cravat" or "cravate" in French.
The boy-king Louis XIV began wearing a lace cravat about 1646, when he was seven, and set the fashion for French nobility. This new article of clothing started a fashion craze in Europe; both men and women wore pieces of fabric around their necks.

Nowdays, it's pretty much the same – necktie is almost an essential piece of clothing. If only it was easier to make a perfect knot...

Mayor of Dubrovnik Andro Vlahusic and his associates held a work meeting with representatives of Alfa plan about the building of a multi-purpose hall on the tennis courts in Lapad. 

According to the preliminary design multi-purpose hall will include two existing tennis courts. Movable wall leaves the possibility that the courts in the winter are used as a closed room, and in summer as an open space.

In addition to multi-purpose hall project includes reconstruction of the existing stands and side rooms, which includes reconstruction of the existing changing rooms and arranging fitness center. The reconstruction of the stands will create an auditorium capacity of 800 seats.

At the meeting it was pointed out that the collection of necessary documents to start the work is in progress.




After almost two months in Dubrovnik waters the luxury yacht of Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich finally sailed into the horizon yesterday. The second largest private yacht in the world, Eclipse, arrived in Dubrovnik on the 31st of August and stayed at anchor in the Bay of Zupa for the whole of September and most of October.

According to Forbes, Abramovich's net worth in 2015 was $8.3 billion making him the 12th richest person in Russia, so he probably didn’t need a loan to buy the $400 million Eclipse. When she was delivered to the owner of Chelsea FC she was the largest private yacht in the world, however she is now the second largest after the monster Azzam yacht owned by the Emir of Abu Dhabi.

There have been rumors that the Russian oligarch has set up a floating European base in Dubrovnik on his Eclipse. And as the billionaire was anchored for free in Croatian waters he had also saved a few dollars. But with the mega yacht sailing out of Croatian waters at around 7pm last night we can wave goodbye to Roman Abramovich, at least until next year.

For purchasing Sveti Rok, the water bottling plant in the Lika region which filed for bankruptcy and for the continuation of its production, there will be no lack of interested parties. Even though the bankruptcy institutions haven't made the decision about taking over the company yet, a process of restructuring and finding a potential buyer has yet to be prepared, but potential investors themselves are already knocking on the company's door.

Certain Croatian retail chains have already expressed their interest in the Sveti Rok company, as well as one Canadian group, presumably members of the Croatian Diaspora. However, the biggest interest is coming from Saudi Arabia. Recently a potential Arab investor has been purchasing large quantities of the Lika water thus raising the balance of exports of the Lika water which is currently at about 10 percent of the company's revenue.
According to the words of Frane Dobrovic, the bankruptcy trustee, the potential Arab investor is a member of the global high-level business circles and one of the leading water importers in Saudi Arabia who works with the largest water manufacturers in the world. Considering the fact that the water company from Lika is quite small on the world market, the interest of the global business players in Sveti Rok, Frane Dobrovic explains with the quality of the Lika water. ‘’They say it is the best water they have ever tasted, but doing business in Croatia is very difficult for them. However, that wouldn’t be an obstacle if the company’s business was well regulated’’, said the bankruptcy trustee.

The key to the best outcome of this story could be in an upcoming assembly of creditors. It is expected that this October important decisions will be made in order to find a new owner. It would also accelerate judicial evaluation of the assets and making of the bankruptcy plan, but also the possible positive solution of some administrative and legal obstacles.

As the state is the biggest creditor in the bankruptcy, it can dictate the further development of the situation and the way of settling with the creditors.

''The state should be flexible because the preservation of this production is of great importance to the Lika region, whilst the general social interest is to continue with the work. During the whole season the company worked better than before the bankruptcy, with more employees (28), and all obligations were duly settled. We managed to ensure the liquidity of the company from regular sales. So, there will be no sale yet’’, concluded Dobrovic.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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