Tuesday, 04 August 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.

Email: mark.thomas@dubrovnik-times.com

- Top barmen are like celebrity chefs, the word “startender” is being used in America - commented Ron Busman the President of the International Bartenders Association (IBA). The organisation held, this weekend, for the first time their European President's Meeting in Dubrovnik, in the Neptun Hotel.

Fourteen international members of the association met in Dubrovnik to discuss the workings of the organisation and to network. Frano Stjepovic, the President of the Croatian Association of Bartenders, was the host of the Dubrovnik event and commented that “To hold such an event in Dubrovnik is important for the city, we will have the chance to meet colleagues and discuss new developments in the industry.”

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Busman added that bartending is currently a very trendy profession and top bartenders are always looking for new ways to improve. “The importance of a bartender cannot be underestimated, a good bartender will not only bring extra business to an establishment but will also act as a good attraction for a bar. A bartender is an asset to an establishment and he/she must be treated as such,” said Busman. Adding that investing in staff is the key to the future prosperity of a bar, hotel or club.

Pepe Dioni, the Vice President of IBA, also attended the Dubrovnik event and commented “When a tourist comes to a destination one of the only people they speak to are bartenders. You will probably only ask a few questions of a receptionist at a hotel but with the bartender you will have a conversation. That is why a good bartender must also be a good communication, the real PR with tourists are bartenders.”

Extensive construction works on one of the leading five-star hotels in Dubrovnik, Hotel Excelsior, are continuing but not without mishaps. Yesterday a crane carrying a heavy load of glass from one side of the street to the other directly in front of the hotel toppled over.

It is still unclear how the accident occurred, however eye witnesses commented that it seemed that the load was just too heavy and the crane toppled over. Fortunately there were no serious injuries, although one person was slightly injured and required medical assistance.

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crane falls over in dubrovnik

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In spite of the fact that Dubrovnik was a “cruiser free” city today the Stradun and the streets of the historic centre were as busy as a summer’s day.

The unfriendly cooler weather that has gripped the region since the Easter period continued this weekend and once again the city was a mixture of tourists in shorts and flip flops and locals in warm coats and hats.

Check out our photo gallery from today

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Judging from this photo we think it is safe to say that the tourist season is well underway in Dubrovnik. This photo, of long lines of tourists waiting to board buses, was taken this morning on the Pile entrance into the Old City of Dubrovnik.

Two mega cruisers are currently docked in the Port of Dubrovnik and quite clearly their passengers have brought extra crowds to the city. After a winter and early spring of empty streets and roads this photo will come as a reminder that although summer brings warm weather it also brings a collapse of the infrastructure in the city.

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The world popular hotel chain of luxury hotels Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts has announced a big investment in Croatia by the end of 2017.

According to an announcement, Four Seasons is planning to begin construction of a luxurious tourist complex in the Brizenica Bay near Stari Grad on the island of Hvar by the end of this year.

The investment is estimated at around 1 billion Kunas and will bring 320 new jobs, it was said shortly before a meeting of the Croatian Minister of Tourism Gari Cappelli with representatives of the hotel chain in London on the 20th of April.

The tourist complex on Hvar will consist of 240 accommodation units, with almost 800 beds in a hotel with 120 rooms, as well as in 70 luxury villas and suites.

''We hope that the construction of this luxurious tourist complex will begin by the end of the year, whilst its completion is expected by 2019'', said Dennis Wijsmuller, the CEO of Arqaam Capital, the main investor company in the project.

The Croatian Minister of Tourism Gari Cappelli who ended his official visit to the UK on the 20th of April, emphasizes that the investment also represents new demands for the local community and tourism workers in terms of destination management as well as in terms of offering new cultural, entertainment, hospitality and other services.

During the meeting with Gari Cappelli, the representatives of Four Seasons pointed out that Croatia is one of the leading tourism markets in Europe and a popular holiday destination for high-class travellers from all around the world. They also said that their new project on the island of Hvar represents ''an exciting opportunity for further strengthening of our presence in Europe, which will bring Croatia an exceptional quality and service that Four Seasons is well known for around the world''.

As part of the ''Royal Christmas Gala'' tour, the famous British soprano Sara Brightman will perform for the first time in front of a Croatian audience this year.

Accompanied by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and featuring many guests, Brightman will hold a concert at the Zagreb Arena on the 21st of December 2017. She will sing a wide musical array of traditional Christmas songs and her greatest hits such as ''Amigos para Siempre'', the timeless song ''Time to Say Goodbye'', and the pop-rock classics ''Who wants to Live Forever'' and ''A Whiter Shade of Pale''.

Brightman is one of the most prominent performers and the world's best-selling soprano of all times with worldwide sales of more than 30 million records and 2 million DVDs. She is also the first artist to have been invited twice to perform the theme song at the Olympic Games. At the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games she sang "Amigos Para Siempre" with the Spanish tenor José Carreras with an estimated global audience of a billion people, and 16 years later in 2008 in Beijing, she sang with Chinese singer Liu Huan, performing the song "You and Me" to an estimated 4 billion people worldwide.

In 2012, Brightman was appointed as theUNESCO Artist for Peace for the period 2012–2014, for her "commitment to humanitarian and charitable causes, her contribution throughout her artistic career, to the promotion of cultural dialogue and the exchange among cultures, and her dedication to the ideals and aims of the Organization.

B-Travel tourism fair was opened today in Barcelona. Tourist Board of Dubrovnik-Neretva County is one of the participants,with Tourist Boards of Split-Dalmatia, Zadar, Sibenik-Knin and Lika-Senj Counties. At the shared stand, the total offer of Dalmatia and Lika will be presented. The B-Travel fair is held for the 25th time and it's intended for a wide audience, with around 40 countries of the world presenting their offer.

The Catalan fair responds to the main motivation of todays' tourists: enjoying the travel experience. Products are divided into 5 main areas: B-Happy, B-Special, B-Culture, B-Adventure and B-Delicious. Croatian stand is located in the B-Culture area.

In 2016, tourists from Spain made over 65 thousand arrivals in Dubrovnik-Neretva County and over 172 thousand overnight stays – reports Dubrovnik-Neretva County Tourist Board.



Luka Modric has become a Hollywood star! Even though the Croatian midfielder has been one of the leading stars in Real Madrid for years, it seems that he also has fans in Hollywood.

In a new Hollywood comedy ‘’Sandy Wexler’’ with Adam Sandler, a famous actor and comedian plays a talent manager working in Los Angeles in the 1990s. In the film, Sandy ''meets'' Modric. Actually, in one scene Sandler enters a cafe bar in Los Angeles, and finds himself standing in front of a wall with a framed Modric' jersey on it. Modric' famous number 10 jersey is from the Euro 2012 in Poland and Ukraine with autographs of players, with the United jersey of Ryan Giggs right next to it.

It is interesting to note that this scene, of which Modric is part, is actually a producers' mistake because the jersey should not be there at all. And why? Because Sandler plays a role of a show business manager Sandy Wexler in the early 1990s, and Luka Modric was just a little boy at that time.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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