Wednesday, 20 February 2019
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.


Plane tickets bought – check. Hotel booked – check. Passport ready – check. You’re ready for a holiday in Dubrovnik in the Adriatic sunshine.

But what are the unmissable attractions. Although we could probably list over a few dozen sights to see we have whittled it down (at least for this first list) to the top six.

From the iconic Dubrovnik City Walls to the golden Banje Beach and of course the tranquil island of Lokrum. Our top 6 unmissable attractions in Dubrovnik will help point you in the right direction.

Looking for a delicious hamburger and not sure where the best burgers in Croatia are. Well according to the popular website the best burgers in Croatia are in the capital Zagreb in the Submarine Burger.

“With travellers starting to think about shaking off the winter cold and hitting up Europe for their holidays over the coming months, Big 7 Travel has put together the list of the ultimate burgers so that you’re never stuck for a cheat meal fix again,” stated the website and out of the top fifty burgers in Europe the Croatian Submarine Burger came in at a respectable 26th position.

The top fifty burgers in Europe list was compiled using an online voting system through the website’s social media channels, of which they have 1.5 million subscribers, as well as online reviews and media coverage and travel blogs.

“They focus on super quality organic ingredients here, which you can taste in the end product. There’s a huge variety in the toppings and meats you can order, meaning you might never have the same burger twice,” wrote the website about Zagreb’s leading burger restaurant.

See the full list here


The renowned Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra has been featured in the popular BBC magazine “Music.” In the October edition of this monthly the Dubrovnik orchestra were highlighted with the program for 2019 and a season guide.

BBC Music Magazine is a monthly magazine. The first issue appeared in June 1992. BBC Worldwide, the commercial subsidiary of the BBC was the original owner and publisher together with the Warner Music Enterprises during its initial phase. The magazine reflects the broadcast output of BBC Radio 3being devoted primarily to classical music, though with sections on jazz and world music. Each edition comes together with an audio CD, often including BBCrecordings of full-length works. The magazine's circulation is 37,530.

Certainly great publicity for the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra.

Position – Personal Assistant

Location – Zagreb

Time period – 25th February to 27th February 2019

Description - I am a British businessman doing business across the region on this occasion in Zagreb. I would appreciate the assistance of a business assistant for a forthcoming trip to Zagreb from Monday 25th Feb until 27th Feb. Requirements are female, 25 -45, good English language skills, good IT and keyboard skills, full driving licence or good knowledge of public transport system, presentable appearance (smartly dressed).

Duties – assisting in getting around the city between British Embassy and various government agencies and buildings. Note taking at meetings, typing reports, solving IT hitches. A knowledge of MUP and MOD an advantage.

Payment - Around 5 hours per day 15 Euro per hour plus lunch

How to apply - Please apply by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

More details - You will find details of my company here

Croatia, along with Hungary, is among the ten countries with the highest cancer mortality rate in the European Union, states a project by the Washington University.

The European Parliament adopted a resolution on policy challenges and strategies against women’s cancers and related comorbidities, calling for stronger engagement in the fight against women's illnesses and for developing an EU-level strategy for equal access to health services for all women. "One in three Europeans develop some form of cancer during their life. About 600,000 women die each year as a result of cancer and 90,000 women die of breast cancer," said Italian MEP Daniela Aiuto.

She added that as many as 80 percent of women could survive breast cancer if it was diagnosed on time.

The resolution that the Parliament adopted recommends that a strategy is based on "collecting accurate and comprehensive cancer incidence/survival data disaggregated by sex in order to ensure that specific actions are targeted at cancer patients, while undertaking research, initiating preventive action against particular types of cancer, and providing access to accurate information, screening, diagnosis, monitoring, treatment and post-therapy support in order to guarantee medical healthcare."

The Croatian President opened a business forum with the country’s largest trading partner yesterday. Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic opened the German-Croatian business forum in Berlin yesterday and was optimistic that German investment would continue to flow and in fact increase in Croatia.

"Economic relations between Germany and Croatia are very good, but there is a lot of room for improvement. This in particular refers to Croatian exports to the German market," commented the Croatian President.

And it isn’t only with the German market that Croatian exports are struggling, although with such an important partner the trade gap should be considerably narrower. However, it could be argued that the German companies have a massive advantage over their Croatian counterparts as they don’t have to deal with excessive taxes, corruption and overburdening levels of government.

The Croatian President tried to reassure businessmen that reforms were coming soon, most notably to the judicial and public administration. However, as the real power in Croatia lies in the hands of the Prime Minister and not the President these could just be seen as reassurances rather than confirmations of policies. "In this year alone, we will cancel or simplify several hundred administrative procedures and obligations, which will save businesses a lot of money and facilitate doing business," concluded the President.

German businessmen were quick to point out that the investment climate in Croatia needs changing if they want to attract larger investment. "We make up 99 percent of all companies in Germany, but we have almost no presence in Croatia. Something needs to change about that," said Mario Ohoven from the German Association of Small and Medium-Sized Businesses.

Germany is Croatia’s top trading partner, with the volume of their bilateral trade in 2017 standing at €5.2 billion, unfortunately the majority of this trade is flowing from Germany into Croatia.


One of the last state owned hotel chains in Dubrovnik has finally found a buyer and yesterday contracts were signed. The Minister of State Property, Goran Marić, and the Managing Director of PND Strategy Ltd, Matea Mateković, signed a contract on the sale and transfer of shares from the Hotel Maestral group.

The hotel chain, Hotels Maestral, is the last major hotel resort in Croatia in the majority state ownership, and for the past five years they have operated with a net profit. This hotel chain has been offered for sale numerous times and had finally found a new owner. Hotels Maestral consists of five hotels in the Bay of Lapad in prime position and although the hotels have been recording a profit they are all in need of investment.

PND Strategy have just spent 153.5 million Kuna on just over 60 percent of the shares, making them the majority shareholder and new owners of the Dubrovnik hotel chain.


At the signing of the contract, Minister Marić commented that "This is a great success, after eight unsuccessful bidding and ninth rounds, the final process has been successfully completed. The CERP Governing Council made the decision to accept the most favourable bid and ended the privatization of the last hotel complex in the Republic of Croatia. We expect the buyer to come up with investment plans and raise them to the highest level of hotel categorization as soon as possible because it is unacceptable for Dubrovnik to have one or two star hotels."

And there can be no doubt that these five Dubrovnik hotels, although in prime seafront locations, are in serious need of investment. However, as we have seen hundreds of times in the past when a publically owned company falls into private hands the aftereffects take years to recover from. State owned companies in Croatia generally suffer from massive overemployment, lack of modern technology and outdated working practises. The arrival of a private investor, actually looking to make money from his investment, normally leads to redundancies and reorganisation.

The Managing Director for PND Strategy Ltd, Matea Mateković, thanked Minister Marić for his co-operation and added: "Our plans are to start with the realization of the project as soon as possible, as we feel that hotels Maestral deserve to have a much better position than they have at this time. We will take business documentation as soon as possible and embark on the preparation of the hotel for the upcoming tourist season."

It’s no secret that Dubrovnik is one of the most photogenic and videogenic destinations in the world. But where are the best spots to marvel at the beauty of the pearl of the Adriatic? Most people would say just about anywhere, and to a certain extent they would be right, but there are some extra special places that give you a real feel of the terracotta beauty of Dubrovnik.

At The Dubrovnik Times we have selected our top five spots to enjoy the vistas over the ancient Old City. They are in no particular order but you have the chance to vote for your favourite view, just click on the arrow and your video will climb the list. And yes, we realise that choosing from five stunning videos isn’t easy when they are all just as glorious as each other.


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The Voice of Dubrovnik


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