Sunday, 16 June 2024
Ivana Smilović

Ivana Smilović

Ivana Smilović – a senior journalist at The Dubrovnik Times. Born and raised in Dubrovnik, Ivana (or Smile as she is known to all) graduated Media Studies from the University of Dubrovnik. A book worm, coffee addict and want-to-be world traveller Ivana brings her unique local insight, connections and general optimistic and well smiley feel to the Times.


At the prestigious American festival The Telly Awards, Croatian films won a number of awards once again. The festival, held for the 41st time this year, had more than 13 thousand entries from around the world, and the works of some of the esteemed advertising agencies, television stations, production companies and publishers were awarded.

The Telly Awards are given by a jury, members of the Council, which consists of more than 200 members, active experts from various fields of television, marketing, etc.
The films produced by Balduci Film were awarded three major prizes:

CROATIA YOUR NEXT FILMING DESTINATION - gold for the best film in the category of promotional film Travel / Tourism

CROATIA YOUR NEXT FILMING DESTINATION - gold in the category Branded Content: Videography / Cinematography, for which the cameraman Jalil Armijo is responsible

RIJEKA I MISS YOU - silver in the Branded Content: Travel / Tourism category

The scenarios of films were written by Spomenka Saraga, who is also the producer of the films, directed by Herve Tirmarche and cameraman and editor was Jalil Armi.

The film RIJEKA I MISS YOU was shot for the Tourist Board of the City of Rijeka, and Croatian actors also appear in the film: Alen Liveric, Natalija Dordevic, Jana Skrgulja, Edi Celic, photographer Iva Znaor and girl Lara Zgrablic. In addition to the actors, there are other members of the team: Bobby Grubic, Robert Kalcic and Pavle Kaplanec.

The film CROATIA YOUR NEXT FILMING DESTINATION was shot with the support of the Croatian National Tourist Board, and for the purpose of promoting Croatia as an excellent destination for shooting all types of films.

-Every award makes us happy, from the smallest to the largest, and each is welcome because it has a motivating effect. We are often not awarded at a festivals, sometimes we do not enter the final round, but we still send our next film to the festival aware that we cannot always win - but we like to compete and prove ourselves. Choosing the winner is a matter of the jury's taste, the amount of films received, and it is often difficult to decide who is better - I know this from my own experience as a jury member at many festivals - said producer and screenwriter of award-winning films Spomenka Saraga.

Films produced by BALDUCI FILM have won more than 50 world awards and recognitions in the last 13 years, and the films UNIQUE DUBROVNIK and DUBROVNIK AND TIME have entered the top 10 tourist films in the world.

So far, these films have already won several awards: at the largest tourism fair ITB in Berlin, at the jubilee 20th edition of THE GOLDEN CITY GATE festival silver awards and at the New York Festivals also a silver medal for the film RIJEKA I MISS YOU, which otherwise would be awarded in Las Vegas during the NAB show, which was not held, so the prizes will be delivered by mail.

The luxury yacht Petara, owned by Bernie Ecclestone, arrived to Port of Gruz yesterday, according to Dubrovacki vjesnik.

Bernie, who is expecting a child with his wife Fabiana Flossi (42) at the age of 89, is a frequent guest in our city.

The yacht Petara, 58 meters long and worth about 35 million dollars, was named after Petra and Tamara, Bernie's daughters from his marriage with his Croatian ex-wife, Slavica.

According to media reports, one of the richest people in the world, Bernie Ecclestone, considers the Adriatic as his refuge, even though more than ten years have passed since he divorced Slavica, with whom he started coming to the Adriatic. Ecclestone and Slavica divorced after 24 years of marriage, and their divorce was declared one of the most expensive in history.

Somebody at the Ministry of the Interior official Twitter page was inspired yesterday morning when sharing the news about arresting sugar thieves in Virovitica. 

-Bitter morning at the sugar factory. Virovitica criminals tried to be sweet but became too sweet – the Ministry of the Interior wrote alongside with GIF of Horatio Caine, well known fictional character from CSI Miami.

The case that made them feel as badass as Horatio was this: on Monday, May 25th, at 10:30 a.m., the Virovitica police station received a report that an unknown perpetrator or several of them had stolen a large amount of sugar from the Virovitica sugar factory.

A criminal investigation established that unknown perpetrators committed the criminal offense of aggravated theft to the detriment of the Croatian sugar industry in the period from 22nd to 25th of May, by using the original key to enter the hall of the packaging plant and sugar warehouse, where they used forklifts, exported 21 pallets of packaged sugar in a one-kilogram package with a total weight of 21 thousand kilograms, and alienated it with an unknown truck in an unknown direction.

After gathering information and ordering of the Bjelovar County Court on May 25th in the evening, a search of the home and other premises in the Virovitica area of a 39-year-old man and the family household of a 60-year-old, used by a 39-year-old man was carried out. 61,900 kilograms of sugar packed on pallets, as well as a truck with Zagreb license plates used by a 39-year-old man, and 18 pallets with more than 17,800 kilograms of sugar were also found in the trunk. A criminal complaint will be made against the 39-year-old due to the existence of grounds for suspicion of committing the criminal offense of concealment.

In connection with the said day on May 26th, criminal investigations were conducted on the 48-year-old and the 52-year-old, due to the existence of grounds for suspicion of committing criminal offenses of aggravated theft.

On May 27th, from the Croatian sugar industry there was a claim for damages stating that a total of 110 tons of sugar had been stolen from them, and that they had suffered material damage in the amount of 374,800 kuna.

The Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Tourism have opened the website EnterCroatia in order to increase the efficiency of crossing the border of the Republic of Croatia and to make the guests aware of the epidemiological measures in force in Croatia.

On this page there is an online form in which all data normally requested in the process of crossing the border are entered and with a simple presentation of a passport or identity document to a police officer at the border, the number or code from the identity card or passport is automatically linked to all pre-entered dana in the online form. By doing this, the entire procedure of entering the data of each individual person in the vehicle is reduced to a minimum time and traffic flow is increased.

-This Government is continuously considering all possibilities to create a balance between economic and health security, while making the entire system in which we connect the segments of tourism, transport and health as efficient as possible. This innovative solution will enable the accelerated entry of tourists into Croatia, where we ensure all security protocols and communication with our guests. Croatia is recognized as a country with a highly efficient preparedness system and a favorable epidemiological picture, and in terms of tourism it is an opportunity to prove ourselves once again as a destination that emphasizes security and innovation - said Minister Cappelli on the occasion of the presentation of the EnterCroatia project.

-After the excellent epidemiological situation in Croatia and after the opening of borders by creating this special website, we have created all the necessary preconditions for a quick, efficient and safe arrival of tourists in Croatia. We believe that our new promotional campaign "The Vacation You Deserve Is Closer Than You Think", which was launched in markets in the countries such as Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy and Poland, will achieve good results and that the citizens of these countries will come in increasing numbers soon - said the director of the Croatian National Tourist Board Kristjan Stanicic, adding that for promotion in markets that mostly depend on air transport connections such as Great Britain, France, Scandinavia, but also distant markets such as China, USA and South Korea, an online platform "EnjoyTheViewFromCroatia" is created, which can be used by all Croatian tourism professionals for their own promotion.

At the same time, all those who fill in their data online will be sent to their email address instructions containing epidemiological information and measures in force in the Republic of Croatia for their safe stay in Croatia.

At the moment, the website has a form available in Croatian and English, and over the next few days it will be available in many other languages and passengers will receive instructions in the same languages (such as German, Slovenian, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, Polish, etc. - everything will be available in more than 10 different languages).

The Civil Protection Headquarters of the Republic of Croatia passed a Decision amending the Decision on the temporary ban on crossing the borders of the Republic of Croatia.

This Decision includes the Member States of the European Union (Czech Republic, Hungary, Republic of Austria, Republic of Estonia, Republic of Latvia, Republic of Lithuania, Republic of Poland, Republic of Slovenia, Federal Republic of Germany and Slovak Republic) whose nationals, because of the good epidemiological situation, will not have to prove the reason for their entry (business, economic, tourist, etc.), but will be able to enter under the same conditions as before the outbreak of COVID-19, but still with epidemiological control, and with the obligation to comply with general and special recommendations Institute of Public Health.

When citizens of these Member States enter the Republic of Croatia, their entry will be recorded with the collection of additional data (place of destination, mobile phone number and e-mail address), due to the possible need for contact for epidemiological reasons.

In order to reduce congestion at border crossings and shorten the waiting time for crossing the state border, which will be extended compared to border control in recent years due to the collection of additional data, it's recommended to foreign citizens who intend to stay in Croatia to submit their data via

While the world is slowly getting back to normal, that still doesn't mean that you can travel wherever you want. But the good thing is that thanks to the wonders of internet you can teleport yourself almost everywhere! 

Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik has published a video made by VSP VIDEO – Dubrovnik, which takes you on the virtual walk through the Museum, including the exhibition of Duro Seder that will finish the day after tomorrow.

Sit back and enjoy your virtual walk – you don't even need a ticket!

The Northern Velebit National Park marks its 21st anniversary today. The area of Northern Velebit was declared the eighth Croatian national park on this date in 1999 and is therefore the youngest Croatian national park.

As the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Energy writes, the park is completely within the boundaries of the Velebit Nature Park, and it has been declared a national park due to the diversity, variety and peculiarity of karst forms, the richness of the living world and exceptional natural beauty in a relatively small area. Due to its values, the Northern Velebit National Park has become part of the Natura 2000 ecological network.

The beauty and value of the entire Velebit was recognized by UNESCO by including the mountain Velebit in 1978 in the network of world biosphere reserves "Man and Biosphere" (MAB). The UNESCO World Heritage List also includes beech forests located in the area of the Hajducki and Rozanski kukovi Strict Reserve on Northern Velebit. They were included in the Census in 2017, together with beech forests from the Paklenica National Park, and are part of the serial cross-border nomination "Beech rainforests and native beech forests of the Carpathians and other regions of Europe" which consists of another 60 beech forests in eight countries. In addition, the Northern Velebit National Park is a member of the European Destination of Excellence (EDEN) network as a national winner in the theme of "Tourism and Protected Areas".

One of the most famous sites in the Northern Velebit National Park is Zavizan, where the oldest meteorological station in Croatia is located. In the immediate vicinity of Zavizan is the Velebit Botanical Garden, founded in 1967, in which today over 300 plant species grow, of which the endemic Croatian Siberia and Velebit degenia stand out.

The fauna of the Northern Velebit is also interesting and diverse. Various animal species live in a relatively small area, the Park is rich in numerous endemic species, while this part of Velebit is inhabited by all three species of large carnivores in Croatia - bear, wolf and lynx. Their presence in the same area is a sign of the preservation of the ecosystem.

In addition to biodiversity, the special feature of this protected area is the exceptional geodiversity. The area of the Park is listed among the most interesting speleological sites in the world due to the large number of deep pits. The Lukina jama-Trojama cave system, 1431 meters deep, is the deepest Croatian cave, and is also ranked among the deepest in the world.

Covering an area of 109 square kilometers, the National Park has over 30 hiking trails that offer visitors numerous opportunities to discover new spaces. These trails offer beautiful views of numerous mountainous areas and peaks, but also the Kvarner islands and Lika. One of the true masterpieces of construction, the Premuzic trail passes right through the Northern Velebit National Park and leads in a simple way through the harshest and most rugged parts of this mountain.

Visitors can also find out all about the many special features of the Park at the Velebit House Visitor Center in Krasno. It is a place that allows the presentation of natural and cultural values of the Park throughout the year.

This year, the Northern Velebit National Park celebrates its birthday with an educational quiz via social networks with special prizes, and more about the special features of this protected area, the possibilities of visiting and celebrating the 21st birthday of the Park is available at this link.

The end of May brings first anniversary of the death of the great maestro Delo Jusic, who left this world on May 31st, 2019. To mark this sad anniversary, Delo's colleagues, family and friends gathered in the video to perform famous "La musica di notte" and once again pay tribute to this musical legend.

Maestro Delo Jusic is a composer who has left a rich cultural heritage with his large opus of a very wide range, from children's and sacred music, film, theater, entertainment, klapa, instrumental, and classical works. 

His cheerful notes are his distinctive style are recognized all over the world, and many of his compositions have already become practically evergreens. They are sung by all generations. Jusic placed special emphasis in his compositions on the recognizable Dubrovnik musical expression. He has worked with many distinguished musicians. Therefore, many responded with great respect and joy to the invitation to give a part of themselves and sing all together Djelo's song in his honor.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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