Tuesday, 25 April 2017

The number of tourists to Croatia in 2015 choosing to stay in an Airbnb rental property increased by a massive 122 percent compared to 2014. Airbnb has exploded on the rental accommodation scene, outgrowing many of the other traditional platforms for tourist accommodation. This very explosion has arrived on Croatian shores and last year saw the number of guests using Airbnb rise by an impressive 122 percent.

And of course it isn’t only the number of guests that has risen, as of January 2016 there were around 51,000 rental units listed on the Croatian Airbnb website. This is an increase of 81 percent compared to the same period from 2014.

The Airbnb platform is believed to be worth $24 billion and has around 2 million accommodation units for rent around the world. According to a statement from the company the average Airbnb renter earns around $5,000 a year from their service.

The Force is indeed coming to Dubrovnik! Rumours were flying around yesterday that the eighth episode of Star Wars was planned to be partly recorded in Dubrovnik. And now The Dubrovnik Times can confirm that the rumours are actually TRUE.

The website makingstarwars.net quoted yesterday that “A few different people have dropped this same piece of news that Star Wars: Episode VIII will film in an interesting location. The location was used for HBO’s Game of Thrones as the King’s Landing locations. Apparently the location is really pleasant at which to shoot and offers tax breaks and incentives to new productions. The gist: Star Wars: Episode VIII will film in Dubrovnik, Croatia later in the year.”

And The Dubrovnik Times has learned from more than one reliable inside source that the rumours are true, Star Wars will indeed be filmed in Dubrovnik this year. The City of Dubrovnik and the Mayor of Dubrovnik met with the film producers at the end of 2015 and, according to our source, the city can look forward to being the host of yet another major film production.

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The British low cost airline easyJet had a record year with flights to Dubrovnik last year. The airline flew from various European destinations to Dubrovnik and transported 189,328 passengers to and from the city. This was a massive increase of 16.3 percent on 2014 and with the introduction of an additional flight from Bristol Airport and Toulouse to Dubrovnik planned for this summer season the increase this year could be just as impressive.

Apart from the Croatian national carrier, Croatia Airlines, easyJet handled the second most number of passengers to Dubrovnik Airport last year. Croatia Airlines handled 383,464 passengers which was certainly helped with their daily flights throughout the winter months from Dubrovnik to Zagreb.

Looking for your dream home by the seaside, why not try Dubrovnik. The New York Times real estate section have released an article about Dubrovnik property business and if you have 2.5 million Euros burning a hole in your back pocket then they have found the perfect property for you.

“This three-bedroom two-bath villa, built in 1910 on Lapad Bay, part of the Adriatic Sea, is about a 30-minute walk from Dubrovnik’s Old Town,” opens the article in the New York Times advertising a luxurious villa in Dubrovnik on the market at a cool $2.73 million. Adding that “The 2,325-square-foot two-story stone home is on the Lapad Peninsula, one of the most expensive areas in Dubrovnik.”

With the property market in Dubrovnik still relatively stagnant after the boom years from 2005 to 2008 this article might help to attract interest again. Dubrovnik has been a popular holiday home destination for the British, Germans and the Irish, but these markets have slowly dried up as property prices rose and the global financial crisis struck. Real estate prices in Dubrovnik are still the most expensive in Croatia, with the average price of an apartment around 3,200 Euros per metre squared. The days of foreign buyers looking for a good financial investment have long gone and now real estate agents are marketing Dubrovnik a lifestyle choice. Speaking to the New York Times Tim Coulson the owner of First Property Croatia said that “Price expectation from vendors has become more realistic, but many are still unrealistic.”

“Croatia joined the European Union in 2013, which has made it easier for Europeans to buy property. But the volume of sales is still very low compared with the peak years, agents say,” writes the New York Times. And whilst it is the case that EU citizens can purchase property easier in Croatia it is still complicated for people who live outside of the EU to navigate the paperwork.

Croatia is no longer considered as a corrupt country according to Transparency International. In a corruption ranking of 168 countries Croatia finished in 50th position meaning that it is out of the rang of countries considered by Transparency International as corrupt.

The president of Transparency International Croatia, Davorka Budimir, said in a press conference today that “Headway in the fight against corruption is finally visible in Croatia as well.” She added that Croatia has improved its position on the world rankings by three points to 51 points, which just puts it in the position of less corrupt countries.

The average points index for countries inside the European Union is 67 points which goes to show that Croatia still has work to do in its fight against corruption. However the average world ranking is 43 points showing that the work done until now has had some effect.

The least corrupt countries for 2015 were Denmark with 81 points, Finland with 90 points and New Zealand with 88 points. Whilst the most corrupt were North Korea and Somalia both with only 8 points.

Budimir concluded that “Corruption directly threatens citizens’ human rights and their equality in achieving their own interests, it destroys the morality and structure of society and prevents the development of free enterprise. Corruption tends to permeate all segments of society and therefore represents the biggest threat to Croatia’s economic, social and political development.”

Dubrovnik is one of the most photographed cities in the world and it is easy to see why. International media, Facebook, Twitter and millions of Instagram photos are filled every year. Here is our list of the top five sights that need to be snapped whilst in Dubrovnik and the region.

Srđ Mountain
Take a three minute trip on the cable car and you’ll be at the top of the Srđ Mountain, 432 metres above the city, the view is 360° and breathtaking at any time of the day.

srd dubrovnik

City Walls
The 1.9 kilometres of the ancient city walls offer so many differing views, the crystal clear Adriatic Sea to one side and the terracotta rooftops on the other.

walls dubrovnik

Dubrovnik Bridge
Hard to miss, the Dubrovnik Bridge gives you a panorama over the port of Dubrovnik and the Ombla River. There is plenty of parking, toilets and a cafe bar...take your time and your camera.

bridge

Konavle
The southernmost region of Croatia and renowned for its natural beauty, Konavle has a stunning coastline and sheer mountains, and the picturesque town of Cavtat is picture postcard stuff.

cavtat photo

Mlini
A quaint village on the shores of the Adriatic in Župa, Mlini translates as mills in English and the remnants of the old mill stones can still be seen in a charming park area.

mlini

On this day, the 27th of January 1416, the Republic of Dubrovnik banned the slave trade. At a meeting of the Grand Chamber of the Republic of Dubrovnik on the 27th of January 1416 a total of 75 councillors of 78 in the council voted to ban slavery in the Republic. The very next day the vote and the decision came into effect and slavery was banned.

The decision stated that "none of our nationals or foreigners, and everyone who considers himself or herself from Dubrovnik, can in any way or under any pretext to buy or sell slaves or female servant or be a mediator in such trade.” With this decision the Republic of Dubrovnik was among the first countries in Europe and in the world to ban the buying and selling of slaves.

For example Great Britain banned the trading of slaves 391 years later, and the USA banned the slave trade 450 years after Dubrovnik on the 18th of December 1865.

2015 was one of the best years on record for the Croatian tourism industry with a growth of over 8 percent on the previous year. Official figures show that 14.1 million tourists visited Croatia last year and achieved an impressive 78.5 million overnight stays.

According to the Croatian Ministry of Tourism the tourism industry in Croatia last year saw overall revenues reach 8 billion Euros.
The Croatian Adriatic coastline was the leader in tourism figures again, with Istria recoding the most tourists, a total of 3.5 million, and 23.6 overnight stays.

The most numerous tourists in Croatia last year were German guests, in total 2.1 million arrived in the country which is an increase of 6.3 percent over 2014.

Croatia has received a donation of laptops, camera and software to assist in dealing with the thousands of migrants that are flooding through the country. The donation, thought to be worth around 100,000 Euros was given to the Croatian Deputy Police Chief Drazen Vitez by the German Ambassador to Croatia, Thomas Eberhard Schultze.

“This equipment will have an impact on the border police performance in mobile situations,” commented the Croatian Interior Ministry on the German donation. It is planned that the new technical equipment will be installed at the transit centres in Croatia as well as the refugee reception area.

Since the beginning of the refugee crises around 610,000 migrants have passed through Europe, the majority of their way to Germany.

Dubrovnik’s tourism could have another explosion this year after news that the eighth episode of Star Wars may well be filmed in Dubrovnik!

Reports in the Croatian media suggest that the latest episode of Star Wars could be partly filmed in Dubrovnik.
Dubrovnik emerged on the radar of international film production companies after hosting the popular HBO serial Game of Thrones. HBO have used Dubrovnik, which acts as Kings Landing, in the Game of Thrones for the past five seasons and this has generated global interest in Dubrovnik as a location. In recent years various serials and films have been recorded, even a Bollywood blockbuster.

It is rumoured that Dubrovnik will be used for several scenes in the new eighth episode. According to the website makingstarwars.net “A few different people have dropped this same piece of news that Star Wars: Episode VIII will film in an interesting location. The location was used for HBO’s Game of Thrones as the King’s Landing locations. Apparently the location is really pleasant at which to shoot and offers tax breaks and incentives to new productions. The gist: Star Wars: Episode VIII will film in Dubrovnik, Croatia later in the year.”

The Croatian Audiovisual Centre declined to either confirm or deny the rumour that the next Star Wars wills be filmed in Croatia. The City of Dubrovnik confirmed to The Dubrovnik Times that they are aware of the rumours that Dubrovnik will be used as a location for Star Wars after an “American blog wrote about the possibility.” However they declined to comment further. When asked if the City of Dubrovnik had signed a “contract of silence” the City confirmed that they hadn’t signed any contract.

From an inside source The Dubrovnik Times has discovered that producers of Star Wars met with the Mayor of Dubrovnik and representatives of the city before Christmas.

Filming of Star Wars, the eighth episode, will begin in March this year, we will soon discover if indeed Dubrovnik a location.

star wars dubrovnik film

 

 

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The Voice of Dubrovnik

THE VOICE OF DUBROVNIK


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