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Adriatic Modernism: Grand Hotel of Lopud

Lopud Croatia map

On the shores of small island simply off the japanese coast of the Adriatic Sea, a (principally) vacant trendy lodge lives outs its days surrounded by the quiet anonymity offered by lovely Lopud, Croatia.  Buried within the Mediterranean backyard of an island, the stays of this big white concrete ship have peered from behind the island’s lush vegetative progress for the final eighty years.

The ‘ship’ is the Grand Hotel, a modernist masterpiece designed by one of Yugoslavia’s biggest architects.  It was constructed within the 1930s and kick-started the fishing island’s tourism business.  The Grand Hotel survived World Struggle II and nationalization, however within the years because the Croatian Conflict and re-privatization the lodge has failed to seek out its footing.  After a 2001 chapter it has handed by way of a number of corporations’ arms, every making an attempt to do what the one earlier than couldn’t.

Right now the Grand Hotel nonetheless seems as an unfinished rework, however it has a brand new proprietor, a brand new hope, and a brand new set of residents. 

cowl photograph courtesy David Flett


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Grand Hotel Lopud Beginnings

Lopud Croatia mapLopud is a small island only a mile away from Croatia’s Dalmatian coast.  The second largest and most economically developed of the Elaphiti Islands, Lopud measures a mere 1.eight sq. miles (four.63 sq. km) in measurement.

The island enjoys 250 days of sunshine per yr and sees common temperatures within the 80s F (30s C).  It additionally includes a distinctive, 16th century botanical backyard that’s house to 500 plant species, delivered to the island over the course of lots of of years by visiting seamen from everywhere in the world.

Extra essential to builders, the small island was additionally a most bucolic setting, free of automobiles, improvement, and business.  In 1931 sea-captain Antun Sesan famous the potential of the island of Lopud as a vacation spot for tourism and weekend getaways.

Sesan was the brother-in-law of brothers Niko and Antun Glavović, who have been house owners of the Guesthouse Glavović in Lopud and conversant in the lodge enterprise.  Collectively the three conceived the thought to construct the Grand Hotel in Lopud.  The possession association: two-thirds of the lodge was owned by the Glavović household, and one-third of the Grand Hotel was owned by Antun Sesan.

Sesan visited Dubrovnik’s Division for Arts and Monuments in search of an architect for his lodge.  It was there he met municipal conservator Kosta Strajnić, a contemporary structure devotee and good friend of Nikola Dobrović.  Strajnić was half of a motion that wished to see Dubrovnik go extra trendy and fewer conventional in design; he despatched Sesan to see Dobrović, who was finally employed by Sesan to design the brand new Lopud lodge.

Aerial photo of the Croatian island of Lopud in the Adriatic Sea.The Croatian island of Lopud within the Adriatic Sea.


Nikola Dobrović, Arhitekt

Nikola Dobrovic, pictured here in 1936 on site for the construction of the Grand Hotel on Lopud, was one of Yugoslavia's greatest modern architects.Nikola Dobrovic, pictured right here in 1936 on website for the development of the Grand Hotel on Lopud, was one of Yugoslavia’s biggest trendy architects.

Nikola Dobrović (1897-1967) is extensively thought-about to be one of Yugoslavia’s most essential trendy architects.  He’s acknowledged as a pioneer amongst trendy architects and is credited with shaping the area’s post-war id.

He designed dozens of trendy buildings alongside the Dalmatian coast, though his most well-known work was the Federal Ministry Protection constructing in Belgrade – notoriously bombed in a 1999 NATO raid and at the moment the town’s most well-known wreck.

Dobrović traveled to Dubrovnik repeatedly after 1929, and completely settled within the metropolis in 1933.  Till his dying in 1967, Dobrović frequently spent his summers on Lopud and even deliberate to construct a summer time house on the island.

As an architect Dobrović stands out as a result of his works have been commissioned largely by the center class.  In consequence his designs have been sometimes environment friendly with area and of extra modest proportions, evidenced by the shortage of adornments and low sq. footage in his most well-known flooring plans.

Functionalism was the immutable aspect of Dobrović design; within the architect’s personal phrases, “spatial art stands high above all other art forms. Any architect or architecture enthusiast can easily believe this.”  In execution Nikola most popular the looks and performance of clean white plaster utilized to strengthened concrete, a recurring theme in Dobrović structure.

An ideal instance is the island of Lopud, a veritable Dobrović playground.  In 1932 Nikola created the Monument to Viktor Dyk and in 1939 he penned the gorgeous Villa Vesna, an obvious homage to Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye with an look sixty years forward of its time. Dobrović was a fan of historic mythology, mirrored within the names for his designs:  Villa Adonis was named for the Greek playboy, Villa Rusalka for a water nymph, and Vesna symbolized the spring.

Also on Lopud Island is Dobrović's beautiful Villa Vesna, built in 1939.Additionally on Lopud Island is Dobrović’s lovely Villa Vesna, inbuilt 1939.

However of all his contributions to Lopud, probably the most compelling Dobrović product was the four-story Grand Hotel, a Brutalist piece de resistance during which he spent greater than two years of his life designing and constructing.


Grand Hotel Development

Vintage postcard of the Grand Hotel, circa 1930s.Classic postcard of the Grand Hotel, circa 1930s.

Constructing on Lopud was difficult as a result of the island lacked all however probably the most primary of providers.  In 1933 a quarry was established and a small concrete manufacturing unit was constructed.  Tracks put in alongside the jetty allowed carts to move crushed rock to the constructing website.

The erection of the Grand Hotel turned a factor of fascination for the locals, put along with supplies and strategies by no means earlier than seen on the island.  It wasn’t simply Lopud, both: the Grand Hotel was the primary construction on the Yugoslav coast constructed with a strengthened concrete skeleton.

Development started in 1934, as soon as all essential permits have been secured and filed.  Its grand opening was in 1936, by the way earlier than the lodge was absolutely accomplished.  The builders have been proud of the lodge’s sustainable improvement and their creation of dozens of jobs, securing the financial future for a lot of on the island for many years.

A printed brochure from the interval marketed the lodge’s options:

“80 rooms outfitted by trendy requirements, every room has a balcony, cold and hot operating water, electrical lights, wi-fi, and good air flow, electrical energy, automated telephones, electrical cooking, espresso on the terrace, eating room (partially closed, partially open).  Meals are served, and within the backyard are electrical followers, a pond, a darkroom for images, two spacious roof terraces, every day live shows, loos, and showers on every flooring.  Between the lodge and the seashore is a park 60 yards lengthy, with an space of 2,000 sq. yards, planted with cypress and olive timber, oleanders, orange and lemon timber, many sorts of palm timber and cactus, rosemary, eucalyptus, mimosas, and so forth. … “

Classic photographs of Grand Hotel, Lopud (click on to enlarge)


Dobrović’s Grand Hotel Design

Plans showing various elevations of the Grand Hotel on Lopud Island, circa 1934.Plans displaying numerous elevations of the Grand Hotel on Lopud Island, circa 1934.

When Nikola Dobrović first visited Lopud he fell in love with the island.  His idea for the Grand Hotel was revolutionary, however it was additionally meant to enrich the island’s panorama.

How he made a contemporary lodge not seem utterly out-of-place in a fishing village is slightly creative:  As a bellwether of the island’s anticipated burgeoning sea-based tourism business, Nikola designed the Grand Hotel comparable in profile to a cruise ship.

The primary perspective drawings by Nikola Dobrović of the Grand Hotel have been revealed in 1932.  One set of renderings appeared within the ebook “Contemporary Architecture by Southern Slavs” whereas one other set appeared in a problem of the Yugoslav journal Arhitektura.

Following the nautical theme, the whole lot was white.  Home windows seem steady, and the lodge has a number of flooring with balconies that run the complete size of the lodge, mimicking stacked decks of a big cruise ship.  The doorway to the lodge has a cylindrical ‘command bridge’ that welcomed visitors with the phrases ‘Grand Hotel’ and ‘Entrance’ carved in aid.  On the prime of the lodge the phrases “GRAND HOTEL” are reduce out of the concrete alongside the parapet.

Design & Plans for the Grand Hotel, Lopud

courtesy Glavović household archives

Ocean liner cues didn’t finish with the outside; all the things however the glass was slender or small.  Rooms have been undersized (75 sq. ft / 6.9 sq. m) and resembled cruise ship cabins.  Double rooms have been fitted in pairs with beds positioned lengthwise.  Rooms had primary cabinets and wash basins, however loos and bogs have been centralized in a ‘sanitary cores’ situated on the finish of the corridor.  The slender hallways have been free of adornments, and the lodge lacked an elevator.

One can discover Le Corbusier’s rules of new structure round each nook, every part current in type was a structural necessity.  A uncommon hedonistic contact was the tennis courtroom on the lodge’s roof terrace.

In this pre-WWII aerial photo of Lopud, the Grand Hotel's rooftop tennis court (with bleachers) is visibleWithin the backside of this pre-WWII aerial photograph of the Lopud shoreline, the Grand Hotel’s rooftop tennis courtroom (with spectators’ bleachers) is seen. (courtesy Glavović household archives)

By at present’s requirements a lot of the lodge seems a bit austere, however for the period it was a breakthrough, boasting some firsts together with many developments and luxuries not widespread for the time.

Nikola’s ultimate contact was the distinctive inclusion of his signature on the entrance of the lodge, one-foot (30 cm) tall and carved out of the concrete above the primary flooring:



Nikola Dobrović left his name carved out of concrete on the Grand Hotel on Lopud.Nikola Dobrović left his identify carved out of concrete on the Grand Hotel on Lopud. (courtesy Artwork Ko)

Rooms have been minimalist however all had balconies, electrical energy, and scorching water.  The lodge had its personal heating and air flow system, automated phone system, and since the lodge was on a small island that lacked infrastructure, the Grand Hotel had its personal energy station; extra electrical energy was directed to the remaining of the island, offering many in Lopud with energy for the primary time.  With sustainability in thoughts it was constructed with a complicated rainfall and gray-water irrigation system which directed captured rainfall and runoff towards the encompassing gardens and park.

Dobrović designed a second wing for extra capability nevertheless this wing was not constructed till the 1970s, after his dying.  This second wing didn’t function the slender rooms or wave railings of the unique wing, nevertheless it did have more room and included such upgrades as personal loos and bogs for every room.

The finished lodge was financial with area, managing to compress 96 rooms (24 per flooring), workplace area, laundry, communal areas, and a restaurant right into a just-over 75,000 square-foot (7,000 sq. m) constructing.

courtesy Glavović household archives and Structure Dept., Museum of Science & Know-how, Belgrade


Grand Hotel Lopud

Emblem / logo for the Grand Hotel of Lopud, YugoslaviaEmblem / emblem for the Grand Hotel of Lopud, Yugoslavia

When the Grand Hotel opened it was a four-star lodge.  For greater than seventy years was the most important lodge on the island, internet hosting some 35% of the island’s capability.

Throughout its early life the lodge was a spot of elite tourism, an costly place to spend the night time with rooms costing greater than double different boarding choices on the island.

In its first yr of operation the lodge was visited by three,765 vacationers.  The glitzy Grand Hotel provided a chance to the fishing village on Lopud, the likes of which it had by no means seen earlier than.  Many residents had their first job on the lodge, working in housekeeping or carrying vacationer baggage. Some labored their means as much as supervisor.  However everybody has a narrative concerning the Grand Hotel.

The Grand Hotel on Lopud Island was built in 1936.The Grand Hotel on Lopud Island was inbuilt 1936. (courtesy Artwork Ko)

In 1941 the Unbiased State of Croatia (Nezavisna Država Hrvatska, or NDH) got here to energy as a ‘puppet regime’ to the powers in Germany and Italy.  The Glavović household was accused as being collaborators whereas the Grand Hotel was used as a short lived focus camp by the Ustaše to carry persecuted Serbs, Jews, Muslims, and different anti-fascist dissidents arrested across the Dubrovnik space.  In accordance with one supply, “about 600 to 700 captives were confined” within the lodge.

Throughout World Conflict II Josip Broz Tito rose to energy whereas main the Yugoslav nations towards the occupation by the Germans.  After the institution of socialist Yugoslavia, Tito launched a nationalization program by which many personal properties have been confiscated from the personal sector and ‘nationalized’ into the care of the federal government.  On the conclusion of World Struggle II the Grand Hotel was nationalized into this program and operated by a state-run lodge amenities firm.

In better times: facing NW along the eastern elevation of the Grand Hotel.In higher occasions: dealing with NW alongside the japanese elevation of the Grand Hotel. (courtesy oris)

In 1973 the Grand Hotel was completely restored and expanded – though the enlargement was constructed with little deference to Dobrović’s unique plans.  To raised go well with the necessities of vacationers of the period, hallways and rooms have been enlarged and railings straightened.  Rooms within the new wing got their very own personal bogs, and the Grand Hotel’s rooftop tennis courts have been sacrificed for HVAC air flow shafts.

By the 1980s the lodging on the Grand Hotel have been once more in dangerous form.  The smaller rooms and lack of in-room loos or bogs left the lodge with the less-demanding clientele, which led towards a hastened degradation.


The Croatia Warfare & Re-Privatization

Behind a fence: Grand HotelBehind a fence: Grand Hotel. (courtesy Hugh Lester)

In 1990 a property restitution regulation was handed in Croatia, which started the sluggish course of of re-privatization of many motels and homes.  The Grand Hotel escaped from returning to its unique house owners after it was ‘preempted’ by the Municipality of Dubrovnik.

Beneath Croatian legal guidelines of preemption, municipalities have the primary proper of refusal to buy any property involving traditionally vital or in any other case protected buildings earlier than the personal sale could also be closed.

When the Grand Hotel was re-privatized, Dubrovnik exercised its proper of preemption, usurping the lodge from Glavović descendants.  The town then bought the Grand Hotel to a personal proprietor who promised to revive and re-open the Grand Hotel.  However on the time, the nation was on the brink of struggle.

When the Croatian Conflict of Independence started in 1991, it crippled the area and its tourism business.  The Grand Hotel was shut down and briefly seized by combatants.  It emerged from the Croatian Conflict within the mid-1990s as half of the portfolio of Inns Lopud, d.d., a subsidiary of Dubrovačka Financial institution.

In 2001 Inns Lopud d.d., proprietor and operator of the Grand Hotel on Lopud, was in chapter courtroom as a result of the corporate owed “municipal and water back charges totaling 137 thousand kuna.”  Locals questioned why the corporate sought chapter safety over such a small quantity, and suspicions started to rise that the lodge was being artificially depressed to permit for a less expensive sale to a 3rd social gathering.


Von Habsburg and Roth

Baroness Francesca von Habsburg attempted to purchase the Grand Hotel in Lopud, Croatia, in 2002Baroness Francesca von Habsburg tried to buy the Grand Hotel in Lopud in 2003.

Francesca von Habsburg, an artwork collector and the previous spouse of Austrian royalty, had an affinity for the cultural heritage of the area and established herself in close by Dubrovnik.  There she helped shield and restore priceless works from the Dubrovnik Portray Faculty and liturgical objects from Dubrovnik Franciscans and Dominicans.

Her work preserving artwork and historical past satisfied the Dalmatian Franciscan Province of Dubrovnik Franciscans to present a 99-year lease of Lopud’s Delivery of Mary monastery to von Habsburg in 1997.  The centuries-old monastery was crumbling and the Franciscans didn’t have the cash for repairs – though later von Habsburg would come underneath hearth for failing to spend cash to revive the monastery.

Von Habsburg was occupied with buying properties Lopud, and appointed Austrian businessman Erwin Roth to help with the offers.  Roth was a transplant who moved to the world within the mid-1990s and had established an organization in Cut up, which he used to purchase and promote actual property.  His shopping for ultimately spilled over to Lopud, the place he spent 6.5 million kuna buying Villa Slavica, the Kantun café, and the restaurant Šunj (named after the island’s famed seashore), at chapter auctions.

Austrian businessman Erwin Roth represented the buying party in the attempted December 2003 sale of the Grand Hotel, Lopud.Austrian businessman Erwin Roth represented the shopping for social gathering within the tried December 2003 sale of the Grand Hotel, Lopud.

It was 2002 when information retailers first caught wind of the baroness’ intention to buy the lodge.  Retailers have been suspicious of her capability to fund the acquisition, claiming the baroness “practically remained without inheritance and money.”  In the meantime, an analysis in 2002 estimated the price to rehabilitate and rebuild the Grand Hotel might probably attain 5 million euros.

In December 2003 the Grand Hotel Lopud was set to be bought at public public sale.  Nikša Scheers, whose mom was a Glavović, argued the chapter public sale was a rip-off.  Scheers alleged that as a result of von Habsburg was buddies with Dubrovnik mayor Vido Bogdanovic, the mayor agreed to permit the lodge to declare chapter over a comparatively paltry 137,000 kuna debt in order that von Habsburg might purchase the lodge at a reduction.

Scheers argued if the once-nationalized lodge was in chapter, it might probably be acquired for much less cash.  On this case, the lodge (which was estimated to be value 72 million kuna) was undervalued, set to go to public sale for simply 12 million kuna.

One other article referred to as the public sale an “unnecessary bankruptcy” and pointedly criticized businessman Erwin Roth as a result of the Lopud properties he bought two years prior (Sunj Restaurant, Villa Slavica, and the tavern café Kantun) had failed to supply the promised enterprise and employment for the quiet island.  These emotions have been echoed in yet one more article which additionally famous the three Roth properties that did not see redevelopment after buy.

The fence around the Grand Hotel protects the abandoned building from tourists.The fence across the Grand Hotel protects the deserted constructing from vacationers. (courtesy clive)

“[Francesca von Habsburg] just wants to have the island’s real estate and be the owner of the island.”

– Nikša Scheers, Glavović inheritor

After the late December 2003 public sale, it was introduced that Erwin Roth bought the Grand Hotel on behalf of the baroness for 15.eight million kuna.  Glavović heirs tried to delay the sale beneath claims the state, county, and metropolis weren’t provided their preemptive proper of first-refusal to buy.  Courts agreed, and gave the municipalities sixty days to contest the acquisition, after which era Roth’s firm might attain possession upon cost of their bid worth.

To this, Roth stated “it is interesting that in 2002 we offered the Glavović family 2.3 million Deutsch Marks [for the Grand Hotel], and we were refused because they wanted 7 million.”  He went on to say that he meant to develop the Grand Hotel right into a boutique lodge, and it will have a deliberate opening of Christmas 2007.


From Dubrovnik to Atlantska Plovidba

Front of the Grand Hotel shows signs of life (circa 2012).Entrance of the Grand Hotel exhibits indicators of life, circa 2012. (courtesy zeitlose-mediterrane-schoenheit.de)

On the urging of lodge heirs and different locals, the municipal authorities swooped in on the eleventh hour. In February of 2004 the town council exercised its preemptive proper and matched the required minimal bid for the Grand Hotel.

The Grand Hotel, which is part of Croatia’s cultural heritage listing, has a modicum of safety being recognized as an “immovable cultural property.” This designation additionally requires builders and house owners to respect the principles established by the Dubrovnik Division of Conservation earlier than any modifications may be made.

Huge information got here in September of 2004 with the announcement the town had bought the Grand Hotel to delivery conglomerate Atlantske Plovidbe d.d. for 21.5 million kuna.  Atlantske plovidbe d.d. (AP) was based in 1955 and is registered for a powerful array of enterprise actions: Sea and coastal dry bulk transport, river transport, passenger and tour operator providers, ships and immovable leases, scientific analysis and improvement, market evaluation and public analysis, enterprise and administration consulting, secretarial and translator providers, lodges and motels, eating places, camps, canteens, wholesale and retailer brokerage, retail family equipment restore, vessel import-export, vessel servicing and repairs, monetary and book-keeping consultancy, tax advising.

[ Atlantska plovidba d.d. is the owner/operator of the Hilton Imperial Hotel and the Hotel Lapad in Dubrovnik. ]

A December 2006 rendering produced by Atlantska plovidba illustrating plans for the Grand Hotel.A December 2006 rendering produced by Atlantska plovidba illustrating plans for the Grand Hotel.

Of their December 2006 bulletin Atlantska plovidba advised buyers the corporate had secured the Grand Hotel property, and in Might of 2006 started cleansing out the lodge.  Previous crumbling concrete furnishings was eliminated, as was some previous gear and fixtures.  The corporate stated the subsequent step was to attract up plans for the lodge redesign and acquire the required permits for remaining reconstruction, and ultimately attain an settlement with Hilton to franchise the Grand Hotel.

The said objective of Atlantska plovidba was to use “appropriate modern standards while maintaining the basic features of the hotel’s original organization and interior design.”  The lodge was to be a four-star lodge with 75 rooms and would keep its unique design, gardens, and landscaped grounds with concrete benches and tables.  The corporate talked about a potential enlargement to the rear of the lodge as a result of conservation covenants meant the lodge couldn’t be constructed taller.  AP reached out to design agency HOK to carry out a conservation research and draft their imaginative and prescient for the Grand Hotel, and introduced a deliberate re-opening for the vacationer season in 2008.

Of their June 2007 bulletin Atlantska repeated the announcement of their buy of the Grand Hotel Lopud and painted an expectation of what the longer term holds.  “Since the subject is completely devastated, a complete renovation is necessary.  In doing so we will strictly make sure that the subject is under special protection.”  The group talked about rehabilitation plans that concerned re-branding the Grand Hotel as a Hilton after its renovation, however so as to rehabilitate the lodge AP wanted to take away broken gear and furnishings, knock down partitions, and fence off the property.  Atlantska additionally obtained crucial permits for the ultimate restoration of the Grand Hotel.

The backside of the Grand Hotel in 2008 before the second wing (pictured on left) was demolished.The bottom of the Grand Hotel in the summertime of 2008 because it appeared after the overgrown foliage was reduce, however earlier than the second wing (pictured on left) was demolished, simply months after this photograph was taken.

The June 2008 bulletin painted a extra grim image, resultant of the financial local weather.  For the Grand Hotel, website cleanup started.  Almost twenty years’ value of overgrown foliage was eradicated from the lodge grounds.  Particles and waste was collected and eliminated, the entrance and rear gardens have been tended, and its grove manicured.

Within the firm’s November 2008 bulletin AP introduced the second wing of the lodge had been demolished.  The rear wing, which was constructed within the early 1970s and never completely true to Dobrović’s unique design, had been modified to suit the wants of the time.  As a result of the lodge was a protected monument, such demolition would first require the approval of the Conservation Division of Dubrovnik.

Atlantska plovidba informed buyers of their July 2009 bulletin the worldwide monetary disaster had trickled right down to the delivery market, and in consequence restricted funding was put aside for the corporate’s division of particular tasks – whose belongings included the Grand Hotel.  On the time, all expenditures on funding properties had been halted and restricted to acquiring permits.  Regardless, AP made progress on the Grand Hotel by demolishing the second wing and half of the auxiliary amenities on the grounds.

Then the updates stopped.  The Grand Hotel in Lopud did not see a single point out for greater than a yr throughout the corporate’s subsequent three bulletins.


Crusing from Atlantska Plovidba to Anker Grupa

Since 2008 Lopud island's Grand Hotel has been surrounded by a fence.Since 2008 Lopud island’s Grand Hotel has been surrounded by a fence. (courtesy clive)

Atlantska plovidba ultimately addressed the absence of Grand Hotel updates of their July 2011 bulletin, saying it has not given up on renovating the lodge, however the post-recession years have pressured the corporate to re-focus its efforts on its core enterprise.

“Atlantska plovidba was and will always remain a maritime company, and we cannot jeopardize our core business with other projects.”

– Atlantska plovidba bulletin, July 2011

Because the spring of 2011 the corporate was looking for a strategic funding associate.  Partnering with AP in early discussions was the Anker Group, a subsidiary of the Italian Marazzi Group and proprietor of Lopud’s largest lodge at present, Hotel Lafodia (Hotela Lafodije).  The Anker Group was a most popular associate on account of their expertise operating a four-star lodge on the island.

This partnership was echoed in a November 2011 article, which repeated the message that with higher monetary backing there was a higher probability of progress.  But regardless of the optimism, there have been no Grand Hotel updates in AP’s December 2011 or July 2012 bulletins.

A new type of resident lives in the Grand Hotel now.A brand new sort of resident lives within the Grand Hotel in the present day. (courtesy Chris Hutchinson)

In July of 2012 information leaked that Atlantska plovidba determined to promote the Grant Hotel.  As a result of the property has safety standing underneath Article 37 of the Regulation on Safety and Preservation of Cultural Heritage, the municipalities affected (Croatian authorities, County of Debrovnik-Neretva, and the town of Dubrovnik) had preemptive right-of-first-refusal earlier than any personal sale might be finalized.

On July 26th, 2012, Atlantska plovidba launched an official assertion on the choice to promote the lodge, which particularly cited Article 37 of the cultural property safety regulation.  In August of 2012 AP provided the lodge to Dubrovnik-Neretva County for €2.5 million, however the county declined.

With Article 37 glad and no authorities takers for the historic property, Atlantska plovidba was free to pursue a personal sale.  The corporate finalized the sale of the Grand Hotel on October 11th, 2012; the customer was the long-rumored Anker Grupa, house owners of the profitable and year-old €40 million Hotel Lafodia.  Shortly thereafter Anker revealed as a lot in a press launch, together with the likelihood of buying land across the Grand Hotel to increase its grounds and supply its visitors extra privateness.

Inside photographs of the Grand Hotel, Lopud

photographs courtesy Wolfgang Thaler

As soon as the property was acquired by Anker Group, lodge updates weren’t frequently revealed (as a result of Anker is a personal firm it isn’t required to supply shareholder studies).

A June 2014 information article provided that reconstruction had not but began and that “the most realistic deadline is 2016.”

[ Need to stay on Lopud?  Hotel Lafodia is hiring.  “Seasonal dream job at the Hotel Lafodia!” Employment consists of lodging, uniforms, and two meals a day! ]


Grand Hotel At this time

The stays of the partial rework are nonetheless seen at this time.  Inside partitions have been knocked down and in lots of rooms the broken concrete furnishings has been eliminated.  The fence erected by Atlantska plovidba nonetheless stands across the property, now extra a visible deterrent to vacationers than safety function.

Development particles strains the grounds – to the customer it’s unclear if a restoration is underway or the squatting residents have been stockpiling development supplies.

The courtyard in front of the Grand Hotel still looks like a construction site. The courtyard in entrance of the Grand Hotel nonetheless seems to be like a development website. (courtesy zeitlose-mediterrane-schoenheit.de)

In accordance with native residents, squatters have come and gone however have usually lived within the lodge because the Croatian Struggle.  Everybody was evacuated from the Grand Hotel when it started a restoration in 2006, however when the renovation stopped the uninvited residents moved again in.  In the course of the development of close by Hotel Lafodia, the Grand Hotel was house to imported development staff.

Within the mornings the Grand Hotel can come alive as its residents prepare for work, however in the course of the day the place is as quiet as a tomb.  If it weren’t for the rows of garments drying alongside the balconies, one would suspect the lodge was empty.  However it’s a becoming tribute to the Dobrović ethos of sustainability that his buildings outlive him and proceed to be helpful to the individuals; he wouldn’t have it another approach.

No, the Grand Hotel isn’t empty.  On the island of Lopud Nikola Dobrović has written his personal mythology.  And right here, he’s immortal.