Opatija in the past
Situated at the foot of the mountain and nature Park Učka on one side and the crystal-clear Adriatic Sea on the other, Opatija is a truly unique town.
The development of the city of Opatija went hand in hand with the development of the sea port of Rijeka. This pearl of the Adriatic had its heyday in the 19th century and in the period of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy.
As a sea port of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Rijeka experienced its economic boom by the building of one of the first European railways that linked the city with Trieste and Vienna, which added to importance of the nearby town of Opatija. The year 1844, when the aristocrat Iginio Scarpa from Rijeka began to build Villa Angiolina, is taken as the beginning of the development of tourism in Opatija.
It is the construction of Villa Angiolina that encouraged other European aristocrats to start building beautiful buildings. Those were mostly vacation villas serving as a getaway from politics, war and work, but also venues for romantic meetings of European nobility, which very quickly earned Opatija the nickname "the city of lovers."
In 1889 the Emperor Franz Joseph officially awarded Opatija the status of the primary health resort of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. Even then, Opatija stood side by side with Nice and Monte Carlo, and a vacation in Opatija was a sign of glamour and prestige. Over the years, Opatija was regularly visited by numerous guests from the high social and political circles like Albert Einstein, Isadora Duncan and Yesenin, Giacomo Puccini, Erich Maria Remarque, and many other members of the European elite.
The architecture of Opatija is unique in all its splendor and authenticity. The magnificent villas dominate the townscape, which leaves all visitors of this beautiful town breathless.
Opatija of today
Today Opatija is a wonderful multicultural city. Its fascinating architecture is recognized by many celebrities who ever more often make Opatija their second home. The magic of Opatija is impossible to describe in words - Opatija has to be experienced.
The Lungomare promenade connects the town of Opatija with surrounding towns that jointly form the Opatija Riviera. This 12 km long promenade is a popular recreation place for most citizens and guests of Opatija. The town "lives" throughout all year round, providing plenty of cultural, sporting and educational attractions. Congressional tourism in Opatija has been developing systematically for years and is now at the European top. A great advantage is also the vicinity to the city of Rijeka, the third largest city in Croatia, which offers a variety of possibilities.
To own a property in Opatija is a matter of prestige, and the value of real estate is growing rapidly year by year. The rise of prices is the result of limited construction since the town is situated between the sea and the mountains. The number of building sites is rather limited so the real estate on offer is being sold throughout the year irrespective of the season.
Bevanda is the unique complex consisting of five-star hotel, restaurant and bars, located in Northern Adriatic, just by the sea.
This refined hotel was built on the foundations of a restaurant of the same name, established in 1971 and has only ten rooms, each bearing the name of a celebrity who visited the town: Gustav Mahler, Isadora Duncan, or even Albert Einstein. Their picture windows open towards large terraces overlooking the Adriatic, offering stunning views of Opatija, Rijeka and the islands in the distance.
Many experts participated in this great project bringing the best of themselves: the hotel architecture was developed by Dražul Glušica, architects from Rijeka, the woodwork was designed by Sinago Company, key pieces of furniture were created by the Kvadra Company, while the visual solutions were envisaged in the Kuharić Matoš Studio. Bevanda’s rooms are equipped with cosmetic products from famous international brands
Bevanda, a renowned restaurant is contemporary and multi-functional, with separate areas in which guests can enjoy their cigars and hard drinks. Supported by the freshest ingredients of the land and of the sea, Bevanda’s cuisine is based on modern adaptations of traditional Mediterranean recipes. Bevanda offers a wide selection of fresh seafood; from scampi soup to lobster and cuttlefish risotto, the menu is innovative and features dishes like sashimi and tartare as well as traditional salads and steaks.
Outdoors during the summer and inside during the winter, the bar and its stylized furnishing are envisioned as a place where guests can have fun, talk, meet and socialize. Spend your days in a relaxed haven overlooking the sea, and enjoy your evenings with music and the rhythm of the night-life. The superior offer of drinks – from coffee and natural juices to champagnes, cocktails, wines and spirits.
One of the main advantages of Opatija is its exceptional position. Within just a few hours’ drive there are world-famous attractions such as Venice or the Roman amphitheater in Pula. Italy and Slovenia are only a 30 minutes’ drive from Opatija.
Through the last 10 years, Croatia has built up a network of impressively fast roads and motorways which are currently considered the most modern roads in the EU.
Opatija and the whole Kvarner region are well connected by new roads to all major cities of Europe.
- Zagreb (the capital city of Croatia) - 150 km
- Ljubljana (Slovenia) - 125 km
- Trieste (Italy) - 88 km
- Vienna (Austria) - 505 km
- Salzburg (Austria) - 390 km
- Munich (Germany) - 530 km
- Budapest (Hungary) - 505 km
- Milan (Italy) - 500 km
- Venice (Italy) - 200 km
- Florence (Italy) - 470 km
- Verona (Italy) - 320 km
The Kvarner region is also well connected by air routes to all major destinations in Europe. At a 2 hours’ drive distance there are as many as 6 international airports with continental and intercontinental flights.
An interesting fact about Opatija is that it was originally a winter resort. Since the city is situated in the Kvarner Bay at the foot of Mount Učka, protected from cold winds a unique subtropical microclimate is thus created. The temperature in winter rarely falls below 100C, and the average summer temperature is 25 to 30 degrees.
The fact that the winter is very mild has initially positioned Opatija as a winter destination; that is a destination where the European aristocracy was hiding from the cold continental winters.
The subtropical microclimate is responsible for exotic and very diverse vegetation that can be found in the town of Opatija; from laurel and rosemary, evergreen and deciduous trees, chestnuts, pomegranate and oak to the exotic bamboo, palm, cypress and eucalyptus.
The Učka nature park, located just above the town of Opatija is a protected area which is an excellent recreation destination. Apart from the rich vegetation, one should note a rich variety of wild animals such as deer, does, wild boars, badgers, martens and wild mice. The most dangerous animals that can be found within the park are brown bears. They live in the most northern parts of the park and do not pose a threat.
The climb to the mountain top is most beautiful on foot, by bicycle or on horseback, and it will offer a breathtaking view of the city, bay and all islands. For the less ambitious there is a public driveway connection.
The Opatija Riviera is rich in beautiful beaches. The most famous city beach Slatina is a central place for socializing and all the events in town, and it has relaxation and amusement facilities. In addition to the main beach there are a number of small beaches of different purposes.
Along the Opatija Riviera there are small well-maintained beaches that guarantee peace and quiet. Those with a little more adventurous spirit will definitely be interested in small lagoons with very difficult access by land. These beaches are very clean, quiet and guarantee the privacy that all of us sometimes need.
The beaches are mostly of natural stone and are arranged in the form of concrete terraces but there are several beaches for families that were artificially transformed into sandy beaches.
The beaches are classified not only with respect to their material makeup, but also according to categories of users. For this very reason there are special purpose beaches such as family beaches, beaches where dogs are allowed to swim or beaches intended for naturists.
Most of the beaches in use have the European Blue Flag, which is a guarantee of quality and cleanliness of the sea water.
The best beaches of Opatija "Lido Bevanda Beach Resort" and «Angiolina Beach»
At once two beaches of Opatija "Lido Bevanda Beach Resort" and «Angiolina Beach» have been recognized as the best beaches 2017 in Croatia and within the traditional tourist event "Days of the Croatian tourism" they received a prestigious award "The best beach 2017".
We will remind that the well-known Opatija’s beach “Angiolina” is a cult place, the beach with wooden cabins constructed in 1884, modernized in 1904 and, unfortunately, completely burned down in 1989.
Today's Angiolina beach is absolutely new modern complex, which stretches on 400 square meters, with a set of excellent conveniences to guests and Opatija's inhabitants.
The completely new Angiolina Beach has gone back in time and been restored to its previous retro design. It covers two storeys and its attractive appearance and terraces leave visitors speechless.
The facility includes the Angiolina Café and nightclub, as well as additional services such as the Gentlemen's Shop, Nero Ink tattoo studio, and a pop-up store of the famous Croatian fashion duo ELFS.
Other modern beach of the royal standard "Lido Beach Resort Bevanda", which stretches on 5000 square meters, with the magnificent pool of 100 of square meters with the purest sea water.
The most exclusive beach in Opatija and beyond is located right in the town centre, next to the beautiful Angiolina Park. The beach offers a variety of services and facilities for its visitors, including quality bars and restaurants and various entertainment options. To look the menu of cafe and restaurants you can on the official Lido Beach Resort page.
Both beaches have a beautiful view of the gulf Kvarner and for many guests and residents Opatija is the most favourite vacation spot at all seasons of the year. Treat yourself to a great experience at one of Opatija’s finest beaches!
Mediterranean cuisine is very rich and specific, and it is considered one of the healthiest in world gastronomy. Croatian cuisine stands side by side with the Italian, Greek and Spanish cuisine because they share the same base. The base of Mediterranean cuisine is seafood and fish, vegetables, olive oil and Mediterranean spice herbs.
Besides the Mediterranean cuisine the Continental cuisine is also very interesting, because it bears some connection to Hungarian and Turkish cuisine. It is rich in various kinds of meat of domestic as well as of wild game, which live in large forests. Almost one third of the total area of the country is covered by forests hundreds of years old that have historically been an important source of food and meat.
Slavonia is the most fertile area for growing food, and the advantages of this area have been recognized by the Romans during the Roman Empire. They named the most fruitful part Valis Aurea or the Golden Valley. This very name is a synonym for the fertile ground where all varieties can be grown. The Romans were especially delighted with wine from the region. The reputation of the quality of wines from Valis Aurea still means a lot even after 2000 years, as one of the local wines is served to the Pope in the Vatican today.
By Mediterranean cuisine and fish, which is ubiquitous, we mean fish freshly caught from the Adriatic. In the Adriatic Sea there is almost no industrial and artificial fish breeding. It is exclusively natural fish farming that guarantees quality.
Wine production is a centuries-old tradition in all Croatian regions and wine is an integral part of almost every meal. Croatian wines are highly valued in the world and they are becoming increasingly sought after. The production is relatively small by world standards, so the focus is not on quantity but on quality. The continental part is better known for its white wines, while the coastal parts are more focused on types of red wine.
Neighboring Italy is famous for its cheeses but what few people know is that cheese production in Croatia has a longer tradition and the same quality. Goat cheeses are especially appreciated and they pair exceptionally well with some red wines from this region.
Olive production is traditionally represented in all coastal regions, and extra virgin oils from Croatia receive gold medals almost regularly at all international exhibitions and their quality surpasses Italian and Greek olive oil. The oldest living olive tree in Croatia is more than 1,600 years old and is one of the oldest on the European continent. Olive growing tradition is more than 2000 years long.
Any true gourmet has at least once in his life tasted some of the dishes with the noble black truffle. The Croatian region of Istria is one of the world’s richest sites of precious and expensive mushrooms. Frittata (an egg-based dish similar to omelet) with truffles is specialty that is a sin not to try at least once in your lifetime. A truffle has been found In the vicinity of the town Motovun which is listed in the Guinness Book of Records.
There's a saying that water is the source of life. This would mean that Croatia has life enough for the whole Europe. Apart from the fact that Croatia has top-quality drinking water, it is the second richest country in terms of underground water supplies, after France. A major part of the country literally lies on a large pool of drinking water. For this reason, few people in Croatia buy bottled water because they already have water of same quality through the public water supply system at their homes.
“The land of a thousand islands”, as Croatia is affectionately referred to by all world's tourist experts, is an ideal place for all types of nautical tourism. Regardless of whether one is a casual fan of sailing, or an owner of a luxury yacht, there is general agreement that the Adriatic Sea is perfect for sailing.
There are officially 1246 islands, islets and cliffs in Croatia, only 67 of which are inhabited according to the latest records. The rest are uninhabited, which represents a true heaven for all fans of sailing. Discovering small bays and hidden beaches is a never-ending game with the numerous islands and locations waiting to be explored. The official data reveal that some islands, e.g. Hvar had been inhabited as early as 3500 BC and 2500 BC.
There are 42 state-of-the- art docks for nautical tourism (marinas) in Croatia, where you can refuel your boat and find restaurants, shops, beauty parlours, as well as other facilities. All the marinas are equipped to accommodate both sailing enthusiasts in transit, and vessels of different sizes. It is certainly wise to book one's place in advance, in view of the usual great demand. In this way, you reserve a place where you have at your disposal electricity, water, food, servicing and maintenance facilities, embarking and disembarking options and other conveniences indispensable for a pleasant and quality vacation.
The Opatija Riviera boasts a beautiful marina in Ičići, which meets all the highest world standards and can cater for the wishes of even the most demanding users. It is soon to be expanded to increase its capacity, and will also be able to accommodate very large ships. There are currently several marinas in Croatia equipped for the docking of mega yachts.
Medical services and medical tourism have been going hand-in-hand with the development of tourism in Opatija since its very beginnings. The unique climate, combined with crystal clear sea was initially Opatija's main advantage. Today we host a number of health facilities, offering top-notch services. Leading experts in various medical fields manage local clinics, treating patients from all corners of the world.
Of special prominence are orthopaedic clinics where a number of celebrities and top sportspersons have sought help after serious injuries. We are proud to note that the four-time Olympic medallist in alpine skiing Janica Kostelić placed her trust only in Lovran doctors. Apart from orthopaedics, which stands at the helm of the local medical services, Opatija prides itself on highly developed services in all branches of general and dental medicine.
Opatija abounds in state-of-the-art spa and wellness centres, climate-conditioned health resorts, hydrotherapy and a host of other treatments.
Thalassotherapy Opatija was the first medical institution in Croatia that introduced professional and modern rehabilitation for cardiac patients. Sixty years of experience in working with cardiac, rheumatic, physiatric and dermatological patients ranks Thalassotherapy Opatija among the top institutions for treatment and rehabilitation. A complete harmony of experience, professional education, state-of-the-art medical, diagnostic and therapeutic equipment along with an ideal climate and geographical features of the area, define this hospital as an ideal place where you can find rest, health and enjoyment. All the therapy and rehabilitation programmes are under continuous supervision of an expert team of doctors.
Founded in 1957 Thalassotherapia Opatija is admitted to be the leading center for cardiac rehabilitation in Croatia and one of the largest laboratories for functional non – invasive cardiac diagnosis.
By the decision of the Ministry of Health of Croatia in 1981 the Center was granted the status of the Special Hospital for the rehabilitation of heart, lungs and rheumatism, and in 1998 became the first and the only Reference Centre for Healthcare Tourism and Medically Programmed Recreation for the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Croatia.
Thalassotherapia Opatija’s fundamental activities beside the primary cardiological direction include the physical medicine, rehabilitation, rheumatology, dermatology and neurology fields.
Complimentary to the continuous improvement of its traditional functions the Thalassotherapia Opatija with the equal professional enthusiasm focuses on the health and spa tourism, opening on its basis the top wellness center with a wide range of services.
To provide a breakthrough approach to the diagnostics and treatment of the cardiac diseases, the Thalassotherapia Opatija in partnership with Mark Kaufman Charitable Foundation established within the Special Hospital a new Unit, equipped with the next generation device “Siemens Cios Alpha” for angiography and electro stimulation.
The cost of the equipment, donated by the Foundation, arises to 190,000 Euro, and in acknowledgement of the financial support rendered by Mark Kauffman Charitable Foundation the cutting edge Unit will be named “Kaufman Foundation Unit”.
In February, 17th the department was officially inaugurated. The State Secretary of the Ministry of Health Mr. Željko Plazonić expressed his personal gratitude to Professor Mark Kaufman for the «invaluable contribution in this top priority project, that provides the base for rendering high – quality medical services to the citizens of Croatia, and for reinforcing standing of the country on the market of international health tourism». The Director of «Thalassotherapia Opatija» Mr.Victor Peršić stated in his turn that the new department, inaugurated through Mark Kaufman Charitable Foundation support will allow the Center to enter a whole new level of providing the medical assistance to the patients.The grand opening of the department is already qualified as the flagship event of the year 2017 – when «Thalassotherapia Opatija» celebrates its 60th anniversary.
Croatia is situated in Central Europe, where it borders with Slovenia and Hungary in the north, Serbia in the east, Bosnia and Herzegovina in the southeast, Montenegro in the south and shares a sea border with Italy in the southwest.
- Land area: 56.542 sq. m
- Sea area: 33.200 sq. m
- Length of land border: 2.028 km
- Coastline length: 5.835 km, 4.058 km of which pertains to islands
- Number of islands and cliffs: 1.185 67 of which are inhabited
- Tallest mountain range: Dinara 1,831 m
- Population: 4.290.612
- Capital: Zagreb, population 792.875
- Official language: Croatian, Roman alphabet
- Currency: Hrvatska kuna (HRK)
- Memberships: member of the UN-a (since 1992), Member of the OESS, member of the European council, member of NATO-a (since 2009), member of the European Union since July 1st 2013
Regarding the choice of an ideal location for the purchase of real estate, Croatia offers a number of advantages in comparison to other similar destinations in Europe. Beside the fact that the Croatian coast, with its 2 600 hours of sun a year and its average sea temperature of 25°C - 27°C, make it one of the sunniest countries of the Mediterranean, we can name some more advantages:
- More than 10% of Croatian territory counts as a protected area, and the Adriatic Sea is the cleanest sea in Europe, which has been confirmed by the European „Blue Flag“ for cleanness awarded to almost all Croatian beaches
- A mild and pleasant climate has been conclusively proved to be beneficial to the respiratory system and general health
- The Adriatic sea, with its 1246 islands, islets and cliffs is a true heaven for sailors
- The state-of-the art road European infrastructure
- Its central position in Europe, within a 3-hour flight from all European cities
- Croatia has been a full-fledged member of the European Union since July 1st 2013
- The complete legislative system has been brought in line with the EU legislation, vouching for security in legal matters
- Low crime rate puts Croatia among the safest countries in the world, with the City of Zagreb as officially one of the safest world capitals
- There is still no real-estate tax
- EU citizens have the same rights when purchasing real estate as the local citizens
- The necktie - did you know that Croatia is the home of the most popular clothing item in business, the necktie. Around 1635, 6000 mercenaries came to the aid of King Louis XIII. Among them there was a large number of Croats who, led by the Banus, stayed in the service of the King. The traditional uniform of a Croatian soldier was adorned with neckbands of various patterns made of either regular cloth in case of common soldiers to elegant silk ones made for officers. This very accessory caught the attention of the French court. The „Croatian elegant style“ was hitherto completely unfamiliar to the Europe of the time, but had by 1650 become accepted in the French court as an accessory and a symbol of culture and elegance. The word for necktie comes from the French word cravate, derived from “a la Croate”, meaning „in the Croatian style“
- Nikola Tesla- „I take pride in my Serbian descent and my Croatian homeland“ is one of the most famous statements by this unique genius. The extraordinary physicist, who was born in the small village of Smiljan in the heart of the Lika region, gave the world some of the most important inventions
- Slavoljub Penkala- another Croatian inventor who has given us an item every person has held at one point: the ballpoint pen
- The sea organ- turning the sound of waves into music is by no means easy. However, a renowned architect from Zadar has done it in Zadar. This incredible and unique installation attracts people from all over the world and is simply breath-taking.
- Theatre- the island of Hvar is home to the oldest European theatre, built in 1612
- The Dalmatian- one of the world's most favourite dog breeds is indigenous to Croatia and named after the Dalmatia region
- The movie industry: Croatia was the site of many world famous movies and series. The currently most popular series in the world, Game of Thrones , has been filmed for 6 seasons in various locations in Croatia