ZAGREB, Oct 5 (Croatia Sun News) – The northern Adriatic resort town of Rovinj was declared Tourist Destination of the Year at the closing ceremony of Croatian Tourism Days in the eastern city of Osijek on Friday evening.
The event, which opened on October 2, took place in the five counties of the Slavonia region. The closing ceremony in Osijek brought together over 1,000 participants, including tourism workers, their partners and guests. Also attending were senior state officials, including President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, Parliament Speaker Gordan Jandrokovic, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, Tourism Minister Gari Cappelli, government ministers, regional and local government officials and guests from around the country.
Croatian Tourism Days traditionally ended with the presentation of awards to top 10 companies and individuals.
Rovinj took the title of Tourist Destination of the Year in competition with Zadar and Mali Losinj. The award was presented to Rovinj Mayor Marko Paliaga by President Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic, who praised the local tourist board and industry professionals for their commitment and results.
The Anton Stifanic Lifetime Achievement Award went to Frane Skoblar of Zadar’s Turisthotel. It was presented by Parliament Speaker Gordan Jandrokovic, who commended the company for international competitiveness and excellent results on the challenging market.
Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic presented the Anton Stifanic Annual Tourism Award to Ivan Sabljic, the CEO of the Valamar company’s hotels Collection Dubrovnik President and Lacroma Dubrovnik, thanking all tourism workers for yet another record-breaking season. The PM said that this year was expected to end as usual with about 20 million tourist arrivals, over 100 million overnight stays and about €12 billion in revenues, adding that in this way the tourist industry was strengthening the national economy.
Thanking the organisers, the prime minister said he was particularly pleased that this year’s Croatian Tourism Days took place in the five Slavonia counties. “This fits into the government’s Slavonia Project. In the last three years HRK 60 million (€8 million) has been invested in the regional tourism industry.”
Tourism Minister Gari Cappell presented the Anton Stifanic Award for Best Company to the German tour operator ID Riva Tours from Munich, which specialises in Croatia. Its founder, Selimir Ognjenovic, was among the first to push for Croatian Tourism Days to be held in Slavonia, Baranja and Srijem.
The former head of the Croatian Mountain Rescue Service (HGSS), Vinko Prizmic, was honoured for his outstanding contribution to promoting Croatian tourism, while the Sustainable Tourism Award went to the UNESCO-listed Papuk Nature Park.
Rajska Plaza in Lopar on the northern island of Rab was voted Beach of the Year, Olive Island Sutomiscica took the title of Marine of the Year, Spinnaker in Porec was declared Restaurant of the Year, while the Renaissance Festival in the northern continental town of Koprivnica received the Award for Tourism Event of the Year.
Novigrad’s Aminess Maravea Resort is Campsite of the Year, Katarina Line from Opatija was voted best Destination Travel Agency, and Valamar Girandella Resort in Rabac took the Hotel of the Year Award.