Looking for My Dad, a 1967 Hotel Bellevue Dubrovnik Waiter

Total Croatia News

Updated on:

Toso Dabac
Toso Dabac

The TCN inbox a colourful and diverse place, and we get many requests for help, not all of which we can address due to lack of resources. But let’s see if the wider TCN community in Dubrovnik can help this reader from Holland, who is hoping somebody with a good memory may be able to help him find his Croatian father, who was working as a waiter at Hotel Bellevue Dubrovnik in 1966. 

Hi Paul,

I saw your articles in Total Croatia News about Croatian Returnee Reflections. With much imagination, you can say I’m a Croatian Returnee, but that is just a very small part of the story.

I also have no idea if the story I‘m gonna tell is something for you because it needs time and old-fashioned journalistic investigation.

In a nutshell: In 1966 and 1967, my mother (Dutch) has been on holiday in Dubrovnik. The first year she went to Hotel Bellevue. The next year she went again (different hotel) but met the waiter from hotel Bellevue. They dated during her holiday and 1 + 1 became 3 after 9 months. She tried to reach my father by sending a letter for him to the hotel but never got a response. So it’s unclear if he ever got her message and know about my existence.


In the past, I took some action to find my father. I wrote a mail to the hotel but got no reaction. Last month I tried to get in contact with someone who could help me. I wrote to The Dubrovnik times (could be an interesting story for them) but Mark Thomas is in England. Other actions didn’t help either so far.

Important is of course his name. That’s somewhat of a mess. He never wrote his name, so I know only the pronunciation from my mother: Gojko Smilonic. I couldn’t find anyone with that name, the best existing names who look like that are and Smiljanić or Smilović. If he’s still alive, he must now be in his eighties. I have a hazy photo of him.

It’s already a short timeframe; we’re coming to Dubrovnik on the 29th of September for two weeks (so I have time to travel). I have no idea if this story and project can be any interesting for Total Croatia News. If not, maybe you can help me with a person or organization I can contact who can.


Anyone with any information, please contact me on [email protected] Subject Dubrovnik waiter


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