Croatian Gov. Waits For Pandemic & Recession to Lure Golf Investors

Total Croatia News

April 8, 2020 — A golf course, villas and a hotel next to Prokljansko Lake have been a dream for over 15 years, outlasting several economic booms and two potential investors. The Croatian government waited instead until a global pandemic collapsed the tourism industry and caused a painful recession to attract investors, according to Jutarnji List.

A binding tender for the long-awaited project “Prukljan in Skradin” opened on April 1, (with little irony). It offered interested investors 54 hectares of land for sale, and an additional 150 hectares in a concession to realize the €300 million project.

The Ministry of State Property announced a non-binding tender for Prukljan in March 2018, answered by two investment funds, one from Germany and one based in the Netherlands.

The Ministry announced at the time that a binding tender, given the interest of investors, should be announced as soon as possible The whole matter was extended so the state’s bureaucracies and administrative obstacles disappeared. Two years later…

Croatia’s on-again, off-again relationship with the luxury tourism market — especially golf — has been a hobby horse for Total Croatia News. The list of 30 – yes, 30 – proposed and unrealized golf projects has been languishing for seven years. Then, a pandemic hit.

“Better now than never,” Skradin’s Mayor Antonijo Brajkovic told Jutarnji when asked if timing was aggravating.

“Look, certainly other circumstances would be better for the realization of the project,” he reportedly said. “If it is well-conceived, prepared, and the money is secured for it, then I do not see why investors would not respond.”

Brajkovic didn’t know why it took two years between announcing a non-binding and binding tender. The project originated during former Mayor Nediljko Dujic term in 2006, and was the put on hold until 2018. It was included in the catalog of state investment projects.

According to the tender, the investor will buy 30 hectares of land within tourist zones to build a hotel complex with a maximum of 1,500 beds. Another 136 hectares of land will be included in a concession for the investor, slated to become an 18-hole golf course. An additional 24 hectares are also for sale for the construction of tourist villas.

In addition, the project also envisages a concession over the maritime domain and the construction of a nautical tourism port, as well as the construction of two beaches for hotel guests.

The deadline for completion of the construction of the project is five years from the signing of the contract, within which the investor must obtain all necessary permits and start construction.


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