As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, Hotel Emotheo, the very first boutique Imotski heritage hotel, will open in the very centre of Imotski, and it is project in which local entrepreneurs, the company J.P. Immobilien, have been heavily involved.
The investor comes from the construction and real estate business, and after participating in the development and construction of a number of hotel projects, four years ago they decided to open their own hotel, in their hometown, to which they wanted to pay respect. They also wanted to stay in line with and respect Imotski’s cultural heritage that, in addition to modern approach, will be the main basis of design and service at Emotheo.
The very first Imotski heritage hotel will boast twenty beautiful designed rooms and two suites, a bar and a restaurant, and the plan is to be open all year round and attract guests with higher paying power from all over the world, but also to be a ”living room” of sorts for the local population and a place to host gatherings and smaller events.
“Four years ago, we decided to buy the derelict building which stands here, where 100 years ago there was a lodging house with an inn, we hired experts to come in and help us develop the story and get things started. The purchase took time because there were several owners involved, we spent a year clearing the land, which is in a demanding zone, the conservators also had work to do, and now we’re bringing those works to an end, and interiors are being arranged in order to have a soft opening sometime before Christmas.
The first goal was to reach three stars in terms of categorisation, but in cooperation with consultant Zoran Pejovic, we decided to raise the bar to four stars and develop a middle scale product that we’ll then direct towards the upscale segment, primarily through the gastronomic offer and personalisation,” explained Davor Pojatina, the co-founder of J.P. Immobilien.
Natural materials were used in the building itself and the facility was designed by Ante Niksa Bilic, who also hails from Imotski, and the hotel director Domagoj Nikolic is also from there, who is otherwise a tourism expert with extensive experience here in Croatia and abroad. He will come to Emotheo from his position as a lecturer at the American college RIT (Rochester Institute of Technology) down in Dubrovnik. Along with numerous interests in the tourism sector, Nikolic’s passion is history and storytelling, which is why he was the right choice for the first Imotski heritage hotel, according to the investors.
The development of the wine-food concept will be headed by young award-winning chef Roko Nikolic, also from Imotski, who is moving there from Rovinj’s Blu restaurant. After studying at the prestigious Italian Gastro Academy Alma near Parma, he started his hotel career at the Hilton Imperial Hotel in Dubrovnik.
The ultimate gastronomic experience will be the focus of this hotel, and it will combine the complex heritage of the wider region with the reinterpretation of traditional Dalmatian cuisine. This will be accompanied by a bar offering everything from local and international liquors and wines to signature cocktails, all in line with the story and concept.
A combination of tradition and technology
“Our guests will experience our authentic culture, but also feel the influence of all other cultures and influences that have merged there, and this is a story that will permeate all parts of the hotel. Our focus will primarily be placed on providing very good service and the presentation of a combination of tradition, knowledge and technology, and our plan is to attract guests who are looking for a unique product like this either through personalised tours or on an individual basis.
We’re planning to cooperate with leading DMCs (destination management companies) that address the “upscale” audience, as well as with large booking agencies that also have these experiential offers. We also plan to introduce ourselves to people from here and the local population, honour them and invite them to come and hang out with us,” stated Domagoj Nikolic.
Both the management and the investor point out that this is not exclusively a business investment, but rather an emotional dedication to their home.
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