Opatija (Italian: Abbazía) is a town in Croatia. Located at the foot of the mountain and nature park Učka, Opatija offers an excellent choice for vacation in summer and winter. Beautiful nature, parks, old Austro-Hungarian villas, promenades and beaches have been attracting tourists from Europe and the world for 160 years. Opatija is the leading tourist destination in the Republic of Croatia for the organization of congresses, seminars and conferences. Through festivals, concerts, exhibitions and other cultural and sporting events, Opatija offers cultural and entertainment facilities throughout the year.

Opatija is located on the eastern coast of the Istrian peninsula, and lies at the foot of Mount Učka. It is the largest city and the center of the Liburnian area, which stretches from Plomin, along the coast and the mountain massif of Učka and Ćićarija to Rupa and Kastav.

Opatija is a tourist town, picturesque in appearance. With its tradition and appearance, it stands out from other tourist cities because its, albeit short-lived history is very vivid.

Opatija's climate is sub-Mediterranean, which means that it is not like in Dalmatia, but the temperatures are slightly lower, and there is more rainfall and cloudy days a year than in the southern parts of the Adriatic.



Church of St. Jacob
Villa Angiolina (1844)
Opatija park
Grand Hotel Kvarner (1884) - the first modern hotel on the Croatian Adriatic coast
Villa Amalia (1890)
Art pavilion "Juraj Šporer"
Fontana - Helios and Selena - the work of sculptor Hans Rathautsky (1889)
The Girl with the Seagull - the work of sculptor Zvonko Car, set by the sea in 1956.
Madonna (1891)
Church of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Hotel Imperial (1885)
Summer stage
American Gardens Opatija

In Opatija, the first eight stars were placed on the Slatina promenade. Opatija accepted the idea, which Zagreb rejected, to make famous stars on the famous Slatina promenade, which was opposed by many citizens of Opatija, considering it a bad copy that does not show Opatija's specificity on which to build tourism. Dr. Amir Muzur, the mayor of Opatija, accepted and signed a contract in which he supports the creation of these stars. One local singer gave away his star for his 34th birthday. His name is Drazen Turina Shajeta. On March 18, celebrity stars were discovered. This discovery awaited many people with great curiosity. One of them was the poet Dragutin Tadijanović, who also had his own star.

The stars were awarded to: Ivo Robić, Janica Kostelić, Dražen Petrović, Krešimir Ćosić, Oliver Dragojević, Miroslav Krleža, Dragutin Tadijanović, Miroslav Radman and Nikola Tesla. , scientific, artistic and other work.

The project has experienced numerous criticisms and controversies, and so far has not fulfilled the basic clauses written in the contract.



In any case, "old" in Opatija terminology means the pre-tourist era, ie Opatija before 1884 and a series of plastic surgeries directed by the Southern Railway Society (Südbahngesellschaft). Just as the old reasoning of local fishermen, sailors and weavers languished, so did their cottages disintegrate at the expense of this new tourist logic - either left to General Director Friedrich Schüler, or transformed under the same owners into catering barracks.

Pre-tourist Opatija
Getting along with the "old" Opatija means immersing yourself in a street grid that is significantly different from today's. If we wanted to take a walk along the pre-tourist main street today, a series of surprises would await us. The northernmost part of the "ancient Marshal Tito Street" had the same course as today: from Škrbić to the Market Square, time touched people and buildings, but not the street. However, you should further step into the infamous side quarter of Radnička cesta, winding from Mrkat to the hill, pass between Barić and Riječka banka and descend to Ribarski trg (Piazza vecchia) behind today's photo shop Luigi. Fish, fruits and vegetables were sold here long before the Market of our time was built. Squeezed between the villas Dalibor (with the office of the "Society of Saints Cyril and Methodius for Istria" and the apartment of Victor Emperor Emin) and Ertl (later, by the owner of the bakery, Rosenberger) on one side, and Ježica on the other, the old main street in the port rose to a square called Stendardo, by the flag they would hang here on the feast. There, at the intersection with today's St. Florian, until a couple of decades ago, the people of Učka sold wood and coal from burnt donkeys. Going down Ulica sv. Florijana, the old main street would take us further, to the Palme Hotel: here we return to M. Tito and to the main street of today's Opatija. But already under the Paris cafe we ​​have to turn again, into the narrow Tesla street. Here awaits us the clumsy megalomaniac construction of the villa Rudovits (alias Schanzer), the chapel of St. Cosmas, Dawn and the remains of the remains of the once famous Opatija cinema. There, in front of Zora, on the ex-highway there is a staircase (squeezed between house numbers 118 and 120 in Ulica m. Tita) which on the other side of today's main street continues in the gap between Villa Devana and Hotel Atlantik: it was the junction of the church of Sv. Jakov with the street network of old Opatija. Following the logic of the old highway, however, we would continue further, The Stairs of Theodore Billroth and Edita Stern (today on that road we intersect Dobrila Street and Nova Road), all the way to Vrutki Street.

The second artery of Opatija, the junction of two still living streets today - E. Kumičića and Vrutki, was the longest road continuity, intersected only in our century built New Road (1908). The shortcut that connected the diverging streams (E. Kumičić-Vrutki and the lower street - "pra-M. Tita") after the bifurcation near the market, was today's Ulica sv. Florian (ex M. Gorky).

The houses of old Opatija were not only grouped around these roads, but partly followed the ancient logic of fleeing the coast, which exposes them to many dangers. An extremely large group of houses thus formed Jelenkino or Jelenkina Vas, an independent settlement located at that time, located around the northern part of today's B. Želea Street with a continuation towards Put u Bregi and E. Bošnjaka Street. Here, about 25% of Opatija's houses were concentrated on a relatively small area - in the place furthest from the church of Sv. Jakov, and the importance of the "settlement" was certainly given by the tavern of Matija Dujmić at number 88.

Of course, despite all the interventions that tourism has imposed on the city, some facades from the older era have withstood the test of time, often facing the narrower foreign sea, as prescribed by the rules of protection from the pirate eye. Although many houses, marked on the only pre-tourist cadastral plan (1820), have disappeared, such as, for example, houses on the site of today's fountain in Slatina, or Paskvale Jačić's house in front of the main entrance to the Imperial Hotel, or Jurković Suc's house on the site of a concrete swimming pool. villa Amalia, many have remained in place, surviving abundant reconstructions and expansions. Such is the house at M. Tita 78 (Maxi-bar), the whole core around Vrutka 23-27 (perhaps the oldest residential core of Opatija in general, where the first colonists from the Giusti family settled, near the Vrutki stream and on the edge of church lands) , or a house at Teslina 4. The Vrutki 15 house, next to the Šikićs' house above the parking lot at Tržnica, has preserved an extremely rare "meeting" for Opatija (entrance covered platform), and Sv. Florijana 12, where the poet Zoran Kompanjet was born and where the poet Marija Trinajstić lives, behind thick walls and under a low ceiling still has a kitchen "hood" (air outlet) over an antique stove.

Take a walk through the "old" Opatija of Vrutka, Jelenkina Vas, Strojbarić, Križišće and Sv. Florian, means to inhale the smell of lunches, listen to family quarrels and peek into the everyday life of the descendants of those who could not build Opatija, but have always maintained it with their blisters as a gift of a rare plant in their own garden.