Tourism Ministry announces possible tender for Kupari facilities

ZAGREB, 20.8.2013.

The Tourism Ministry expects a tender for the Kupari facilities near the southern Croatian town of Dubrovnik to be advertised in September and that by the end of the year an investor will have been selected.

"The text of the tender is in its last phase but before it is advertised, decisions by the relevant bodies recommending how to manage state property need to be made, which requires some more time. We expect the tender to be advertised in September and that by the end of the year we will have selected an investor", the ministry said in response to enquiries.

The ministry added that all the details had been agreed to with the Ministry of Culture and so any conditions regarding conservation would be part of the tender requirements.

According to unofficial information as carried in some media, the investment is estimated to be worth around 200 to 250 million euros.

The ministry further noted that "all serious investors involved in the hotel business are interested in Kupari".

The tender for this complex has been announced several times and the media have been speculating on investors' interest, mentioning the American Hyatt hotel chain, the Valamar Group, which owns the Dubrovnik-Babin Kuk hotel company, the Turkish Rixos, which already owns the Rixos Libertas hotel in Dubrovnik, and Karisma Hotels Adriatic, a company consisting of the Karisma Resort International from Mexico, Croatia's Agrokor, and TUI Travel.

The media have unofficially mentioned interest by investors from Qatar and the USA. In early August, the Azerbaijan Export & Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO) advertised a call on its web site to investors for Kupari.

Asked about the interest by possible investors from Azerbaijan, the Tourism Ministry responded that during a recent visit by Azerbaijan state institutions, Kupari was presented as a possible investment opportunity in Croatia.

Kupari was once an attractive military resort in southern Croatia but for the past 20 years it has been abandoned and has decayed. Once, this complex of five hotels and residential buildings used to record 1.5 million bed nights a year and employed around 400 people. (Hina)