{ evolution }

 

Croatian hotels have undergone a fascinating evolution over the years, reflecting not only the shifting landscape of tourism but also the socio-political dynamics that have marked the nation’s history. From the communal vibrancy of the Yugoslav era to the adaptive role of hotels during times of conflict, and finally to the contemporary emphasis on individualism, these venues have borne witness to a broader societal shift. As we navigate the present and future of hospitality, it is crucial to appreciate the nuanced history that has shaped the very environments we engage with.
In earlier times, common spaces played a pivotal role as vital meeting points, fostering cultural exchange and social cohesion. The contemporary trend leans towards private and personalized experiences, with common areas taking a backseat to larger, more secluded rooms. There is a discernible decline in distinctive and integrated art within these spaces, reflecting a departure from the aim of synthesizing art and design. The concessioning of formerly open beaches, where the presence of rented sundecks creates an unwelcoming atmosphere for the public, further emphasizes the evolving seclusion in the modern hospitality landscape. Furniture and equipment, once designed and produced domestically to reflect a self-sustaining industrial prowess, are now predominantly imported. This results in a homogenized aesthetic characterized by neutral tones, particularly an overwhelming prevalence of beige.
This research delves into the transformation of hotels along the Adriatic coast from the 1960s to the present, examining integration of architecture and nature, proportions and designs of common spaces, incorporation of art, and utilization of beaches and outdoor amenities by both locals and tourists. The goal is to explore how societal dynamics and values have continually shaped the evolution of the spaces we inhabit, and use these insights as valuable resources for conceptualizing and promoting initiatives that redefine luxury. By learning from the past, can we offer solutions for a more inclusive future, providing lessons in commoning and offering antidotes to touristification and individualization?

 

Nera Jelaska