The invisible force field that draws the sleek & chic to Hvar Town, has left the rest of Hvar Island in delightful semi-obscurity. A recent article in the Toronto Star discusses the village of Humac on Hvar Island, reached by a scary mountain road weaving precariously over the cliffs. Fortunately, the article inaccurately describes this road as “the main thoroughfare on this 68-kilometre-long island”. No. The main thoroughfare is a modern, inland road that connects Hvar Town, Stari Grad and Jelsa. I suppose that if you’re living in Humac though, that mountain road counts as a thoroughfare.
I could also quibble with the remark that “this island remains much like it was decades ago.” That would be true for every place but Hvar Town. It remains a stunning architectural showcase but, in the ten years that I’ve been visiting the place, I’ve seen the hills behind Hvar harbour grow new buildings faster than mushrooms after a rainstorm.
But these are minor details in an otherwise good overview of Hvar Island. I wouldn’t expect the world to come rushing to Humac’s door, but I like the mention of Hvar’s excellent hotels such as the Riva Harbour Hotel and the deluxe Adriana with its rooftop patio, swimming pool and spa. I always thought that the Palace Hotel deserved some attention and I’m glad to note that it’s being renovated.
The article also mentions that local “farmers, winemakers and fishermen” have joined together to form the “Best of Hvar Club”, ensuring that 50% of the produce served in the above hotels comes from Hvar Island. Good for them!
The people of Hvar have shown impressive solidarity. I wonder if the “Best of Hvar Club” local produce partnership has been successful because part of the Suncani Hotel chain (which owns most of Hvar hotels) is owned by Hvar Town. Local pressure forced the government to assign a percentage of Suncani Hotels to Hvar when it was privatised. Other Croatian townships are trying to follow the example of Hvar but it’s a highly contentious issue. The problem that Hvar and many other Croatian resorts have is that the local hotel company is a major employer. Among other things, they want these companies to give their kids good jobs and not just low-wage seasonal work.
See the Toronto Star article
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