The weekend needs to be a moment of pure relax for me, but often, if I decide to stay home, I end up working all day long and my house becomes a prison, so the best thing is to plan a weekend away.
May is the best period for a little escape and I’m lucky enough to live just an hour away from the Croatian coast, so naturally that’s where I’m heading!
This time the compass pointed to Rovigno, a wonderful town on the Croatian coast. Here you can really taste history; the old town, filled with hidden corners is developed on an isthmus with cobbled roads and old houses that have been perfectly restored! The small shops of local artisans alternate with tiny restaurants and the smell of sea salt fills your spirit and your body.
But I’ll dedicate a separate article to Rovigno because there’s so much to say about it, and today I’ll just talk about the hotel where I stayed, filling up on cuddles and being spoilt for the weekend.
I get to Rovigno in a heartbeat! The streets at this time of year are free from traffic, making the trip much more pleasant!
As I step into the hotel I notice a huge glass window from which you can admire the wonderful location: a natural bay that opens up on the edge of the Zlani rt park, the first protected area in Istria (1948): 52,4 hectares in which wood and exotic plants – planted by man – alternate. Towards the end of the 19th century the count Johann Georg Hutterott started fixing up this park, with the desire to create a climatic heaven Cap Aureo.
I also see a wonderful clear blue sea, surrounded by the dark green of the pine trees of the Park, a perfect combination of colours.
In the hall, two elegant chandeliers and the natural beauty of the marble and the wood make the environment rich and beautiful.
I see a young woman heading towards me, and she’s in perfect harmony with this magnificent place: Lovorka Androsic, a beautiful tall woman that I soon discover to be the hotel manager!
I stop to talk with Lovorka because I want to know all about this wonderful place!
She is polite and enthusiastic about her job, so we start talking about the place as she greets me on the terrace of the hotel with a cup of coffee.
She tells me a little about the Monte Mulini projects – that in 2009 became the first Luxury Boutique Hotel in Croatia – and about its evolution, comparing it to a fascinating man in his fifties, with a strong fascinating personality. Her ideal of the perfect man!
I must say that Lovorka is right, because after exploring the different areas of the hotel, I share her idea … and we’ll soon be competing for the same man because I really like this place!
Its swimming pools face the sea, and you can sip a lovely cocktail as you sit by the edge of the pool or, in the summer heat, directly on benches in the water! J
For those who love the sea and for the younger guests, there’s a wonderful private beach with the best comforts, the Monte Mulini Beach Club will spoil you more than you grandma did when you where little children.
The hostess’ are there to help, the beach is supplied with towels, sunbeds and umbrellas, and in the evening the bar turns into a great place for DJ set parties!
Between the trees and the beach there are a few green lawns, where you can sit and eat your “PicMMnic”, and to be extremely romantic you can order a personal meal and eat it in the shade of a pine tree, comfortably sitting on a cover!
But the surprises don’t end here!
As I walk around I realise that you can rent a bicycle and in a split second I’m on a bike and off to discover the area; but as usual I misjudge distances. First I head to the centre of Rovigno (3 minutes by bicycle and 12 on foot), but not satisfied, I go off to explore the Natural Park to see how large it is and … I still haven’t seen it all!
And so, tired and hungry, I head back to base where a meal is waiting for me at the Wine Vaut, but that is a story for another time!
So be a little patient because in a few days there will be another article in the “food” section, dedicated to this magnificent experience!
Ph. Andrea Zangrando