OZB February 2019

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February 2019 | N° 16 | FREE COPY





















Get the Party Started Faces of Romania Cor nel Brad No Pain No Gain T he Skinny on Ski Touring



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Douglas Williams - Editor

Out With the Old


k, so welcome to the OZB show, second series. OZB slept in - a wee hibernation - and missed January (yuk, I hate January) but we’re back for February, fully refreshed and, having pressed a big fat reset button, we are raring to go in 2019, earlier wobbles disappearing in the rear view. Just incase anybody needs an explanation OZB stands for O Zi Buna, the ubiquitous and charming Romanian phrase which wishes a good day upon all and sundry… wait for it... We started off in the summer of ‘17 as a sort of “expat” mag because it made it easy for us to explain but we’ve since morphed into a lifestyle/culture magazine “celebrating the best of modern Romania” that just happens to be in English, the linguistic juggernaut that Romanians have so successfully boarded. Founding partners have gone off to pursue different projects (hence the “season 2” allegory) and I’m grateful to Fulvia and Marcel for having helped to get OZB off the ground. Which leaves little old me in sole control…cue the maniacal laughter... Now I have an exciting, new and talented team for this next incarnation of OZB. I’m confident that this new team will allow us to produce a high quality organ that delivers the best in terms of people, places, things going on, fashion, food, art, music, literature, scintillating stories etc etc that entertain, elucidate and educate. So without further ado introducing Oana Vasiliu, our new editor and one of Bucharest’s brightest, young journo’s with her finger on the pulse and a contact list longer than the network of Romanian highways… ok, actually longer… Then we have the inimitable Codruț Neguț


FOR SALES ENQUIRIES: Paul Gibson 0730 037 755


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artistically directing, Bucharest born and bred but UK trained photographer, artist, film-maker and all round good guy. Alexandru Manda - DJ, bike enthusiast, man about town - is helping us meet the right people, people who we can help and who can help us, seeking out mutual back scratching opportunities, more on those in a jiffy. Paul Gibson is that rarest of creatures a thoroughbred media sales professional and we are grateful that he is moonlighting for OZB while mostly working for such august publications as the Financial Times no less. And last but not least we have Dan the man delivering OZB all around town to the coolest and hippest joints - cafes, bars, restaurants as discerned by our cool and hip team (err, ok, that’s not me…) as well as gyms, schools, hotels… a full list can be found below right. So if you have something going on, if you’ve been somewhere and you’d like to share, if you are someone with a story to tell or know someone whose story needs told, if you have a product, place or service that you think would fit within these pages then get in touch - douglas@ ozb.ro Commercially we are a very efficient way of getting your message in front of your potential customers and clients, drop me an email and we can discuss potential partnerships. Thanks to all those who have contributed not just to this issue but to this project overall - editorially, commercially, legally, accounting-wise and even encouragement-wise too, you know who you are. And that only leaves me to say, enjoy this issue and … O zi bună!






Publisher/Editor-in-Chief douglas@ozb.ro




Commercial Director Layouting and Visual Communication by

You can get a hard copy of OZB magazine at the following distribution points: The American International School of Bucharest, The British School of Bucharest, World Class Gyms (Jolie Ville, Atlantis, Pipera Plaza, The Club, W at Aviatorilor), various Starbucks, 5 Star Hotels, at over 24 carefully selected cafes, restaurants and bars around Bucharest and more than 30 Ursus outlets around the city. If you would like to stock OZB magazine contact us and we'll add you to the list.


Contents Let the Music Play


Cultured Cafes


Enjoy a Tank Beer at Beert


February Events


The Romanian Sushi Story: Ai Sushi Bar


People. Power. Romania.


National Heritage Goes Digital: CEC Palace


Going Green, Going Sustainable


Meet the artsy community: NOD Makerspace


A Stubborn Silence


Art Woven Into History


Going Hell for Leather


Ski Touring: Skiing with Added Mountaineering


Way With Words


Up Down Up

Top image: Disco Sigaretta poster, cropped Front cover: Disco Sigaretta poste W W W.O Z B . R O F E B R U A R Y 2 01 9



All of the artworks have the Pinifarina font in common, following the great Italian car designer Battista “Pinin” Farina

Let the Music Play By Oana Vasiliu

One of the most beautiful quotes that exists, when it comes to the art of entertaining audiences through DJing, refers to the DJ as God, life as a dancefloor, love as the rhythm and you as music. For more than 10 years now, Alexandru Manda and Vlad Matei, more commonly known as Disco Sigaretta, have been packing dancefloors with music lovers. OZB caught up with them between sets recently.

What’s with the Italian nickname?

Disco Sigaretta duo, Vlad Matei and Alexandru Manda.

More than 10 years ago we discovered Italo Disco and due to its revival back then, many international DJs took a fake Italian name. Our name appeared whenever we featured in articles. It was the pre-Facebook period and the links between music fans were basically made on other social platforms like Myspace and blogs. We chose Disco Sigaretta because in the 1980s the Italo disco producers


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Let the Music Play

used English or American names to look like international bands and subsequently get a broader audience and that’s what happened to us. People thought that we were foreign DJs, they came to our gigs, they talked to us in English and we got the “special” treatment. This was one of our marketing tools and it certainly helped, extra especially it helped since the music we were trying to promote wasn’t well known. Currently, Disco Sigaretta is our name for the parties we host in Control Club.

When did you start DJing - and what or who were your early passions and influences?

It was in 1997 that I met my DJ partner Vlad Matei - we were exchanging cassettes and magazines, especially hiphop, and especially materials brought from other countries. We were constantly looking for music and in that period before the internet the joy of discovering a new song on these cassettes was absolutely amazing. A constant influence for us from our hip-hop period was Dj Sleek / Bogman, to name but one. Then, there are a lot of people who became our friends and are similarly constantly preoccupied with mu-


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sic: they were talking about music, writing about music and even making music.

What was your first setup as DJ like? How was it compared to the parties you are invited to now?

At that time, the setup for the DJ was already made, we only needed to bring the music and the headsets. There was a time when we just used our iPhones and headsets at our gigs.

Let's say you have a gig coming up tonight. What does your approach look like – from selecting the material and preparing for opening and then building a set?

We make a profile of the place and of the expected public, that enables us to best create a chemistry between the space, the people and the music. And our gigs are divided into club music and music in bars or private parties, so different events have different musical setups.

Can you describe your state of mind during a DJ set?

At first it was the hype of putting on music mixed with the alcohol of course, but with time we’ve become more focused purely on the music and its effect on people, we’ve also become more aware of the effect of music on us and this helps us when it comes to better understanding the state of mind of our public on the dancefloor.

Why we should attend a Disco Sigaretta DJ set?

In 90% of our shows, Disco Sigaretta means Control Club parties, where you can listen to our music for 8 hours straight, which is basically a journey through several musical genres, but from different periods of time and even different continents. People should be aware that we have special guests from abroad and each DJ comes with a slightly different energy and style and every time we invite them to perform with us we are confident because they are almost always our heroes. Last year we had guests from the United States, Japan, Sweden, Great Britain, Portugal, Germany and in 2019 we expect DJs from Kazakhstan, Italy, Germany, Australia and Russia.• 10

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10 minutes from Bucharest,

HORSE RIDING LESSONS, from beginners to competition level. In English , French or Romanian Comuna Dascalu, DJ 200, Judetul ilfov 44°36'30.0"N 26°14'19.0"E 44.608333, 26.23861 0744 327 437

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☕ /

Cultured Cafes By Ellie Buchdahl & Alexia Koutzis

Bucharestians are spoilt for choice when it comes to hip cafes, joints offering up delicious eggs benedict, sturdy salads, cheese cake, coffees, crafty beers etc. In advance of Valetine’s OZB dips a perfectly pedicured toe in Bucharest’s burgeoning cafe scene and samples a few of the finest in and around the city, some are romantic, some less so, all are beyond decent. Papila - photograph by Cătălin Georgescu

Green Hours


Calea Victoriei 120

Strada Ștefan Mihăileanu 42

Do you like… jazz? Then Green

Inside a beautiful old building

Hours is for you. Performers from the

with high ceilings, chipped wallpa-

fabulous Maria Răducanu to rough-

per, and piles of random magazines,

and-ready student bands play give

Coftale has to be one of our favourite

regular gigs for various amounts of

spots. In the summer, the leafy terrace

lei, held in the steamy cellar bar in the

is the perfect place to cool off; in the

winter or the shady courtyard in sum-

winter, it’s a cosy and comforting nook.

mer around this grand old mansion

The small menu has some serious-

off Calea Victoriei. The food is pretty

ly tasty stuff. The smoked salmon

pedestrian – pizzas, chicken wings,

breakfast comes with poached eggs that

OK-ish salads – but the vibe, the good

pop when you poke them with a fork;

drinks selection, and the low prices

the ‘two ways’ soup (just what it sounds

for such a central spot make it a great

like – two flavours of soup served in

place for a relaxing evening, whether

a kind of ying-yang fashion) is lovely

or not someone’s on stage.•

and thick; and the carrot cake… oh my goodness, the carrot cake… is the best in Bucharest. As well as great coffee, they also have a decent couple of craft beers. The staff give you a very warm welcome. Highly recommended. •

Artichoke coffe-shop exterior


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Cultured Cafes





Vivo Food Fusion Bar

Calea Victoriei 45

Strada D. I. Mendeleev 2

Strada Ion Brezoianu 4

Calea Floreasca 70-72

Super smooth superfood

Great breakfasts, a super selec-

Vivo is a serious contender for

Tucked away from the hubbub

smoothies, excellent coffee, and a

tion of more unusual craft beers, and

of the Old town, you will hear and

the best diner in town – and yes, that

rather lovely, rather unusual location

killer aeropress and V60 coffee – it’s

smell this delight. coming round the

means the best burgers, the best fries

are what make Artichoke worth the

no wonder M60 has made a name

corner. Loud and bustling, as it is

and the best ribs in Bucharest (chal-

visit. There’s a very small menu of

for itself as one of Bucharest’s best

almost always busy. You can have

lenges accepted). The meat is incred-

breakfast-type bits and pieces, but

hipster spots. You might have to jostle

both an extremely cheap eat there

ibly good quality, and if you want

it’s the charm of sipping your cappu

a laptopper for table space, or stake

by ordering (in my opinion) the best

rare, they will genuinely cook it rare.

in the shady alcove next door to the

your claim at Saturday or Sunday

and most generous helping of chips

Oddly enough, they also have some

oldest church in Bucharest that really

brunch time, when the eggs various

in the city, or spend a little more and

of the best (non-ciorba) soup as well,

sticks with you. That, and the friendly

ways, muesli pots and delicious selec-

get your moneys worth in quality! Tip

which comes with addictive cheesy

staff. •

tion of cakes are a big draw for our

great Gin and Tonics, huge selection

croutons. The prices aren’t extortion-

city’s finest beards and beanies. •

served in giant fishbowl style glasses. •

ate, especially considering that you’re getting into Floreasca territory here.•

Manasia Hub

Fabrica de Bere Buna


Dianei 4

Strada Stelea Spătarul 13

Calea Victoriei 91

Strada Polona 40

Strada Dianei 4, Bucharest

Once a rather grungy backstreet

A must for those who like

Just off Piata Rossetti down

The VW minivan parked out

bar and club, Manasia has upped

their beer crafty – as the enormous

front, the jumble-sale furniture, and

an unassuming strada, Dianei 4 is a

its game recently, with a small but

‘CRAFT BEER’ sign plastered on the

of course, Acurela’s signature rainbow

charmingly dilapidated villa set in a

high-quality menu that includes daily

front of the building suggests. This is

umbrellas adorning every corner give

small garden. The higgledy piggledy

specials, soups, bite-size burgers, and

Zaganu’s microbrewery (even though

this cute café a kooky, hippie vibe.

steps up to the entrance presage an

generous platters of zacusca, vinete

Zaganu isn’t exactly micro, being one

On the menu are decent beers, great

interior that turns up the shabby in

and fasole batuta (Romanian bean

of Romania’s best-known craft beers)

teas and coffees, smoothies, shakes,

shabby chic albeit underscored with

hummus). The regular deals on bottles

and all their classic blondes, IPAs,

hot and cold lemonades, cocktails, vin

strong, architecturally elegant tones.

of wine also make this a tempting

darks, reds and browns are on offer

fiert, and spoon-bendingly thick hot

It’s an altogether lovely space and

spot with a lot of character. It’s not

from the taps behind the bar. Perch

chocolates (including with chilli pep-

understandably popular - reserving

your typical romantic dining venue,

by one of the big windows, grab a

pers, berries, and a particularly lethal

is essential. There are quality draft

especially not in the winter, when

glass of one or a flight of three and a

Disarrono version). The food menu is

beers, good wines by the glass and

the concrete interior feels a bit like a

beer-soaking bite of food (nachos, hot-

on the small side, but they have tasty

well presented, if underwhelming

railway tunnel – but it all depends on

dogs, sandwiches, that kind of thing),

soups, quiches and cakes, plus burgers

food. •

your style, I guess. And definitely take

and you’ve got the perfect place to

ordered in from the café Dorobanți


a look in summer, when the quiet,

people-watch over Calea Victoreiei

20 nearby. •

leafy terrace fills up with the young,

and let the effects of the good stuff

hip and beautiful. •

sink in. •

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J'ai Bistrot

Maize Farm to Table

La copac


Calea Grivitei 55

Strada Paris 61A

Strada Pitar Mos 23

Strada Doctor Niculae D. Staicovici

I love surprising friends with this

If your wallet is feeling full and

26 For a more genuine Romanian

little gem, located in a residential area

your stomach empty, spend a little

culinary experience La Copac is my

with a fairly discreet facade. It opens

more and treat yourself, this place


up into a cozy restaurant during the

delivers extremely high quality. The

winter and during the summer, there

interior of the restaurant has been

artisanal Romanian decor. During the

street, so careful not to miss the en-

is a hidden garden at the back, perfect

very tastefully assembled. The open

summer the courtyard is open and set

trance. During the summer there is a

for a Romantic dinner, a big crowd of

plan kitchen reveals a spotless envi-

around a beautiful old tree. On occa-

little garden. The glow of a few fairly

friends or perhaps just an afternoon

ronment for food preparation. The

sion they set up a grill and often there

lights and lanterns in the trees create a

alone swinging in the hammock.

produce is carefully sourced from local

is traditional Romanian live music.

charming intimacy.

The menu is small but I

Romanian farms and I think the high

The interior is intimate with

The service is exceptional,

This quaint little place opens only three times a week. Ota is very well hidden on a residential back

They have just a few dishes and

haven’t been disappointed yet, go for

quality, presentation and skillful hands

there is an old generosity of spirit that

the selection changes every week, at

lunch and the set menu is extremely

in the kitchen contribute to one of the

you don’t experience in most run of

an average of 10 lei per dish this is a

cheap. If you are out late they often

best meals you will have in Bucharest.

the mill restaurants in Bucharest.

real cheap eat. The owner once told

hold great music events. Highly

I can recommend the Wild Sturgeon!

recommended. •

The service is highly profes-

The food portions are ex-

me he runs the restaurant for his plea-

tremely generous, with a huge variety

sure not for financial gain, to cook,

sional and the ambience draws the

and at around twenty five lei for a liter

eat, drink and socialise with people. If

whole experience together. •

of delicious house wine you may need

you stay later than the opening hours

to loosen your belt. •

he often closes the place but let you stay as long as you like. •

Cafe Verona

Alt Shift



Strada Pictor Arthur Verona 13-15

Strada Constantin Mille 4

Strada General Eremia Grigorescu 17

Strada Sfintilor 6

This is by far the most romantic

Scandinavian, industrial style

of choices. Located behind the beau-

interior unexpected in the heart of

Shift. The same menu but a cozier

a few hundred meters from Piata

tiful Carturesti bookshop, the restau-

Bucharest. This is my “go to” for con-

atmosphere in the winter. During the

Rossetti this little gem makes you feel

rant is a sprawling garden. During

sistently excellent food, It rarely disap-

summer you can dine in the beautiful

you might be in Amsterdam or maybe

the summer find a table outside and

points, the portions are huge and the

front garden that swallows you in it’s

Berlin. The best soup and sandwiches

through the winter drudge there is

prices fair, I particularly recommend

magical atmosphere. A bottle of wine

I have had in Bucharest and always

covered space which gives you the

the salads, the schnitzel, the pasta and

and the most sumptuous cheese board

beautifully presented. My recom-

sensation you are still in the beautiful

I could keep going ! Make sure you

you have ever seen are my recommen-

mendation the carrot and ginger

garden. The lighting and calm ambi-

reserve as it’s always packed. •

dations. •

soup ! I must rave about the service,

The sister restaurant of Alt

Down a tumble down street

ence create a unique experience. The

the owners make you feel, you have

menu is not enormous but there are a

entered a party at their house and you

few delights and the wine selection is

are completely in their care. •

very decent. •


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Enjoy a Tank Beer at Beert


here’s a new location in town! Grab your friends and enjoy a fresh unpasteurized tank beer at Beert, located in the Old Town of Bucharest. Beert was born out of the idea to design a place that portrays the concept of traditional draught locations with a more modern approach. Having tanks allplaced around provide the location with a specific mood that fits the picture perfectly. As draught beer has and still is one of the most iconic symbols of friends’ gathering, this new location brings the opportunity to enjoy a fresh cold beer in a place with unique features and designs in the HoReCa market, which creates the finest environment for some memorable moments with friends. The experience with tank beer is not related to exotic flavors or richness of flavor and

taste, but to maximum freshness and clean aromas, free of environmental disturbing influences (sun, temperature, age). What differentiates tank beer from other beers? • • •

It has a very fresh taste, like drinking from the brewery; It’s a premium unpasteurized draught beer; The beer is transported directly from the brewery to the specially engineered tanks in the pub; It has a short shelf life: < 28 days (currently 14 days).

The fresh taste of tank beer comes mainly from two major factors: the brewing age, which is very low, and keeping the beer constantly cold. The fact that this beer is always cold, from production to consumption, is the best thing that can be done for a beer in terms of fresh taste. • Enjoy a Tank Beer at Beert

For more details and reservations, contact Beert at following: Facebook: Beert (@beertpub) Instagram: Beert (beertpub) Address: Sf. Dumitru Street, No. 3, Bucharest, Romania (next to Distrikt)


February Events




• Disney on Ice Reach For The Stars,

• Seeing history (1947-2007),

• Alessandro Safina,

Romexpo, 6-10 February

National Museum of Contemporary Art,

14 February and Sala Palatului Bucharest,

until June 2019

17 February

Sala Polivalenta Cluj Napoca,

How about meeting Mickey Mouse and his friends in an entertaining show? If

For the first time in a 18-year long

Guess who is back in Romania, just on

you are a fan of Frozen, Little Mermaid,

existence, the National Museum of

time to celebrate love? The Italian artist Alessandro Safina will perform twice,

Rapunzel and Beauty and the Beast,

Contemporary Art launches in its

then you must book a place. Both kids

most generous space a long-term

bringing again and again the magic

and adults are expected.

innovative project dedicated to the

of pop-opera genre that made him so

collection: the curatorial discourse


David Duchovny

presents Romanian contemporary art history (1947 – 2007) by giving equal

• David Duchovny,

weight to the documentary and artistic

Sala Radio, 10 February

dimensions, to the production of culture

MNAC National Museum of Contemporary Art

and to the context determining it.

If you ever stayed glued in front of the

Thus, Romania’s contemporary history

tv to see X Files or Californication series,

and art history enter into a dialogue

then it’s definitely a must to attend the

through the systematic display of one

David Duchovny concert, as part of the

of our country’s most eclectic museum

European tour Every Third Thought.


• Erotic Design Fair,

• Tom Odell, Arenele Romane, 16 February

Control Club, 9-10 February Melting hearts and really beautiful Maybe you need some inspiration in

sounds. Both poetic and romantic

the month of love. Romanian design

lyrics, the British contemporary singer

creation for adults only will be available

and pianist Tom Odell will return to

in the Erotic Design Fair. Be prepared

Romania with his latest album and world

for soft-porn shopping.

tour, Jubilee Road. Don’t miss it.

Tom Odell


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February Events

Alessandro Safina




For the best, freshest, tastiest Sushi in Bucharest, visit Sushi2Go in the Strip Mall on Iancu Nicolae, Pipera. Or visit:

www.livrare-sushi.ro to see the full menu and call 0770 902 782 for delivery. Minimum order 100 lei, further conditions apply.

Mention this OZB advert when you order either in person or over the phone and you will get a free soup/drink/Kapa Maki.

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Call Ronen or Mihaela on 0731 49 77 87 for more information

Jan-Mar Promotion Oil & Filters Change from 90 Ron (inc VAT) www.facebook.com/BaramiPremioCarService W W W.O Z B . R O F E B R U A R Y 2 01 9



The Romanian sushi story : Ai Sushi Bar By Oana Vasiliu

Anda Mancas, owner of Ai Sushi Bar, opened up a hip place as she imagined where everyone could enjoy their sushi, but also other types of delicious food, great selection of brews, laid back atmosphere, very friendly and smart staff. How can you bring Japanese synergies to the Romanian market? OZB found out.

Why did you decide to pursue a career in the restaurant business?

Since I was a child, my favourite game was one invented by me and my best friend, it was cold “grocery”. That meant I had a table and a chair on the street and I was selling chewing gum, candies, juices etc. all bought from the shop around the corner and sold with an increased price. Around 8 years old, I’ve continued to sell newspaper to the drivers that were waiting to the traffic light. This was the beginning. Later on, I’ve learned that a business has same principles of management but until the global financial crisis came, I already failed in two businesses, so there was something wrong I was doing and that was the fact that I didn’t enjoyed it. When I was focusing on what I was enjoying, all my thoughts lead to hospitality. I’ve read that luck is the moment when training meets the chance. This is what happened to me.

What are your day-today responsibilities as a restaurant owner and manager?

As in any other business, a manager has to take care of sales, marketing, PR, human resources, acquisitions, administration, finance, legal proceedings and all the bureaucracy. The most pleasant responsibility: when I was spending time with “customers” that were my actual friends or later became ones. The fun part also 18

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involves testing food, drinks, playing music, entertaining myself and the others.

What’s your secret to keeping customers coming in?

Probably being present at Ai every day counts a lot. It counts because I hear all the suggestions, all their inquires, all the complains, I am trying my best to keep the quality the same as the one from day zero, I notice my colleagues and try to improve their skills, I see the atmosphere and change it if something doesn’t feel right, I always listen to people’s advises and when I do something new, I am always trying to get different perspectives. A plus might also be that Ai team haven’t suffered too many changes so my colleagues get connected to everyone, they learn each other's desires, they also become friends with all the people that step in and probably that helps our customers fell like it’s their comfy place.

What are some of the challenges of being a restaurant owner and manager?

Finding the perfect spot for it, “pray" for the owner of the place to accept all your inquires, find a good name, open it with a very low budget etc. When it starts working, new challenges arise: hope that the owner of the place will not kick you The Romanian Sushi Story: Ai Sushi Bar

out or modify the contract or not having to move out courtesy of the legislation, as it already happened to me. But currently my biggest challenge is to keep on doing a good job. Be present, come with new ideas, keep the team, the quality and the atmosphere. •





People. Power. Romania.


ameni. Putere. Romania. (People. Power. Romania) is a photographic archive created by the Romanian photographer Cornel Brad and it portraits the most relevant moments of the Romanian history over the last hundred years. Politics, health, economic, social, cultural, entertainment are the main themes portrayed in the book, where over 100 photographic portraits and texts presents quite accurate the

past one hundred years. The photos are coloured, with texts written in Romanian, French, German and English to understand the stories behind the portraits.


People. Power. Romania.

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Aurică Geneti (b.1963) A worker tortured in the 1987’s anti-communist rebellion in Brașov

Alexandra Parfenie (b.1986) Air traffic controller

Teodor Mărieș (b.1962) Anti-communist civic activist.

Neagu Djuvara (b. 1916 - d. 2018) - Romanian historian, diplomant, philosopher and novelist.


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Alexandra Furnea (b. 1988) Writer and activist. One of the survivors of the Colectiv Nightclub fire that took place in 2015. W W W.O Z B . R O F E B R U A R Y 2 01 9



Cecilia Jugăreanu (b. 1957) investigated and tortured in the 1987’s anti-communist rebellion in Brașov

Emil Constantinescu (b.1939) President of Romania (1996 - 2000)

George Narița (b.1985) "The Strongest Fireman of Romania"

Virgil Măgureanu (b.1941) The first director of the Romanian Intelligence Service (1990-1997).


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Alina Șerban (b. 1986) Film and theatre actress of Roma origin.

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JULY 17, 2018

JULY 25, 2018

AUGUST 15, 2018

bpricope #doepicshots #withgalaxy #cronicaridigitali #romania #promovezromania #turistinbucuresti #romaniapitoreasca #patrimoniu #arhitectura @samsungromania

turismbiz.ro Candelabrele masive din #PalatulCEC au mecanisme cu scripeČ›i pentru ĂŽnlocuirea becurilor Č™i reprezintă elemente de mare valoare artistică ce impresionează prin frumuseČ›ea Č™i eleganČ›a lor. #cronicaridigitali .. ..

ig_romania CONCURS Vrei să faci parte din echipa de instagrammeri care va muta săptămâna viitoare lecČ›iile de istorie ĂŽn online? .. ..

National Heritage Goes Digital: CEC Palace



ne of the most graceful and beautiful buildings in Bucharest, CEC Palace, dates from 1897, where even King Carol I and Queen Elizabeth participated at the construction. The palace, built in eclectic style, ends with a glass and metal cupola. The entrance is crowned by a semicircle, supported by a pair of composite style columns. The four corner volumes, decorated with fronts and socks, are covered with Renaissance style domes. For visiting the interior, special request is required. •



The Digital Chronicles (@CronicariDigitali) project is created by Zaga Brand Agency and the National Heritage Institute. The project aims to bring the values ​​and traditions of Romania to the millennials generation through social media.



AUGUST 14, 2018

JULY 23, 2018


cryscrystian In every corner of the CEC palace there is a piece of history!

robmihh Amazing details

art_hunters There are dark shadows on the earth, but its lights are stronger in the contrast

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♼♼♼ •

National Heritage Goes Digital: CEC Palace




748 likes JULY 18, 2018

onechristina Palatul CEC, în toată splendoarea şi măreția lui. Cadre realizate la #HeritageInstameet, o campanie organizată de @cronicaridigitali, care îşi propune să promoveze în spațiul digital patrimoniul cultural. W W W.O Z B . R O F E B R U A R Y 2 01 9



Going green, going sustainable

you take to promote sustainability?

Responsibility comes for all of us, whether we are at home, at work, on the street or on holiday. As a responsible person, you can take a few simple steps to sort the waste you produce every day, to use natural products, to buy only as much as you need and to dispose less. Waste has become a worldwide concern. Many countries have taken steps to lessen their waste and to stimulate their populations and businesses to pay more attention to the resources they use, regardless of their size. Besides food waste, we have a huge problem with waste in the fashion industry. In recent years, major textile companies have forgotten about sustainability and have begun to release even 2-3 collections each season. This phenomenon only increases the consumption of clothes and therefore diminishes each item’s expectancy.

What factors do you consider when proposing a sustainability initiative?

Andrei Cosuleanu

When it comes to sustainability, there are few people in Romania who can truly lay claim to the title of pioneer. Andrei Cosuleanu, president of Act for Tomorrow, is one of them. OZB took a walk along with him.

How do you define sustainability?

Sustainability is now part of our DNA. Whether it is a country that is governed in a responsible way, or we are talking about a company that is concerned about the sustainability of its business. Sustainability is about understanding the impact of all of our actions and trying to ensure we are responsible and ethical. When we talk about environmental care, health, employee development, customer care, business partners, and even community involvement we are talking about sustainability. If we take the business case, sustainability is a business x-ray. In recent years, business sustainability has become an indicator of the value of a company if it is to be listed on the stock market. Sustainability is a cost that a company must assume in order to be competitive.

What daily steps do 26

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Ond of the most important factors when it comes to sustainability is for a sustainability strategy is in terms of partners. For example, if we are talking about a textile company, it is very important to pay more attention to the raw materials used. Another important factor is how goods and products are transported. Transport has become a real threat to people's health, responsible for over 30% of pollution in major cities in Europe. In this context, a solution is to produce as close as possible to the final consumer. Another thing that we take into account is the health of a company. And here I am referring to how employees are treated in that company, how human rights are respected and how the company encourages employees to be responsible.

Do you think the average consumer really cares about buying a sustainable product?

In recent years, due to the way information circulates, some consumers have become more accountable. And we are talking about two cases - consumers who buy from stores that pay attention to sustainability and consumers who buy fair trade products. Unfortunately, in the past few years, more and more companies have tried to maintain a competitive price but have not mentioned the quality of the products they use. This is a real danger to customers. One example is dairy products Going Green, Going Sustainable

that do not have natural raw material. There are many available substitutes that make the final product taste natural. Unfortunately, such practices are an attack on food safety for consumers and health measures should be tightened to eliminate these practices. We still have a lot to do for consumer empowerment.

Which are the biggest changes that happened in the sustainability field in Romania in 2018?

2018 was the year in which the sustainability directive started to be put into practice. A still small number of companies now understand the importance of such an approach that not only involves the sponsorship and communication departments, but it also acts as an x-ray of all departments and they understand how they should cooperate to ensure the sustainability of their company. Another important step in 2018 was a sustainable development strategy for Romania. Once the Sustainable Development Department of the Romanian Government was set up, it came up with a strategy and an action plan that our country will implement in the coming years. I hope this plan will be in place from 2019 onwards and all the relevant actors will be at the same table. As far as the waste situation in Romania, 2018 marks a new legislation in the field of waste collection. Unfortunately, this new legislation does not yet have enforcement rules, with a blockage in the sector in the first weeks of 2019. An important change of the year was the removal of plastic bags. This was an extremely important step, but now we have to monitor the bags that will replace them.

What is you challenge for 2019?

2019 is definitely full of challenges. I think the greatest one is to encourage people to take responsibility for their actions. Whether we are talking about education or climate change, we must understand that the steps we take must be sustainable. We are waiting for the implementation of a separate waste collection system, so that environmental education can practically take place. Romania has a goal of reaching 50% recycling waste, and for this goal to be reached unprecedented action is needed. • see actfortomorrow.ro for more information


Meet the artsy community: NOD Makerspace Just on the Dambovita shore, in eastern Bucharest, an old industrial building now hosts the most creative hub in the city: Nod Makerspace. The place is a dynamic ecosystem for any creative mind, anyone who thinks business in a creative way - they can find a community in which they can work and thrive.


Work space

Mater Library


od Makerspace works both as a fab lab/makerspace, a co-working space, private studios, and an event space. Members range from all kinds of different professional backdrops - from designers, architects, artists, sculptors, specialists in advertising, branding to programmers, engineers and inventors. Everyone shares know-how and experience with other members and they learn from one another creating a community of strong professionals. Members get firsthand access to the variety of events hosted including conferences, product launches, workshops and fairs. Nod Makerspace creates projects that impact the community. Some of the projects are MATER Library - the first “materials library” in Romania and South Eastern Europe, where you can explore up to 2,000 materials ranging from glass, wood, ceramics, hemp and many more. Another project is Level-Up - a free acceleration programme for makers and entrepreneurs that connects participants, mentors, experts, clients and partners, while also providing the equipment, know-how and physical resources required to launch a successful, ready to scale product. •


see www.nodmakerspace.ro for more information Meet the artsy community: NOD Makerspace

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A Stubborn Silence By Stephen McGrath


inter nights in remote Romanian villages are seldom eventful affairs. Dusk arrives in swift transition and thick plumes of smoke from burning wood consumes the valley of the centuries-old settlement where I live. Many villagers here continue to farm – and even depend on – their small plots of land, and therefore operate using their circadian clocks. As a result, from dusk till dawn the village is silent, dormant save for the cooing and howling of local wildlife. Even the cackles in the local shop-bar are eerily quiet. Being a natural urban-dweller in a remote rural settlement during these long 28

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In 2017 Stephen McGrath bought a rundown farmhouse in Transylvania with his wife and young son. A journalist by trade, McGrath is now learning what it takes to restore a medieval peasant home, and make a life for his family in rural Romania.

frigid periods can be testing, especially when one’s home is not yet equipped with modern features like central heating, a kitchen or even an indoor toilet. This is why we’re staying at the in-laws this winter, just around the corner — four generations living under one roof. In the evenings the matriarch of the family, my wife’s grandmother, busies herself chopping up walnuts and apples which she spent harvest season collecting. Her husband is mostly bedridden now, and condemned to a life of television watching. Adrian, my father-in-law, is a real countryman, a smallholder farmer who knows a lot about many things — in particular how to make hundreds of litres of quaffable wine. This year, his red wine yield was just short of 600 litres. A Stubborn Silence

Elena, my mother-in-law, cooks and looks after the house, and is periodically away working in Austria. My wife, Andreea, who has spent most of her life living in cities, spends her evenings reading thick novels. In the evenings I often sit outside, braving the cold to drink a glass or two of ‘vin de casa’ (house wine) from the most recent batch, and contemplate the year ahead. Rural Romania is a land far-removed from the gender-equal ambitions of Western Europe. People here do, however, appear more content in their traditional roles — no


doubt due to having few options — but perhaps more importantly, when the crunch comes, during the energy-intensive harvests, for example, literally everyone, children included, get stuck in to help bring home the harvest. There is a widely accepted assumption that rural living is naturally healthier than urban living, but this is only partly true. People here generally lead more active lifestyles, but their consumption habits could easily shock the most laid-back of heart consultants. Pork, is all its forms, is eaten almost daily, and drinking a large shot of homemade țuica daily before lunch is viewed in perhaps the same way many urbanites would view a glass of orange juice. As I sit outside, Adrian’s dogs, who live behind the barn to protect the chickens and lambs, have stirred into a frenzied din of barking. This triggers the village’s wider canine population to follow suit, and the silence is temporarily broken, before settling back down to a stubborn silence. I drink my second glass of wine, the temperature hovering around zero, as I consider my day job and think about the next round of work on the house. Adrian emerges from the silence, into the courtyard darkness, to add more firewood to the central heating wood burner. A true rural Romanian experience requires a lot of toil, from the sourcing, collecting and chopping of firewood, to the planting and excavating of potatoes to feeding the animals — most things are just part of a cycle dictated by the seasons, which, naturally, seldom offers any respite. This time of year, before our home is done at least, it’s easy to feel displaced from our natural habitat — the city. But before long, the frost will retreat, frogs will return to the stream, and everything around us will bloom. On a cold night, it's a pleasant thought. •

Stephen McGrath is a Romania-based correspondent. His Work appears regularly in the international press, for publications including The Times, BBC, The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Spectator, New Statesman, Forbes, and others.

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Art Woven Into History


Right: Queen Mary- steel crown- metal & wire culpture with wall metal base, 1.5m diameter

By Oana Vișoiu

arius Hulea is a young contemporary artist born in 1987 in Alba Iulia. He is a sculptor who uses an interesting technique, welding metal wires, to create portraits of historical figures, philosophers, writers and musicians who are well known in Romania and abroad eg. Enescu- the composer and musician and Brancusi, the sculptor. Last year he was entirely focused on the centenary of the reunification of Romania, portraying the personalities from that time including the Romanian Royal family. His current exhibition “Centenart. 8 visions about Romania at 100” is at the Brasov Art Museum( MAB). This is part of a group exhibition exhibiting through till 17 February 2019. Darius is exhibiting two pieces, Queen Mary’s portrait and a statue of King Ferdinand I on his horse.


Above: Ferdinand I King – metal & wire sculpture with metal base, equestrian, 3.5m H

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“Darius manages to capture in his metal sculpture portraits the spirituality and essence of these great thinkers and great rulers of Romania” - says Oana Visoiu- owner of Renaissance Art Gallery. His statue of Mircea Eliade exhibited and sold by Renaissance Art Gallery - was inspired by a 1976 novella by Mircea Eliade, “Youth Without Youth” (Romanian: Tinereţe fără tinereţe), which follows the life of Dominic Matei, an elderly Romanian intellectual, who experiences a cataclysmic event that allows him to live a new life with startling intellectual capacity. In 2007, the novel was adapted into a film by Francis Ford Coppola, also titled Youth Without Youth. • Art Woven Into History



Eliade Imetal sculpture, portrait, 5m H W W W.O Z B . R O F E B R U A R Y 2 01 9



Luoana Virjoghe

Going Hell for Leather By Anda Ene

OZB spoke with Luoana Virjoghe, Romanian designer of fabulous leather clothing. Luona talks about working with leather, about being inspired and what it takes to carry off wearing her art.


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Luoana, why do you do, what you do? How was your way from fine art and sculpture, to fashion designer? How do you come to chose to design and work with leather?

I’ve read something lately and though it might sound like a cliché, I think it is my new motto in life: “Make art to express, not to impress”. I was born creative and my creativity never stops. I wanted to be a sculptor because when I was young I thought sculptors made really grandiose art. I always dreamt of creating something big and special and I considered sculpture the best way to do this. This influenced the way I design my collections they have sculptural lines and shapes, and they reflect my formative years in this art. Leather caught my attention, because it is very versatile. It might be a very rough material but it’s also very delicate, soft, amazing to touch. I am kinesthetic, so I am inspired by the touch Going Hell for Leather

and the texture of leather, it gives me that shivering feeling...

What you find most inspiring around you and where do you look for inspiration? And then, how do you put that inspiration to work, how do you make things concrete? I find my inspiration usually in small daily details that I notice here and there. In the city, this can be a building on the streets, a persona, a flower or an emotion. Scrolling through the internet, I love to research other artists - painters, sculptures and graphic designers - and find out how they put their ideas into practice. Usually, my attention is drawn by a single, small detail from their body of work, this can be a shape, a curved line, a texture or even just a particular mix of colours... I never know what can be until I see it. And then the


magic happens, I take that detail, reinterpret it and create my own design. Another source of inspiration is the material itself. I work generally with silk and leather. I love the transparency of the organza (silk) and the fact that the material allows itself to be shaped in different ways. The shimmering appearance of silk makes it more interesting especially when combined with leather. I love the contrasts: transparent sheerdense, soft-tough and so on.

When you design you objects, do you have in mind a certain allure, a Persona?

When I start to think of the product, I want to make it real but often I don’t know exactly what the end result is going to be, in terms of the final cut. During the process of fabrication, the product might undergo a lot of changes from the initial concept that first appeared in my mind. I keep changing while creating, because what I want to obtain has to be unique and feminine and, at the same time, wearable. I don’t have a persona in my mind, a muse… I am more into the emotions that trigger my designs.

Your collections have the power to amaze, your clothes are made for bold and confident women. In few words,

what story are you telling us?

The clothes I design are indeed bold and I would add, they are statement clothes. They are made for a confident woman, a woman who has the attitude of the conqueror, but who is also sensible and cultivated enough to wear a piece of art and still look natural doing it.

If you were a foreigner visiting Romania or an expat who is just about to leave after a few years' of living here, what are the 3 objects would you choose to take it with you?

It is hard to only pick 3 objects... but for sure my first choice would be a piece of Romanian traditional clothing, especially a Romanian blouse vintage or new piece. Before leaving, I would make sure the visited the whole of Romania for the incredible sights, the amazing well-preserved traditions and the lovely energy. So my other pick would be gathering lots of memories from this beautiful country! •

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Ski Touring: Skiing with Added Mountaineering Ski Touring keeps it real with participants eschewing such soft touches as lifts prefering to literally climb up the mountain with their skis themselves, sometimes on the skis, and then skiing down. Long term advocate and avid ski tourer Christopher Shonn explains his passion for his sport which is rapidly gaining in popularity here in Romania.


y name is Christopher Shonn, I am a 49 year old American Citizen. I come from Akron, New York a small town in Western New York near Buffalo. I have been an athlete since I was very young. As a youth I was passionate about cycling and raced on a national level in the US. I had also spent all my family holidays in the Adorandack Mountains in Upstate New York hiking and skiing. After finishing University in 1993 I left the US and initially worked in as commercial real estate agent in Budapest Hungary. I came to Romania in 1996 to start a real estate agency for Colliers International and eventually became an entrepreneur in the real estate industry in 2000. After a decade of living and working in the fast moving Bucharest I decided to build a holiday home in Bran - that was 2007. The experience can only be likened to that of Peter Mayle’s “A year in Provence”, but the experience brought me back to my childhood of growing up in the countryside and back to my love of mountains and sports. As time has gone by Bran has slowly become home. My business is still mainly in Bucharest, so I travel between Bran and Bucharest. Basically, my modis aparende is when the phone rings I jump in the car and race of to Bucharest for work and when things are quiet I am in the mountains hiking, running, mountain-biking or skiing. In the years since I have lived in Bran I have averaged approximately 60-70 days of skiing per year. Many people, especially in Bucharest, ask me how I manage to ski so much and the answer is that on most days I am practicing my “Ski Touring”. Ski touring is the “original” ski sport. In ski touring you fastens synthetic “skins” to the bottom of your skis and climb up the mountain using a technique 34

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similar to that of classical cross-country skiing. At the top of the mountain/ slope the skins are then removed and the bindings locked-down to allow the skier to descend in the same manner as an alpine skier. The advantage of ski touring is that it can be done anywhere there is snow and a hill. With ski touring you are not reliant on the ski lift schedule. This is how I manage to ski so many days per year. For example I can make a ski tour in Sinaia on Monday morning between 07.00 and 10.00 am and still be in Bucharest for a lunch meeting. I can even make a ski tour on a Friday evening using a lantern with friends and climbing to Cabana Postavaru in Poiana having left Bucharest at 17.00 after a days work. Many people ask me if ski touring is difficult. The answer is that you can make it as difficult as you like. The effort necessary is similar to that of cycling. Both in ski touring and cycling you can either go at a leisurely pace or you can race. I am also regularly asked if the sport is dangerous. At the basic level it caries the same level of risk as alpine skiing and the best place to learn ski touring is on a ski piste. As one gains more experience with ski touring it is normal to begin to try ski touring off-piste where the level of risk depends not only upon your skill level as a skier, but also on your knowledge of the terrain and on the conditions. Generally, ski touring off piste is best done with a guide. Ski touring can also be an excellent form of fitness training and for anyone passionate about skiing, running and cycling it is an excellent cross-over sport. In Romania there are 6-8 ski touring races per year. The best race for a beginner is Postavaru Night, which is a candle light race from the bottom to top of the Poiana Brasov ski resort. The race is held each year on the evening of the last Saturday in March. • Ski Touring: Skiing with Added Mountaineering


For more information I would recommend the following: Tabere si Circuite de Alergare, Schi si MTB www.taberesicircuite.ro for guiding and ski touring camps for beginners in Bucegi Mountains and Poiana Brasov and skiaplinismromania.ro is a portal for general information about ski touring and racing in Romania.



Way With Words

ara Skurtu is an American poet, creative writing coach, and international public speaker based in Bucharest. A two-time U.S. Fulbright grantee and recipient of two Academy of American Poets prizes and a Robert Pinsky Global Fellowship in Poetry, her poems are published internationally and translated into seven languages. Tara is the author of the chapbook Skurtu, Romania and the full poetry collection The Amoeba Game.


Before moving to Romania, Tara worked at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University and taught at Boston University, where she was a lecturer in creative writing and taught composition to incarcerated students through BU’s Prison Education Program. At present, she has a creative and narrative consulting company and leads creativity seminars and creative writing workshops for individuals, small groups, and companies in Bucharest and beyond. •

Dreamt last night I fed you, unknowingly, something you were allergic to. And you were gone, like that. You don’t have even a single allergy, but still. The dream cracked. Cars nose-dived

(from The Amoeba Game)

off snow banks into side streets. Sometimes dreams slip poison, make the living dead then alive again, twirling in an unfamiliar room. It’s hard to say I need you enough. Today I did. Walked into your morning shower fully clothed. All the moments we stop ourselves just because we might feel embarrassed or impractical, or get wet.



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Someone is smoking in the lavatory and one of the flight attendants says shit and she gets on the mic and says whoever this is will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law upon landing while I’m writing I hate ballpoint pens with a ballpoint pen because they don’t spray my period-brown ink all over the white designer jeans of the gorgeous Miami woman to my right—which was how I learned not to write poems in a metal box in the sky with a 1930s Sheaffer fountain pen—and I was the one waiting at the lavatory door when we all smelled the smoke and didn’t know what to do and I’d already been between two bombs at a bombing, so after being ordered Way With Words

back to my seat with a full bladder of wine, I order a whiskey, and this turns the Romanian flight attendant on, who winks and gives me nuts and olives on the house, and by now I know again we aren’t about to explode this time, and swallow my nip and eat my snacks and continue, with this ballpoint pen I hate, working on what will, nineteen days short of two years from now, become a poem, and we land in Bucharest and everyone but me claps in perfect post-communist unison and the smoking man gets away with it.

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Up Down Up By Douglas Williams Avez Rezervare In catering they say that if you can produce fantastic starters and similarly fantastic desserts you don’t need to worry too much about the main course. The thinking is that, as in life, people remember their first impressions and their last, the rest is just filling. That’s in terms of what people eat but something similar is true of the service that people receive. A proper warm greeting and a sincere good-bye go a long way towards a lasting, positive, overall impression sadly both are in short supply in many a Bucharest eaterie. A dining experience in Bucharest is often bookended by that initial “avez rezervare?” - the questioner approaching rapidly and eyeing you with suspicion, “friend or foe”. And this frosty greeting even when the place is patently empty! Much pondering then ensues before the prospective diner is shown to the worst seat in the otherwise empty place! Queries such as “Could we possibly sit there?” are slapped down, “no, aici.” And then there’s that other beauty at the end: “card or cash” usually delivered in a “gotcha” manner - wait staff seemingly take some sort of grim satisfaction in being as gruff as possible with their ultimate task. And woe betide the person who changes his or her mind… It’s a mistake that can easily cost you a further

half hour. I know there are complex and tedious, basically accountancy-related reasons for this query but I’ve been around and it simply doesn’t happen anywhere else so I’m pretty sure it’s circumventable here.

the same. The only downside was the hotel where we stayed - it made Faulty Towers seem like the Mandarin Oriental. The ineptitude was almost as hilarious as the afore-mentioned TV show but I’m not sure my foreign friends would have laughed like we did. Snowshoeing: a lot more accessible, easier and safer than skiing, less challenging on the wallet, allows deep countryside to be accessed in deep snow and gives a good work out. Florin Bana is an excellent guide. Icecubes & Brass

Snowshoeing At the weekend I was lucky enough to go snowshoeing up around Bran/ Magura with some friends. Something I never thought I’d be doing. Loads of snow, cold but not unbearably so, and a long and winding trail through forest and meadows. I was reminded of just how extraordinarily beautiful Romania truly is. Of course I posted pics on Facebook that received envious comments from friends eager to come and experience

Returning to Bucharest I was greeted by scenes of carnage with the streets strewn with trees smashed by the ice but we promptly took a stroll around my go-to museum, the Village Museum, by Herestrau, regardless and it was charming as ever though similarly smashed, trees-wise. Lunch in Europe’s biggest beer hall “Beraria H” was further improved by a brass band - Chef of Life - playing , as they do every Sunday, with some aplomb. Sausages, beer and brass, what a perfect Sunday. Just in the off chance you haven’t been yet, the “new” section of the museum displays some traditional Romanian properties that are heart-stoppingly gorgeous. • DW


Commercial law | Immigration law


Commercial law | Immigration law.


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Up Down Up

Real Estate Brokers We are looking for

contact Damian Galivn

damian.galvin@whitemountain.ro 0727 606 074 W W W.O Z B . R O F E B R U A R Y 2 01 9



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