Page 1

ISSN 2459-8305






e i r a M e é Ren phano Ste





Financing the Expansion of Global Healthcare

Issue 2 • September 2017 • Year I

Marketing in Health Tou


The New Face of Wellness

There is Only One


ISSN 2459-8305

TOP 5 Medical Tourism Destinations Luxurious Spa Treatments p. 112

Rest, Relax, Restore and Repeat p.108

Choose Croatia Airlines for your business and leisure travels! Croatia Airlines, the Croatian flag carrier, is a mid-sized European airline in constant growth. In its 28 year existence, it has connected Croatian cities with the most important European centres and, through them, the entire World. In Croatia, the airline has flights to Zagreb, Bol, Dubrovnik, Osijek, Pula, Split and Zadar. The utmost attention is paid to the confidence and satisfaction of passengers, which is why the company constantly works on improving and developing the quality of its services. On all flights passengers are offered food and beverages free of charge which vary depending on the class of travel, the flight duration and the part of the day. Recently, Croatia Airlines has introduced a FlyEasy fare class which brings you more convenience during your travel with no checked-in luggage. Special attention is paid to the maintenance of aircraft both within their own fleet and also for the third parties. This is an additional guarantee of safety, one of Croatia Airlines’ most important business segments. During last summer season, Croatia Airlines has flyed to 39 destinations in 24 European countries. This is the second consecutive year in which Croatia Airlines expands its network with four international routes. Croatia Airlines has offered flights to three new destinations - Stockholm, Helsinki and Oslo. Also the airline introduced direct international flights between Zagreb and Bucharest. Last year also the company introduced direct flights from Zagreb to Lisbon, Milan, Prague and St. Petersburg. Thus, within a period of 365 days, Croatia Airlines' passengers have been offered as many as eight new international routes. This way the company provides strong support to the development of Croatian tourism and the overall business sector. More information about the company is available at the website

Easy to your desired destination!

Fly with Croatia Airlines to magnificent Croatian cities of Zagreb, Dubrovnik, Split, Zadar and Pula. Our modern fleet, professional staff and quality service guarantee your satisfaction. Visit our website, check our offers and buy your ticket. 072 500 505

+385 1 6676 555 _ m.

My airline.

Issue 2 • September 2017 • Year I ISSN 2459-8305

F coree py

Issue 2 • september 2017 • year I



w IntervIe

Renée-phManaroie Ste




ZaGreB - centre oF MeDIcaL eXceLLence

Financing the Expansion of Global Healthcare

Issue 2 • September 2017 • Year I

Marketing Health Tou in


The New Face of Wellness

There is Only One


IssN 2459-8305

TOP 5 Medical Tourism Destinations Luxurious Spa Treatments p. 112

Rest, Relax, Restore and Repeat p.108

Contents 22

ISSN 2459-8305 PUBLISHER Nativa Media Ltd. Roginina 6, 10 000 Zagreb, Croatia T: + 385 (0) 1 7701 390 Email: EDITORIAL BOARD EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Andrea Šitum EXECUTIVE EDITOR Marijana Matković EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Viktorija Antolković ART DIRECTOR Filip Dinstl GRAPHIC DESIGN Atlantis, Zagreb TECHNICAL SUPPORT Story Editor, editorial system TRANSLATION Dialogo, Zagreb PHOTO COPYRIGHT Depositphotos PRINT Kerschoffset Zagreb Ltd.


14 Interview Renée-Marie Stephano


40 Shaping the Future of European Health Tourism

52 Financing the Expansion of Global Healthcare

HTI Event Coordination Centre ETATMED Ltd. Strojarska cesta 20, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia M: +385 (0) 91 2381 823 P: +385 (0) 1 5533 705 Email: © 2017 HTI NEWS. All rights reserved. Copying in any form, renting, making public in any form, including on the Internet, as well as modifying in any way, any part or the entire publication is not allowed without a writen consent of the rights holder.


61 Marketing in Health Tourism 80 Take Your Brand to the Next Level


22 Centre of Medical Excellence 24 Zagreb is a Human-Sized City 28 Technology and Innovations in Focus

32 5 Stars for Luxury and Quality Service

36 In a Healing Embrace of the Surrounding Area


42 Croatia – Discover the Source of Health and Pleasure

54 Kvarner – Healing Garden of Europe

70 Krapinske Toplice LUXURY

102 Tailor-made Luxury WELLNESS & SPA

90 Historical Thermal Towns

105 The New Face of Wellness 108 Rest, Relax, Restore and Repeat


114 From the Kitchen to the Stars 118 Nutritionism in Tourism 120 Mediterranean Diet


“The two approaches, western healthcare and holistic wellness, are increasingly complementary and synergic in the resulting added value for clients and new businesses� Paolo Moreira, PhD p. 52




42 28




ear readers, Beneath Mount Medvednica, embraced by the gentle Sava River, lies Zagreb – the capital of Croatia. We have talked to MSc Martina Bienenfeld, Director of Zagreb Tourist Board, who says that Zagreb has always been and remains to be a city tailored to every man’s taste – its citizens, as well as every tourist who visits it. The city’s beauty, charm and history permeate the streets of Upper Town and these, together with a rich tourist offer, have always been the reason why Zagreb is so popular among tourists. However, the real growth in the area of tourism has been recorded especially in the past few years. In addition, Zagreb is becoming increasingly popular as a health tourism destination. Top notch technological solutions in medicine, high end experts and innovative treatment methods make Zagreb one of the most prominent centres of medical excellence in Europe, while good road and air traffic connections contribute to its reputation as a health tourism destination well worth paying attention to. If we also include the offer of Zagreb’s five-star hotels, rich gastronomy and the city’s surroundings in which there are some high-

Read HTI News Magazine Online!

ISSN 2459-8305

Issue 1 • February 2017 • year I croaTIa – european GeM oF HealTH TourIsM IssN 2459-8305 8

quality medical facilities and spa centres, as well as the vicinity of the Adriatic Sea – it becomes clear why Zagreb’s health tourism potential has been recognized. Besides Zagreb, the story of which is covered in our special feature, our latest edition brings you a story about Croatia – the country that is ranked at the very top of the UNESCO list for its richness of water resources, and for its beauty and tourist offer stands out as one of the „must-see“ summer vacation destinations. However, Croatia is on its way to becoming a holiday destination all year round, mainly due to health tourism. We reveal the latest trends in the wellness industry, and bring you a few interesting interviews with the leading experts in health tourism industry - Renée-Marie Stephano, President and Co-Founder of the Medical Tourism Association, Zdeslav Radovčić, Director of HTI Conference and Paolo Moreira, Editor-in-Chief of International Journal of Healthcare Managment and expert in international health marketing and communication. We hope you will enjoy the September issue of HTI News Magazine.




Medical Tourism & Global Trends


Issue 1• Februar y 2017

Special Edition HTI ConferenCe 2017

Health Tourism

In CroaTIa

TOP 6 Luxury & Spa Hotel s Luxurious Spa Treatmen ts p. 100

Tastes of Istria p. 110

• Year I

From the

K itchen to the Michelin


Historical Thermal Towns


Zdeslav Radovcic

F co ree py

Feel at home in World Business Class Relax and enjoy your private space. With a full-flat bed seat and meals prepared by top chefs, the new World Business Class makes you feel at home -

Royal Dutch Airlines

News & Trends

HEALTH TOURISM News & Trends The Best Place to Visit in Europe Photo: J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Zagreb made the top of the hotlist of European destinations you need to see in 2017. According to Lonely Planet, the world’s largest travel guide publisher, Croatia’s capital is both cosmopolitan and edgy, but often overlooked by visitors in favour of the extensive Croatian coastline. “Zagreb has a dynamic cultural offering, a blossoming food and craft beer scene, and with the opening of Zagreb’s long-awaited airport terminal, along with a host of new flight routes, it’s never been easier or cheaper to reach the Croatian capital”, states Lonely Planet.

New Sauna Trends Not a fan of sweating in a hot box? For centuries, sauna has been a part of culture and a way of life in Northern, Central and Eastern Europe, but the future brings reimagining of the sauna experience. The new trends now include theatrical Sauna Aufguss events, with trained sauna-meisters using elaborate towel rituals to circulate scent infused air, humidity and heat, extravagant theatre-like performances and remarkable architecture and design of 21-century saunas. One thing is certain - sweating will get more spectacular, so jump in on that bloodpumping detox experience!

Telemedicine – Medicine of the Future

Communication services have facilitated remote healthcare services – in the case of medical tourism, when doctor and patient are in different countries, telemedicine can bridge the distance and facilitate the monitoring of recovery. However, telemedicine has numerous advantages at home as well, primarily when it comes to remote monitoring of chronic patients. In people with diabetes, a monitoring device connected with the hospital enables a doctor to monitor a patient’s condition in real time. Based on the information on body weight and insulin level, the algorithm calculates the necessary dose of insulin to maintain safe glucose levels.

Eva LaRue Delighted with Croatia Former CSI: Miami star and luxury travel blogger Eva LaRue has been in Croatia promoting the Group of Unique Luxury Hotels at Croatian Chamber of Economy - Stories, Croatian Unique Hotels. In March, Eva became the ambassador of the new brand and spent two weeks in July travelling the Croatian coast. Together with her daughter, she visited Split, Dubrovnik, Zadar and the islands of Hvar, Korčula, Šipan and Šolta, which was enough for her to declare Croatia her No.1 European destination. She shared her experiences on Instagram and Twitter profiles, as well as on the One Planet blog.


News & Trends



In a world where there is no escape from noisy digital connection, wellness destinations and spas offer a new focus on silence. Recent studies show that noise and 24/7 availability hurt our focus and sleep, as well as increase stress, anxiety and depression levels. The launch of “silence spas” and “wellness monasteries” provides an answer to the desperate need for actual silence, quiet contemplation and savoring the natural peace. This on-the-rise wellness and spa trend, often accompanied by the practice of silent eating, has a potential to become one of the lone cultural spaces dedicated to silence, nature, digital detox and unplugged human thought.

Getting ready for your next health tourism conference? Apart from staying on top of the newest trends in health tourism industry, these conferences also represent a great opportunity for networking. According to the poll carried out by Harvard Business Review, 95% of participants believe that faceto-face meetings are the key to success in building long-term relationships and 89% agreed face-toface meetings are essential to sealing the deal. The best place for networking in health tourism industry in USA is at the World Medical Tourism Congress, which is held this year in L.A. on October 2-4, and the best place for health tourism networking in Europe is at the HTI Conference, which will be held in Zagreb from 1 to 3 March 2018. See you there!


As Croatia is becoming an increasingly attractive health tourism destination, Croatian National Tourist Board recently has launched a special subpage Health & Wellness dedicated to health tourism on its official website In that way, a wide offer of Croatian wellness, spa and medical tourism service providers is presented at one place, enabling a unique promotion of included service providers. They are divided into 10 tourist regions according to the activities and services they offer, with subject information available in six languages.


For the second year in a row, the Croatian region of Istria has been named the best olive growing region in the world according to the Flos Olei Guide for 2017. The renowned Flos Olei, the world’s leading magazine for extra virgin olive oils, has included as many as 61 Istrian olive growers in its latest guide - Olea B.B., Belci, Ipša, Stancija Meneghetti, Zigante, Tonin, Basiaco and Chiavalon.


Take a deep breath, close your eyes and relax in Crvena Luka

Relax and unwind in the hands of professionals in our Wellness & Spa Centre Energy Clinic and treat yourself and your loved ones to unforgettable moments with a variety of massages and treatments. Enjoy our unique ambience, modern interior and breath-taking natural surroundings.

Crvena Luka Hotel & Resort is a unique blend of rich natural surroundings and modern design set in an exclusive location, surrounded by century-old pine forests and a one-ofa-kind sandy beach. |

See you soon...



MEDICAL TOURISM INDUSTRY Renée-Marie Stephano, JD, President and Co-Founder of Medical Tourism Association, discusses the global healthcare industry and assets necessary to develop a successful medical tourism policy


AUTHOR: Andrea Šitum

“The needs of the traveling patient are immense and yet not enough attention is spent assuring that care continuum is safe and secure and leveraging that experience as a means of generating more patient volume”

Renée-Marie Stephano, JD,

President and Co-Founder of Medical Tourism Association


enée-Marie Stephano, JD, is the President and Co-Founder of the Medical Tourism Association - a non-profit organization dedicated to the global healthcare industry. As Chief Executive Officer at Global Healthcare Resources, her work has resulted in numerous international medical tourism patient programs that support medical tourism and wellbeing. Ms Stephano offers a unique insight in global healthcare management and development of viable health tourism polices, which in return result in improved global healthcare. Could you tell us what segments of the medical tourism industry have recorded the greatest changes since the founding of MTA in 2007? - Celebrating our ten year anniversary gave us a good opportunity to reflect on this point. The single most valuable change in the medical tourism industry is the expansion of the definition of the terminology, the scope of the industry, and the adoption of good metrics in measuring the economic impact. The arguments early on involved a resistance to use the term medical tourism, the crux of that debate revolved around the unlikelihood of a patient

engaging in tourism activities. I believe we now see that the economic impact in tourism as a result of patient mobility is truly the best measurement to utilize from a policy perspective. First, we are able to recognize the important link between various public sectors in health, hospitality, tourism and economic development. Second, we are able to drive economic impact from one sector into the other for investment to create greater impact and fund program that previously were not viable. What MTA’s activities would you highlight that have had the biggest influence on recognition and forming of new trends in medical tourism? - From the inception of MTA ten years ago, we see various important trends impacting the patient who travels for care, whether they be patients from developed countries seeking more affordable care due to lack of insurance or being underinsured or patients in developing markets seeking access to better quality or avoiding long queues. We saw an opportunity to position ourselves as the voice of the medical tourism industry with a primary goal to grow awareness of B2B opportunities.



Editor's choice || MEDICAL TOURISM ASSOCIATION While cash paying patients may be secured through SEO and SEM, it is hugely unreliable from an investment perspective as each new competitor comes into the market with similar marketing and investment tapping the same target market. Our focus has been on building an immense buyer network to connect businesses together - it has become our most successful niche as no other company does this on a remotely similar scale. Framed properly, medical travel from a government perspective has the capacity to fund population health management and national health equity programs currently underfunded and underutilized. We are not yet measuring the long term impact of medical travel programs on improving access to quality of care and improving population health. This is our next decade of work. If medical travel programs inbound can truly raise the standard of healthcare for local populations, every nation should be looking at policy. That’s what inspires us at MTA. That’s why I get up in the morning. In 2007, only 0.75 million Americans travelled abroad to obtain medical care – what number are we talking about today, which destinations are most popular among Americans and what health issues are the most common reason for travelling abroad? - We partnered with the International Healthcare Research Centre and Global Healthcare Resources to launch the Medical Tourism Index which is now a peer review academically validated tool to measure the perception of a destination for medical tourism. It highlights the top 41 destinations for medical travel from the perspective of Americans. Since then, we conducted several regional surveys to confirm the MTI destinations were valid from the perspective of other continents. For Americans, most patients are traveling domestically state to state for bundled pricing packages and centres of excellence. The same reason holds true for international care sought although you will see some traveling for more advanced, non-FDA approved or experimental treatments. The numbers for those services are quite low - back in 2012, there was an estimated 1.6 million Americans traveling with economic impact at 25% growth. Do European trends follow the American ones? - We are finding that European adoption of medical travel is much higher than American simply by the proclivity of Europeans towards travel alone and ease of cross border travel. We are seeing slower


Presenting at the Global Women’s Leadership Summit

adoption of patient experience technology and a resistance to collaborative efforts to market or focus on competitive advantages of European services. The recent European Health Tourism Industry Summit held in Rovinj in February brought together representatives from 18 European nations. This clearly demonstrated many gaps and opportunities for European nations to work together and attract a larger segment of B2C, B2B and even B2G medical travel business.

Advancing Global Healthcare Framed properly, medical travel from a government perspective has the capacity to fund population health management and national health equity programs currently underfunded and underutilized. Global partners can serve as instigators of population health change and an inspiration towards advancing global healthcare concerns such as obesity, diabetes and other lifestyle diseases.

If we look at the changes from a global perspective, which countries have, in your opinion, experienced the largest growth in the field of medical tourism? Also, which countries have recorded stagnation or decrease in the number of tourist visits? What is your take on the possible reasons for such trends? - I believe every nation has taken great strides to bring recognition to its borders for medical or wellness

“If medical travel programs inbound can truly raise the standard of healthcare for local populations, every nation should be looking at policy. That’s what inspires us at MTA. That’s why I get up in the morning”

Renée-Marie Stephano, JD,

President and Co-Founder of Medical Tourism Association


With His Excellency Qadhi Saeed Al Murooshid, DirectorGeneral of the Dubai Health Authority

Presenting on the development of healthcare clusters

travel. Very simply, lack of consistency or continuity is the largest downfall. Looking at many well organized nations with national programs a decade ago, many of them did not create policy to support the efforts towards medical travel. This has created a major shift for countries like Singapore. Other nations have taken a long time to evolve policy to assure quality of services and have suffered some perception concerns such as India and Mexico. Yet there is a large opportunity to get that momentum going and to contribute in a major way to the changing landscape of global healthcare. The focus should always be on providing care for local patients first, yet the strategic goals would be to develop an international program that can fund capacity building programs, reverse brain drain and inspire foreign direct investment for growth. How important is good cooperation between the private and public sector in positioning a country as a desirable medical tourism destination? - I am a large proponent of public-private partnerships. I don’t believe this is effort for solely one or the other and some nations demonstrating great partnerships between the public and private sector are seeing tremendous growth such as in Thailand, South Korea and Philippines. Today it is quite a risk to travel to certain parts of the world. I’m curious, what do you consider to be the most important factor in helping medical tourists regain


Editor's choice || MEDICAL TOURISM ASSOCIATION their trust in a destination - destination security ratings, testimonials, certificates or other? - In our recent Global Buyers Report safety and security was a number one concern and decisive factor on where buyers of healthcare refer their patients for care. There are real threats to security such as terrorism, crime, etc. and then potential risk like mosquito borne viruses. For a nation or city with safety issues promoting itself in medical tourism, all of this should be address transparently - the discussion should be held right from the onset to assure confidence that visitor safety is a top priority. Many travellers use Destination guides issued by Medical Tourism Association – how many editions have you issued so far? - Medical Tourism Magazine Health and Wellness Guidebook Series is designed as a travel guide for health and wellness seekers. It focuses on walking the patient through the decision making process and important traveller information they need. We produce these guides also for buyers or referrers of health services so they can leverage the tools they need for their insured, employees or patients and provide confidence in their selection of a destination. Recently you issued guides for the Croatian Island of Lošinj and Bagatin Clinic from Zagreb. Croatia is a small country; however, in the past few years we have experienced a true tourism boom. Do you think we could have the same kind of growth in medical tourism as well? - We recently released the Bagatin Clinic guide and Lošinj Island of Vitality, both came out beautifully. Bagatin is so experienced and dedicated to the medical travel care continuum for its patients we are greatly impress with the work they are doing. Mali Lošinj is just a beautiful island with a microclimate so special for the treatment of people with respiratory problems. It really shows the uniqueness that can be found in Croatia in terms of environment as well as expertise. The existing work of the private sector and the growing interest of public sector support are pretty impressive. The desired collaboration amongst the stakeholders demonstrates a real passion for expanding existing service expertise to include even greater complexity service lines through specialization. The key to growth is in collaboration - right now each city is pretty focused on its own efforts, yet an opportunity for a nationwide approach is clearly visible.


At the signing of the memorandum of understanding with the Korean government


With Jonathan Edelheit and Bill Rancic

Holding a keynote speech at the World Medical Tourism Congress in Washington, DC

You collaborate with Zagreb Tourist Board on developing the strategy of health tourism of Zagreb – in your opinion, what are Zagreb’s highest potentials to be considered the new top health tourism destination? - Zagreb’s existing tourism market is its largest potential for expanding medical tourism. While the wellness travel product and packages is still limited in the city, there is a good opportunity to consider an expanded wellness product that supports recuperation and wellness services complimentary to medical care. The greatest potential for Zagreb is its human resources – its people are very passionate about making Zagreb a world renowned destination for medical tourism and high volume of patients is currently seen through cosmetic

services, dentistry, ophthalmology and orthopaedics. This could be expanded with international accreditation and professional development programs or certifications that could improve competitiveness. Zagreb Tourist Board is extremely supportive of its stakeholders and the potential for Zagreb. I assume we will meet at the next HTI Conference that will be held in Zagreb in 2018? I sincerely look forward to that possibility. - The MTA remains a dedicated partner to HTI Conference in bringing best practices and education to the European market. If that is held in Zagreb, a beautiful metropolitan city with so much potential for medical tourism, then that sounds like a great place to be.

“The economic impact in tourism as a result of patient mobility is truly the best measurement to utilize from a policy perspective. First, we are able to recognize the important link between various public sectors in health, hospitality, tourism and economic development. Second, we are able to drive economic impact from one sector into the other for investment to create greater impact and fund program that previously were not viable” Renée-Marie Stephano, JD,

President and Co-Founder of Medical Tourism Association



City ofB


There is Only One


Photo: J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Croatia, and especially its capital Zagreb, have recently stood out on the European health tourism map. Apart from top experts and technology on par with the most modern European medical centres and prestigious wellness centres waiting for you in five-star hotels, Zagreb is a city made for business meetings and conferences, for city breaks, and enjoying a rich gastro scene or interesting events throughout all four seasons. The city is human-sized, and if you have not visited it yet - we can introduce you to Zagreb differently: now, right now is the perfect time to visit it and start to get to know all aspects of Zagreb!


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

Centre of Medical


Numerous private and public polyclinics and health centres with expert staff and exceptional quality services, competitively priced, make the capital of Croatia a centre of medical excellence


owadays, health tourism is becoming increasingly more important as an aspect of Croatia’s tourist offer, and the capital, Zagreb, is taking on an ever more prominent place on the European health tourism map. Numerous private and public polyclinics as well as health centres with expert staff and exceptional quality of service, at competitive prices, make the capital of Croatia the centre of medical excellence, whose comparative advantage lies in the proximity to large emissary markets, excellent traffic connections, as well as an overall offer which satisfies even the most demanding clients. Most health tourism services have a high added value, and through the joint action of the health and tourism system, a climate is created for further development of the city of Zagreb and its surroundings as an indispensable medical tourism destination.

AUTHOR Andrea Šitum


The comparative advantage of Zagreb is the proximity of large emissary markets, excellent traffic connections, as well as an offer whose diversity satisfies even the most demanding clients


Qualified medical staff and hospitals and polyclinics with state-of-the-art equipment guarantee excellent health service. Most local medical specialists gained their knowledge in the largest European medical centres, continually acquiring the latest equipment and treatment trends. That’s why

Still haven’t visited Zagreb? If you choose to visit Zagreb for medical services, in addition to selecting quality, you have selected a supreme experience that the capital of Croatia offers at every turn. Today, Zagreb has 58 hotels with 7,409 beds, 50 hostels with 2,295 beds and 2,491 accommodation units as rooms/apartments/studio apartments and holiday homes with 5,964 beds


Zagreb is a place where you can find worldrenowned medical clinics and medical practices, while many hotels in Zagreb include a high level of wellness and spa contents. There are many different types of accomodation. Today, Zagreb has 58 hotels with 7,409 beds, 50 hostels with 2,295 beds and 2,491 accommodation units as rooms/ apartments/studio apartments and holiday homes with 5,964 beds. Co-operation with supporting industries that complement the health tourism offer is of utmost importance, such as interesting tourist facilities and hotel and hospitality facilities as well as top-notch gastronomy. The capital of Croatia is one of the leading destinations in this segment.

Photo: J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


It should be noted that the Croatian metropolis throughout the year has various other content that complements the health tourism offer, creating an added value of the overall experience. There are unlimited possibilities for visits to music and theatre performances, art events and museums, sporting events, as well as enjoying pleasant walks, interesting architecture, many parks in the city centre, pedestrian zones and ambience. There is also the surrounding area extremely beautiful and attractive, full of vineyards and wine roads, interesting museums, medieval and baroque castles and long-standing health resorts. In the immediate vicinity of Zagreb there are several top clinics specializing in health tourism, hot springs and spa oasis, created for enjoying the wellness offers and healing natural factors.

WHY CHOOSE ZAGREB? • Zagreb guarantees quality with competitive prices • Zagreb is close • Zagreb offers more

From the First Pharmacy to the University The University of Zagreb’s biomedicine faculties Pharmaceutical, Medical and Dental Faculty represent a place of permanent education and training for health professionals Continuing the rich pharmaceutical practice, as evidenced by the opening of the first Zagreb pharmacy in Kamenita ulica 9 in the middle of the 14th century, Zagreb pharmacists successfully passed on and improved their knowledge and skills. On this foundation, based on the decision of Emperor Francis Joseph I, in 1882 the “Pharmacy Teaching Course” was established at the University of Zagreb, setting the foundation for the study of pharmacy. The Faculty of Medicine joined it in 1918 in transferring scientific and medical knowledge. Although the first requirements for establishing medical studies date back to 1790, the Department of Pathology and

Anatomy of the Faculty of Medicine started to operate only in 1918. The history of the School of Dental Medicine encompasses the period of establishing the dental education institution, when the Odontology Chair was founded in 1892, then the Department of Odontology from 1948 to 1962, and finally the founding of the School of Dental Medicine in 1962.


Zagreb is a Human-Sized City

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

We talked with the director of the Zagreb Tourist Board - MSc Martina Bienenfeld. Together with her team, she is behind some of the most successful tourist projects


ll of my jobs have always been connected to tourism - emphasizes MSc Martina Bienenfeld, director of the Zagreb Tourist Board, the head of a team which designed and implemented some of the most popular tourist projects such as “Advent in Zagreb”, which has been proclaimed for two years in a row the best in Europe according to the independent portal European Best Destination. On the tourist map of Europe, Zagreb is becoming increasingly desirable every year. What kind of tourist trends are recorded in Zagreb and where do you see “room” for improvement? - Zagreb continues to report a growing number of overnight stays and arrivals for several years now. This is the result of

AUTHOR Andrea Šitum

"It is of utmost importance to cooperate with all the branches that complement the health tourism offer, from health institutions to various tourist facilities and hotel and hospitality facilities. The capital of Croatia can be one of the leaders in this segment"

many years of effort and work in promoting Zagreb as a tourist, cultural, sports and congress destination, as well as the close cooperation with the city administration and other institutions. Without the cooperation of all the stakeholders in the tourist offer, Zagreb’s success, in terms of tourism, would not be possible. In creating the total tourist product of the City of Zagreb, the city offices of the City of Zagreb provide great support; there is also the Zagreb Tourist Board and, ultimately, the tourism industry. There is always room for improvement, and the Zagreb Tourist Board within its capability aims to enrich and expand the tourist offer every year. What is the potential of Zagreb when it comes to health tourism? - This aspect of tourism is growing in importance, and along with it a modern form of medical tourism is developing, where Zagreb occupies a more prominent place. Private and public polyclinics and health centres with expert staff and top quality services are turning Zagreb into a centre of medical excellence. An additional advantage is its proximity to European markets, excellent transport connections and the overall health service offer, which can compete with other health tourism destinations. From which countries do most of the “health tourists” come to Zagreb? - Our neighbours from Slovenia, Italy and tourists from Germany come to us the most. Are you working on attracting health tourists from new destinations and how is the opening of the new Dr. Franjo Tudjman airport contributing to this? - We are planning to exhibit at special-


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

A Little Bit of History

"The new Franjo Tudjman airport terminal is showing great results, and I can say that since its opening on 21 March, we have obtained seven new direct air routes to Zagreb, which attracts all tourists, including 'health' tourists"

Photo: Dubravko Miloslavić, Croatian National Tourist Board

Today’s Zagreb has grown from two medieval settlements that developed for centuries on the neighbouring hills - Gradec and Kaptol. With traces of human settlements dating back to prehistoric times, the first written mention of Zagreb dates back to 1094 and the founding of the Diocese of Kaptol. The Golden Bull, a document issued in 1242 by the Croatian-Hungarian King Bela IV, granted Gradec considerable privileges and status as a free royal town. The unification of former settlements in 1850 created the conditions for the development of a modern Central European city. Today Zagreb is the administrative, economic, cultural, transport and scientific centre of Croatia, which will win you over with modern achievements, as well as traces of the rich past, visible at every step.

ized fairs in the world, and we are also working on a feasibility study for the development of health tourism in Zagreb. The new Franjo Tudjman airport terminal is showing great results, and I can say that since its opening on 21 March, we have obtained seven new direct air routes to Zagreb, which attracts all tourists, including ‘health’ tourists. How can Zagreb’s excellent position be optimized - in its immediate vicinity there are several world renowned clinics and spas, while Kvarner with its hotels, health and wellness centres is only a two hour drive away? - It is of utmost importance to cooperate with all the branches that complement the health tourism offer, from health institutions to various tourist facilities and hotel and hospitality facilities. The capital of

Croatia can be one of the leaders in this segment. Throughout the year, Zagreb offers a range of content and events that complement the health tourism offer. The Zagreb area is just as attractive, with thermal springs and medicinal spas, while the Naftalan Spa, which is half an hour drive from Zagreb, is the only one in Europe and second in the world known for rare natural healing factor sites - medicinal oil, naphthalene and thermomineral water. Kvarner and the sea are also at our fingertips, which our visitors recognize. How do you see Zagreb in 10 years? - Today and tomorrow, Zagreb is a human-sized city - comfortable to stay in, neither too big nor too small, with wonderful people who give it soul and where you will never feel alone.


Photo: J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

Zagreb Card

Your Best Travel Companion Take advantage of your Zagreb Card for the best experience of Zagreb


he Zagreb Card is your ideal travel companion through Zagreb, saving your precious time and money. The card is available in 24 and 72 hour versions, and when you purchase it, you can get a free ride on city transport and the indispensible city attraction, the funicular, and completely free entrance to four prestigious city museums, the Zagreb Eye viewpoint and the Zoo. There are also discounts in 70 different places, such as many city museums, restaurants, shops and various services. The Zagreb Card can be purchased online through a web shop and be picked up at the Tourist Information Centre at Ban JelaÄ?ić Square 11. It is also available at the reception of many hotels and hostels in Zagreb and in some tourist agencies.


The ZAGREB CARD offers free city transport and funicular rides, as well as free entrance to four prestigious city museums, the "Zagreb Eye" viewpoint and the Zoo

Photo: R. Martin, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


An excellent geographic location, great roads, air and sea connections, pristine natural beauty and potential for the development of health tourism are the reasons why more and more tourists visit Croatia and Zagreb


he city of Zagreb, located on the geographical, cultural, historical and political crossroads of Eastern and Western Europe, combines the continental and the Mediterranean spirit into a peculiar whole. From the north, the town is protected by Mount Medvednica, and the spacious plain and the Sava River open it up to other parts of the world. With its location, Zagreb is a Central European city and it is brilliantly connected to many European centres thanks to the recently built modern Dr. Franjo Tudjman airport, connecting it with many distant

European and international destinations, well-organized rail transport with a station in the very centre of the city and excellent road connections to European capitals.


On the other hand, Zagreb is an excellent starting point for exploring all the attractions Croatia offers. Less than an hour away from Zagreb is the beautiful Zagorje, where you can enjoy rural tourism, unspoiled nature and healthy food. Less than two hours from Zagreb you will reach the world famous Crikvenica or Opatija Riviera, recom-

mended as a departure from stressful everyday life. Zadar is only 286 kilometres away, one of the most beautiful towns on the Adriatic coast, the famous Arena in Pula is 197 kilometres away and Split - the world famous Diocletian’s resort - about 410 kilometres, which means that in just ony day, you can have breakfast in Zagreb, and lunch and dinner in some of the most beautiful destinations on the Croatian coast. In addition, visiting Zadar and Split is a real opportunity to “hop” to some of the most beautiful Croatian islands, including Lošinj, Kornati, Dugi otok, Brač or Hvar.

These figures are no obstacle to visiting Zagreb! Ljubljana

142 km


1340 km


1081 km


517 km


268 km


769 km


934 km


1870 km


1703 km

Explore Zagreb with a Cell Phone in Your Hand Planning a trip and finding your way in a new environment is easier than ever with all the miracles of modern technology


Do you want an insider to show you Zagreb? Awarded as the best mobile application in 2014, the Zagreb Be There app offers you five possible routes, each of which presents Zagreb in a somewhat different way.


Zagreb Places is the number one application for finding places of interest in the Croatian metropolis - connect with friends, share experiences and choose the best that Zagreb offers.


What to do tonight in Zagreb? Discover Zagreb by searching this insider's guide with lists of great restaurants, bars and events that you should not miss.


Meet in Zagreb will guide you through the Croatian capital, its history, accommodation and congress facilities, conference organizers and congress services, as well as catering services for event managers.


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


in the Focus

Many specialized clinics in Zagreb are technologically well-equipped and today are reference centres for the education of experts from a number of countries


AUTHOR Andrea Šitum

ith its surroundings, Zagreb has become a leading health tourism centre, recognized primarily for the establishment of specialized clinics that have become a place for experts to specialize and for the introduction of innovative treatment methods and new technologies. Moreover, Zagreb’s proximity and good traffic connections to health resorts and hotels inland and on the coast is an additional incentive for local community and private sector investments in the development of the offer.

best cardiovascular disease centres. The University Hospital Merkur is the number one hospital in the world according to the number of transplanted livers per million inhabitants. In 2015, the University Hospital Merkur transplanted its thousandth liver, with a 96 percent transplant success rate, which is a superior result. The University Hospital Merkur is also known for cross-transplantation and transplantation of non-conforming blood groups.


Specialty Hospital St. Catherine is among the few European institutions that first started using mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), derived from fat tissue, in clinical ALWAYS AMONG THE FIRST practice. In 2015, the orthopaedic team The University Hospital Centre in Zagreb for the first time in the region introduced includes the Heart and Blood Vessel Disease a new medical alternative in the region: Clinic, which performed the first cathetermeniscus transplantation - an arthroscopic ization of the heart in Croatia, only four procedure that uses donor tissue to replace years after the first such procedure in the the damaged meniscus. world. Back in 1978, an echocardiographic Radiologists, neuroradiologists, oncololaboratory was set up in this clinic, which gists and surgeons with various specialities soon became the reference centre of the who have gained experience in leading European Cardiac Association and the local and world centres today make up World Health Organization, where more the expert team of Radiochirurgie Zagreb, than 700 home and foreign cardiologists a private clinic for cancer diagnosis and were trained. Some of them are respontreatment. The clinic has advanced tumour sible for establishing the Heart diagnostic technology and the and Blood Vessel Disease Clinic Varian EDGE radiotherapy and at the University Hospital radiosurgery suite. This is The University Dubrava, while some of the next generation linear Hospital Centre in Zagreb these experts are among accelerator for high preincludes the Heart and the founders of the cision radiosurgery as a Blood Vessel Disease Clinic, Magdalena Clinic for non-invasive alternative which performed the first Cardiovascular Disease to classical surgery. catheterization of the heart in in Krapinske Toplice. ToThe latest technology day, these three centres in dental implants in a Croatia, only four years after compete with the world’s toothless upper jaw and the first such procedure

in the world


lower jaw - All-on-4 and Zygoma All-on-4 a method that eliminates the long-lasting process of upper jaw bone rejuvenation is the main feature of the Ortoimplant Dental Spa in Zagreb, which is the first Zagreb clinic that has also started to implant the latest pterygoid implants.


Bagatin Clinic today is the leader in cosmetic surgery and dermatology in the region, unique in its use of the VECTRA 3D device, which enables the simulation of postoperative appearance. It also has state-of-the-art laser technology, which is applied in dermatological and dental procedures, as well as in innovative laser treatment against snoring with impressive results worldwide. Prof. dr. sc. Gabrić and prof. dr. sc. Iva Dekaris from the Clinic Svjetlost, the first private university clinic in Croatia, were among the founders of the first Croatian eye bank in 1994, and each of them has more than 1000 corneal transplants to their name. They are also Croatian pioneers of corneal transplants with tissue tested in the eye bank. The founder of the IVF Polyclinic, the first private Polyclinic for gynaecology, obstetrics and reproductive medicine for in-vitro fertilization (IVF and ICSI), prof. dr. sc. Velimir Šimunić, is one of the IVF pioneers in the world. He acquired knowledge in the University Hospital Centre Zagreb, one of the oldest clinics for gynaecology and obstetrics in this part of Europe. Thanks to this experience, top technology and quality of service, the IVF Polyclinic competes on equal footing with leading centres in Europe.

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

Leaders in transplants

University Hospital Merkur is number one in the world according to the number of transplanted livers per million inhabitants - in 2015, University Hospital Merkur transplanted its thousandth liver, with a 96% transplantation success rate


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

Photo: D. Rostuhar, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Enjoy Zagreb Coming to Zagreb for a medical procedure or wellness weekend? Make sure you get the most out of what Zagreb has to offer... Once you start your tour around Zagreb, strolling from one highlight to another (and there is so much to see!), soon you’ll find you’re starting to fall in love with Zagreb and its people. Drinking coffee in one of the many chic cafés, leisurely walking around its streets and daydreaming in the city centre’s green oasis, you’ll discover you’re rather enjoying the unique “Zagreb experience”. And once you realize that, it will be hard not to come back!


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


for Luxury and Quality Service SAFE RESTAURANT EXPERIENCE

The food in top 5-star hotels will satisfy the tastes and wishes of every guest with regard to the Halal and Kosher certificates, as well as the PKU menu and BOSK gluten free standard

The 5 star hotels in Zagreb can boast luxurious accommodation, wellness and spa facilities, as well as top-quality gastronomic offer tailored for guests with special nutritional needs


AUTHOR Marijana Matković

he capital of Croatia offers guests a wide choice of accommodation - from modern hostels, small boutique hotels, private accommodation in apartments to luxury five-star hotels, owned by international

hotel chains. Zagreb is also distinguished by the fact that several top 5-star hotels, such as the The Westin Zagreb, Esplanade Zagreb Hotel and Sheraton Zagreb Hotel, are in the very city centre - just a few hundred meters from the main city square.

Esplanade Zagreb Hotel The Esplanade Zagreb Hotel was built in 1925 to provide accommodation for passengers of the legendary Orient Express train connecting Paris and Istanbul. It offers rooms in the Secession style, a fitness centre and a sauna, and the beautiful Oleander terrace with views of the heart of the city. The exclusive health club offers a wide range of therapies for relaxation and revitalization. In addition to having the Halal and Kosher certificates, implementing the BOSK certification, Esplanade Zagreb Hotel gained the title of the first Croatian certified hotel with a gluten free offer.


Photo: Esplanade Zagreb Hotel


Photo: The Westin Zagreb

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB


The modern and luxurious hotel in the very centre of Zagreb, The Westin Zagreb is known as the regular host of national and international high profile events. With the Westin Difference philosophy, each stay is transformed into a revitalizing experience thanks to the fitness programs, completed with a top-notch offer of the World Class Health Academy spa centre. All restaurants have Kosher, Halal and PKU Friendly certificates, and the SuperFoodsRx menu, in conjunction with nutritionists, ensures optimum food matching.

Sheraton Zagreb Hotel Because of its position and elegance, Sheraton Zagreb Hotel is loved by business people, but also by all those who come for a holiday. The multifunctional halls of this hotel are the ideal venue for conferences and events. In the Sheraton Zagreb Hotel wellness centre, you will set aside time for yourself, and in restaurants you can indulge in local or international cuisine delicacies prepared by the best Croatian chefs. The food will satisfy the tastes and wishes of every guest with regard to the Halal and Kosher certificates, as well as the PKU menu for people with phenylketonuria.

Photo: Sheraton Zagreb Hotel



Be Active!

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

For all active holiday lovers, Zagreb offers a number of options that will give you a good work out - what is your choice? AUTHOR Viktorija Antolković

On two wheels

The bicycle is one of the favourite means of transportation that allows you to travel quickly, cheaply and healthy on short urban routes, regardless of the time of day and the traffic. Thanks to the public bicycle system, 21 locations in the city provide a bike to start your Zagreb adventure.

Swimming in Jarun

Apart from being the largest park in the western part of Zagreb, Jarun is also a favourite recreation zone for its citizens. Once a source of building material for creating the river embankments, Jarun was designed in 1987 for the needs of the University Games. Bicycle and walking paths as well as game and exercise equipment attract many recreational visitors, while refreshment can be found on hot summer days on large pebble beaches with five Blue Flags guaranteeing the safety of the “Zagreb Sea”.

Jogging at Bundek If you want to completely get away from the city crowds and retreat into a deep and thick centennial forest, visit the Maksimir park, open to the public back in 1794 as the first public park in South East Europe. It was named after its founder, bishop Maksimilijan Vrhovac, and was landscaped as an English park.

Photo: M. Vrdoljak, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Paradise for golfers

The sport offer of the stretch along the Sava River includes golf courses for all those who prefer this noble game in the hot spring and summer months


Hiking on Medvednica

The most popular excursion destination for the people of Zagreb is Medvednica, a protected nature park which includes as many as eight forest reserves. Hiking trails of varying degrees of difficulty, for amateur hikers to hardcore ones, will lead you to hiking lodges where a well-deserved portion of beans and strudel await you.

Photo: D. Rostuhar, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

A walk in Maksimir

Bundek, an increasingly popular recreational destination, boasts landscaped beaches, lakes, cycling and walking trails and sports grounds. Early morning jogging provides the perfect departure from the busy daily routine, on the days when you need some peace.

Photo: J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

When in Zagreb... You will not experience the true Zagreb if you do not take a ride on the funicular, try štrukle - a cottage cheese-filled strudel, or if you do not bring a gingerbread heart home with you


very corner of Zagreb, some calm and quiet, some pulsatingly vibrant, perfectly reflects the character of the city, and only your personal preferences will determine which Zagreb attraction you will enjoy the most!

1. 2.

TAKE A RIDE ON THE FUNICULAR. The world’s shortest railway line has connected the Lower and Upper Towns since 1890. VISIT THE MUSEUM OF BROKEN RELATIONSHIPS. The unique museum dedicated to relationships was declared the most innovative museum in the world in 2011.

5. 6. 7.

SEE AND BE SEEN AT THE ŠPICA. The locals always find the time for coffee, and the best one is on the Saturday Špica - in cafes around Petar Preradović Square. TASTE ŠTRUKLE. Though you will be thrilled by the rich gastronomic offer of top restaurants, štrukle - a strudle filled with cottage cheese is a must!

BRING HOME A GINGERBREAD HEART. To have an unforgettable memory of your visit to Zagreb, choose a unique souvenir - gingerbread heart, a traditional vividly decorated souvenir made of honey dough.

Photo: CroChef, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive


LEARN ALL ABOUT ZAGREB’S HISTORY. Get to know the legends and the mysterious side of the city through night-time interactive tours based on the novels by Marija Jurić Zagorka and city legends.


WALK AROUND MIROGOJ. The largest city cemetery is also a beautiful park and art gallery in the open, with well-known arcades built by architect Hermann Bollé.


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

In a Healing Embrace of the

Surrounding Area In the immediate vicinity of Zagreb, surrounded by beautiful nature, there are clinics, spas and hot springs offering medical rehabilitation and wellness programs at an international level


AUTHOR Marijana Matković

uests arriving in Croatia for a medical in Croatia, is also located in Krapinske Toplice. It specialprocedure or therapy in Zagreb can izes in bone and joint system reconstructive procedures, choose from superbly equipped and sports injuries and arthroplasty - joint replacement, as world-renowned medical services, well as the treatment of complicated bone fractures. while a further advantage lies The St. Catherine Specialty Hospital for Orthopaedics, in the fact that in the vicinity Surgery, Internal Medicine, Neurology and Physical MAGDALENA of Zagreb, within an hour Medicine and Rehabilitation, a member of the CLINIC FOR by car, in pristine nature, numerous clinics, prestigious family of the Leading Hospitals of CARDIOVASCULAR spas and hot springs can be found, offerthe World, stands out for its quality. The St. ing therapy, medical rehabilitation and Catherine Hospital is a centre of excellence DISEASE wellness programs on an international for modern diagnostics, pain relieving spine 12,000 patients are examined level. surgery, and sports medicine, developing in the Clinic annualy, and their cooperation with leading European, American treatment is conducted by a WORLD RENOWNED QUALITY and Israeli clinics and experts. The great potentop team of cardiologists One of these clinics is the Magdalena Clinic tial of the hospital has also been recognized by and cardiovascular for Cardiovascular Disease, the leading cardiothe European Commission, which allocated HRK vascular disease centre in the region, located in 17 million of non-refundable EU funds to a project surgeons Krapinske Toplice, in Zagorje, about an hour away being developed with their partners, the Genos lab. from Zagreb. Almost 12,000 patients are examined in the Clinic annualy, and their treatment is conducted by a SURROUNDED BY NATURE top team of cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons All those who need rehabilitation or strengthening with international experience. of immunity and energy renewal after a certain medical The Special Orthopaedics and Traumatology Hospiprocedure should be recommended to stay in some of tal Akromion, the largest private orthopaedic hospital the hot springs near Zagreb, with a top spa and wellness

Naftalan - natural mineral oil Thanks to the natural mineral oil whose natural healing has been known since ancient times, Naftalan Special Hospital for Medical Rehabilitation in Ivanić Grad holds a special place in medical rehabilitation and treatment of certain rheumatic and dermatological problems. The Hospital Naftalan is known for its success in treating inflammatory rheumatic diseases (rheumatoid and psoriatic arthritis), joint and spine diseases and skin diseases (psoriasis and neurodermatitis), as well as a spa and wellness recreation oasis.


Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

offer. In Terme Tuhelj, you can choose between various health and spa treatments, from medical gymnastics and aquacise, electrotherapy and fango therapy (with medicinal mud) to standards treatments for body and soul care. Another interesting destination is in Krapinske Toplice, the Aquae Vivae Aqua Park, with newly refurbished five-star pools where you can go for a slide, enjoy the waves or a diving adventure and enjoy underwater massages. The healing properties of thermal water and the wellness and spa offer are a good argument for visiting Krapinske toplice, while staying there can be combined with visiting interesting historical sites or farms where you will be offered homemade food and quality local wines, or walks and staying in beautiful pristine nature, which in itself is already medicinal.


Seasons 4IN ZAGREB

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

In March, all of Zagreb shines with a new glow. The reason lies in the Festival of Lights, when art installations light up Zagreb. From the end of April to the beginning of October, the Zagreb Time Machine will take you back to the city’s past. The spring is even more marvellous in Zagreb with the international street festival Cest is d’Best, when the entire city becomes a stage and the random passers-by its co-creators. At the beginning of May, Zagreb becomes even more colourful - thanks to the international garden flower show Floraart, the largest horticultural event in this part of Europe.

Martić Street is transformed into a design, art and entertainment area during the Design District Zagreb event. June is also the month when visitors to the INmusic Festival flock to Zagreb for the biggest open-air festival in Croatia which has been included among the world festivals several times. Don’t miss it! The Courtyards manifestation gives you the opportunity to peek behind the Upper Town facades into baroque palace courtyards, while the end of the summer is reserved for the Hanžeković Memorial, an international athletic rally that has gathered the most prominent world athletes since 1958.

J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Zagreb Film Festival. In October, the Zagreb Marathon is held with one of the fastest marathon trails, where the elongated route, without many turns, provides a steady pace and good results.

Autumn Winter Summer A sure sign of summer is Summer on Stross, the popular Strossmayer promenade where you can enjoy a glass of fine wine, relax with daily live music or enjoy the city view. For a few days in June, the entire block around


The beginning of October in Zagreb is marked by White Night, an all-night event when the city centre pulsates in the rhythm of art - theatre, dance and performance, as well as street art. One of the eagerly awaited festivals every autumn is the

M. Mehuli, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

S. Kastelan, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive


M. Gasparovic, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Events in Zagreb are increasingly taking over city streets and squares, spontaneously becoming an integral part of everyday life - every season is the right one to visit Zagreb

The end of the year is marked by Advent, and Zagreb’s Advent for the second year won the best Christmas destination by the European Best Destinations portal. At the beginning of the year the Snow Queen slalom race is traditionally held on the top of Medvednica - Sljeme.

You can find a list of all the events on

Special Feature || CITY OF ZAGREB

Photo: D. Rostuhar, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Advent in Zagreb Upon lighting the first advent candle, each of the city squares becomes magical in its own way with the smell of mulled wine and Christmas carol notes. So it is no surprise that for the second year in a row Zagreb has been awarded the title of the best advent destination according to the European Best Destinations portal.

Photo: S. KaĹĄtelan, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

The Slalom World Cup Championship has been held since 2005 on Sljeme, the top of the Medvednica Mountain. It was named after the legendary Janica Kostelić, the best alpine skier who trained here since childhood.

Photo: J. Duval, Zagreb Tourist Board Archive

Snow Queen

Zagreb Classic In the summer, under the open skies on the grass of the King Tomislav Square park, classical and pop music concerts take place, operas are performed and old movies shown. The Zagreb Classic is an ideal excuse for a picnic for classical art and a positive atmosphere aficionados!



Shaping the Future of European Health Tourism

HTI Conference participated in creating one of the most comprehensive studies of health tourism, which will be crucial for repositioning Europe as the world’s top health tourism destination


AUTHOR: Andrea Šitum

pproaching its 8th edition, which will be held in Zagreb from 1 to 3 March 2018, the HTI Conference has grown into the biggest event in Europe dedicated to health tourism and it has become a number one meeting place for all health tourism stakeholders. Zdeslav Radovčić, the founder and director of the HTI Conference, talks about the impact the HTI Conference has had on the European health tourism and shaping its future.

network with the umbrella organizations and associations within Europe such as ECTAA, ESPA, EHTTA, as well as with the European chambers of economy and the European tourist communities. It’s important to say that the health tourism study of the European Parliament refers to the “Croatian Tourism Development strategy until 2020” and quotes the work of several Croatian scientists. In this 28 countries study Croatia was referred to most, together with UK, Italy, Belgium and Germany.

What is the role of HTI as a leading European health tourism event in positioning Europe as a top health tourism destination? - We are very proud that our activities had impact in creating one of the most comprehensive study of the European Parliament - ”Research for TRAN CommitteeHealth Tourism in the EU - general investigation”, published in June 2017. It will be crucial for repositioning and rebranding Europe as the world’s top destination for health tourism. The leadership of the HTI Conference had several meetings with the key people who worked on the draft of the document. At the conference in Vienna we hosted Carlo Corazza who was Head of the Unit “Tourism, Creative and Emerging Industries”, DG GROWTH, European Commission. Mrs Claudia Tapardel, the member of European parliament, Committee on transport and tourism, was a speaker at the conference in Rovinj. We are regularly presented at the high level conferences on tourism in the European Parliament and

How will this reflect on health tourism business and what are the next steps to accelerate this goal?


“Bringing Europe as the world's top destination for health tourism requires greater efforts and coordination at the European level, defining common offers and marketing activities, harmonizing national legislation and removing administrative barriers” Zdeslav Radovčić, founder and director of the HTI Conference

- The EU document is important because it will be a platform for the EU Funds and National banks for reconstruction and development to launch loans and other financial tools in the field of health tourism. There is also a large interest shown by non-institutional private funds interested in investing in health tourism such as US based Princeton Healthcare International. Bringing Europe as the world’s top destination for health tourism requires greater efforts and coordination at the European level, defining common offers and marketing activities, harmonizing national legislation and removing administrative barriers to faster development of the European health tourism market. What are your plans for the next period? - In this period, before the next HTI Conference, I am visiting and speaking at many world summits, conferences, exhibitions. Among them are World Medical Tourism Congress L.A., Termatalia in Spain, World Travel Market London, World Medical Tourism Congress Asia Pacific Moscow, Moscow MedShow, Medical Travel Exhibition and Conference Kiev, The World Medical Tours Summit, Abu Dhabi... A pretty intensive period combined with the organization of the eighth edition of HTI Conference in Zagreb. We are expecting more than 400 participants from more than 40 countries and over 50 buyers of health tourism services. The conference will continue to open up the most important issues of future development but also via B2B meeting enhance the opportunities for closing new contracts.



Croatia Destinations || DISCOVER CROATIA

Discover the Source of Health and Pleasure Croatia is definitely a unique destination in many ways – it’s time to visit this small Mediterranean country and explore the hidden gem of health tourism PROMO CROATIAN NATIONAL TOURIST BOARD


Daruvar Spa

Rovinj panoramic view

Photo: Boris Kačan, Croatian National Tourist Board

TREAT YOURSELF TO THE GETAWAY OF A LIFETIME Health tourism services are provided throughout the country, from beneficial effects of the sea to the healing thermal springs


Photo: Saša Halambek, Croatian National Tourist Board

Photo: Hrvoje Serdar, Croatian National Tourist Board

Destinations || DISCOVER CROATIA



roatia is an ideal destination to enjoy the drops that mean life. It is at the very top of the UNESCO list of water wealth in Europe and in the world, and the large number of thermal and spa places with 103 sources of natural mineral water will take care of the complete rejuvenation of your body and spirit. Bathe in the warmest of European waters, ride the sea waves, relax under the massaging waterfalls and geysers, recover from all of your worries and enjoy like an emperor, all of it only in Croatia.


Unique in many ways, Croatia has roots tracing back to ancient times, and its many cultural riches and interesting stories speak volumes - from ancient Roman times and the Renaissance through the Baroque, the Turkish conquest, to the modern era. Croatia is a country rich in historical and cultural heritage, where its national treasures and natural beauty are not just revealed inside one of the many museums, galleries, churches, national parks and natural reserves, or within one of the many historical monuments and sites found on UNESCO’s world heritage list, rather one will find this historical and natural beauty is visible at almost every turn so you have

many reasons for visiting Croatia. One of that reasons is health tourism. Health tourism in Croatia today consists of wellness services, which are provided by more than 80 hotels and wellness centres; health farm services, which are offered by 15 special hospitals and health farms; and medical tourism services, which are available at public hospitals and a large number of private practices. Health tourism services are provided throughout the country, but mostly in the regions of Kvarner, Istria, northern Croatia and in Zagreb. Treat yourself to the getaway of a lifetime!

Photo: Hrvoje Serdar, Croatian National Tourist Board

Destinations || DISCOVER CROATIA



Thanks to its exceptionally favourable climatic features, accessibility and beauty, Kvarner started developing health tourism quite early. Kvarner’s first steps in the field of tourism in general are associated with health tourism as well. The climatic health resorts in Opatija, Crikvenica, Veli Lošinj, Mali Lošinj, on the Island of Rab and in Skrad and Delnice, towns situated in Gorski kotar, were built already at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. Whether you wish to receive treatment for the disease you are suffering from or, better yet, prevent a disease, the Kvarner destinations offer excellent climatic possibilities as well as a highly professional medical ser-

Long tradition of health tourism The climatic health resorts in Opatija, Crikvenica, Veli Lošinj, Mali Lošinj, on the Island of Rab and in Skrad and Delnice, towns situated in Gorski kotar, were built at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century


Mali Lošinj

Massage with healing mud (fango), Terme Tuhelj

Photo: Ivo Biočina, Croatian National Tourist Board

Photo: Ivo Biočina, Croatian National Tourist Board

Photo: Hrvoje Serdar, Croatian National Tourist Board

Delnice from above

Photo: Ivo Biočina, Croatian National Tourist Board

Destinations || DISCOVER CROATIA

Varaždin Castle

vice and various recreational programs. Although most Istrian hotels extend their offer with diverse range of facilities including indoor pools and fitness and massage centres for resting your body as well as your soul, when it comes to wellness itself, Istria has only recently started an accelerating development of this category. New centres are opening following the world trends. They are inviting you for a visit – to come and make your own potpourri of aromatic or chromo therapies, baths and saunas, whirlpools, ice baths and other beauty and healthcare programs.


In Northern Croatia, there are many thermal centres like Top-Terme Topusko which will make your wishes come true like a goldfish, Krapinske Toplice thermal centre which boasts the therapeutic hy-

perthermal water and natural therapeutic mud, Bizovačke Toplice thermal centre where you can swim in the warmest part of the Pannonian sea, or Stubičke Toplice thermal centre which is hidden in the vicinity of Zagreb, and which is famous for

ONLY IN CROATIA Bathe in the warmest of European waters, ride the sea waves, relax under the massaging waterfalls and geysers, recover from all of your worries and enjoy like an emperor

the cryosauna - a treatment of exposure to extremely low temperatures from – 110 °C to – 190 °C, which has a positive impact on the skin and boosts the immune system. The Terme Sveti Martin thermal centre in Međimurje and Daruvar thermal centre are certainly the favourite destinations for professional and recreational athletes. For those who like history and tradition, one of the best choices is the Varaždin thermal centre which dates back to ancient times, and it has been a synonym for superior service and incredible healing powers for centuries. Croatia also has a unique place in Europe with natural source of naphthalene curative oil - the Naftalan - thermal centre in Ivanić Grad. This is the second finding place of that kind in the world, and the only one in Europe. Croatia is definitely a unique destination in many ways and it’s worth to visit this small Mediterranean country.




and Global Trends

Medical tourism industry is expected to grow by 25% annually for the next 10 years, and it is assessed that as much as 3% to 4% of the world’s population will travel abroad in search of health treatments


AUTHOR Andrea Šitum

hile borders are more frequently crossed in search of quality healthcare, it becomes clear that health tourism is not just an accompanying phenomenon. Medical tourism is experiencing a rapid growth as more and more travellers search for new treatments, lower prices of medical procedures or higher quality of services unavailable in their home country. A recently published report by VISA and Oxford Eco-


nomics confirms this as well. It is projected that medical tourism industry, currently valued at $100 billion, will grow by 25% annually for the next 10 years. It is also assessed that 3% to 4% of the world’s population will travel abroad in search of health treatments. The United States is currently in the lead in terms of market share for health spending, but the share of Asian countries, such as Thailand, Singapore and South Korea will continue to grow. Moreover, the report suggests that China could also impose itself as one of the leading health tourism service providers within the next decade.


TOP 12 by Medical Tourism Index According to the 2016 MTI Report, the very best medical tourism destinations are: CANADA GREAT BRITAIN ISRAEL SINGAPORE INDIA GERMANY FRANCE SOUTH KOREA ITALY COLOMBIA SPAIN JAPAN


Medical Tourism Index (MTI) Report for 2016, created within the research implemented by the International Healthcare Research Centre, ranks 41 medical tourism destinations taking into account three key dimensions: the state, industry and healthcare system. The MTI Report also projects the growth of medical tourism, thus creating unique opportunities for investors looking for new challenges and investment prospects. 2016 World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress is also indicative in this context, as the most comprehensive international healthcare conference and tradeshow in the healthcare tourism industry. It was held in Washington on September 25-28, 2016. Last year, more than 3000 participants from over 50 countries generated profit of one billion USD, with the promise of continuing business cooperation and investment in the coming years. As for the European destinations, for seven years in a row Europe has shown an increased interest in the sphere of medical tourism. According to the 2016 MTI Report, the European countries that were included among the 41 destinations increasingly attractive to medical tourists include Great Britain, France, Germany, Spain, Russia, Italy, Poland, Malta and Turkey.

Who is a medical tourist? Any person travelling from their home country to another country to receive a better quality or lower priced medical, surgical or dental treatment is a medical tourist. Terminological confusion over the concepts of health tourism further increases, especially if the terms like “wellness tourism“, “spa tourism“ or “medical tourism“ are used interchangeably. Health tourism is a package of services that includes tourist and healthcare services and products linked with travel and change of the place of residence, and all for one reason – to improve health. The concepts of “wellness tourism“, “spa tourism“ and “medical tourism“ describe different forms of health tourism, or tourism sub-areas, with health tourism as an umbrella (superior) concept. Medical tourism is a travel of an individual outside their place of residence to find a satisfactory level of healthcare. It is often motivated by financial reasons, meaning that for the same or lower price they want to find a more professional and higher-quality service or service they cannot find in their place of residence. Wellness tourism is a travel of an individual to another place in search of ways and services to maintain health and raise their quality of life, with the aim to achieve physical and spiritual well being. Spa tourism is one of the oldest forms of health tourism, and it includes services and treatments based on the benefits provided by the natural conditions of the location.




74,87 Great Britain is the leading European medical tourism destination

Great Britain As the leading European medical tourism destination, Great Britain attracts a large number of tourists coming for specialist medical examinations. Quality healthcare centres and highly trained medical staff also ensured Great Britain the second place in the global ranking of health tourism destinations. The government provides all British citizens free or low cost care under the National Health System. Healthcare services of a small private sector are available to people that do not want to wait in line for medical services, or are not British citizens or residents.





France has one of the best healthcare systems in the world

Germany Germany, the largest European and the fourth largest economy in the world, provides free healthcare to its citizens through public health insurance system. This system is based on contributions paid to the fund by employees and employers. Along with the public insurance, there is also private health insurance – all those who, according to regulations, are not obliged to stay in the public system can replace public insurance with the private one. This includes students, civil servants and employees whose annual income exceeds the defined limit.


million tourists visit Germany each year

France French tourism accounts for a large part of its economy – France is the most visited country in the world, receiving over 84 million international tourists in 2016. This health tourism destination invests over 10% of its GDP in healthcare, which, according to the World Health Organization’s assessments, makes their healthcare system one of the best ones in the world. France has a mix of public and private healthcare services, and many doctors work in both sectors. This includes public hospitals, non-profit independent hospitals (linked to the public sector) and private institutions. The government refunds its citizens and permanent residents the majority of healthcare costs, even up to 100% in case of costly or long-term diseases.


71,22 49






Italy’s healthcare system is regionally organized and provides universal healthcare coverage to all citizens and permanent residents through the system of public and private services. Anyone can opt to use the private medical sector for specialized examinations and diagnostic tests, but these are not covered by the National Health Service. However, the attractiveness of Italy as a tourism destination, despite the cost of medical services, makes Italy competitive against other European destinations. There is still a lot of potential for improvement – with new international certificates and raising the quality of healthcare staff, Italy can gain a better reputation among the potential medical tourists.

International certificates and raising the quality – are the factors for the further improvement of medical tourism in Italy 50

Spain has a combination of private and public healthcare systems, with the public system free of charge for citizens and permanent residents funded through taxes. Even the Constitution of the Kingdom establishes the right of all citizens to healthcare protection, which leaves the private sector catering to people who do not want to wait for healthcare services, employees with high income and medical tourists. Although higher-ranked destinations surpass Spain in terms of the quality of service in the private sector, the prices of medical services and attractiveness of the destination could be the key factors to make Spain an even more popular medical tourism destination.

The prices of medical services and attractiveness of the destination – will make Spain an even more attractive destination




The Energy Clinic is a rounded, comprehensive wellness and spa experience. Our mission is help You find a better You.


Financing the Expansion of Global Healthcare Contemporary entrepreneurs in the field of health tourism face the key challenge of getting access to investment capital models and strategic partners who understand their specific needs


s Princeton Healthcare International Director for Europe and Editor-in-Chief for International Journal of Healthcare Management, Paolo Moreira, PhD, is dedicated to fostering international healthcare management in all of its dimensions – especially regarding international healthcare marketing and health communication. Health tourism industry is on the rise – what are your predictions for future growth? - The health tourism market is set to continue its fast growing ratio for the next decade. Recent estimates anticipate an annual movement of health and wellness seekers of over 100 million people generating a market value of over USD 50 billion. What are the main reasons for such expansion? - This industry is emerging due to rise in healthcare expenditure in developed countries coupled with the growing availability of high quality and cost effective treatments in developing countries. Additionally, the wellness industry is set to continue its growth rates due to a number of factors, including a growing demand for Traditional Chinese Medicine and other Eastern traditions related to prevention and well-being. The two approaches, western healthcare and holistic wellness, are increasingly complementary and synergic


AUTHOR: Andrea Šitum

“The experts in IJHM and PHI partnership add to their long standing experience in markets development and international financing, a thorough understanding of the related intercultural challenges and of the specifics of corporate cultures in both healthcare and wellness organizations” Paolo Moreira, PhD

The Best of Both Worlds Western healthcare and holistic wellness are increasingly complementary and synergic in the resulting added value for clients and new businesses in the field of health tourism

Paolo Moreira at the HTI Conference

Interview || HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT in the resulting added value for clients and new businesses. Regarding the expansion of global healthcare, what can be done in bringing together service providers and buyers? - Contemporary entrepreneurs in this field face the key challenge of getting access to investment capital models and strategic partners who understand their specific needs and are knowledgeable in this international market. The partnership between International Journal of Healthcare Management (IJHM) and Princeton Healthcare International (PHI) developed a global network of experts, providers of wellness and healthcare services, as well as buyers of both types of services and large groups of clients. Within this partnership, a diversified set of experts is prepared to support investments and new projects in this sector offering full scope consultancy from planning to financing, through to implementation and international markets development. What is necessary for success in the global field of health tourism? - The experts in partnership add to their long standing experience in markets development and international financing, a thorough understanding of the related intercultural challenges and of the specifics of corporate cultures in both healthcare and wellness organizations. These are also fundamental skills for success in this new and truly global economic trend which will be at the service of the interested participants in HTI 2018. In short, we are keen to meet and discuss the financing and international market development needs of participants who already have a start-up idea, an expansion or even a merger & acquisition project, but need to get access to capital and financing solutions with clear market development goals.


KVARNER The Healing Garden of Europe

Destinations || KVARNER


iversity is the main characteristic of Kvarner, which includes the area between the two large mountain ranges – Učka and Velebit – as well as the coast and islands. This is where the coastal areas of the Opatija Riviera, the city of Rijeka and Crikvenica-Vinodol Riviera meet. There are also the Kvarner islands: Krk, Rab, Cres and Lošinj, as well as the mountainous Gorski kotar. This is an invaluable

combination of sea, islands and mountains concentrated on a very small area of land, so you can enjoy the pleasures of the sea and retreat into the forest shade in the interior all in one day. Thanks to this diversity – a touch of mild climate of the coast and islands, and fresh air from the interior, as well as sea and wild plants – Kvarner became “a healing garden“ of Europe. Beautiful beaches, walkways, fragrant gardens and hundred years old parks, are all great places to relax, re-energize and awaken the joy of life. Also containing places for an active holiday and entertainment, Kvarner truly has an ideal tourist offer.

KVARNER HEALTH & WELLBEING Although famous as a destination suit-

able for the treatment and rehabilitation of heart and respiratory diseases, Kvarner is also visited by those who want to prevent or treat many other health issues. Kvarner Region Tourism Board has used this idea of “wellbeing“ as the basis for the project of branding health tourism entitled “Kvarner Health & Wellbeing“. Kvarner Region Tourism Board is also one of the founders of the Kvarner Health Tourism Cluster. Opatija Tourist Board, in line with the long tradition of health tourism, is also of great support to this project as well as Rijeka Tourist Board, Crikvenica Tourist Board and Mali Lošinj Tourist Board. The Faculty of Medicine in Rijeka and Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management in Opatija are also Cluster members and together they initiated and launched a Postgraduate Specialist Study in Health Tourism with the aim to educate professional staff.

Beautiful beaches, walkways, fragrant gardens, hundred years old parks, places where one can relax and re-energize, all of this is a beautiful background for a rich Kvarner’s medical, spa and wellness tourism offer PROMO KVARNER HEALTH TOURISM CLUSTER


Destinations || KVARNER


Kvarner is a famous destination suitable for the treatment and rehabilitation of heart and respiratory diseases


One of the crown jewels of Kvarner’s health tourism offer, Thalassotherapia Opatija, is a special hospital for medical rehabilitation of heart and lungs diseases, as well as rheumatism. The hospital successfully keeps pace with the current trends in the treatment of cardiovascular and rheumatic patients. The hospital of the same range, Thalassotherapia Crikvenica, achieves remarkable results in treating respiratory diseases and movement disorders with the combination of sea air, climate and sea water. Veli Lošinj Spa is the leading spa in terms of treating respi-

ratory diseases, asthma and psoriasis; its approach is based on the therapeutic effect of pine forests and unique microclimate of the Island of Lošinj, combined with the modern methods of physical medicine. Specialty Hospital Medico offers specialized clinical examinations, advice and consultations, as well as laboratory and radiological diagnostics in the field of dermatology and venereology, gastroenterology, pulmonology, cardiology, nephrology, endocrinology, gynaecology, urology, ophthalmology, orthopaedics, otorhinolaryngology and neurology. It also has two operating rooms for minor procedures and


Destinations || KVARNER


general and plastic surgeries.


Although famous as a destination suitable for the treatment and rehabilitation of heart and respiratory diseases, Kvarner is also visited by those who want to prevent many other health issues

Terme Selce, Hospital for Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, also has a high reputation due to its knowledge and protocols for the prevention and treatment of locomotor system diseases and injuries. Dr Nemec Special Hospital, dedicated to the treatment of locomotor system diseases and injuries, also became internationally recognized. Its special services include cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery and a total knee and hip endoprosthesis. Dental Polyclinics “Dr Jelušić“ in Opatija and Rident Polyclinic (in Rijeka and Poreč), as well as dental medicine centres Orto Nova in Rijeka, Kalamar Implant Dentistry (in Rijeka and Dramalj) and “Smile“ Clinic are an important part of the overall health tourism offer. Public institutions are also an important link, such as the Community Health Center Rijeka, Clinical Hospital Center Rijeka, Emergency Medicine Institute and Teaching Institute of Public Health. The Cluster was also joined by Interdial, Polyclinic for Hemodialysis located in Opatija, which provides hemodialysis and hemodiafiltration and operates as a part of the clinics for dialysis within the Fresenius Medical Care Group.


It is easy to find worldclass accommodation near

29 members of the Kvarner Health Tourism Cluster Kvarner Health Tourism Cluster gathers 29 members from the medical, tourism and university sector and accompanying services. Established in November 2014, the association organizationally merges preparation and placement of a recognizable and competitive health and tourist, as well as scientific and educational product, designed according to global trends, tradition, resource base and destination specificities. The Cluster is focused on strengthening and development of Kvarner health tourism in accordance with the strategic documents that define this tourist destination as “The destination of health“


these institutions. Three hotels owned by the Jadran Company are the symbols of the city of Rijeka. These include: Jadran Hotel located on the coast in a residential part of the city; Continental, the oldest hotel in the city, found in the centre of Rijeka, and Neboder, which offers amazing panoramic view of the city and the whole Kvarner Bay. Lošinj Hotels and Villas, a brand owned by the leading hotel company Jadranka, offers a range of four and five star accommodation in hotels, villas and apartments on the Island of Lošinj. They have also been developing their own health tourism programmes since

2014, aimed at pulmonary rehabilitation and healthcare wellness. Milenij Hotels in Opatija - Milenij and Sveti Jakov, Design Hotel Royal, Grand Hotel 4 opatijska cvijeta and Continental and Agava Hotels – offer a perfect holiday experience in line with the highest standards. All of these institutions invest a lot of attention in high quality education and continuous training of employees in wellness professions, in which a special role is played by the Lovran College – Wellness Academy, established in 2004. If they need help with organizing their stay, Kvarner visitors can contact one of the leading incoming tour operators, Mediteran Adrija in Rijeka, represented on the market by its brand name MedAdria, or travel agencies and Travelana from Rijeka.

info Kvarner Health Tourism Cluster Email:

Health tourism || BAGATIN CLINIC


The cooperation with the prestigious non-profit organization Medical Tourism Association® resulted in a unique Destination Guide, 92 pages of which cover the services of the clinic and the destination – Zagreb and Croatia


and Excellence During its 20 years of existence, Bagatin Clinic has become a synonym for the quality of service and innovative approach to health and beauty


perfect synergy of the latest technology and modern, non-invasive methods of treatment and surgical procedures, combined with the work by highly trained specialists, has brought Bagatin Clinic services in the segment of plastic surgery, dentistry and dermatology to the international level, making it a recognizable leader in Croatia.




The story of the today’s Bagatin Clinic begins in 1995, when the first private practice for maxillofacial surgery was established by the world-renowned cosmetic surgeon Marijo Bagatin, MD, DSc. This, at the time still small-scale and family-run clinic, was taken over by his two sons. Today, both Dinko and Tomica Bagatin are prominent and highly successful cosmetic surgeons. The practice saw rapid growth following the appointment

of Ognjen Bagatin, a graduate economist and a member of the MBA Croatia Association, to the position of the clinic Director. Through permanent education and investment in his business skills and knowledge, in combination with a clear vision, he is now leading the clinic towards development, constant investments and progress. The clinic management was soon joined by the executive director Bojan Pintarić, a marketing expert with an extensive experience in the sector of

Health tourism || BAGATIN CLINIC

The clinic is focused on the culture of learning and continuous education and training of its employees, which motivated the establishment of Bagatin Academy luxury products and services marketing, and excellent knowledge in the field of beauty market. The “new era” initiated by this management duo has been marked by diversification and expansion to other segments of medicine – firstly to dermatology and cosmetic treatments, and finally to dentistry, with an emphasis on cosmetic dentistry, when the first dental studio was opened in 2015.    


During the 20 years of their existence they have become a synonym for service quality, and stood out among the other clinics and institutions with their unique and comprehensive approach to health and beauty, which has been recognized by numerous national and international

clients. Today, they boast more than 12.000 satisfied clients and an average annual growth of 55% during the last five years, the fact making them a leader in the cosmetic surgery and dermatology market. In 2015, this success was also recognized by Deloitte, a prestigious consulting and auditing company, when they presented Bagatin Clinic with an award for the most successful fast growing company in the sector of health care and pharmacy in Croatia and the region.


Behind the quality of Bagatin Clinic services, there is a large team of 70 employees, with a tendency to grow even beyond this number. Renowned medical

staff consists of general and cosmetic surgeons, dermatologists, dentists, anaesthesiologists and excellent cosmetologists with years-long experience. The successful team also includes marketing, PR, sales, HR and logistics experts, as well as receptionists, administrative and call centre employees who facilitate smooth and successful business operations. The organization pays a lot of attention to the culture of learning and education, with commitment to permanent professional training of the employees in order for them to realize their business and personal potentials. This lead to the creation of Bagatin Academy that, year after year, is becoming a real centre of business excellence and education. The Academy offers all of the clinic employees unique training in the


Health tourism || BAGATIN CLINIC Medical Tourism Association®, a unique Destination Guide has been created, bringing together the information on the clinic services and destination (Zagreb and Croatia) on 92 pages. The Guide was officially introduced at the World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress in Washington D.C. in 2016, the clinic being the silver sponsor of the event.


Service at the level of five-star hotels

Since its beginning, the clinic’s business strategy has been focused on providing services aimed at delighting their clients and on setting service quality standards in the Croatian market. The client is always the priority. From the first contact with the clinic through a call centre or reception staff, to the service provided and saying goodbye, the client can rest assured that the whole staff is fully dedicated to them and that the service is at the level of a five-star hotel

Activities and efforts to put Croatia and Bagatin Clinic on the global medical tourism map are continually under way ANUAL with the support of key GROWTH OF 55% institutions, such as the Bagatin Clinic prides itself in Ministry of Tourism, more than 12.000 satisfied Croatian Chamber of customers and an average Economy and other field of so-called “soft crucial state bodies. annual growth of 55% in the last skills”, with specially The goal is to presfive years, making it a leader in tailored workshops and ent the institutions of the plastic surgery lectures designed to meet strategic importance, and dermatology their specific needs. advertise the services market available on the market INNOVATIVE APPROACH and recognize Croatia as a top From the very start, Bagatin Clinic saw tourist destination. Clinic ended the year the importance of using new forms of 2016 with two significant nominations by communication in the market. Innovative the International Medical Travel Journal: approach to marketing set a standard of one for marketing initiative regarding its excellence, which starts with good compositioning and branding, and the other munication with the client and is distinfor the best international cosmetic surgery guished by an individual approach. The clinic in 2017. result is visible in a high number of followers on Facebook, over 120.000 of them, while the company is also active on the increasingly more influential Instagram and their own blog. A lot of hard work and effort is paid to the quality of the content, as well as to client education, which has proven to be very successful with more than 260.000 annually downloaded copies of the online service brochures. This type of individual approach in communication Bagatin Clinic has successfully attracted new clients, Green Gold Tower while securing the retention of the existGrada Vukovara 269a/10, 10000 Zagreb, ing ones.



Medical tourism is one of the key products in the hospitality industry with a primary role in extending the tourist season and dispersing tourist activities, the fact leading to the introduction of the newest department within Bagatin Clinic – the medical tourism department. In addition to offering medical services to their clients, they assist with transfer, accommodation and learning about the cultural and gastronomic offer of Zagreb and its surroundings. In cooperation with the prestigious non-profit organization


Croatia Downtown - Centre Kneza Višeslava 14/2, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia T: +385 (0) 1 46 10 225 Email:

MARKETING in Health Tourism

Interview || MARKETING

Ognjen Bagatin, MBA, Bagatin Clinic General Director, talks about the marketing strategy that has positioned his clinic on the world map of health tourism


hen we decided to reach out towards the international market and turn to medical tourism, the first goal was to position Bagatin Clinic as the leading private clinic in the region, with service equal to those in luxury five star hotels. The first step in receiving global recognition of the clinic was to present Croatia as a pro-health destination - says Ognjen Bagatin, MBA, Bagatin Clinic CEO. - Cooperation with local and national institutions, such as Croatian Chamber of Economy, Ministries of Tourism, Health, Foreign and European Affairs, as well as the Office of the President, Croatian National Tourist Board and Zagreb Tourist Board, proved to be the key step. Within this cooperation we created the Destination Guide, a guide in English with information about Zagreb as a major tourist destination and the services at Bagatin Clinic. The printed edition of the guide was promoted at World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare congress in Washington, one of the most important events in health tourism in the world. That was an excellent opportunity to present the clinic. We received support from Medical Tourism Association (MTA), the most famous global non-profit medical tourism association that promoted our guide through its communication channels and social networks reaching over 1.5 million members. What other steps would you single out as important in brand positioning? - Last year we established contacts with Croatian National Tourist Board in Benelux countries, United Kingdom, Sweden and the USA. We became members of American Dental Association, MTR and Global Clinic Rating. Back home, we teamed up with numerous partners, such as Svjetlost Eye Clinic and St. Catherine Specialty Hospital, and established cooperation with a number of international facilita-

AUTHOR Andrea Šitum

tors. We concluded the year with a couple of successful study tours for foreign partners and health care clients, opening towards the Swiss, German, Italian and Israeli market, as well as Middle East and USA markets. So, 2017 started off well. - Yes, with two prestigious nominations from international association IMTJ (International Medical Travel Journal), the first for marketing initiative in clinic branding and the other for the most successful international cosmetic surgery clinic. We’re still in the process of planning study tours, wrapping up some web adjustments and POS materials for Slovenian market. I cannot reveal all of our plans, but you will be able to see us on different fairs and congresses in Los Angeles (WMTC), Ljubljana (Narava Zdravje) and Abu Dhabi (ITW).

“Back home, we teamed up with numerous partners, such as Svjetlost Eye Clinic and St. Catherine Specialty Hospital, and established cooperation with a number of international facilitators” Ognjen Bagatin, MBA, Bagatin Clinic CEO



ZYGOMA ALL-ON-4 Changing the Face of Implantology

Lack of bone matter in the upper jaw is no longer an obstacle for implants - the new zygomatic implants have successfully managed to overcome that barrier



“From my experience, I believe this method, that requires excellent surgical skills, takes precedence over other methods for dealing with tooth loss. That includes six or eight implants in the upper jaw and sinus lift, a bone augmentation procedure“ Zdenko Trampuš, DDS

ou may have been told that you are not a suitable candidate for upper jaw implants and that your only option is the outdated and uncomfortable prosthesis or more implants plus bone augmentation (sinus lift). We believe that anyone who is convinced there is no other option will be glad to hear that is no longer the case, thanks to the Zygoma All-On-4 method. Now everyone with lack of bone matter or complete bone resorption in the upper jaw can get implants. Thanks to this state of the art dental method, implemented in only a few offices in the world, dealing with missing teeth will never be the same.


It has been a long journey for dentistry, one that took us from uncomfortable prosthesis, to All-on-4 concept. Luckily, now patients with a completely toothless jaw can say goodbye to their old prosthesis, thanks to All-on-4 – a method where both jaws can be implanted with four implants made on the basis of digitally designed teeth. The best dental implants on the market, combined with a state of the art treatment concept, result in a fast and painless treatment. In a couple of hours, the patient gets teeth

Meet Zdenko Trampuš, DDS

Zdenko Trampuš, DDS, graduated from The School of Dental Medicine at The University of Zagreb. He received further training in the field of implantology at UCLA (University of California Los Angeles, USA) in 2008. He is a member of American Dental Implant Association (The Implant Prosthodontic Section of ICOI), co-founder and member of the European Academy of Piezosurgery, member of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists, and co-founder and member of GFDT (Functional Diagnostics and Therapy Association). Also, he is a member of Croatian Society for Maxillofacial, Plastic and Reconstructive Head and Neck Surgery, as well as Croatian Medical Association. Zdenko Trampuš, DDS, is known in Croatia for his constant search for and introduction of state-of-the-art dental technology and methods in the dental practice.


prototype implants as a temporary solution, while the permanent solution takes two and a half months to be ready. The result is a fixed prosthesis which does not appear different from natural teeth. The greatest obstacle for dental implants has always been a lack of bone matter where the implant should be placed. If the root is missing for a longer period of time, the location of the tooth loses bone matter. Until now, this was treated by a long and sometimes uncomfortable bone augmentation procedure. Luckily, that obstacle is no longer present because now you can implant zygomatic implants in the upper jaw. Zygoma implants or zygomatic implants are a revolutionary new type of implants for the upper jaw. The method was developed by Per Ingvar Brånemark, a Swedish professor, biologist, orthopaedic surgeon and scientist who dedicated a huge part of his scientific work to osseointegration (functional joining of the bone and implant).


Zygoma All-on-4 protocol has almost a 100 percent success rate and there is no need for artificial bone implants or sinus lift. Patients respond well to the protocol, especially because the procedure is entirely painless and quick. The procedure can be done on patients with diabetes, osteoporosis or another condition which can be contraindicated for bone augmentation. Also, patients can maintain oral hygiene more easily since it is identical to the care needed for natural teeth. Unlike All-on-4 method with a traditional procedure, the procedure with Zygoma implants is two times more expensive and is done exclusively by dentists with exceptional manual skills and training necessary for them to learn this operativeprosthetic method of dealing with tooth loss. So, if you were told that you are not a suitable candidate for implants, don’t hesitate to call for a free initial check up and consultation.


“Zygoma All-on-4 enables us to implant four zygomatic implants even to a completely dysfunctional upper jaw, giving permanent teeth to people who have lost all hope, just after a few hours in the chair“ Zdenko Trampuš, DDS


Ortoimplant Dental Spa Ilica 283, Zagreb, Croatia T: +385 (0) 1 37 03 498 Email:,



Specialty Hospital Medico, situated in Rijeka, is one of the first privately-owned medical institutions in the Republic of Croatia, successfully combining cutting edge diagnostics and surgery. With more than a hundred employees, including 50 distinguished physicians, Medico provides top quality health care to patients across 24 specialized medical areas. Medico is the first medical institution in Croatia to obtain the American Accreditation Commission's Accreditation for Quality and Patient Safety, holds the Temos Certificate “Quality in International Patient Care“ and has been operating in compliance to the highest international standards, such as the ISO standards, for almost two decades. Specialties: • Anesthesiology • Cardiology • Dermatology and venerology • Endocrinology • Gastroenterology • General surgery • Ginecology

• Health programs • Internal medicine • Medical Biochemistry Laboratory • Nephrology • Neurology • Neurosurgery • Ophthalmology

• Orthopaedics • Otorhinolaryngology • Plastic surgery • Pulmonology • Radiology • Urology

Information & Reservations: 051/263-109; Agatićeva 8, 51000 Rijeka Working hours: Monday - Friday 7:00-21:00 Saturday 7:30-14:00



of Health Tourism

Meet Terme Selce Polyclinic that has been nurturing the tradition of health tourism for over 25 years – so far it has treated patients from 86 countries, 6 continents and even 120 Olympic and World champions



Primarius Vlasta Brozičević, M.D., spec. physical medicine and rehabilitation, as well as rheumatology, has been caring for athletes for years – she is the official doctor of the Croatian Ski Team, Croatian Olympic Committee, as well as a member of FIS Medical Committee. She has created Top Sport Professional Programme based on her own method

Safe and efficient rehabilitation

The Polyclinic is recognized for its fast, safe and efficient rehabilitation and numerous innovative methods it uses. Their experience of treating more than 30.000 patients is world-renowned – Terme Selce cooperates with 22 medical institutions in 8 countries. Polyclinic Selce is Biodex Isokinetic Reference Centre for Croatia


hen a person is ill SPORTS ELITE and under stress, Prim. Vlasta Brozičević is an interthey mostly retreat nationally acclaimed expert in sports within the fammedicine. She says that thus far 120 ily circle because world champions and Olympic medalthey feel better lists have been treated in Selce, includsurrounded by ing also Croatian world-renowned the ones they love. On the Crikvenica athletes – Luka Modrić and Mateo Riviera, in Terme Selce Polyclinic, there Kovačić, Janica Kostelić, Ivan Rakitić is such a family – the founders of and Filip Ude, Olympic champion in the polyclinic, Prim. Vlasta gymnastics. Along with the reBrozičević, M.D., Head of habilitation and treatment Department of Physical of injuries, Terme Selce SPECIALTIES Medicine and RehaPolyclinic also works bilitation, and her on the prevention of Diagnostics, physical therapy husband Prim. M. athletic injuries and and rehabilitation, sports Sc. Ivan Brozičević, psychological and medicine and wellbeing specialist of internal physical readiness for programmes are the medicine - cardiolotrainings and compespecialties of the polyclinic gist and director. For titions. that performs 40 diagnostic more than 25 years and 250 therapeutic they have been buildUNIQUE procedures ing their knowledge METHODS and developing special - Terme Selce Polyclinic protocols in diagnosis, physihas also been recognized by cal therapy and rehabilitation, sports people suffering from back pain, espemedicine, medical wellness, weight loss, cially discus hernia and osteoarthritis, health and beauty programmes. Prof as well as osteoporosis. Terme Selce’s Iva Brozičević Dragičević, M. Sc., clinical know-how, paired with cutting-edge and sports psychologist, is also part technology such as: guided computerof the team. She participates in manized 3D decompression, MBST, Orthoaging a special programme, Healthy kine – autologous conditioned serum Living by IBD, and special weight loss programmes. Terme Selce Polyclinic is located 18 km from the airport on Krk, 140 kilometres from Pula, 168 km from Zagreb and 150 km from Ljubljana. Transfer to the polyclinic is organized by its friendly staff. Polyclinic has 44 experts of different specialties. Its clients describe their stay and achievement of objectives as “more than expected“.


and educational workshops on ergonomics, guarantee speedy recovery – says Prim. Vlasta Brozičević. She explains that MBST is a unique method that induces the regeneration of cartilage and bone formation, the fact also confirmed by scientific studies. - This method is a real aid in stopping the progression of a disease and preventing serious complications – Prim. Brozičević points out.


- We want to make our clients and patients feel at home. It is one of the ways for our joint efforts invested in solving health issues to have a successful outcome and for them to quickly regain health and vitality, to be able to overcome demanding tasks, both at workplace and at home – concludes Prim. Brozičević. Individualized revitalization programmes, as well as an extremely successful weight loss programme are

some of the important factors why it is good to choose Terme Selce. Companies that invest in the health of their employees also have the possibility to organize systematic checkups combined with various wellbeing programmes.


Terme Selce Polyclinic 1. prilaz I.L. Ribara 8, 51266 Selce, Croatia T: +385 (0) 51 764 055 (Selce), +385 (0) 51 400 420 (Rijeka) Email:



IMED dental polyclinic is the leading

regional private polyclinic focused on dentistry Top-quality team | 30 experts | 20 years of experience in implantology and orthodontics | Over 12,000 implants placement | Lifetime warranty | 98.5% success with implants placement | More than 10,000 satisfied patients

Implant dentistry, oral surgery, orthodontics, prosthodontics, periodontics and dental procedures under general anesthesia. Comfort and reliable, VIP dental service, top-quality medical team and multi-disciplinary approach secure the position of the leading regional private polyclinic.

IMED protocol rational, safe and fast!

The Imed protocol is an authorial concept developed as a result of 20 years of implanting experience and specializing in Europe and the USA. We provide our patients with a new smile fast and safely, in a single day with the help of cutting-edge technologies! A team of 12 experts implements the protocol. One surgical procedure under general anesthesia and a simultaneous teeth extraction, implants placement and, if needed, jawbone regeneration. In the next 24 hours, temporary bridges that are placed on the implants are made using the CAD-CAM technology. The patient leaves the clinic in less than 24 hours, completely functional and aesthetically recovered. The recovery lasts for several days with minimal postsurgical problems and a definitive prosthetic rehabilitation occurs after 3 months.

Cutting-edge technology, equipment and materials

oral surgeon, head of the implant clinic and IMED polyclinic director

In Imed we solve cases that require complex multidisciplinary procedures. The emphasis is on treatment quality and individual approach. My team and myself are constantly dealing with the most complex cases with our best knowledge and competence and we are always happy to put a smile back on the faces of our patients.”

• Nobel Biocare implants • Nobel-Procera scanner for implantoprosthetics • Osstell - a device for checking the stability of implants

• Arcus Digma - a device for digital bite registration

• Cad Cam technology • Digital orthopantomogram • ISO 9001 certification of quality equipment and processes

Services • Imed Protocol • Implants placement under general • • • • • •

anesthesia All on 4 Periodontics Dental prosthetics Oral surgery Orthodontics Cosmetic dentistry

Selska cesta 90A, Zagreb, Croatia Tel. +385 (0)1 366 8936 | D E N TA L N A P O L I K L I N I K A

Marko Krmpotić, DMD, M.Sc.

Prof. Sandra Anić-Milošević, DMD, PhD

Orthodontist, Head of Orthodontics at Imed Polyclinic

Over the last two decades there has been a growing number of adult patients asking for orthodontic treatment. Our patients are becoming more aware that once the teeth are in a correct position the better prosthetics can be done afterwards. In addition to esthetic braces we also offer Invisalign treatment where standard brackets are replaced with clear aligners.


Krapinske Toplice A Real Health Destination Krapinske Toplice have recently turned into a big construction site – with projects worth 30 million euros already carried out and the dredgers warming up for five more private investments


AUTHOR Andrea Šitum

“Our desire is to become the best Croatian health destination recognized worldwide, and we have excellent predispositions to achieve that”

Ernest Svažić, municipal mayor of Krapinske Toplice


rapinske Toplice (SPA) is situated in the heart of Croatian region Zagorje, about 50 kilometres from Zagreb. In addition to everything spas usually offer, another advantage of this one is that the major previously worked in tourism, starting as a dishwasher and ending up as spa manager. He considers the town’s touristic development his lifetime project, aware that only new investments can guarantee survival in the globalization game. The list of “his“ ongoing projects is impressive, thus inspiring us to talk to Ernest Svažić, municipal mayor of Krapinske Toplice. What is your vision for Krapinske Toplice? - Our desire is to become the best Croatian health destination recognized worldwide, and we have excellent predispositions to achieve that. We have thermal waters of proven quality at our disposal, and we also

use it as the energy-generating product which is important in branding Toplice as green destination. Our tradition in health tourism development is more than 150 years old. Europe has only a small number of places where you can find such concentration of professional medical staff such as here. Furthermore, we are a unique example of the symbiosis between private and public health investments.


How did you manage to combine private and public interests? - The first private hospital in Croatia was the Hospital for Cardiovascular Surgery and Cardiology Magdalena, nowadays holding the prestigious Canada International Accreditation. Special Hospital for Orthopaedic Surgery Akromion was opened next. They both grew on the foundations of a renowned public rehabilitation centre, Special Hospital for Medical Rehabilitation. They are developing complement services and attracting similar type of investments. In that regard, the construction of an exclusive retirement home has started, as well as a residential facility that follows the principle of residential care.

Aquae Vivae

What other investments would you stress out? - The first construction site recently opened concerns the renovation of famous Bellevue, gastronomic villa and our pride from the Austro-Hungarian times. Unfortunately, its last guest was served in May 1945.



“The first construction site concerns the renovation of famous Bellevue, gastronomic villa and our pride from the Austro-Hungarian times. Unfortunately, its last guest was served in May 1945.“ Ernest Svažić, municipal mayor of Krapinske Toplice

Afterwards, the construction works move to the hotel for which a Russian investor ordered a detailed study by best consulting firms that recommended him to invest precisely in Krapinske Toplice. We are the county’s leader in family housing, the segment we keep investing in. I would also like to mention new luxurious apartments in town’s centre. Construction works started in spring. There are other investors besides local entrepreneurs? - We stepped outside for the first time in Moscow in 2010. In a tough international competition we managed to attract the attention of Russian investors to build their first international helicopter pilot training centre right here. Local administration supported the project and facilitated its quick realization. Shortly after, they decided to invest in the hotel. Bellevue is a German investment, family entrepreneurship project, which will become our new oenologicalgastronomic Mecca. Villa Magdalena has also been renovated and upgraded by local entrepreneurs, while the new residential facility is built by entrepreneurs from the island of Krk.


What is the municipality doing in the meantime? - We’ve defined our development strategy, prepared town-planning documents and a catalogue of desirable investments, thus sending a message that we know what we want. Then we’ve prepared regulations enabling maximum reliefs to our investors. We also prepared a number of projects complementing private investments. We’ve renovated the historical Avenue “Aleja kestenova”. We are also preparing new and renovated access roads, with the ongoing project of a multifunctional market with tourist info point offering local products. In the evening it will turn into a stage for film, dance and theatre. Sports hall will be a public project, and we’re already using European funds to finance the biological filtration system and the expansion of drainage system. This is an important segment of environment protection, in that regard this year we’ll also start working on a recycling centre. How important is the newly opened water park in terms of development? - Aquae Vivae put us back on the map of the most popular thermal rivieras. Last year

they sold 110 thousand tickets, this year they expect 180 thousand visitors. Ground for optimism is surely Croatian National Tourist Board award for the best attraction in 2016, in the category of recreation and fun, with a big sauna world already planned. Aquae Vivae is also preparing to build new outdoor pools. Another thing that makes it special is that it’s full of innovations. For example, the thermal water is also used as an energy-generating product. In Krapinske Toplice today we have thermal water in 227 households. Most guests want more than just wellness and thermal water, how about additional attractions? - Our winning combo is that we combine the best Zagorje has to offer, complemented with local attractions. Our surrounding has hundreds of faces. You can visit numerous castles, such as Trakošćan, Veliki Tabor, world famous Krapina Neanderthal Museum, Kumrovec, Marija Bistrica, wine roads, numerous festivals of film, song or dance. In addition, there are festivals offering authentic experience such as monodrama festival or summer Bald Fest bringing us back to lively times of the Austro-Hungarian Empire at its best.

Health tourism || ST. CATHERINE HOSPITAL


of Excellence

St. Catherine Hospital has been envisioned as a Center of Excellence for sports medicine, orthopedic surgery, radiology, neurosurgery, neurology and physical medicine and rehabilitation, both in terms of expert staff and equipment


t. Catherine Hospital is a European center of excellence for advanced diagnostics, orthopedic procedures and spine surgery, pain management, sport medicine as well as in the implementation of innovative diagnostics methods and personalized treatment strategies. The concept of integral healthcare, where expert teams from radiology, orthopedics, surgery, anesthesiology, gastroenterology, neurology and physical medicine take a multidisciplinary approach, using the newest equipment and the latest treatment options, providing superior diagnostics in one place, the best treatment options and individualized rehabilitation protocols) is what underlines the uniqueness of St. Catherine Specialty Hospital. Hospital closely collaborates with numerous European and U.S. clinics including Unfallkrankenhaus Berlin (Germany), Regiomed-Kliniken (Germany), Diagnostikum Graz (Austria), Carolina’s Pain Institute (USA), Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University (Thailand), etc. In ad-



dition, St. Catherine Hospital is the official medical institution of The Croatian Olympic Committee, The Croatian Football Federation, The Croatian Taekwondo Federation and of many sports clubs in the region.


From the very first day St. Catherine Hospital has been envisioned as a Center of Excellence for sports medicine, orthopedic surgery, radiology, neurosurgery, neurology and physical medicine and rehabilitation, both in terms of expert staff and equipment. In addition, we are focused on “PatientCentered Medicine”, a form of practice, that seeks to focus medical attention on the individual patient’s needs. In order to achieve that goal, we carefully work on care processes, improving the service process and repositioning care programmes aimed at local, regional or international patients. Besides, we are currently applying significant efforts in order to be among the first European hospitals to apply integrative concept of personalized medicine. There is no any doubt, the value of health

care can be increased tremendously through individualized (personalized) medicine.


St. Catherine Hospital is among a few European institutions that started with applications of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) in clinical practice. St. Catherine’s orthopedic team for the first time in the region made a new medical alternative: the meniscal transplant, an hour-long, outpatient, arthroscopic procedure that uses donor tissue to replace damaged meniscus, which can dramatically slow the onset of arthritis. In addition to meniscal transplant since recently we are also successfully applying a new biological treatment: meniscus replacement with the synthetic implant. Furthermore, we are currently in the process of introducing pharmacogenomics into routine clinical practice. St. Catherine Hospital is the member of the PainOmics consortium that include 9 different countries. The total budget for this study is Euro 7,8 mil. while EU is supporting project with Euro 5,9 mil.

Health tourism || ST. CATHERINE HOSPITAL

The Tenth ISABS Conference To achieve planed goals, in June of 2017, St. Catherine Hospital together with Mayo Clinic and International Society for Applied Biological Sciences organized The Tenth ISABS Conference on Forensic and Anthropologic Genetics and Mayo Clinic Lectures in Individualized Medicine which is considered to be one of the most important scientific events in the biomedicine in 2017. The conference topics included: personalized and regenerative medicine, pharmacogenetics, molecular diagnostics, stem cell therapy, etc. More than 50 invited speakers (including 5 Nobel prize laureates) as well as 500 participants from more than 40 countries attended the Conference (

Scientific Center of Excellence

On November 2015., Ministry of Science, Education and Sports of the Republic of Croatia announced that the St. Catherine Hospital become Scientific Center of Excellence for the Personalized Medicine in the Republic of Croatia as a part of Consortium that includes the top healthcare and scientific institutions in country. Hospital is ISO 9001 accredited and a member of prestigious The Leading Hospitals of the World family. In June of 2015, International Certification Association (ICERTIAS) announced that the St. Catherine Hospital won the Top-Quality medal (QUDAL - QUality meDAL) and that St. Catherine Hospital according to the customer’s/patient’s opinion is the best private hospital in the Republic of Croatia. Superbrands organization based in the Great Britain in July of 2016 announced that St. Catherine won Croatia Superbrands 2016/2017 Award for its quality, reliability and distinction. Also, St. Catherine Hospital has been named a National Champion for Republic of Croatia 2016/2017 in The European Business Awards, Europe’s largest business competition set up to celebrate business excellence and best practice in the European business community.

Numerous of overseas patients

info N Ch atio


20 am na 16 /1 pio l 7

Because of unique approach a numerous of overseas patients and World’s top athletes have been treated or diagnosed in hospital including: Garry Kasparov (former World Chess Champion), Marin Čilić (Winner of the US Open 2014), Aleksandr Viktorovich Khoroshilov (the first Russian male to win a World Cup race (Schladming, 2015) since 1981) Gordan Giriček (NBA player: Memphis Grizzlies, Orlando Magic, Utal Jazz), Bojan Bogdanović (NBA player: Brooklyn Nets), Mario Mandžukić (football player: Juventus, Italy and Croatian National Soccer Team), Luka Modrić (football player: Real Madrid, Spain and Croatian National Soccer Team), Ivan Rakitić (football player: Barcelona, Spain and Croatian National Soccer Team) etc.

St. Catherine Specialty Hospital Bracak 8, 49210 Zabok, Croatia Phone +385 49 296 600 Fax +385 49 296 699 E-mail:

St. Catherine Specialty Hospital, Business unit Zagreb Trpinjska Street 9, 10 000 Zagreb, Croatia Phone +385 1 2867 400 Fax +385 1 2867 499 E-mail:


Enjoy the freedom of pain-free movement The hospital has acquired a reputation of “hospital without pain�. All possible types of anesthesia, primarily the techniques of regional anesthesia, are aimed at reducing postoperative pain to a minimum. Akromion Special Hospital for Orthopaedic Surgery has a very low percent (0,02%) of infections. In order to be more available to patients, they can visit us in our polyclinic in Zagreb and clinics in Split.

Rehabilitation in Polyclinic in Zagreb

Akromion Special Hospital for Orthopaedic Surgery is the largest private orthopaedic hospital in Croatia. It is equipped with the latest equipment, operating block with three operating rooms and 11 rooms and suites of high standard, which ensures maximum comfort to the patients. Akromion provides medical services for the treatment of diseases and injuries of the musculoskeletal system. We cover everything from arthroscopy to the joint replacement. We treat fractures and perform reconstructive procedures of malunion or non-union of the fracture.

At the Polyclinic in Zagreb, we perform rehabilitation prior to and following surgeries, as well as rehabilitation of outpatients with painful conditions of the joints and spine, inflammatory or degenerative etiology and sports injuries. The whole rehabilitation process is constantly under surveillance of the expert rehabilitation team (orthopaedic surgeon, physiatrists, physical therapists) and is adapted to the abilities and needs of each individual.

Nikola Cicak, MD, Ph

Our services

Professor Orthopeadic surgeon Head of Akromion Hospital

We treat diseases and injuries of the musculoskeletal system with the most modern techniques. We particularly emphasize the following surgeries:

ARTHROSCOPIC PROCEDURES + arthroscopic shoulder surgery • shoulder stabilization • rotatory cuff repair • calcification removal

+ arthroscopic knee surgery • • • •

meniscectomy suturing meniscus articular cartilage surgery reconstruction of the anterior and posterior cruciate ligament

+ ankle arthroscopy + elbow arthroscopy + hand arthroscopy + hip arthroscopy + Joint replacement surgery

Commitment and love for profession are the guiding spirit of the Akromion’s establishing team! For each patient, we apply individual approach to treatment. The Akromion Hospital stands out from other hospitals with the possibility of choosing the type of the implant depending on the age of patients, their activities and the degree of damage to the joint. The bearing surfaces of the implants are the key factor in their long life. Also, our team treats sports injuries of the musculoskeletal system, especially in case of professional players. A large number of top athletes underwent successful surgery and rehabilitation at Akromion.

+ hip replacement

• total hip replacement (bearing surfaces: metal, ceramics, cross-linked polyethylene) • hip resurfacing • revision, acetabular reconstruction with trabecular metal

+ knee replacement

• hemiarthroplasty • total knee replacement • revision

+ shoulder replacement

• total shoulder repalcement • resurfacing shoulder arthroplasty • reverse shoulder arthroplasty


• treatment of bone fractures • treatment of the maluninon and non-union of the fractures • hallux valgus corrections • carpal tunnel surgeries • corrective surgeries of the musculoskeletal system


spinal degenerative diseases herniated disc spinal stenosis spondylolisthesis spine stabilization

Hospital in Krapinske Toplice

Ljudevita Gaja 2 49217 Krapinske Toplice Telephone: +385 49 587 487 Fax: +385 49 587 488 Clinic tel: +385 49 587 477

Akromion Polyclinic in Zagreb Frana Vrbanića 26, 10000 Zagreb Telephone: +385 1 6445 820 Fax: +385 1 4646 184

Clinic in Split

Splitska kuća zdravlja Kranjčevićeva 45, 21000 Split Telephone: +385 21 252 255 Fax: +385 21 899 784



for Cardiovascular Diseases Magdalena Clinic offers a unique continuity of prevention, diagnostics, treatment and at-home-monitoring of cardiovascular patients



The Telecardiology Centre Magdalena was founded on September 16, 1996. It is located in the town of Krapinske Toplice, in the idyllic landscape of the Zagorje County, as well as in the Croatian capital Zagreb. With the aim of quality improvement and availability of care to cardiovascular patients, Magdalena started the first Telecardiology Centre in Croatia, which provides remote diagnostics, monitoring and treatment of an even higher number of heart patients.


agdalena Clinic for Cardiovascular Diseases has become one of the leading regional centres for cardiovascular diseases. Within the same facility, and under the same premise, work and closely collaborate cardiology, cardiac and vascular surgery, anaesthesiology, intensive care and telemedicine departments – all placing the patient at the centre of their attention and activities. Expert teams perform all non-invasive and invasive diagnostic procedures, as well as percutaneous and surgical cardiovascular interventions. New technologies are continuously being implemented with treatment results comparable to the best European heart centres. A vast number of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, shorter hospital stay, good organization, new technologies implemented in daily work and constant quality control guarantee premium quality of service. Since 1996, more than 100,000 patients have been treated in Magdalena Clinic, more than 10,000 cardiovascular surgeries and more than 20,000 percutaneous coronary interventions with stent implantations have been performed. This great experience is a guarantee of a minimal complication rate.


One of the most advanced procedures in the world today, TAVI (Trans catheter aortic valve implantation), was performed for the first time in Croatia at the Magdalena Clinic in January 2011. Indications and planning of TAVI procedure is the assignment of Magdalena heart team (invasive cardiologist, anaesthesiologist, cardiovascular surgeon). This procedure is a therapeutic option for patients with severe aortic stenosis, which are for some reason considered very high risk or inoperable for classical surgical aortic valve replacement (advanced age, comorbidities, patients which had aortocoronary bypass operation done before...). In 2011, new technology was implemented for 3D mapping (Carto3) enabling pulmonary vein isolation for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation treatment and ablation of focal atrial and ventricular tachycardia. Electrophysiology studies of the heart (EP) and radiofrequent (RF) ablations for different arrhythmia treatment started in Magdalena Clinic in 1998. Over the years, number of ablations is constantly increasing. Total number of patients treated with RF ablation during 17 years is now near 2.000. Since 2000, Magdalena is practicing telemedicine, standing as the digital health leader in Croatia. The Telecardiology Centre offers the service of distant patient monitoring through the implementation of an ultralight, mobile ECG device that delivers high-quality results. In this manner, the patients can send their ECG at any time, no matter where they are, and contact Magdalena’s experts 24/7 to obtain specific recommendations.


International quality certificates

EVAR (endovascular aortic/aneurysm repair) and TEVAR (thoracic endovascular aortic/aneurysm repair), procedure involves the placement of an expandable stent graft within the aorta to treat aortic disease without operating directly on the aorta HIGH SUCCESS RATE

Magdalena’s cardiovascular team performs more than 500 cardiac operations and more than 300 vascular operations per year with a high level of success rate. Vascular

surgery of the aorta, carotid and other peripheral arteries is performed with excellent results. More than 12,000 patients are checked yearly into the cardiology and cardiovascular surgery outpatient clinic, including echocardiography exams and pacemaker follow-up exams. More than 14,000 cardiology consultations are carried out following a transtelephonic ECG and/or blood pressure monitoring in the call centre, which operates 24 hours a day. An extraordinary system has been developed for the protection against in-hospital infections. Significant efforts have been invested to minimize the need for perioperative donor blood transfusion. Magdalena Clinic is a part of Croatian Primary Percutaneous. Coronary Intervention (PPCI) Network, meaning that urgent coronary interventions are performed 24 hours a day for patients with acute myocardial infarction.

The client and their needs have always been and will remain to be the focal point of Magdalena Clinic. Through its dedicated work and introducing new medical methods and technologies into its daily practice, Magdalena medical team ensures the best results of the highest quality and high patient safety. Three independent certificates: ISO9001, ISO EN 15224 and Accreditation Canada International, guarantee Magdalena’s systematic efforts in ensuring quality of service, as well as continuous service improvement.

info Magdalena - Clinic for Cardiovascular Medicine Ljudevita Gaja 2, 49217 Krapinske Toplice, Croatia T: +385 (0) 49 244 444 Fax: +385 (0) 49 244 040 Email:


Health tourism || BRANDING

Take Your


TO THE NEXT LEVEL How to stand out in health tourism, in the mass of similar services and stories?

B Know who you are, and be clear with how you want to be perceived by others

AUTHOR Marijana Brdovnik/Magic 4 Club

randing in health tourism is almost like branding in any other area in tourism but with one important exception: it involves a health element, one of the most personal and sensitive aspects. This is why branding of health care services should be done with the trust element as a key factor of any brand story. To be successful in branding and promoting of health services you need to tell a story, an emotional story, that will not only inspire and motivate loyalty, but also make potential clients feel the service even before they try it. Unfortunately, conventional marketing of health tourism is too often based on selling medical services and room nights at spas and resorts when it should be based on branding. Without a powerful brand, all the advertising, sales promotion, web designs and public relations won’t help you achieve your objectives. What makes medical tourism true in the mind of consumers is the promise of a health care solution, and the perceived value of an experience they will get. The global medical tourism market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 19.38 percent by 2019. (Source: Market Research Store), which gives a great potential to this area mostly not discovered enough. More and more patients will be traveling for better quality care, shorter waiting times and more personalized care. The question is: How will you stand out in the mass of similar services and stories?


Starting point of the branding process is always planning followed by a vision and strategy. Know


who you are, and be clear with how you want to be perceived by others. At the beginning of your brand journey take time to analyse the competition, and from time to time invest in research of innovations on the market and how they change your business. But don’t go running after your competition and be obsessed how they do the business - instead find your own way on the market and try to establish a point of difference from the start, as well as a value for your clients. For any brand in health tourism it is vital to communicate with clients - patients, train its staff to be fully able to understand patient’s needs, and have good communication skills. It is important for every employee involved in the process to be aware of brand standards, and know what the brand stands for and how to represent it properly. If you are the owner of the business, consider inviting a health tourism branding expert to do a brainstorming with the key stakeholders in your company in order to create an effective promotion strategy, action plan, and budget allocation with timeline. Marketing is a crucial element of any hospital, clinic or spa’s business development strategy. Successful brands identify their potential customer base and present the product in an innovative and appropriate way; they try new approaches and come up with integrated marketing strategies in order to increase awareness.


People’s health is always going to be an emotional subject. Medical companies need to understand those emotions, and follow them up with their comprehensive approach and uniqueness of ser-

Health tourism || BRANDING


Marketing is a crucial element of any hospital, clinic or spa’s business development strategy

Much more than just a logo Branding is much more than bringing together a nice logo, attractive brand name and slogan, and presenting the key services through a nice brochure

vice. Reaching for health and wellness, tourists can differ from standard approaches in tourism and it takes specific communication strategy planning, due to very personal, and sometimes very risky, nature of services, to tailor a specific offer. However, growth of health tourism makes it clear that globalization of health care is imminent. Patients are no longer limited to local providers and high prices. Today’s patients can discover high quality medical and dental specialists in neighbouring or far away destinations at a much better price and service than at home. Always have in mind that you can make a fantastic spa zone or dental studio with amazing facilities and hire the best doctors or masseurs in the world, but if you don’t have a real vision with a strong difference point from the other providers, and are not committed to positioning your business, all you’ve got is a building with no clients, and with no loyalty perspective.


Health tourism || IVF POLYCLINIC

Regional Leader

in Infertility Treatments IVF Polyclinic, renowned for an extremely high success rate in artificial insemination, closely follows world trends and develops its own methods in infertility treatments


ach year of our efforts results in about a hundred newborn babies - we are informed by IVF Polyclinic, the first private polyclinic for gynecology, obstetrics and reproductive medicine in Croatia, which also performs in vitro procedures – IVF and ICSI. Since its founding in 1997, the polyclinic has established itself as a centre offering all-around care, treatment and therapy to infertile couples, owing to the thirty years of experience of its founder Prof. Velimir Šimunić, MD, PhD, one of the world’s pioneers in IVF treatments. Significant attention is paid to the latest ideas and trends worldwide, as well as to the clinic’s own practice and research of causes of infertility in men and women and developing treatment methods. In 2013 IVF Polyclinic team was joined by Igor Maričić, MD, gynecologist specializing in human



reproduction and a leading expert in outpatient hysteroscopy in Croatia.


Joining Prof. Velimir Šimunić, MD, PhD, and doctor Maričić on the team are Prof.

In 2016 IVF Polyclinic became an International Accredited Clinic of Global Clinic Rating

Srećko Ciglar, MD, PhD, also a subspecialist in human reproduction, Prof. Mirko Koršić, MD, a renowned endocrinologist and diabetologist, and member of the British Academy of Medical Sciences, radiologist Edita Parac Blažević, MD, and gynecologist Mihajlo Strelec, MD. Clinical embryologists Danko Dobec and PhD Igor Matić, and IVF Polyclinic’s general manager Anita Šimunić, LL.M., Ec.S., also contribute to the polyclinic’s outstanding results. The elegantly designed IVF Polyclinic occupies almost 400 m2 of the ground floor of a new modern building. It features a spacious modern waiting room and two large gynecology clinics, fully equipped for complete diagnostics and minor surgical procedures. IVF Polyclinic not only offers a variety of outpatient treatments in the areas of gynecology, obstetrics and reproductive medicine, but functions as a day hospital as well. There are two patient rooms, an

Health tourism || IVF POLYCLINIC

More than 4000 babies born in Croatia

 Prof. Velimir Šimunić, MD, PhD, IVF Polyclinic owner and medical director, a specialist in gynecology and obstetrics with a subspecialty in human reproduction, was the head of the Institute of Human Reproduction at the Women’s Health Clinic in Zagreb for over 25 years. He is a regular member of the Croatian Academy of Medical Sciences and a professor of gynecology and obstetrics at the Zagreb Faculty of Medicine. Prof. Šimunić, MD, PhD, is a pioneer in gynecological endocrinology and human reproduction on the territory of former Yugoslavia. He started an IVF program at the hospital in Petrova Street as far back as in 1982/83 and headed the team responsible for the conception and birth of the first IVF baby – Robert Veriga. Robert Veriga was born as the first IVF baby in former Yugoslavia and third in Europe. Since then, doctor Šimunić has enabled more than 4000 IVF children to be born.

operating room and an IVF Center in a completely separate and protected area.



Clinical pregnancy rate 2015 y 2016 y

Ovulation induction 3 - 4 cycles





AIH / ITI - IUI 1 cycle / all patients IVF - ICSI / per ET * all patients



* ≤ 35 yr age



Cryo ET / FET * oocytes or embryos *all patients



Spontaneous abortion rate 17,2%


Multiple pregnancy * twins


Complications (OHSS..)




Table 1

The IVF Center is set up according to all modern principles and rules of the Croatian Ministry of Health EU regulations and ESHRE guidelines. The IVF Center is divided into four units – an andrology laboratory for outpatients, an embryology laboratory with special rooms for sperm processing, and gamete and embryo cryopreservation. IVF Polyclinic works closely with and is a part of organizations of the most esteemed medical experts in Croatia. Owing to the physicians’ outstanding expertise, their world-class level of experience and exceptionally attentive approach to patients, as well as the quality of service and affordable prices, there is no doubt that the polyclinic is equal to leading infertility treatment centers in Europe and worldwide. What distinguishes this polyclinic from its competition is primarily the exceptionally high success rate of artificial insemination procedures (see Table 1*).


fallopian tubes and ovulation disorders. Infertility treatment also includes an outpatient hysteroscopy procedure, which can be diagnostic or surgical. When it comes to diagnostics in gynecology, IVF Polyclinic treats preinvasive lesions of cervix (HPV, CIN, colposcopy, LLETZ conization), diagnoses tumors, diagnoses and treats endometriosis, treats endocrine disorders and polycystic ovaries, menorrhagia and abnormal bleedings. The polyclinic offers comprehensive ultrasound diagnostic services, check-ups of normal and pathological pregnancies, repeated miscarriage treatment and diagnosing fetal normality. As for preventive female health care services, the polyclinic also diagnoses breast diseases.


IVF Polyclinic Polyclinic for gynecology, obstetrics and reproductive medicine Babonićeva 121, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia T: +385 (0) 1 46 78 600 Email:

The polyclinic’s main service is infertility diagnostics and treatment, which includes various procedures: semen analysis, sperm DNA fragmentation and determining chromosome anomalies. In diagnosing infertility in women, the polyclinic checks for uterine anomalies, treats endometriosis, damaged


Experience and Love for

Health tourism || DR RITZ POLYCLINIC

Ophthalmology Dr Ritz Polyclinic, the place where health and beauty go hand in hand, following the latest trends in ophthalmology



ven as a little girl, I dreamed about becoming an eye specialist. After completing my studies and serving as a substitute doctor in paediatrics for three years, I got a chance to specialize in ophthalmology in the then Military Hospital, now Dubrava Clinical and Hospital Centre in Zagreb. I knew that this was my chance to make my dream come true – says the ophthalmologist Liana Ritz Mutevelić, PhD. Recently, Dr Ritz made her other dream come true as well – she opened her own ophthalmology practice at which she continues to educate herself and follow the latest trends in anterior eye segment surgery, plastic and aesthetic surgery in the area around the eyes and non-surgical facial aesthetics.

“There are more and more people who have not developed cataracts, but they opt for lens implants to get rid of glasses“

ophthalmologist Liana Ritz Mutevelić, PhD


To what extent did your specialization in Dubrava Clinical Hospital Centre leave its mark on you? It was the best ophthalmology centre of the time in former Yugoslavia. - Yes, everything we did at the time was in line with the global developments in the field. We performed our first lens implant surgery in Zagreb in the late 1970s. In the early 80s, during my specialization, I started performing eyelid surgeries because it turned out I was good at it. We travelled the world a lot, adopting novelties, and young doctors had a lot of learning opportunities. Dubrava Clinical and Hospital Centre, the then Military Hospital, was a pioneer in performing many procedures in this region. For example, Ljerka Henč-Petrinović, Docent PhD, introduced electrophysiological tests. Emil Skrt, Prim. MSc., was a pioneer in intraocular lens implantation and he also introduced some diagnostic procedures. While I was a resident, all these doctors devoted their time to teach and encourage me to improve myself. I also spent 15 years as an ophthalmologist at the Department of Maxillofacial Surgery in Dubrava Clinical and Hospital Centre.     How much has ophthalmology changed since you

completed your specialization? - Cataract surgery is the most frequently and most successfully performed surgery in the world, and the development of technology has significantly improved the effect of these surgeries. Lenses that were previously implanted did not correct astigmatism, so a patient still had to wear glasses, at least for reading, and sometimes even for distance. Today, in our practice, patients have the option to choose lenses that completely replace glasses, and with more advanced lenses there are no accompanying issues that sometimes occurred in the past. What types of procedures are you performing today and do you manage to follow the trends? - I perform cataracts surgeries, as well as plastic surgeries of periocular area. There is always something new being discovered in these fields, and I enjoy the challenges and adopting changes in the technology of procedures. I feel that, on the one hand, my experience gives me security, whereas the love for ophthalmology makes it seem like nothing is an obstacle and I simply enjoy following new trends. I am very fortunate that, in both offices; in Krešimir Square and in Kranjčevićeva Street, I managed to form a great team of people our patients can trust. How often do you perform eyelid surgeries at your office? Are these exclusively aesthetic surgeries or do eyelid surgeries impact eye function as well?

Court Expert Witness for Ophthalmology Liana Ritz Mutevelić, PhD, attended a postgraduate study and numerous courses in Croatia and abroad in order to improve her knowledge. It is interesting that Dr Ritz is also a Permanent Court Expert Witness for Ophthalmology

Health tourism || DR RITZ POLYCLINIC


Dr Ritz Polyclinic Krešimirov trg 19-5, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia T: +385 (0) 91 400 5432 Email:

“In case of drooping eyelids, it may seem like eyelid surgery solves “only“ an aesthetic problem, but this condition can also reduce the field of vision“ ophthalmologist

Liana Ritz Mutevelić, PhD

- Outpatient eyelid surgery does not only solve aesthetic problems, but also treats problems related to the weakness of eyelid muscles, eyelid skin diseases or infections, scars, as well as benign or cancerous eyelid tumours, even the paralysis of part of the face around the eye. However, even the purely aesthetic procedures are important to many – drooping eyelids with excess skin, droopy eyebrows or baggy lower eyelids make the face look tired and old. The overall impression after such treatments can be a refreshed and rejuvenated face. You also offer Dermatude Meta skin rejuvenation therapy. What is it about? - It is a skin treatment method that boosts natural processes, with an external application of active ingredients in the form of special serums. A highly advanced digital device makes invisible micro-perforations on the skin of the face, neck and décolleté invisible. This results in the activation of natural skin rejuvenation processes and collagen and elastin production that repair these micro-perforations. Results can be seen pretty quickly - fine lines and wrinkles fade, pores refine, the blood circulation is stimulated - the face looks refreshed and rejuvenated. So, can we say that in your office health and beauty go hand in hand? - Yes, always. We always try to give the maximum to our patients. It makes us even happier when patients contact us and say that, after so many years, they finally can see the blue sky. Or when someone says that there are no words or presents to express their gratitude. This is when I also feel grateful and I know that my mission, both as an ophthalmologist and human being, has been completed.



Alongside the Best

an e p o r Eu Hospitals

Quick and effective medical solutions for orthopaedics, painful spine, varicose veins, hemorrhoids or cosmetic procedures are just a small part of Zagreb Arithera Specialty Hospital’s offer



amous names of the Ariand joint system diseases. After diagnothera’s medical team and sis and surgeries, patients are provided best treatment methods are with high-quality physical therapy and the reason so many rehabilitation and accommodated patients from the in comfort hospital single and EU choose Zadouble apartments. greb as their The Centre for Spine Anterior scoliosis treatment destination. performs minimally surgery, performed by By coming to Arithera, invasive diagnostic and Vladimir Kovač, DSc, results patients can solve a therapeutic Spine Pain in correcting deformity number of health probManagement methods to about 90% in severe lems, from diagnosis and and all forms of lumbar deformities with distortion treatment to rehabilitaspine surgery, revition – all under one roof. sion spine surgeries and of up to 140 degrees Medical procedures are surgeries for degenerative performed on over 2000 spine diseases. m2 of superbly designed and In the field of orthopaedics, equipped space with about ten clinics, Arithera is a one-stop medical centre two operating rooms, recovery rooms, that offers examinations by specialists, dihospital ward with single and double agnosis, endoscopic surgeries, large joint rooms, as well as halls and a swimming replacement surgeries (knee, hip, shoulpool for physical therapy and rehabilitader) and other orthopaedic surgeries, as tion. well as physiotherapy and rehabilitation. Innovative, personalized and intensive RAPID POST-SURGERY physiotherapy programmes enable RECOVERY unusually fast recovery. This is important Arithera Specialty Hospital is a for all patients, especially professional and well-known orthopaedic cenrecreational athletes who have to rehabilitre for treating tate quickly after surgery and get back to all muscle sports activities.


Arithera pays special attention to diseases caused by the modern lifestyle, such as varicose veins and hemorrhoids. They use state-of-the-art, improved UGFS method of ultrasound removal of varicose veins with foam, continuously being developed and improved in cooperation with the British Vein Institute. The procedure is non-surgical, completely painless and 100% effective – in an hour varicose veins are removed and patients can resume normal daily activities immediately. In 8 years of experience in applying the UGFS method, the hospital has successfully treated 5000 patients. With DG-HAL and DG-RAR methods, hemorrhoid removal is minimally painful and quick, has a high success rate and it enables patients to resume daily activities several days after surgery.


Besides its natural beauty and tourist offer, Croatia also attracts tourists with cosmetic and plastic surgeries and minimally invasive beauty, skin rejuvenation and wrinkles treatments. Cosmetic and

“We have been recognized as a hospital with excellent service and equipment, wide range of specializations and renowned doctors, thanks to which more and more patients from abroad choose our services. Thus we position Croatia as an esteemed medical tourism destination in this part of Europe“ The Director of Arithera Specialty Hospital, Arijana Hegediš Došen, BPT; Vice-President of the Medical and Health Tourism Cluster of the City of Zagreb




By introducing new specializations, the highest medical standards and highly professional staff, Arithera Specialty Hospital positioned Zagreb as an ever more prominent medical tourism destination of Europe

plastic surgery in Arithera is led by an experienced surgeon, Bukovačka cesta 1, Petrova 128, Zagreb, Croatia sub-specialist in plastic, reconstructive T: +385 (0)1 23 04 074 and cosmetic surgery, Prof Rado Žic, DSc. He performs oncologic and reconstrucEmail:                                                     tive breast surgeries, as well as aesthetic breast correction (breast augmentation and reduction, breast lift); eyelid surgeries; ear and chin surgeries; buttock and hip liposuction; abdominal corrections; thigh lift and cosmetic and functional corrections of the genital area. Competitive prices and high-quality procedures make Croatia an increasingly desirable destinaArithera Specialty Hospital

tion for this ever-increasing segment of medical tourism. More and more patients from abroad recognize Arithera Specialty Hospital as a hospital with world-class service and equipment, wide range of specializations and renowned doctors. The majority of patients come from Italy, Austria, Germany and the region. Just a one or twohour flight to Zagreb stands between the European patients and top professionals, state-of-the-art technologies and excellent treatment results at lower prices, less waiting time and equal, if not even higher, level of quality.      



Among the Leading International Transplantation Centres The University Hospital Merkur is the first institution with a developed multiple organ transplantation program in this part of Europe and the only centre in Croatia that performs simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations


t the University Hospital Merkur, between 100 and 120 orthotopic liver transplantations, about 60 kidney transplantations and about 15 simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations are performed annually. According to this data, the University Hospital Merkur is the number one most successful in liver transplantations in Croatia, the second in kidney transplantations and is the only centre where simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations are performed. The top experts in the transplantation team include professor Mladen Knotek, Ph.D., head of the kidney transplantation program at the University Hospital Merkur and President of the Croatian Society of Nephrology, Dialysis and Transplantation of the Croatian Medical Association; and Damir Jemendžić, MD, general surgery specialist and abdominal surgery subspecialist at the Department of Abdominal Surgery and Solid Organ Transplantation of the University Hospital Merkur. How successful are kidney transplantations and what is your standing in comparison with other centres in the world? Prof. M. Knotek, Ph.D.: The results of the University Hospital Merkur fit in with the leading kidney transplantation centres in


AUTHOR Marijana Matković

the world. The kidney transplantation program is a medium-sized program (in Croatia, second in size, following the Zagreb University Hospital Centre), where kidney transplantations from a live donor predominate. The University Hospital Merkur is the only centre in Croatia where kidney transplantations are performed with positive antibodies to the donor (with a positive cross-match) and with incompatible donor and recipient blood groups. We also carry out desensitization procedures of highly-sensitized kidney recipients. How much does the University Hospital Merkur invest in the education of experts? Do you cooperate with any transplantation centres around the world on expert and knowledge exchanges?

Simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations The University Hospital Merkur is the only centre in Croatia that performs simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations. The indication for such transplantations is type I diabetes with terminal kidney disease, and since 2003 over 130 such transplantations have been performed

D. Jemendžić, MD: All doctors involved in the work of the University Hospital Merkur transplantation team have a specialization and a more narrow specialization in their field, and have also been trained in a transplantation centre. The Mount Sinai Medical Centre, NY (the second largest transplantation centre in the world) must be highlighted here, as well as the transplantation centres in Sydney, Paris, Tokyo, Heidelberg and others. The University Hospital Merkur also provides ongoing training for doctors from transplantation centres from abroad, primarily from the neighbouring countries. Since Croatia has been a full member of the Eurotransplant since 2006, it actively participates in congresses, board meetings and other forms of knowledge exchange with other members. You are the only ones to have developed a simultaneous multiple organ transplantation program in Croatia. The pancreas and kidney transplantation in diabetics who end up on dialysis, for instance, is relatively new in the world as well? Prof. M. Knotek, Ph.D.: Simultaneous transplantations are more demanding from the surgical and nephrolic aspects, as well as the aspect of critical care during the postoperative period. Such transplantations are not a novelty in the world, but because of their complexity, only a minor



Thanks to the results of the

with respect to the University Hospital Merkur, Croatia competitive in terms aforementioned of prices, but it can has for 7 years in a row held success? There is be expected that the the first or second place in the no doubt that you price differences will world according to the number of can offer top-quality gradually decrease. registered and realized organ medical services, but donors and the number of what does the data on It is well known transplanted organs per transplantation prices that you also receive million inhabitants in the world and in Croatia patients from abroad. indicate - are we competitive? Where do they usually come D. JemendĹžić, MD: Given these from and in addition to transsuccesses, the University Hospital Merkur plantations, what all can we offer them definitely has potential in medical tourism, when it comes to their recovery? Do but it is necessary to establish procedures you also cooperate with national health in view of the Eurotransplant regularesorts? tions and the laws and regulations of the Prof. M. Knotek, Ph.D.: At the University Republic of Croatia. The cost of kidney Hospital Merkur, kidney transplantations transplantation in Croatia is lower than have been performed on a significant What is the potential of the University the cost of transplantation in Western number of patients from the neighbourHospital Mekur in medical tourism European countries, or in the US. Croatia is ing Bosnia and Herzegovina. When it comes to persons who do not have a Croatian citizenship, only live donor kidney transplantations are performed. After the surgery, patients in Zagreb continue University Hospital Merkur their check-ups at the University Hospital ZajÄ?eva 19, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia Merkur, which is why one of our plans is to T: +385 (0) 1 24 31 390 establish co-operation with some of the Email: Croatian health resorts regarding the patient rehabilitation program after kidney transplantations. part of the transplantation centres performs them. In the countries of Southeast Europe, the University Hospital Merkur is the first institution with a developed program for this type of transplantations and the only centre in Croatia that performs simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations. Since 2003, more than 130 simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantations have been performed at the University Hospital Merkur. Simultaneous liver and kidney transplantations, live donor liver transplantations and live donor kidney transplantations are also performed, while small intestine transplantation was also performed on two occasions.



Wellness & Spa || THERMAL TOWNS


The 5

Wellness & Spa || THERMAL TOWNS

Most Beautiful

HISTORIC THERMAL TOWNS Even the ancient Romans enjoyed the benefits of healing thermal waters, and some of the most beautiful historic thermal towns in Europe emerged along the famous hot springs


he benefits of thermal water are well known – it is primarily used for serious skin irritations associated with dermatological conditions, and more often in everyday skin care. But, what is it that gives thermal water its healing properties? By definition, healing mineral waters include underground waters that, thanks to general mineralization,

AUTHOR Marijana Matković

ion composition and content of some gases and therapeutically active components, possess physiological properties beneficial for the human body. Thermal spring waters are located deep under the ground, in specific geological conditions – water is heated by penetrating through the cracks at a certain depth within the Earth and springs to the surface at a temperature of 35 to 42˚C.     The use of thermal water for thera-

peutic purposes has a lengthy tradition, and even the ancient Romans enjoyed its healing benefits. This centuriesold tradition served as a basis for the establishement of the EHTTA Association (European Historic Thermal Towns Association) in 2009. And since every thermal water has its own peculiarities, we are bringing you an overview of the five most beautiful thermal towns in Europe. 


Continue on page 94


Thanks to the use of thermal mineral water and mineral healing mud, spas are known for the treatment of rheumatic and female diseases, especially infertility

Daruvar Spa facilities are located in the heart of the historic landscape park, Julius Park, one of the oldest protected parks in Croatia. The old Romans were also familiar with the healing quality of hot springs of Daruvar, called Aquae Balissae at the time, when they constructed first spring-water intakes in this city in 288 BC. From that time onwards, this miraculous gift of nature has been restoring people’s health and vitality. Daruvar spa can boast with several hot springs, their temperature ranging from 39° to 47 °C. Along with water rich in calcium, magnesium and hydrogen carbonate, the treatments also use mineral mud, fango. Thanks to the use of thermal mineral water and mineral healing mud, the spa is famous for the treatments of rheumatic and female diseases, especially infertility.


Wellness & Spa || THERMAL TOWNS



Budapest has an almost two millennia long bathing culture, as witnessed by various archaeological excavations from the Roman times. The second important period of bathing culture was at the time of Turkish rule (1541-1686), and it flourished in the early 18th century and the time of the Enlightenment, when the first studies on the benefits of hot springs of Buda were published. In 1762, during the reign of Maria Theresa, it was decided that mineral waters should “be analysed and registered at the expense of the treasury“. In the early 1930s Budapest was becoming increasingly famous as a thermal town, with most healing hot springs. The fact being reflected by numerous spas – the biggest Széchenyi Spa, Art Nouveau Gellért Spa, Lukács Spa, Rudas and Király spas, to name only some.


Enchanting Bath, with its world-famous 18th century architecture and impressive Roman baths, is the only spa town included in the UNESCO world heritage list. Although the first traces of human settlements date from the 8th century BC, the legend has it that around the year 863 BC the baths were discovered by the Prince Bladud, banished from the kingdom of his father because he contracted leprosy and was forced to wander the land as a swine herder. After he cured himself by bathing in the warm mud around the hot spring, he founded Bath as a sign of gratitude. Since that time, Bath has been a popular place for relaxation and healing water treatments, with the warmest water in the UK. In 2006 the new Thermae Bath Spa opened its doors, continuing the rich tradition of bathing culture.


Maria Theresa was the first one to order the analysis of thermal waters in Budapest, at the expense of the state treasury

Wellness & Spa || THERMAL TOWNS


Wellness & Spa || THERMAL TOWNS


Therapeutic effects of Karlovy Vary spring water were allegedly first discovered by Charles IV Holy Roman Emperor while deer hunting, and it was precisely this discovery that led to the establishment of the spa. It is assumed that the city developed around Charles IV’s hunting lodge in the mid-14th century. The most famous and the hottest of its 12 hot springs is the 12-meter high Vridlo with temperatures reaching 72 °C. Unlike the 16th-century practice, which required one to stay in the water for up to ten hours a day, the use of thermal water is nowadays strictly regulated in terms of time and frequency of use.


Karlovy Vary is a city famous for its “13th hot spring“, or also known as stomach remedy – Becherovka, a liqueur made from 32 herbs and water from the hot springs


It is assumed that the tradition of using hot springs dates back to Roman times, but the discovery of the healing properties of natural springs in the 14th century marked a major change in the history of this Italian town. The first baths were built in 1530, and after two centuries of rivalry with neighbouring towns, Montecatini Spa flourished in the 18th century. The famous town’s spas, Bagno Rejio, Leopoldine Spa and Tettuccio Spa were built in that period. These spas are supplied by the four natural springs, each with unique therapeutic properties. As the main bathing city of Tuscany, each year Montecatini Spa attracts thousands of visitors who enjoy the healing properties of thermal water for the benefit of body and soul.


Health tourism || DARUVAR SPA


on the Springs of Health Even the ancient Romans were familiar with the healing properties of Daruvar Spa thermal springs – from their time onwards, this miraculous gift of nature has been restoring health and vitality


hen you visit Daruvar Spa, you will see for yourself that the old Romans adored this healing spa for a good reason. They saw it as a place on a human scale that heals the body and soul. Numerous healing thermal water springs, deposits of healing mineral mud, preserved historical buildings and beautiful historical landscape parks, as well as natural beauty, numerous sports and recreational, wellness-spa and medical facilities, still make Daruvar Spa a perfect place for treatment, relaxation and rehabilitation.



HELP IN TREATING INFERTILITY With the application of thermal water and mineral mud (fango), a team of top specialists and physiotherapists, and state-of-the-art equipment, Daruvar Spa offers successful treatments of rheumatic diseases – inflammatory rheumatism, degenerative diseases of the spine and large joints, as well as medical rehabilitation after surgical procedures, injuries and fractures of the extremities, and treatment and rehabilitation after sports injuries. Treatments with thermal water and mineral mud proved to be useful in treating infertility and as an excellent basis for wellness and spa programmes.

Generally speaking, you will find peace, relieve stress, strengthen and prepare to return to everyday life with the power of healing thermal water for the body and untouched nature for the soul.


You will find a pleasant accommodation in the spa hotel “Termal“*** and wing “Villa Arcadia“*** located in the most beautiful part of the landscape garden, only a few minutes walk from Daruvar city centre. They are surrounded by Julije’s Park, one of the oldest protected parks in Croatia, with beautiful historical buildings,

Health tourism || DARUVAR SPA


Historical sights Aside from rehabilitation, relaxation and recreation, Daruvar also offers numerous cultural and historical sights, including Antun’s bath from 1772, Central Mud Spa from 1909, Villa Arcadia from 1870, Swiss Villa from 1860 and the castle of Count Janković from 1777. In front of the castle there is one of the oldest Ginkgo biloba trees in the world, a tree of exquisite beauty and great value. While walking through history, toss a coin for luck into “Ivan’s well“, the largest healing thermal-water intake or take a walk on the Educational Trail of the Roman Park Forest, all the way to “Julius Brum“, the spring of love

• treating rheumatic diseases • rehabilitation after surgeries, injuries and fractures of the extremities • treating and rehabilitation of sports injuries • treating infertility

healing thermal-water intakes, park forest and well-kept walkways, ideal for long walks. Along with “Arcadia“, there is also a wing with 12 exclusive apartments, connected with a Baroque restaurant “Terasa”, which has been included on the list of 100 best Croatian restaurants for years in a row. In short, along with medical treatment, spa and wellness programmes, you can also count on a high-quality culinary offer.


With the power of healing water, surrounded by the untouched nature, you will find peace and relax your body and soul

“Termal Hotel” has indoor and outdoor pools with healing thermal water, a superb fitness centre, wellness-spa centre with Finnish and infrared sauna, steam bath, Jacuzzi, face and body treatment zone and tanning bed, so everyone can find something for themselves. The complex also contains a sports hall, tennis and mini-golf courses, paintball field, hanging bowling alley, and three fully equipped conference rooms, making Daruvar Spa an ideal place for team buildings.

Villa Arcadia 1870


Photo: M.Turbić

Daruvar Spa Julijev park 1, 43500 Daruvar, Croatia T: +385 (0) 43 623 632, +385 (0) 43 623 624 Fax: +385 (0) 43 331 455 Email:


g in o G DIGITAL


Marketing agencies can help you shape your digital strategy, but the key is working together – says Boris Turkić, Co-Founder and Director of M+ Agency



“For a company, creating a digital strategy is a road map in terms of what to do, where to go, what to look after, what to avoid, and the beautiful thing is, everything in our digital world is measurable, pretty much in real time, so you can react according to results”


Boris Turkić, M+ Agency

hile some health tourism stakeholders are heavily investing in marketing and positioning themselves on the global playground, many clinics, hotels or other treatment facilities are completely ignoring the power of marketing, especially digital marketing. Boris Turkić, Co-Founder and Director of M+ Agency, explains why “going digital” might be the best business strategy.

detailed digital campaign. We continued our relationship for the following conference in Rovinj which really blew our mind in terms of where the health tourism industry is going, what the possibilities are and what the needs of all stakeholders actually are. This led us to develop special programs for HTI stakeholders - we are in the finalizing stage of special packages that will be available for any company/association that wants to take advantage of digital marketing.

Tell us a little bit about M+ Agency? - M+ Agency is a full-service marketing agency with strong emphasis on digital marketing. We started some six years ago and have grown to a team of 25 people, with offices in Croatia and Serbia. Our focus is “to be there” for our clients, and this approach has enabled us to grow steady each year by over 70%, some years even 100%. We are currently serving approx. 50 clients, majority of them coming from retail, fashion, real estate and increasingly more from health industry.

What makes M+ different from other agencies, and why are you a good choice for potential clients? - We are not afraid to say no to the client - there have been clients for which we ended up not doing anything, because they were not ready to work together with the agency. This is not the way we work; we excel in the partnership model, where we work together with the client to make the best out of any challenge ahead of us.

What is M+ Agency’s connection with the health tourism industry? - Our first real connection came through working with the HTI conference in Vienna in 2016, where we structured a very

M+ Agency Ulica grada Vukovara 284, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia T: + 385 (0) 1 646 35 49 Email:


What are some of the must-haves in the health tourism marketing? - I really think it’s about the whole package, but some fundamentals include: proper website with purposeful design, strong database, smart and targeted campaigns that lead to channels in control of the client and using platforms like HTI, MTA and others. Each marketing euro or a dollar spent should be accounted for and should add to the overall value of the client’s platform. Set your goals, set a budget (whatever budget you can afford), see which expertise you are missing in house, find a partner that can help you and work with them closely.

Health tourism || LIPIK SPA

Centuries-old Tradition OF SPA TREATMENTS Listen to your body and choose a holiday you deserve, in the serenity of a historical Lipik garden at the source of healing thermal water


urrounded by a century-old garden, near the natural thermal and mineral water sources, rich history of Lipik Spa in its preserved original architecture introduces you to the benefits enjoyed even by the ancient Romans. Centuries-old tradition of spa treatments is primarily based on the healing properties of the water with a permanent source temperature of 60°C, which, due to its chemical composition, has extraordinary balneological properties in terms of temperature, amount of fluoride and content of dominant ions: sodium, bicarbonate and chloride.


The combination of natural factors, modern medical achievements and professional staff provides rehabilitation programmes tailored to the specific needs of each individual. Lipik Spa offers rehabilitation of neurological diseases and conditions, rheumatic diseases, posttraumatic conditions, postoperative rehabilitation. It achieves ex-


Health effects of Lipik thermal and mineral water:

• reduction of neck and back pain • reduction of pain due to osteoarthritis and inflammatory • rheumatism of various types • positive effects on pain reduction caused by neurological diseases - and after joint and spine surgeries • increased mobility of the joints • strengthening of muscles and reduction of painful muscle tension


cellent results in the rehabilitation of people affected by multiple sclerosis and poststroke conditions. In addition, Lipik Spa is the right place for preventive treatment and health tourism services. For relaxation and recreation there are waterfalls and geysers massages in the pool, hand and underwater massages, as well as pearl and marble baths. Lipik Spa offers accommodation in the serenity of the one of the most beautiful spa gardens in Croatia, a protected monument of landscape architecture. Depending on the condition of each individual, there is a choice of accommodation from the ward with 24-hour care, rooms equipped in accordance with the highest hospital standards to “smart rooms“ and four-star apartments.

Toplice Lipik Ulica Marije Terezije 13, 34551 Lipik, Croatia T: +385 (0) 34 440 700 Email:


Luxury & Wellness || TOP 6 HOTELS

Tailor-made LUXURY T

Top quality service, attention to detail and innovative design solutions characterize all the luxury hotels, but only some of them have been recognised as the best according to the European Guest Experience Award


AUTHOR Viktorija Antolković

oday’s travellers largely rely on online reputation when choosing their next destination. In fact, a recent study shows that 95% of travellers rely on recommendations and reviews by previous guests when deciding where to book. This is why the International Luxury Hotel Association (ILHA), a leading world organization for luxury tourism and travel industry, in cooperation with TrustYou, a global leader in hotel reputation feedback, awarded the 2016 European Guest Experience Award to six hotels. They LUXURY THAT TrustYou Meta-Reviews that rank FEELS LIKE HOME used hotels on the basis of verified comIn Lindos Blu Hotel in Rhodes ments collected through review and each member of the staff booking sites. This approach resulted in the selection of best luxury hotels in cares for the guest just like six categories. they would for a visitor in

their own home

90 countries, 250 000 members Best hotel: Lindos Blu, Greece

Built like an amphitheatre overlooking the picturesque Vlicha Bay, Lindos Blu Luxury Hotel & Suites is a peaceful retreat for those wishing to relax on the cosmopolitan Island of Rhodes. Unique architecture and minimalist, yet opulent interior design, together with impeccable and personalised service create an ideal setting for an idyllic couples’ holiday in the Mediterranean. Each member of the staff cares for the guest just like they would for the visitor in their own home, with a warm and sincere welcome and top quality service and attention to detail that goes far beyond the average hotel experience. From a simple request for more pillows to a birthday or anniversary party, the awarded Lindos Blue Hotel team puts additional efforts to put a smile on your face.


ILHA, The International Luxury Hotel Association, is the leading organization promoting and enhancing the superior service of luxury hotels. Registered as a non-profit organization based in Palm Beach, Florida, today ILHA connects professionals from the field of luxury tourism around the world. It provides its members an insight into global trends in order to achieve or maintain high standards of luxury hospitality. ILHA brings together over 250 000 members from 90 world countries.


Luxury & Wellness || TOP 6 HOTELS

Best wellness: Le Regina Biarritz Hotel & Spa, France

Completed in 1907, Le Regina Biarritz is one of the city’s architectural gems. This iconic Art Nouveau building with 65 elegant rooms furnished in the historical spirit of the Belle Époque invites its guests on a journey filled with unforgettable moments. Its spa programme is a true ode to relaxation! Steal some time for yourself and spend it in luxury treatments dedicated to the well being of body and mind. The rich offer of treatments and massages, Relax in a true sanctuary of combined with a number of luxury and relaxation and exclusive beauty products, treat yourself with a true provides all the ingredients Sothys experience by indulging for a complete happiness and in relaxing facial and body comfort. treatments


Located in the heart of London, this classicist hotel connects French chic design with English tradition. The concept of the awarded Rose Lounge is very specific. Its beige and pink decor reveals the English garden and floral theme inspiration. The design is a subtle blend of two cultures, French and English, also depicted by the paintings by French and English masters. The lobby is an inviting and welcoming place, perfect for relaxing with a book or a cup of tea. The unique atmosphere Inviting and welcoming lobby, is achieved with floral motifs and floral fragrances, as well perfect for relaxing with a as the candle-lit evening rituals book or a traditional English that completely transform the cup of tea atmosphere of the lobby.



Best Lobby Lounge: Sofitel St James Hotel London, Great Britain


Luxury & Wellness || TOP 6 HOTELS

Best room: Villa Honegg, Switzerland

Hotel Villa Honegg, built in 1905 in Art Nouveau style, is located in the heart of Switzerland above Lake Lucerne. It was reopened in 2011 after a complete renovation, in which it managed to preserve its historical charm. What is it that makes Hotel rooms only round up the its rooms so special? Villa Honegg’s rooms are extremewhole experience of staying ly comfortable, with quality at Villa Honegg, with its beds and bedding, and beautiimpeccable service, delicious ful marble bathrooms, which food of local origin and an make any guest feel at home. A incredible view mixture of natural materials, such as wood and leather, and top quality furniture also contribute to the winning room design, as well as a discrete and userfriendly technology.



Best service: Mountain Resort Feuerberg, Austria At the height of 1765 meters there is a place that combines comfortable rooms, a 3000 square meters large spa and an incredible holiday experience above the clouds: Mountain Resort Feuerberg. Feuerberg is an ideal place for all skiing, nature and wellness lovers, whose “Spirit & Spa“ holiday philosophy makes each stay unique. The blend of active holiday in the snow and mountain air with relaxing moments of peace and contemplation in the spa centre offers the perfect mind and body balance. And there is an extra bonus for families with children: professional child care, playrooms, a Top quality service and family sauna, ski school and dedicated staff take good school ski lift. care so you could make



the best of your holiday above the clouds

Relais del Nazionale Hotel offers its guests a warm welcome, warm and intimate ambiance and a typical atmosphere of the Alps – a cosy chalet, rich in enchanting details, which perfectly blends with the serenity and harmony of the surrounding nature. Rooms in a traditional style, with rustic beams, wooden floors and antique furniture, are an ideal blend of the old-fashioned spirit and all the benefits of the modern times. Hardly anyone will be indifferent to the hotel restaurant offering buffet breakfast and an afternoon tea and snack in front of the fireplace. The one thing all the guests


joyfully remember is an abundant offer of fresh products typical of this area and local specialties prepared with special care and love Photos:


Best food and beverage: Relais del Nazionale Hotel Vernante, Italy


The New Face

of Wellness From wellness architecture to mental wellness, wellness industry is now taking a new turn to improve our overall health and happiness AUTHOR Viktorija Antolković




t’s not just the relaxing spa rituals and rejuvenating wellness routines that lift our spirits – wellness architecture is also a part of that “feel good” vibe, which is taking a new turn starting to utilize designs and materials that improve our health and happiness. It can be as simple as using natural materials or employing plants that help remove air toxins, or at the high-tech end, with hotel rooms that manipulate circadian lighting and dawn-simulation for good night’s sleep of their guests.


Beauty Meets Wellness In the previous years, the beauty industry was focused on outward appearance and external measures to enhance beauty, mainly through cosmetics and topical products. But now, it embraces a more holistic approach where looking good also means feeling good. This beauty&wellness trend includes the notion of healing and nurturing from the inside out. The traditional “cosmetic repair” model is replaced with a beauty approach that revolves around prevention by creating health and wellness from the inside - from fixing to preventing, from topicals to ingestibles, from artificial to organic, all rooted in scientific validation.

Instead of focusing on surface aesthetics, wellness architecture shifted its attention to design and materials that address the physical and mental health, elaborating standards for human health and wellbeing. And there is some serious sciUNIQUE ence behind that - “International Well Building EXPERIENCE Standard” (WELL) or Mayo Clinic’s new “Well Hotels and wellness retreats Living Lab” examine how every aspect of now rely on innovative use of architecture and design affects real human biophilic design and “smart” rooms beings, in order to present scientifically with sensors and responsive based, practical guidelines.

architecture that can tailor unique health experiences for each guest

Healthy mind = healthy body

These recommendations are already being implemented in hotels and wellness retreats that are positioning themselves as leaders in the wellness architecture movement, from innovative use of biophilic design (finding inspiration in nature and utilizing natural materials) to “smart” buildings with sensors and responsive architecture that can tailor unique health experiences for each inhabitant.

Mental disorders are on the rise, now more than ever - according to World Health Organization, the number of people suffering from depression or anxiety between 1990 and today has increased roughly 50%, to over 600 million. Instead of focusing on physical health, which has been dominating the wellness industry and discarding mental wellbeing, mental wellness is discovering new paths to emotional wellbeing and happiness. Wellness industry now tackles with the task to bring discipline back into our lives – from a healthy day and night routine, work-rest balance and the practice of digital detox.


There is a world. And there is a different world.


Rest, Relax, Restore

and Repeat While professional hands take care of you, wellness centres are a perfect place to relax, while the numerous health advantages for your body are an added bonus


AUTHOR: Viktorija Antolković

o many things to do and so little time? The hurried pace of today’s lifestyle takes its toll in the form of overload, accumulated responsibilities and growing stress, and the only solu-


tion is to restore the physical and mental balance in your life. Fortunately, going to a wellness centre is a chance to take a break from the hectic everyday life - it’s time to find inner peace and re-connect with yourself.  Continue on page 110

THERMAL RESORT LAŠKO Hotel • Wellness • Thermal pools Ayurveda • Medical Centre Congress Thermana d.d., Zdraviliška cesta 6, 3270 Laško | 080 81 19 | 03 423 21 00


Take a walk, meditate, read or choose a spa treatment - all that matters is that you enjoy the activities that please you. One of the ways to relax is definitely massage - besides helping relax your body and relieving muscle pain, scientific studies show that massage reduces stress hormone levels and strengthens immunity. Regular massages bring numerous physical and emotional benefits, as there are several types of massage, from deep tissue therapy to the so-called Swedish treatments, which can be very beneficial for your body and mind. Aside from relaxing and clearing your mind, massages can also work on a specific problem in your body.


Sweating in the sauna is a great way to help the body get rid of accumulated toxins. Because of the heat of the sauna, body temperature begins to rise, blood vessels expand, and blood flow increases. Increased body temperature in the sauna activates the same body defence mechanism as does an elevated body temperature caused by disease - increased white blood cell formation. Thus induced deep sweating secretes various types of toxins, including chemicals such as pesticides and heavy metals. At the same time, the body increasingly secretes good mood hormones (endorphin, serotonin and dopamine) and the growth hormone responsible for the youthful appearance of the skin and hair growth.


The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that mental illness, including stress and related disorders, will be the second leading cause of disability by 2020. Stress-related illnesses lead to frequent sick leaves and a high percentage of healthcare service usage, to the same extent as do accidents in

If you overdo it with wellness, expect but a few “side-effects” - boosting the “happy” hormones, vitality, increased productivity and creativity 110

the workplace or absence due to longterm illnesses. Each wellness and spa centre is a place for relaxation and getting rid of stress, which now also offer special stress management programs. Such an approach can also significantly increase work performance and help you find new energy for everyday challenges. Therefore, the equation is clear - the more you go to wellness centres,

Benefits of hydrotherapy

Hydrotherapy with thermal waters improves circulation, has a positive effect on the elasticity and strength of the connective tissue, relieves and treats dermatological diseases, relieves the pain of the musculo-skeletal system and has anti-inflammatory and antiirritant effects

the greater your productivity and better vitality!

A SIP OF WATER - A SIP OF HEALTH The benefits of thermal water have been known since Roman times - hydrotherapy with thermal waters improves circulation, has a positive effect on the elasticity and strength of the connective tissue, relieves and treats dermatological diseases, relieves the pain of the musculo-skeletal system and has anti-inflammatory and anti-irritant effects. However, the consumption of thermal


Take a walk, meditate, read or choose a spa treatment - all that matters is that you enjoy the activities that please you

water also brings numerous health benefits. In addition to bathing in pools, individual baths in thermal water or underwater massage, due to the specific value of the minerals, sipping thermal water additionally helps cleanse the body. Drinking water is beneficial for the stomach and other internal organs, and inhaling it is beneficial for people suffering from allergies and all those living in the city.


Today’s spa centres offer a combination of advanced skin care using the highest quality natural ingredients with face and body rejuvenation treatments, in a

relaxing atmosphere. Procedures such as laser treatments treat various conditions, including hyperpigmentation, enlarged veins, capillaries, or laser hair removal, while body shaping programs, such as anti-cellulite massage or body wrap treatments are growing in popularity. Add to this individualized weight loss programs, fitness and yoga programs that, combined with a customized diet regime, represent a real step towards a healthy lifestyle that should become an ultimate priority for all of us.


Wellness & Spa || LUXURIOUS SPA


We are slowly turning back to nature, on all levels, including luxurious spa treatments


AUTHOR Viktorija Antolković

ometimes we all need to rest and relax without the stress and worries of everyday life, and luxurious spa treatments raise the definition of relaxation to a whole new level. If you need pampering in the true sense of the word, the diverse range of the most luxurious treatments is slowly going back to nature, taking the very best from it. Namely, the latest trends look for inspiration in nature and when it comes to skin care and revitalization they only choose superior natural ingredients, including expensive herbal extracts or gold and crystals.

hydrated. The massage also has anti-stress and relaxing effect.


Bee venom is yet another ally in rejuvenation and a new star of spa treatments – its formula stimulates the creation of collagen and elastin for smooth and tight skin, leaving only fresh and rejuvenated complexion.

For centuries, caviar has been known as an almost magical source of nutrients that enriches and regenerates the skin. Therefore, from the depths of the sea comes skin care rich in omega-3 fatty acids, nourishing vitamins and proteins, yet another inspired discovery in the eternal quest for timeless beauty.


Gold is a symbol of wealth and luxury, and it is thus not unusual that gold massage is seen as the ultimate professional care. The body slowly absorbs tiny particles of gold, leaving the skin radiant and



Our body has the power to regenerate and heal, and stem cell therapy uses precisely this ability to turn back the biological clock. Plant stem cells stimulate the formation of new collagen and blood vessels, renovation of damaged skin, and slow down and reverse the signs of aging. They are, therefore, very welcome in spa treatments.



Many cultures and religions believed crystals and precious stones had magical powers, and today they are used in spa treatments for relaxation and revitalization. According to the ancient teachings about the smooth flow of positive energy, each crystal has its own energy vibration. More recently, crystals have become part of luxurious cosmetic product lines.

Wellness & Spa || LUXURIOUS SPA

15 years of luxurious treatments Energy Clinic has been offering its clients luxurious wellness and spa programmes for 15 years, combining the revitalizing energy of healing and the feeling of complete relaxation. Following the opening of the first centre in London, the largest Croatian and one of the major European chains today combines wellness and spa centres in more than ten five-stars hotels in Croatia, Montenegro, Switzerland and Germany. With the slogan “15 years relaxing in luxury“, Energy Clinic focuses on the promotion of a lifestyle recognized by Mick Jagger, Richard Gere, Donatella Versace, Pierce Brosnan and many other celebrities.





From the

Kitchen Stars 

to the

Both Chef Xavier Boyer and Chef Fernando Perez Arellano agree on one thing – Michelin Stars are not the goal, but a recognition of hard work and effort to please the guests AUTHOR Andrea Šitum

Photo: Fernando Perez Arellano


he taste of Mediterranean would not be the same without them - two superb Chefs, Xavier Boyer and Fernando Perez Arellano, are the culinary geniuses who have undoubtedly raised the Mediterranean diet to the ultimate artistic level. Boyer built his culinary career in some of the most famous French restaurants, obtaining the Michelin stars along the way. He has been working in the renowned Gaddi’s Restaurant in The Peninsula Hotel in Hong Kong since February 2016. He terms himself a ‘modern classic’ who likes to refer to the well-proven flavours. Fernando Perez Arellano mastered his culinary art in several top-notch restaurants in Dublin, London and Naples, opening his own restaurant Zaranda in Madrid in September 2005, winning the prestigious Michelin stars during its first year. Five years later, he opened Zaranda on Mallorca, recapturing the success. Today, Zaranda is renowned as one of the top 10 gourmet restaurants in Spain. However, the main incentive for creating interesting tastes is always a satisfied guest, while the stars serve as a mere acknowledgement that the effort pays off.



10 questions for Chef Xavier Boyer


How did your culinary career start and why did you want to become a chef?

- My career started at the age of 15, when I became an apprentice for Mr Robuchon. I was always passionate about food and my mother had a restaurant in the Caribbean when I was a child. Therefore, I always liked to help her and be surrounded by food.


You have worked in many restaurants around the globe and with many famous chefs. Who among them had the biggest influence on you?

- Yes, I worked in many restaurants around the world, but since I worked for Mr Robuchon for more than 14 years, it was him who influenced my work the most. Author’s note: Joël Robuchon is a famous French Chef and restaurant owner, proclaimed the “Chef of the Century” by the Gault Millau Guide in 1989.


How difficult is the path towards the Michelin Star award?

- Michelin star is not a goal, but a recognition. We always work very hard

in a way to respect the season’s products, and for the customers’ satisfaction. The happiness we can provide to the costumers is the reason that makes us work harder. If we have the Michelin Guide recognition, it is a plus for the whole team.


Did your work change, and how?

- Receiving remarks from the Guide does change us since they come from relevant professionals and we always keep them in mind.


What is your signature dish?

- I do not have a signature dish, because I do not like having one. This is the reason I can always find inspiration in the dishes that I made in the past, and which I can modify as I want.


What inspires you in your work and how would you describe your culinary philosophy?

- I am primarily inspired by travels, because I can discover new flavours and new combinations. My family comes from the south of France, so the Mediterranean influenced me as well. I

would describe my cooking philosophy as ‘less is more’.


What is the secret of a good restaurant?

- For me, the secret of a good restaurant is the integrity of the chef and the welcoming staff.


What future challenges and developments do you foresee in the restaurant business?

- Right now, the challenge I am facing is to take Gaddi’s to an even higher level of excellence than the one it is currently at.


What advice would you give to someone who wants to become a chef?

- The first advice I would give to a person who wants to become a chef is to work hard and to taste as many various flavours as they can.


What do you like to cook the most when you are not working – just to eat at home?

- I like to cook roast chicken, mashed potatoes with olive oil and with the perfect chicken jus.

“Michelin star is not a goal but a recognition. We always work very hard in a way to respect the season’s products, and for the customers’ satisfaction” Chef Xavier Boyer



10 questions for Chef Fernando Perez Arellano


How did your culinary career start and why did you want to become a chef?

- I started to wash dishes in a restaurant when I was 18 because I tried to support my stay in Dublin where I spent few months in order to improve my English. Working in the kitchen, and also the fact that I was living by myself, and therefore had to look after my own meals, gave me an interest in cooking.


You have worked in many restaurants around the globe, with many famous chefs. Who among them had the biggest influence on you?

- All of them are very present in who I am and in my style of cooking nowadays. There are also many other chefs whom I did not have the chance to work with but who, nevertheless, have an impact on the way I approach food. It would not be fair to name one in particular.


How difficult is the path towards the Michelin Star award?

- I can say I turned from a teenager into a man the day that I first felt the pressure of having to deliver quality food, cleanly and neatly presented, at the right temperature and at the right time. After a few weeks of doing that, I realised that I had to get used to that pressure and

routine for the rest of my life. Since then, it has become my lifestyle and passion, forgetting about any former hobbies I had as a youngster. I guess Michelin Stars are a consequence of this.

4. 5.

Did your work change, and how?

- Absolutely not. Stars are the consequence, never the cause.

What is your signature dish?

- The black egg is most probably the best known and recognised among all our dishes…


What inspires you in the kitchen and how would you describe your culinary philosophy?

- Inspiration varies. Certainly, my surroundings, the seasons, my background, my trips, my lifestyle, all play a very important role in my creativity. Therefore, my cooking has a traditional soul, an academic heart, a vanguard character and a global influenced personality.


What is the secret of a good restaurant?

- There are many parameters to take into account and every restaurant has its own assets and reasons for the people to go there.

“Generally, I can say that there is no good restaurant without a happy staff, happy food and happy customers” Chef Fernando Perez Arellano

Generally, I can say that there is no good restaurant without a happy staff, happy food and happy customers.


What future challenges and developments do you foresee in the restaurant business?

- Cooking and restaurants are becoming more and more popular at all levels. I believe the industry is going towards the interaction when it comes to gastronomic restaurants and towards hybrid concepts (drinks, music, food, atmosphere), and also when it comes to friend and family restaurants (bistro, brasserie, etc.). The old luxury and silver service is out of fashion.


What advice would you give to someone who wants to become a chef?

- Make sure the lifestyle of this industry matches your personality. It is not all about passion for food… That is the main difference between a good cook and a chef.


What do you like to cook the most when you are not working – just to eat at home? - Paella, Pasta Amatriciana, Spanish omelette, a good steak or grilled fish.




Hotels that want to position themselves in the field of health tourism should provide nutrition counselling service


AUTHOR Marijana Matković

lthough media is nowadays full of good health advice and it seems that people invest in health more than ever before, statistics deny that the Western civilization is also a healthy civilization. If we look at the statistics on the global level, as many as 15% to 37% adults have high blood pressure, whereas at the age of 60 these percentages go up to as high as 50%. The incidence of diabetes has strongly increased in recent decades, and it now amounts to 5% to 10%. What is especially worrying is that diabetes increases the risk of ischemic heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease. Today, there are 600 million people with hypertension and 150 million with type 2 diabetes worldwide, and an almost identical number is glucose intolerant, which also increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. On the other hand, epidemiological studies conducted in Europe and the USA show that the prevalence of celiac disease in the general population is approximately 1%, while the prevalence of food allergies is present in 1% to 3% of adults and 4% to 6% of children. Since food has always been in the focus of interest of every tourist, and especially the ones who need to adhere to

Gluten-free only!

Celiac disease is a unique example of a disease for which the only treatment is a strict gluten-free diet, a lifetime requirement for patients suffering from this particular condition. And since the number of patients in the European Union is growing, hotels should certainly consider having gluten-free menu options.


certain dietary recommendations, applied nutrition has just began to occupy an important place in health tourism. Hotels and spas often opt for certification to provide their guests an additional guarantee of safe food. We have therefore talked with Alenka Brozina, M.D. who graduated from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Rijeka, Croatia, and specialized in internal medicine. She studies the impact of diet on human body and health, and has attended numerous foreign and domestic postgraduate courses in diet therapy, clinical nutrition, sports medicine and sports cardiology.

“A nutritionist is precisely the person who should act as the main link between a guest with special dietary needs and hotel kitchen“ Alenka Brozina, M.D.

Can diet therapy be used in tourism nowadays? - Of course. Special dietary needs are actually an integral part of diet therapy, or treatment with a proper diet. So for example, people with diabetes have to comply with special dietary guidelines to regulate blood sugar levels or to keep their disease under control. Likewise, cardiac patients also have to adhere to certain guidelines. And these are just few diseases that can be treated with proper diet. You often mention celiac disease as a unique example of a disease for which travel is a true “adventure“? - It is true. Celiac disease is a unique example of a disease for which the only treatment is a strict gluten-free diet, which is a lifetime requirement for patients suffering from this condition. In case of celiac disease everything seems very simple, but

Interview || NUTRITIONISM this is not the case. Gluten is added to most products, and there is also a high risk of secondary gluten contamination of food that does not normally contain it. People who suffer from this disease, in general, always carefully think about their travel destination and choose hotels and spas in which all their dietary habits are met and where they feel safe. This is certainly a good opportunity for hotels to think about their business plans and consider diet therapy as a part of their future offer. You mentioned the feeling of safety. How crucial is it when planning a journey? 
 - Sometimes these people feel the safest at home and in their own kitchen. However, occasionally they have to travel to an unknown destination, be it for business or pleasure. And this causes problems because only a few hotels are certified. Nowadays, some hotels have “allergy friendly“ certificates, such as for example ECARF certificate (European Centre for Allergy Research Foundation) which gives an overview of allergens and offers meals based on the presence/absence of the most common allergens (“nut free”, “gluten free”, “lactose free”, “vegan”). There are some good examples on the local level as well because there are some new certificates that guarantee food safety in accordance with the European standards, such as the Croatian Healthy Meal Standard. According to you, is it time for expert nutritionists to deal with hotel menu options? Should such hotels have their own nutritionists who could create individual menus according to guest’s needs? - I absolutely agree. A nutritionist is precisely the person who should act as the main link between a guest with special dietary needs and hotel kitchen. Hotels that want to position themselves in the field of health tourism should provide nutrition counselling service in accordance with the guest’s needs, work on educating their staff and supervise the implementation of certified standards. Could you give some examples? - In Croatia, my home country, there are hotels with ECARF certificate, such as Vitality Hotel Punta in Veli Lošinj, then Apollonia Beach Resort & Spa in Crete, do Sado Business & Nature Hotel in Setúbal, Portugal; Tirler - Dolomites Living Hotel, Alpe di Siusi in Italy, Nana Beach Hotel in Crete, etc. In general, if we look at the hotels that earned this certificate – the majority of them are located in Greece and Portugal. I believe these are good examples we should follow, both in terms of nutrition and tourism.



Mediterranean Diet for Him and Her The diet of the 21st century in the service of health - many studies have proven that the Mediterranean diet is the healthiest diet


any clinical studies have proven that the Mediterranean diet is the healthiest diet with many positive effects on health – this was the reason UNESCO included it in the list of protected intangible heritage in November 2010. - Mediterranean diet includes foods rich in plant fibre, such as cereals, various fruit and vegetables, nuts, legumes, different kinds of seeds and olives, and an increased intake of fish and seafood. Intake of red meat should be reduced, whereas organic eggs and dairy products, as well as poultry should be consumed in moderation. The main source of fat is olive oil, and the best sweetener is honey. Also, daily menu should be adapted to the specific needs depending on age, but gender as well – says Lejla Kažinić Kreho, M.D., the member of the British Nutrition Society and the author of the bestselling book 21st Century Diet.


As many organic fruits and vegetables as possible is the formula for the prevention of prostate cancer. – Broccoli and tomato are an excellent combination for the prevention of prostate cancer and it would be good to prepare them as a side dish with lunch or dinner as often as possible. Also, decrease the intake of saturated fatty acids of animal origin and increase the intake of foods rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. This primarily means oily fish, walnuts, almonds, sunflower and flax seeds. Walnuts and almonds are a good choice for a snack. You can add walnuts to your chicken breast and seasonal vegetables salad and bring it to work as a light lunch, or to your morning oat porridge. Whole grains are generally very


AUTHOR Marijana Matković

healthy and we should consume them two to three times a day, whereas oats are one of the most desirable grains – says Lejla Kažinić Kreho, M.D.


Oats are an excellent source of magnesium, manganese, selenium, iron, calcium, zinc and copper. Due to beta-glucan fibres, they are also popular as food that ‘irons out’ the wrinkles from the outside, they help women with hormone imbalance, so their intake is recommended in perimenopause and menopause. Oats are also excellent for lowering cholesterol. Also, due to their low glycemic index, they are useful in reduction diets. They help in maintaining optimal levels of blood sugar.

In general, whole grains reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes by 20% to 30%, and have a positive impact on the prevention of colorectal cancer, polyps, hormonal cancers, pancreatic cancer and other cancers of the digestive system. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are especially recommended for a healthy heart and blood vessels. This includes food such as oily fish, which should be on the menu at least two to three times a week. Buckwheat, tomatoes (that lower the level of bad cholesterol), green tea, dark chocolate and a glass of red wine are also beneficial for the heart. These are foods that middle aged and elderly people should include in their diet.

Mediterranean shake for testosterone boost for Him Oats also impacts testosterone levels, and in combination with the other ingredients, they become an excellent breakfast. Put in a blender: •  250 ml of organic soy or cow milk, •  3 tablespoons of oat flakes, •  pinch of cinnamon powder, •  2 teaspoons of honey (best would be manuka honey), •  1 banana, •  1 apple, •  1 teaspoon of flaxseed, •  1 teaspoon of pumpkin seeds •  1 teaspoon of sesame seeds. Mix well and drink immediately!


“Whole grains reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes by 20% to 30%, while broccoli and tomato are a good combination for the prevention of prostate cancer and should be prepared as a side dish with lunch or dinner as often as possible“ Lejla Kažinić Kreho, M.D.


Extra virgin olive oil is especially recommended for women, as it was proven that it decreases the risk of breast cancer. When it comes to women, one should also emphasize the importance of foods rich in phytoestrogens, including legumes (lentils and chick peas), vegetables, nuts, flax, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, as well as berries, such as blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. Soy is also a good source of phytoestrogens, as well as soy products and alpha sprouts. All these foods will also alleviate the symptoms of menopause, but one should avoid red meat and poultry that is not free range. If you want to lose weight, dig into celery, and use green leafy vegetables, such as chard and spinach, to fight wrinkles. - In addition to being effective as anti-depressant and for boosting concentration, avocado is also an excellent aphrodisiac. Asparagus, garlic and nutmeg also have a similar effect, and if you wish to enrich your love life even further, eat watermelon – says Kažinić Kreho, M.D. Thanks to the amino acid citrulline that expands and relaxes blood vessels, watermelon is a natural substitute for erectile dysfunction treatment drugs.

Supergreen Mediterranean juice for Her

Drink this juice as a snack – it is strongly alkaline, and thyroid & diabetic friendly. Cold press 1 sliced cucumber, 4 chopped green celery sticks, 1 organic zucchini and 2 medium handfuls of arugula and drink immediately.


Interview || 4 SEASONS CROATIA

Role of Media in Health


The clients always have to think about what makes them special because this is the best foundation for promotion - says Andrea Šitum, Nativa Media CEO AUTHOR Marijana Matković


Seasons Croatia magazine and its online edition ( are both original projects by Nativa Media company director Andrea Šitum who launched them in order to shed light on Croatian potentials in health tourism. The magazine is published in English, Russian and Slovenian, with the website in Croatian and English. Andrea Šitum, author of one of the most read lifestyle websites in Croatia,, says the success exceeded her expectations. Nativa Media company started the year preparing the first edition of HTI News Magazine, created and published by the company itself. This was a reason enough to talk with its CEO. How did you become HTI Conference partner? - To put it simply, professionals easily recognize other professionals, people who they’d like to work with. This was our case as well. Last year, when we were presenting our project and the 4 Seasons Croatia magazine during the HTI Conference in Vienna, Zdeslav Radovčić and I discussed new possibilities and concluded that the similar magazine concept could work equally well in promoting HTI Conference as well. It’s an honour for me that Mr. Radovčić considered us serious and professional enough for this kind of task. In my opinion, it’s an excellent synergy. What makes this project special? - We wanted to tell a story of health tourism in Croatia and Europe, and provide as much information as possible on recent developments in our profession. Therefore we’ve given enough space to marketing experts, branding and certification in health tourism. Even though the magazine aims at B2B marketing, it was designed in the form of lifestyle magazine in order to facilitate the contact between like-minded people. It’s a subtle promotion; I believe it’s much easier to find a person you’d like to cooperate with through a newspaper article, a story or an interview. Furthermore, if you are in need of an urgent info or a contact, you can find it in the info box, together with the QR code taking 


Continue on page 124

ISSN 2459-7309

ISSN 1849-9368

-9368 ISSN 1849

Revija za zdravstve ni turizem in wellness

Журнал об оздоровительном туризме и велнесе

Издание 2 / Март 2016 / Год 1 / Бесплатный экземпляр

Корпоративный велнес Issue 1 / m Health Touris

& Wellness

Year I / Free


4 ns o Searosatia C

ess for

e Welln


/ March 2016



Busines Great Results

.com roatia asonsc urism w.4se h To ww o Healt llness N 1 & We ine Magaz

2016 logy


4 and All-on- a Zygom

TOP 10

1. izdaja / Novembe r 2016 / Letnik I www.4seasonscroat Revija št. 1 za zdravstveni turizem in wellness

spa trend report turizem na

HRvaškem Implantologija

All-on-4 in Zygoma

Jadransko m orJe


ns zine 4 Seaso The Magasponsored Croatia is ian Chamber by the Croat my of Econo

ТоП 10

/ Brezplačen izvod

4 Seasons Croatia

najboljši wellness center АдриАтическое море лучший велнес-центр Luxury & A TO E P 10 Wellness hotelov IC S

T re RIA AD lness cent e best wel Th




Оздоровительный туризм в

in Tourism



4 s Season Croatia sonscroati www.4sea ал об 1 Журн ом выпуск ельн есе оздоровит и велн туризме


ends Spa Tr Report Health

для лучших деловых результатов

Korporativni wellne ss

najboljše poslza ovne rezultate

Спонсор журнала 4 Seasons Хорватия Хорватская Торговая Палата

Projekt podpira Hrvaška gospodarska zbornica

Luxury & Wellness отелей

& Luxury s Hotels es Welln



Interview || 4 SEASONS CROATIA

ogy and cosmetology topics, wellness industry etc.

“Readers’ emotions are triggered by the story and the people behind it, not the interior, regardless of its luxury” Andrea Šitum

you directly to the English version of the website.

How about the challenges you were faced with? - The biggest challenge was the responsibility and the worry whether we would manage to wrap up the financial construction or not. This is, in fact, entirely private investment. However, when we noticed our clients’ positive reaction to promotion of such quality, I knew we were going to make it. The other challenge was me always wanting to deliver „more, better and stronger“. Therefore we decided to modernize our design even further. The third challenge, for me as an editor, was to combine health tourism topics with luxury tourism and gastronomy topics because this year, along with the HTI Conference, there’ll be two more events – ILHA Summit and Taste the Mediterranean festival. What are the recommended characteristics for a health tourism magazine editor in chief? - Just like any other editor, you need to stay cool at all times and follow the rule: „No matter how things look at the moment, it will all turn out great.” It usually does. You need to know how to make quick decisions, organize your work, be visual. Most of all, an editor must be well-versed in the topic written about in the magazine. Writing about health is very demanding because you need to understand even highly complicated medical terms, know your way around nutrition, dermatol-


Fortunately, you have a lot of experience in that regard. - I honestly do, I specialize in topics of health and health tourism. It all stems from my previous education, years of work on website and the latest 4 Seasons Croatia, with experts in health and health tourism. Furthermore, I also worked as an editor of a pharmaceutical lifestyle magazine.

Nativa Media Company won the Greenovation award and the Green Mark certificate for its project

What about the clients? Do you always obey their demands? - Information is of highest importance. I refused certain clients looking for promotion based on false information – magic potions for losing weight or hair regrowth, margarine as a healthy nutrient... We don’t accept things like these. For no money in the world would I promote such a thing. What would you say about media promotion in health tourism to your future clients? - First of all, they have to think about what makes them special because this is the best foundation for the promotion. Afterwards, professional photos, staff pictures, professionals whose expertise proves the quality of the clinic, this is what triggers readers’ emotion. At that point we take over and offer you an a la carte promotion. The best we can deliver. Plans for 2018? - We have a lot of good ideas, plans and energy to promote Croatian health tourism. We’ll continue working on our websites, organizing promotions on world fairs. I believe that 2018 will be similar to this year – a lot of work but having fun as part of the deal.

Promo || ROLEX

BECAUSE TIME IS A LUXURY As one of only two Rolex servicers in the entire former Yugoslavia region, Pero Mamić has gained a reputation of one of the greatest experts in the luxury watch industry



n decades of work in the luxury horology industry, the name of Pero Mamić has become a synonym for reliability, trust and quality. By developing its legacy, Mamić family continues to invest in business and strengthen its position as a leader in the luxury watch industry. You were the first in Croatia to start working with luxury Swiss watch brands, and recently you have celebrated an impressive 39 years of partnership with Rolex. Can you tell us more about how you got started? - I found my life calling as a child while playing with my father’s watches and becoming fascinated with the movements. After becoming a watchmaker, I opened my first shop in 1970 and in 1978 I was certified as one of only two Rolex servicers in the entire former Yugoslavia region. I had worked well with other prestigious brands such as Patek Phillipe, Vacheron Constantin, Longines, Baume & Mercier, Piaget, Certina and Cartier. However, at one point I decided to focus on Rolex and we have had a successful partnership ever since.

several years showing them the ropes. Soon we will be opening a new 300 m2 store in the centre of Zagreb, fully equipped in keeping with the highest standards. What can tourists find in your store? What advice do you give to your customers when buying a watch? - The value added tax refund of up to 17.9% brings in a large number of foreign customers. Our store has different watch brands, with emphasis on Rolex and Tudor watches, and a range of complementary accessories, such as stationery, leather goods and watch winders. A watch is something extremely personal; it is something we treasure our whole life, pass down from generation to generation. Buying a luxury watch is an emotional moment which you remember for the rest of your life and that is why we approach each customer individually.

After several decades of partnership in the luxury watch industry, you have gained a reputation of one of the greatest experts in your profession. To what do you attribute such success? - I do not improvise and I strive for perfection. We are a family business and I have been working with my sons and daughter for


discover your story at

Full of well-being source: zagreb tourist board, photo by julien duval

photo by hrvoje serdar

Don’t fill your life with days, fill your days with life.

HTI News - Special Edition City of Zagreb 2017  

HTI News is 1st European Health Tourism Industry Magazine, published also in a luxurious glossy variant.