Text topic: Architect Nikola Dobrović (1897–1967) – Fifty Years Later
Text author: Небојша Антешевић
This paper is a research of the designing activities of architect Nikola Dobrović (1897-1967) in the Adriatic Sea region in the 1940s, represented by his designs for competitions and tourist facilities architecture in Split and Dubrovnik. They were a great contribution to the development of the avant-garde thought and Modernism in architecture in between the two World Wars, as well as a stimulus for the development of modern tourist economy in the interwar Yugoslavia. In several designs of tourist facilities at the Adriatic Sea (public bathing sites, entertainment hall, hotel, tourist office), which showed high architectural and aesthetic value as examples of interwar modernism, Nikola Dobrović drew attention to the necessity of developing modern tourist structures designed according to the requirements of new tourist demand. Some of these designs have remained unrealized, because there was not enough understanding for them among the expert public or the wider social community, but they still are excellent expressions of Dobrović’s modernist ideas and his authentic architectural language so important for the Yugoslav architecture of the 1930s. The market aspects of tourism inspired the investors to plan construction of hotels that would follow new standards in the hospitality industry in order to meet the requirements of demanding guests who got used to the standards of high quality hotel services while visiting other European tourist resorts. Having applied modernist principles in the architecture of the Grand Hotel on Lopud, near Dubrovnik, as a unique example of modern hotel architecture in Yugoslavia, the architect has also pointed to the social aspect of the modern tourist industry oriented at a new profile of tourists.