This exploratory survey focused on the hotel industry of Croatia
. As it was discussed in the theoretic background
the hotel industry is a supplementary industry, rather than an independent one. This is generally due to the fact that people’s urge to trave l is not generate d by the hotel industry. Thus, it is a range of tourist attractions, which in great scale predetermines the success of a hotel industry in a particular country. From this point of view, Croatia has the extraordinary resource s and attraction s
the diverse a nd pure Mediterranean nature spread across 6
000 km of the coast and over 1
Besides, the country has a rich cultural heritage and longstanding relationship with its Western
European neighbo u rs . Ho wever, as the current condition of the industry reveal s
, these factor s alone do not make a successful tourist destination and lucrative spot for the development of hotels. As the results of the research shows, Croatia has several important drawbacks as an environment for the development of the hotel in dustry ( see Figure
As discovered during the research the Croatian government has chosen a sustainable and well
balanced approach to the development of tourism and hotel industry in particular. All the necessary environment
protection legislation is in place, as well as a well
functioning system for controlling its implementation. However, the government has not yet been able to adopt the crucial policies, which would foster the development of hotels in Croatia. The research uncovered the existence of inefficient, bureaucratic procedures in obtaining construction permits for the development of new hotels.
Also there is a lack of cooperation from the government in promotion of the country, as well as heavy taxation and excessive presence of the government in ownership of hotels and other tourist objects (e.g. marinas). Absence of new developments puts the existing hotels in a dominating position, which fosters inef ficient management practices and resistance to any change (tourists keep coming anyway). On the other hand, another major challenge for hotels derives from a short season and the inability of current industry participants to extend it. The hotel
business i s further hit by a fierce competition from public accommodation providers, who operate at low cost and provide a decent level of service.
These drawbacks are the reason why the Croatian hotel industry is still in its initial stage of development, wi th the total amounts of beds in the hotels being less than in a single tourist city in Spain (e.g. Benidorm).
shows the summary of all the researched factors, affecting the hotel industry in Croatia.
. Hotel industry of Croatia through Porter’s Diamond Model
Implementing sustainable development
F igure 1
the country while having splendid natural resources and a government which understands the importance of its preservation, has a large set of pr oblematic areas. However, all these problems can be solved with time. During the past 15 years the country has been consistently stirring into the right direction, reviving it s political, economic, social and legislative environments.
At this point, it seems that the government will play a major role in future development of tourism in Croatia. As soon as it is capable of implementing the chosen (sustainable) development model of tourism, the hotel industry will improve dramatically. B ut for the time being, the situation within the industry seems to be a vicious circle. Due to the fact that bureaucracy and complicated nature protection system hinders construction of new hotels, the existing ones enjoy monopoly position. This in turns de teriorates the quality of