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Revelations in Sveti Stefan

February 23, 2018

 

Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

 The wonderful island of Sveti Stefan: is where apparently George & Amal Clooney spent their honeymoon.  Where also another two love-birds: tennis champion Novak Djokovic & Jelena Ristić, married in 2014. I broke up a day after being in Sveti Stefan:/. I guess it just didn't work for me. Sigh!!  

 

On my way to Sveti Stefan I had a theatre revelation and I wrote this adapted passage: "Somewhere on a stage characters meet like black holes collide — as heavy as stars, as small as cities, literally black holes (empty hollows). Tethered by gravity, in their final performance the characters seem to course through thousands of revolutions about their eventual point of contact, churning up space and time until they crash and merge into one huge emotional representation, an event more powerful than any since the origin of the universe, outputting more than a trillion times the power of a billion Suns. Emotions, just like black holes, collide in complete darkness. None of the energy exploding from the collision comes out as light. Though it can cause enlightenment. No telescope will ever see the event, apart from the spectators who feel it, and the lady with the red dress. Technology can encompass emotions, but emotions are always beyond it. The stage is where they perfectly intertwine. 

Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

Theatre bends language with effortless might and uses it not only as an instrument of thought, but also as a Petri dish for emotional nuance, it probes deep into the messy human psychology that animates brilliant and flawed characters alike, as they persevere in enormous personal and political, practical and magical quests on stages from around the world."

 

My adapted passage is from the astrophysicist Levin, and it was originaly about stars colliding. I like what came out of it, even if I hold the credits merely for swapping words on my way to Sveti Stefan. Creativity, after all, is one of the last remaining legal ways of gaining an unfair advantage over the competition, or so said Ed McCabe. I found the Petri dish metaphor beautiful rather than imagining bacteria. Emotions can sometimes be as bad as bacteria anyhow, but bacteria is so diverse that literally I think they can come from a much more diversified range than emotions, given they are both strong. By the way, the Petri dish can proudly hold theatre for a microscopic analysis anytime.

Photo (c): Benedetta Risolo

 

Back to Sveti Stefan, I was with a huge theatre group in the area, made up of Macedonians, Italians & Turkish people, and we had one free day away from running a theatre course in the town of Ulcinj in Montenegro. We packed ourselves in Blagoj's van and off we went.

 

 Photo (c): Benedetta Risolo

 

If you don't have a car to get around Montenegro, you will have to rent one and pay attention that the car is functioning properly! A different group from our theatre course ended up renting a car that broke down so they lost precious time in taking the car back and switching it! Mini-buses can be slow, and you also lose time in between stations. Though, if you are on a really tight budget and you are alone, go for a mini-bus, they are a fun bumpy ride! Sveti Stefan is fairly close to the romantic town & fortress Budva ( a mere 5- 6 minutes drive) & at an arms length from Milocer. You can check my article on Budva here.

 

Sveti Stefan is one luxurious resort, sporting an unique a la 15 th century charm! Yep it goes wild and deep! Sveti Stefan was almost like the Forbidden City when we got there: that's because it was forbidden to enter! We found out from a local, that some wealthy car manufacturing companies rented the entire island, to discuss a new car model. They car manufacturers paid exactly 2 million euros to be there. George & Amal reportedly paid more.   

                                Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

I, on the other hand, did not regret at all being in Sveti Stefan, break up or no break-up: it is an uniquely atmospheric setting of  handsome courtyards and serene sea views. It is a world unto itself: attached to the coast by a narrow isthmus, pairs cobbled lanes, shaded courtyards and 600-year-old red-tiled roofs with three pink-sand beaches. 

Photo (c): Aman Resorts Courtesy

Rosy Sand Beach, Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

The entire island was first mentioned in the year 1442, and is in fact this petite, gorgeous stretch of 2 km land!! It's a cute islet & a 5 stars hotel resort on the Adriatic Coast of Montenegro, simple, elegant & ambrosial. It used to be a heaven for the pirates of the Adriatic in the 15th century, though originally it was built to defend against the Turks! Now the whole complex is under Aman Resorts, and you need to know all about it!

Photo (c): Aman Resorts

 

 As a fortification,  it was funded by a guy named Paštrovići. But that was after he looted  the Turkish ships moored in front of Jaz Beach, during Barbarossa's siege of Kotor ( another gorgeous town) in 1539!  I mean what cute heaven ever got away from Barbossa's fury? ( i always imagine this guy wearing a red beard!) Barbossa attacked yet another island I went to: Parga, in Greece! He is chasing me!! Help!

 

                                Photo (c): Benedetta Risolo

 

Actually, no, don't help me! Apparently running from captain Barbossa, got me to Sveti Stefan. 

                               Villa Milocer, Photo (c): Nomaddeea

Photo (c): Benedetta Risolo

 

It was the Venetians  though, that actually re-built it to a more or less version that we know of today, after they destroyed it, by fighting too much with the Turks. Do these wars EVER stop? Nope and is NOT dope! Sveti Stefan has a magnificent history though, that you should know all about, especially, since from its originally 12 families living there, it grew to 400 families in the 18 th century, that later got moved by authorities, and everything transformed by magic into honey for the bees: Orson Welles, Elizabeth Taylor, Sophia Loren,  Princess Margaret, Carlo Ponti, Ingemar Stenmark and Kirk Douglas, ventured around in the 60's and the 80's! But it was also used as an occasional chess venue, attracting top-class players such as Boris Spassky and Bobby Fischer.

 Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

A "fun" fact is that during the communist years, one of Sveti Stefan churches was turned into a casino by the very communists:/ Boooooo!!!

 Photo (c): Aman Resorts Courtesy


When the Yugoslavian break down occurred, the resort saw a decline in its tourism. The Government of Montenegro decided to revive the whole place, by inviting international bids, and the contract was awarded to Aman Resorts that now operates under a 30-year lease..that's a lot. The Aman Resorts is a 5-star franchise hotel of the international group of Aman Resorts and it won the Hotel of the Year Award from Gallivanter's Guide in 2010. Italian tenor, Andrea Bocelli gave a concert at the resort, to mark the Golden Jubilee of the hotel. Probably to match the Venetian ancestry of the islet. Actually, the resort happens to have a presence in all places known to man..and they did a fantastic job in Sveti Stefan..

 Photo (c): Aman Resorts Courtesy

 Photo (c): Aman Resorts Courtesy

 

The stone buildings are hand restored, housing the rooms, cottages and and the 8 suites on the island, styled to showcase original details of what a 15 th century fortress is supposed to look like, and respectful to the centuries of history that give the islet its dash of straight-forward charm. I'm saying straight-forward, because, honestly when you see it, it seems like the goddess Aphrodite mistaken the sea and raised herself up in Montenegro, drank a Vranac wine and reshaped herself into eye-candy buildings! The hotel- village pops up as a bewilderment to the eyes...

 

Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

And speaking of the wine: you my dear, get a bottle of wine included in the services first time when you get to the Aman Resort! The local viticulture and distilleries produce a range of wines and spirits that define the taste of Montenegro. The Vranac Reserve red wine and fiery rakia spirit are two favourites..

                               Vranac Wines, Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

The entire fortified village is  is commercially known as Aman Sveti Stefan, and it is exclusively at the disposal of Aman guests. The Villa Milocer with its 8 suites on the mainland,  is linked to the island by the narrow isthmus. It is a  former royal residence (summer residence of Queen Marija  (Serbian descent)), and sits amid 80 acres of pine and olive woods and incorporates a mouth-watering spa. As though, there wouldn't be enough water around! Just sayin'! 

 

 The villa was refurbished as part of the Aman Sveti Stefan in 2009, featuring silk accents, parquet or antic floors, with large double windows and doors leading onto Juliet balconies that overlook the tranquil gardens.

Villa Milocer, Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

The smell of lilies is incredible in the area! From October to May, the Island and its facilities are closed, but Villa Milocer remains open. 

Villa Milocer, Photo (c): Nomaddeea

Villa Milocer, Photo (c): Nomaddeea

 

One of the thumbs up of the islet of Sveti Stefan is the open-air piazza the very heart of Sveti Stefan, with dining venes facing the sea, having an enoteca, taverna & an anti-pasti bar serving local delicacies. If you like to treat yourself well: give it a go, and hope it won't be rented wholly by the rich dudes of our world! And even if you break up in Sveti Stefan..remember:

 

The End.

Is only 

A New Beginning

Old energies vanish so that the new ones can come in!

 

XoXo

Deea

 

 

 

 

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  Drama Moments & Nomad Times : served with a lem on   on  a flying zebra, and a pinch of jazz. Tips, life tricks & international coffee sips guaranteed.

Nomad

Deea

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