Experiences of an American woman who was married to a Serb.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Belgrade Serbia named #1 "Ultimate Party City" on the Globe by Lonely Planet

And well deserved too.

Personally, I've always described Belgrade to people as "the New Orleans of Europe." A little corrupt, a little scruffy, a little impoverished, but my god the spirit and fun of the place.

Note: As a businessperson, my next thought is how to monetize this burgeoning party reputation. If only the Belgrade tourism board could get their act together and copy New Orlean's incredibly organized convention services bureau. Putting on a conference in New Orleans is a pleasure because they make the organizer's job easy every step of the way. The hotels, the taxis, the entertainment, food, and even the drinks in the airport are all set up for a smoothly functioning and pleasurable event. With a few fact-finding missions and serious government support, Belgrade could become the coolest new meetings and conference center in Europe, especially now that we're all bored of Barcelona which practically became the Orlando of the European event industry in the past decade.

Just an idea....

7 comments:

Christina said...

And it's a great idea! I've been hugely impressed with improvements to Belgrade's tourism sector in recent years. Another positive factor is that it's still a bargain destination within Europe. It's got the excitement Prague had in the old pre-EU days - but with better food!

Rosemary Bailey Brown said...

OK I have to point out that "better food" than Prague does not mean "great food" or even "good food." Even now. Especially if you enjoy fruits, vegetables, and/or spices.

Mario said...

Few years ago Danube was almost as high as Mississippi during Kathrina. Gipsies expelled under Gazela. Music is different but mugging chances are close. I am going to Serbia from Slovenia in two weeks time :-) Belgrade University alumni.

Christina said...

I managed to find decent fruit and veg last there last year - something I was completely unable to do in Prague in 88-89, even though my friends there were vegetarian. Croatia has better fruit and veg, and of course direct access to seafood. But I don't mind switching over to "inland" food for a holiday. As for spices, I always use Vegeta, and fresh herbs - easy to find in markets.

MaiaLaz said...

I'm going to Belgrade on Thursday for 2 weeks and I've heard many differences of opinion from descriptions of it as a "big village," to those similar to the comments above. I have not heard about it being a party city though. But I'll keep my eyes out. :)

Imogen Moore said...

Agreed.... But only in principle.

Let's face it, Belgrade is an unappealing city. Architecturally and environmentally, it can't compete. The one thing it does offer is the feeling of accomplishment one gets after figuring something out. Anything! E.g. A train timetable, how to pronounce a street name, where to find the (really not-so-good bar) that has been recommended by another Serbian Enthusiast.

Make it too easy... And what is left? It all seems a little un-Serbian to me. And I LOVE the place.

Christina said...

Imogen, LOL!! I suppose you're right. Many things are still challenging to me if they involve cyrillic. I giggle when I look back at the note I got from a woman that I later figured out read "Knez Mihailova" but at the time I had no clue what it said, and was too shy to ask people for help na srpskom. Part of the thrill of travel, is having to figure things out, go outside your comfort zone, and Belgrade is still a challenge!