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“A wonderfully unique island experience”
Review of Palmizana

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Palmizana
Ranked #38 of 169 Specialty Lodging in Hvar
Reviewed May 22, 2009

My husband booked a week in Palmizana as the second stop of our spectacular three week honeymoon. He figured it would make for a relaxing and somewhat restful break between Paris and Istanbul. He figured right. We had done a lot of research prior to arriving in Palmizana so we would know what to expect during our visit - expectations that were definitely exceeded. We stayed in Villa Orange and couldn't have been more pleased with the beautiful, comfortable accomodations that were made complete by an amazing terrace with a view of Palmizana Bay. Aside from a couple of day drips to Hvar (which I would highly recommend), we stayed on island. We enjoyed one incredible fresh meal after another. Romina, the owner, was always present and available to assist in any way she could. We rented a boat one day and found several private coves to swim and relax. Most of our time was spent at the beach sunning and swimming, eating and drinking fabulous Croatian wine. A kilo of fresh grilled shrimp for lunch became our daily ritual while sitting on the terrace at Toto's taking in the view of the Adriatic. I only hope that one day we can return to Palmizana -- one week wasn't enough!

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank ESRinSD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 15, 2009

When we booked this trip we had an idea of a quirky and friendly hotel and we were not disappointed.

The hotel itself is located in one of the main bays of St Clements. The island is mainly covered with forest with a rocky coastline with very little entertainment except yourself and your book or scrabble board.

But surely this is the reason to go? The charming Romina whose family have owned and run this guesthouse for generations explained how electricity only arrived at the island 5 years ago. There is no road to speak of just a track taking you through the interior to take you through the various bays. There is also no real beach but an area with loungers on the front of the Palmiziana Bay.

If you are looking for a large sandy beach, then this is not for you. But equally you will easily find a comfortable and secluded spot in any of the bays with pretty much no one else around.

The restaurants on the bays served mainly seafood. However the standard was excellent with fresh fish brought to your table to select and extremely friendly staff who were always willing to help and recommend, especially when they realised you were staying longer than the passing ships who dock in the harbour.

This is probably not the place for people looking to party, and I wonder if it is the best place for younger children but if you are looking for seclusion and you do not mind the various methods of transport required to get to this destination then i would thoroughly recommend. Hvar is a boat ride away if you do get cabin fever.

Do not expect the fancies of modern hotels, there are no egyptian cotton sheets. plasma tvs nor giant walk in showers. Maybe that will come in the future but when it does also except the price to go up a hundred or so euro a night.

The destination itself is unique and beautiful, the accomodation similarly unique and well worth visiting.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank eermeenow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 15, 2009

Palmizana is a beautiful resort on a perfect island. It has a wonderful get-away-from-it all feeling. The 20 minute boat trip from Hvar (a fantastic venetian style place in itself) is like a trip away from the cares of the everyday world to a magic place. It's what we Irish call a 'thin place' — where earth and the heavens touch—you expect to bump into a god or goddess somewhere around.

I stayed with a group of colleagues for a training week. We slept in different villas, each decorated to a different colour theme. The silence at night has to be experienced to be believed. Probably due to the fact that there is no traffic on the island (apart from a couple of stripped down landrover service vehicles).

The resort is an artist's paradise - perfect for writing, photography, painting or just quiet reading. It is surrounded by luxurious semi tropical vegetation and, of course, the warm inviting Adriatic. The sea was crystal clear, with plenty of isolated coves—ideal for private bathing and enjoying the delights of the outdoors.

I found it the perfect place for quiet meditation, but I'm sure it is also fine for partying, if that's what you like. There were some interesting people around so it's a good place to meet, drink, talk and share ideas.

We ate outside, on tables beautifully laid out with clean linen for every meal (including real linen napkins—my test of a classy restaurant). The food was locally sourced and excellently prepared. Service was friendly and quick. There was no problem cooking some special vegetarian dishes for me—nothing seemed too much trouble for the staff.

I loved Palmizana and rate it as one of the best places I have ever stayed. I want to go back again and again. It's a perfect place for lovers and anyone creative or spiritual.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled on business
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1  Thank tdjs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2009

We stayed in this resort for a week in September 08 and had a terrible time over there. First of all do not be fooled by their brochure, the pictures are much more glamourous and beautiful than the reality of the resort that is run on a minimum budget. Everything is old and would need some money spending. There is only hot water for 2 very, very quick showers everynight, they only have water delivered in a reservoir and water consumption is restricted. The island is not catered at all for children, the paths are not paved and you walk directly on dust and rocks. The beaches are rocky, dirty, full of rubbish from the boats and tourists who invade the island everyday. The only easily accessible sand beach is also distgusting, always covered with rubbish, tiny and it is a very noisy (they have a bar next door). The bungalows are very close to each other and there is very little privacy. Also the bungalows are surrounded by 3 restaurants and the rooms are quite noisy all the time so do not expect to read your book in a quite mediterranean atmosphere. Some bungalows had no air conditionning. But the worse is to come. While we stayed there 8 people got food poisoning from their main restaurant and the owners of the resort (always on site) did not want to take any responsabilty, did not offer any discounts or refund. People were ill for up to 3 weeks with terrible tummy ache, diarrhea, vomiting and dehydration. It was a terrible experience when the problem occured as the island is completely isolated and there is no doctor, pharmacy or anyone that can help you if you have a health problem on site. We felt stranded on this island while all unwell, the nearest island with doctors is 30 min away. They can get you there but the transport is done on a fishboat with no comfort, you get splashed constantly along the way. The marketing of this resort is really clever: they ask you to transfer directly the money to their Lichtenstein or Austrian bank accounts so you have no way to get your money back or get it back from your credit card company if something goes wrong. Also they ask you to book for a minimum of 1 week which is far too much for this island that has so little entertainement or nice beaches to offer. I discourage anyone especially with young children to go there. While we were holidaying there we saw some people leaving the resort before the end of their schedule stay because they were so unhappy with the service and the resort.

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled with family
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12  Thank trustme1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
meneghello, Owner at Palmizana, responded to this reviewResponded May 22, 2010

We are very sorry that this guest had a bad experience on Palmizana
and it must have been extremely distressing to have to look after a
sick child at the time. However, we feel we should point out that
many of his complaints against the resort are founded on a complete
misconception of what Palmizana is about and what we are trying to
achieve. We’d also like to point out that, while we have the
deepest sympathy for him and the distress he felt at the illness of his child,
it is, for quite simple reasons, highly unlikely that his child became
ill as a result of food poisoning contracted through our kitchens.

First, we should point out that our family has run the resort for more
than 100 years with immense dedication and devotion. This is a family
business, our livelihood. We run this business according to the
highest moral standards and take great pride in the way we treat,
serve and respect our guests.

We operate with maximum respect for the natural environment as well as
for our guests who come to us with their families and children,
wanting to experience that natural environment and to enjoy it. Our resort is a bohemian one that offers a richblend of natural and man-made beauty.

Palmižana is not an artificial tourist resort like so many built
uniformly around the world. It is a unique and original landscape
created and enriched over decades by its inhabitants. It is a
landscape that has been visited by people for over a century in order
to enjoy a close communion with nature. It is not a “luxury”
resort and we will sacrifice the comforts of civilisation, in order
not to harm the natural environment. For instance, our guest
complains that the paths through the woods to the beaches are not
asphalted – but that is not negligence on our part. We have quite
deliberately avoided doing that, in order to preserve the natural
environment.

Water is the most precious commodity on the island. There is not a
limitless supply. We bring water to the island by boat. As a result
of this, it is necessary to impose water restrictions, but these still
allow guests to have (hot) showers. Tourists for whom a limitless
supply of water is an essential luxury are ill-advised to stay here.
Limited water supplies are part of the reality of a small island like
Palmizana.

We pride ourselves on being very careful in keeping interference with
the island’s natural environment to an absolute minimum. We want to
leave everything on the island as natural possible. Subject to that
we provide all necessary services for our guests.
We are dedicated to maintaining the resort as it has always been, to
preserve the ethos and vision of its founders and to give the guests
who come here the same life experience our guests have always had.
That, too, has been a very deliberate decision and we have persisted
with that in spite of all the political turmoil that has beset the
former Yugoslavia and Croatia over the past century.

Palmizana is a small island and it takes time to reach it. We highly
recommend to everyone to stay at least one week there and, in the high
season, we operate a minimum stay of one week to simplify the
administration of arrivals and departures. This is not an unusual
system and it tends to be convenient for guests too. Most of our
guests stay at our place for one or two weeks during the summer and
most flights and other connections are on Saturdays, too.

Because it is somewhat off the beaten track, the nearest emergency
rooms are in the town of Hvar /15 min ride by boat/ and the nearest
hospital is in Split, 45 min to 2 hours away, depending on the ferry
boats schedules. Of course this could be a matter of concern to
guests, but this information is available on our website, under the
“important information” section.

This guest mentioned that his son had caught a virus and that others
on the island suffered a similar problem. But it is important to
point out that this phenomenon was both fairly restricted in Palmizana
and much more widespread – there was an outbreak of an entero virus
epidemia right along the Croatian coast at this time. Such outbreaks
are common occurrences during the summer months. Numerous cases of
vomiting and diarrhea were reported on the island of Hvar and the town
of Hvar at that time. But there were no specific food poisoning cases
on Palmizana. In our two restaurants during the peak season we serve
around 200 people over lunch and dinner on a daily basis. Given those
kinds of volumes, any incident of food poisoning would have affected a
far wider section of the people staying on the island. But clearly,
this did not happen. It would therefore seem that Palmizana was
simply the location of his child’s illness, but certainly not the
cause of it.

We are very sorry that he had a distressing experience while staying
with us and that this was compounded by his party not fully
understanding what the Meneghello family is trying to achieve and
preserve in continuing to run the resort. I would like to extend my
sympathy to this guest and his family. I’d also like to thank him
for giving me the opportunity to clarify what Palmizana is about, in
order that other travelers are not put off visiting this unique,
beautiful and unusual island that has been giving enormous pleasure
and peace to its many guests for more than one hundred years.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 23, 2008

This was not what we we were expecting. The words boutique, luxury, accessable, nice even, are all very far removed from this strange little 'resort'. Seeing a rat die under your chair on the postage stamp sized beach on your first day of your holiday is no way to start things off. I can't actually say it got worse from then on as we quickly vamossed, or as quickly as the intermittent water taxi service would allow, to Hvar.

Stayed: May 2008
3  Thank Zak B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2008

We had our wedding reception and ceremony at Palmizana this September. The owners and staff did everything they could to make it a wonderful evening for us and our 50 guests. They took care of all the details, allowing us to relax and enjoy the day! The food was excellent - top quality ingredients, lovely dishes and generous portions! Beautiful location, amazing views, lovely gardens & decorations.

We can't recommend Palmizana highly enough to anyone looking for a location for a wedding in Croatia. All of our guests had a great week in Hvar in the lead up to the wedding. Such an easy place to relax and unwind. We stayed at Villa Meneghello (owned by the same family who run Palmizana) - a luxury villa which sleeps 12 and is much better value for money than any hotel - plenty of communal and private space, pool, outdoor entertaining areas, BBQ, excellent decor & artworks.

Some of our guests did stay in the accommodation over at Palmizana and said they loved it there and had a great time.

I don't usually get around to writing reviews but wanted to give credit where due!

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled with family
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3  Thank ElspethSL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 17, 2008

My husband and I booked an 8 night stay at Palmizana for some much-needed relaxation, and we weren't disappointed in the slightest. The island on which the resort is built is absolutely beautiful, with pine forests, rocky shores and crystal clear seas all around. We had a fantastic stay here, exploring the island, relaxing on the beach and indulging in some of the freshest, tastiest meals we have ever found.

We were picked up by Tarin from Hvar (we had to ring the resort as he wasn't there at the alloted time, but Romina chased him up and he arrived shortly afterwards), and then Mario took us in his Land Rover to the resort - along a very narrow road!

We stayed in the Yellow bungalow, which, with a double room, bathroom and single room was ample for our needs. This bungalow also benefits from air con and a very large terrace, and although it is quite near the main restaurant, was quiet most of the time. We were supplied with plenty of towels and the room was cleaned regularly. There is no bath, just a shower, and this only has a bracket at about waist height. The flush on the loo is a little violent too, so it's best to put the lid down before flushing! Overall, the fittings and finish of the bungalow was not quite as perfect as they appeared on the website photos, but everything worked and was adequate and/or comfortable. Don't expect sea views though - although we were up on the hill above the bay, there were too many trees in front of us to see much.

Palmizana is by no means totally isolated - besides the two restaurants of the resort, there are another three strung around the cove, with the one next to Toto's on the beach making a fair amount of noise on the odd occasion. The marina is just a few minutes' walk away, on the other side of the island; there is another bar here, plus a shop and restaurant by the marina reception. None of this detracts from the relaxed atmosphere, but it did come as a bit of a surprise to us.

Palmizana beach is not very big and is a mixture of shingle and sand. It's best to get a sunbed (40 kuna a day) as there isn't much room to lay a towel down. Alternatively, you can walk around the cove to quieter spots on the rocks. If you're feeling more adventurous, there are other coves around the island that can be reached via rocky tracks (put your trainers on, it's tricky in flip flops) or by hiring a little motor boat or kayak. It's worth following the path to the village at the other end of the island (Vlaka) - follow the signs to Dioniz restaurant, which is also well worth popping into for lovely views from a rustic barn over olive groves and vineyards to the sea and the mountains on Vis beyond.

The island is visited by a lot of the yachty crowd, and many of these weigh anchor in Palmizana's bay instead of mooring up at the marina. The restaurant is therefore reguarly busy, but Romina will reserve a table for you unless you tell her otherwise. The food in the Palmizana restaurants is excellent, and we didn't feel the need to go elsewhere very much. The compulsory (but not included in the price) breakfast is a simple affair, with bread, croissants, fruit and yoghurt on offer, along with eggs, ham and cheese if you wish. Fruit juice and tea or coffee are also provided. We did find the local wasps to be a bit of a nuisance at breakfast and lunch, but they disappeared by sundown. The waiting staff were all very helpful and polite, and we felt gave excellent service.

We took a day trip to Hvar - we had planned to get the ferry from the marina, but ran into Mario who arranged for us to get a lift with a friend of his. We had some difficulty finding a boat to take us back though - the ferries didn't seem to be running at the times they said they would, and we ended up teaming up with another couple to get a water taxi back. They had bought a return ticket from a water taxi, but had no way of finding the same taxi to take them back, so ended up paying twice. Hvar is worth a visit, mainly for the citadel and a few good restaurants (Maconodo's was very good, closes at 2pm at lunchtime), but the shops are mainly full of touristy tat.

Overall, we were impressed with Palmizana - Romina clearly runs a tight ship, and was always available to answer queries (she was also able to get our ferry tickets back to Split for us). The island is truly enchanting, and teeming with a wide variety of plant and animal life - we spotted lizards, millipedes, a stick insect, sea urchins and heard many cicadas - and it's the only time I've ever been woken up by peacocks thudding about on the roof! I came away feeling that I had had a proper break from reality, a feeling that has intensified now that normal service has resumed.

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Kninki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Palmizana

Address: Meneghello Estate, Hvar, Hvar Island 21450, Croatia
Location: Croatia > Dalmatia > Split-Dalmatia County > Hvar Island > Hvar
Hotel Style:
Ranked #38 of 169 Specialty Lodging in Hvar
Number of rooms: 12
Also Known As:
Palmizana Hotel Hvar

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