Rijeka 2020

Behind the Scenes: Hotel Benčić

At the site of the former Benčić factory, a group of students of the final year of the faculty of architecture in Zagreb presented their works on the topic of Hotel Benčić, created under the mentorship of professor Idis Turato. In honour of this occasion, we had a chat with Iva Radošević, one of the students. The topic of our conversation was their project, which is directly linked to Rijeka’s candidacy for European Capital of Culture 2020.

While we were creating these works, we all acted as if Rijeka had already won the title of European Capital of Culture. Rijeka is actually the only city that should be able to win it, because it is the only one with the opportunity to make use of the potential offered by the title. In Rijeka, everything is smaller and wackier. Things are experienced in a different way, and there is none of that pretentiousness like in Zagreb or Dubrovnik. ECoC is a privilege, and privileges entail certain obligations. It would be good for us to get this privilege so that we may face these obligations – I mean, there are obligations now, too, but this would really give us the chance to respect them. Pula and Dubrovnik already have the privilege of a developed tourism industry and are able to fulfill their obligations, therefore they don’t need ECoC as much as Rijeka does. This is the Rijeka I will one day live in.