Pearl of the Adriatic

Pearl of the Adriatic

Pearl of the Adriatic


Zori Timeless Hotel

A pearl-like boat docked in the Adriatic bay in Croatia.

Found on an island just off Croatia’s coast, the Zori Timeless Hotel is a boutique retreat set amid unspoilt nature

The tiny Croatian island of Sveti Klement, with its bay Palmižana, is a hidden jewel. Nestled within this untouched, traffic-free paradise is its pearl – the Zori Timeless Hotel, a unique combination of fine dining and four luxury private residences. Located near the larger resort island of Hvar, Sveti Klement is home to Palmižana, a natural harbour, beautiful botanical gardens, pine forests and a tiny fishing village, still without electricity or water supplies. Zori’s guests, though, can call upon every comfort, including the true privilege of extreme privacy.

“People come here because of the quiet and because of the nature,” says owner Iva Tomlinović, who inherited the property in 2006, renovating the restaurant and transforming it into one of the finest gastronomic destinations in Croatia. “This is a beautiful island with wild nature and no built-up areas. There are no large hotels, just small family businesses like ours, with beautiful gardens, bars and restaurants. We offer simple, sustainable luxury with amazing staff who have been with us for many years, and our guests are always coming back because we are like a family within a family. We have many loyal guests, and they are the people who encouraged us to rebuild the residences.”

Those four stylish residences – Infinity, Cloud, Eternity and Horizon – opened in 2023. Built with natural materials to blend in with the surroundings, they offer sweeping views of the blue calm of the Adriatic. They were created following repeated requests by the restaurant’s visitors, many of whom were boat owners staying at the island’s marina. They had been charmed by this extraordinary combination of a beautiful island and Zori’s exceptional cuisine, originally presented by Iva but now served by acclaimed chef Siniša Jevrosimov.

The four houses are located next to each other, with the biggest (Infinity) having two bedrooms, a living room and a terrace. The others all have one bedroom and a Jacuzzi, and all the residencies apart from Eternity have private pools (“We really wanted to offer our visitors the chance to relax,” says Iva). The architects have protected the houses with lush vegetation to increase the sense of seclusion.

Meals from Zori’s restaurant can be served to guests on a private VIP terrace overlooking the sea. These contemporary Mediterranean dishes feature the finest organic ingredients, including fresh fish and seafood caught locally, as well as herbs grown in the kitchen garden. The garden is nourished by recycled water as part of a sustainability programme that includes solar panels and careful planning in the kitchen to ensure that no food goes to waste. There is a small gym, while massages and beauty treatments can be requested in bedrooms. Guests can also use Palmižana as a hub, taking boats to see the sights of Hvar and other islands, or the picturesque city of Dubrovnik.

Following the success of Zori’s new residences, Iva is focused on further refining the experience, providing an even more personalised service in the restaurant by reducing the number of covers on offer. She is also looking into extending the season to offer specialised retreats – possibly based around wellbeing, couple getaways and gastronomy. “Our guests tell us they want to spend more time here,” says Iva. “There is a public beach just by the hotel, no traffic and so much on the island to discover. It is our paradise.”