Hotel President Pantovcak
An outstanding boutique hotel in Zagreb, on the edge of the city centre, oozing style and luxury. With a delightful garden, and living spaces filled with modern art and antiques, this is quite simply the most stylish place to stay in the Croatian capital.
- Rudolf Abraham, Travel writer
On Pantovčak, a quiet residential street – a five-minute walk uphill from Britanski trg, with its cafés, open market, and (on Sundays) antiques and bric-a-brac market. From Britanski trg it's just a 10-minute walk to Zagreb's main square. The hotel backs onto peaceful gardens surrounded by wild cherry trees and bamboo, with a small terrace area with sun-loungers and folding chairs.
Style & character
Effortlessly stylish, its refined décor and peaceful garden an oasis of good taste, peace and quiet. Interiors are predominantly teak, glass and steel, and within this setting slick modern designer furniture is juxtaposed with antiques and original pieces of modern art by well-known Croatian painters and sculptors. Some of the antiques are old enough that they are listed as protected national art treasures – the reception desk is a 500-year-old wooden chest from the island of Vis. The art and antiques were personally selected by the hotel's owner, Zoran Vižintin (himself an architect), and most of the design features of the hotel are the work of local Croatian artists and designers.
Service & facilities
Service is impeccable, and the staff are very helpful and attentive. There is a good restaurant, a small bar, and – along with the gorgeous rooms, one of the hotel's most alluring features – a lovely garden. A small gallery includes artworks by Croatian painters such as Edo Murtić and Ivan Lacković. The hotel has its own solar panels for electricity.
- Room service
Hotel President Pantovčak has seven luxurious and supremely stylish rooms and suites, all of them different. All guestrooms are spacious and flooded with natural light from wall-to-wall sliding glass doors overlooking or opening directly onto the peaceful garden. Dark polished wooden floors with Persian and tribal rugs, king-sized bed, luxurious textiles, antiques and modern art combine to make these some of the most aesthetically pleasing and comfortable rooms in Zagreb. Bathrooms have dark grey marble tiles and chrome, with large corner tubs in the suites (given the quality of the rest of the hotel, the wall-mounted hairdryers could probably do with an upgrade).
The largest and most luxurious room, the Royal Suite, is huge, with two separate bathrooms as well as its own private terrace, and among the artworks which decorate the room are original paintings by Edo Murtić, one of Croatia's most highly respected modern artists.
Food & drink
The restaurant has a lovely setting overlooking the garden, with wall-to-wall glass doors (left open in fine weather), and offers dishes such as green tagliatelli with shrimps, steak with porcini, several salads – and the house specialty, štrukle (a traditional dish from the region around Zagreb).
The buffet Champagne breakfast is outstanding – among the best I've had in Croatia. Along with a good selection of cheeses and cold cuts, there are canapés, smoked fish, hot plates (scrambled eggs, sausages, grilled vegetables), pancakes, fresh fruit, muesli, juices, impeccable coffee and bottomlesss Champagne. On a recent stay around Easter, the breakfast spread also included a cooked Easter ham and baskets of the traditional accompaniment of spring onions and radishes. There’s also a small, relaxed lounge bar.
Value for money
Double rooms from €124 (£110), year-round. Breakfast included. Free Wi-Fi.
Access for guests with disabilities?
Yes. There's a large Family Room – although bear in mind the hotel does pride itself on being an antique-filled oasis of peace and calm.