Obonjan: The Island of Art and Wellbeing
Located adjacent to Italy’s Adriatic coastline, the Croatian island of Otok Obonjan is home to a fusion of art and cultural activities. Set to open on 28 July 2016 with an eight-week season this is an island paradise for free spirited explorers to celebrate, relax and learn in equal measure.
Untouched for ten years and once known as ‘the island of youth’, Obonjan island has been reimagined by the founders of Unknown Festival to fuse art and culture, music and entertainment, food and wellbeing within a carefully curated creative programme that will grow and expand with each year of operation.
Thoughtful and eco-minded accommodation will sleep up to 800 guests at a time; world-class cuisine will be offered in beautiful surroundings across five different outlets; workshops by global thought leaders will take place in a custom built Geodome; the vast stone Amphitheatre will play host to outstanding musicians and DJs; the Woodland Wellbeing Centre will offer an extensive programme for health and healing.
The 136-acre pine and olive tree-covered island, located 6km off the coastal town of Šibenik, has been secured with a 45-year lease in a joint venture between the British event producers, Sound Channel, and Croatian travel partners, Gratiosus and CMT, to form Otok Ltd. The team has enlisted members of the original creative team from the Eden Project in Cornwall and Croatian architect, Una Barac of Scott Brownrigg, to ensure the project is environmentally sensitive and low-impact in design whilst providing far-reaching benefits to the surrounding communities and ecology.
Obonjan brings together the following key concepts:
Music – musicians from around the world will curate the soundtrack to the summer; live bands will host intimate gigs at the Rum Bar; and weekly headliners will host larger parties at the central Amphitheatre. DJs will set the scene for sundowners and piano, cabaret and classical music will add further variety.
Workshops – the Geodome will host a daily programme of inspirational workshops by leading experts and academics on subjects as varied as astronomy, living architecture, philosophy and marine conservation.
Art – Obonjan will exhibit work by artists from Croatia and beyond with permanent and temporary installations creating an evolving open gallery of the island with highlights including an ethereal underwater sculpture garden by British artist Celia Gregory and a extrasensory light and sound installation by Chris Levine.
Film – the island cinema will span the globe, with cult favourites featured alongside global arthouse films, documentaries and critically acclaimed classics.
Wellbeing – health and happiness are at the heart of the Obonjan vision with a number of restorative outdoor yoga and fitness classes. These will be accompanied by an extensive treatment programme with expert practitioners offering massage therapies, meditation sessions and energy healing alongside sauna and steam rooms, outdoor hot tubs and a juice bar providing goodness on tap.
Food and Drink – The executive Chef has created an extensive gastronomic offering across the island’s five main restaurants following the principle of delivering locally sourced sustainable produce with menus that will change daily and feature an abundance of fresh seafood and organic vegetables, herbs and spices.
Development Approach – the island is characterised by Aleppo pine, juniper and olive trees and is home to a diversity of marine and terrestrial life, from sea birds to butterflies and dragonflies. Managing the ecology and investing in the local economy is vital to sustaining these natural assets over time. Working with Bryan Spooner, a leading expert, the Obonjan team is installing sound ecological, social and business management practices to develop an efficient and low impact circular economy managed with the utmost of care and commitment.
For more information or to book your stay contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Photography by Gus Webster (Island) and Paula Andreewitch (Yoga)
June 16th 2016