Belgrade Creates More Accommodation for Party Goers

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Apartment renting for short stays is on the rise in Southeastern Europe, especially in Belgrade, a city famous for its nightlife, with Sky Apartmani leading the way.

A new type of accommodation for younger guests had prospered in recent years and these are high quality apartments rented out by well established businesses.

Serbia's capital is often cited as the best clubbing destination in Eastern Europe, and is being discovered by more and more visitors from the rest of the continent in recent years. During the spring and summer, about one million tourists visit the city, from groups of seniors coming by the Danube on big boats to teenage backpackers coming by train from the west, by way of Zagreb and Budapest. A big portion comes from the region, mostly Montenegrins, Bulgarians and Slovenes (latter flock to the city en masse for the New Year’s night), and Germans, Russians and Italians being the nations with the largest visitor numbers overall.

These figures hide the fact that the tourists which contributed the most to the recent positive hype about Belgrade's nightlife are none of these. They are, in fact, young Brits and other Europeans from countries further away who are more active on spreading the word about the good time they had, both by word-of-mouth and via the web. A quick survey of many Belgrade's barges, where the most of the nightlife in the summer months is taking place, would make one think an invasion from the UK is taking place, and these tourists who come especially for the nightlife are usually not even in the statistics, as they are trying to find cheap accommodation and are not registering with the tourism authorities.

This cheap accommodation often includes privately made agreements on apartment renting, which leaves guests exposed to many risks, or staying in hostels, which, although cheap, are not comfortable, leave no space for privacy, and are only good for very short stays of one or two days. Hotels, of course, are not the solution for this young population of foreign guests, not only because of the price, but also with their strict house rules and meal times. In these circumstances it was only logical that a new type of accommodation for younger guests had prospered in recent years and that includes high quality apartments rented out by well established businesses, often owning more than 20 apartments each.

An affordable apartment for rent advertised by an agency such as SKY Apartmani has the same level of luxury as a four star hotel and many apartments for rent are furnished in such a way not only to be equal to five star hotels, but to compare favorably with the best suites in the best hotels. Sheets and towels are regularly changed, there is free parking, free internet access, a great variety of cable channels, air conditioning, and many services a guest would usually pay for in hotels are also free, as long as the guest is willing to do a little work, like washing and ironing. But the main advantage of the apartment accommodation in comparison with the hotels is the space they offer for the same money. For example, 60 euros is the lowest price in a good hotel in Belgrade for a single room with a few square meters in area, and the same 60 euros is enough to rent a 50m² apartment for a day. Prices go down, compared to the hotels, as more guests share the apartment. The best rate for a junior suite for three persons in Belgrade hotels is 115 euros or almost 40 euros per person per day, while it is only 20 euros per guest in the apartment in the center of Belgrade.

Such benefits are not countered by the inferior locations of these apartments, especially compared to hotel locations. Many of good new hotels in Belgrade, as well as some old and newly renovated ones are not in the strict city center, and good hotels for business clients are usually not even in the center at all. On the other side, guests can find great apartments for rent in the epicenter of the city, right in the Republic square. The guests who come for the nightlife are especially grateful for the proximity of the locations of the apartments to the clubbing scene and tourist locations of Belgrade.

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Dejan Baralic
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