Sveti Stefan, Budva, Crna Gora

Sveti Stefan, now Aman Sveti Stefan including the Villa Miločer, formerly Sveti Stefan Hotel) ("Saint Stephen"; Serbian: Sveti Stefan/Свети Стефан, Sušćepan, Italian: Santo Stefano di Pastrovicchio) is a small islet and hotel and resort in Montenegro, approximately 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) southeast of Budva. The resort includes the islet of Sveti Stefan and part of the mainland, where the Villa Miločer part of the resort is located. An Adriatic playground for the rich and famous from the 1960s to the 1980s, the hotel is now a 5-star franchise hotel of the international group of Aman Resorts, completed in 2009 and operating under a 30 year lease. Formerly an island, Sveti Stefan is now connected to the mainland by a narrow isthmus. The resort in total contains 50 rooms, cottages and suites on the island and 8 grand suites at the Villa Miločer.

The hotel won the Hotel of the Year award from Gallivanter's Guide in 2010.


The island has a 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) coast line in the central part of Montenegro Adriatic coast line. It is situated to the south of Budva between Przno and Sveti Stefan villages. The pink sandy beaches of Sveti Stefan, Miločer Beach and Queen’s Beach are part of the coast line. The island encompasses an area of 12,400 m2 (133,000 sq ft).


In the 15th century, the island had a fortified village which was known as Divic; a Muslim village on the periphery of land on the Drina, which was renamed as Sveti Stefan, after the Christian Saint Stephen. The fortified village was built to defend against the Turks and became a haven for pirates of the Adriatic. Initially, the island with its fortress had 12 families. Later, the village came to be established in the 1800s, when the population was about 400 people. Consequent to the villages getting moved to the mainland, the island village became an exclusive resort frequented by high profile elites of the world. However, the separation of Montenegro from Yugoslavia saw the decline of this resort, in the 1990s. Villa Miločer built between 1934 and 1936 was the summer residence of Queen Marija Karadordevic (1900–1961) of the Karađorđević family of Serbia, which was refurbished as part of the Aman Sveti Stefan resorts that opened in 2008–2009. The villa, surrounded by 800 olive trees is laid out over a 32 hectares (79 acres) plot.

Formerly under ownership of the Radenovic family for some forty years between the 1960s and 80s, the place was patronized by many celebrities like Orson Welles, Elizabeth Taylor, Sophia Loren, Princess Margaret, Carlo Ponti, Ingemar Stenmark, Kirk Douglas and many others.

The resort was described as "a '70s Adriatic playground on a hilly peninsula that's barely connected to the mainland". It was also a venue for political conferences, and an occasional chess venue, attracting top-class players such as Boris Spassky and Bobby Fischer.

The old charm of the Sveti Stefan island was proposed to be recreated by the Government of Montenegro. Action was initiated by inviting international bids for the revitalization project. The contract for such development was awarded to Aman Resorts, in 2007. Now the newly refurbished resort, while retaining the old world charm of its exterior view, has modernized its interior facilities to contemporary modern standards.

The hotel is now a 5-star franchise hotel of the international group of Aman Resorts in the historic fishing village of the Stefan Island. The Aman Sveti Stefan is a renovated resort, under a 30 year lease completed in 2009. On July 13, 2010 Montenegrin Statehood Day, Italian tenor, Andrea Bocelli gave a concert at the resort, to mark the Golden Jubilee of the hotel. During the hour-long show, on a stage right in front of the island-hotel’s perimeter wall, Bocelli sang well-known arias, as well as some of his more popular hits, to the assembled dignitaries, including Montenegro’s top officials, representatives of the diplomatic corps and many faces from cultural, political and public life, as well as many current and former tourist entrepreneurs who had contributed to the development of Montenegrin tourism. Bocelli was also the first guest of the renovated hotel. The hotel won the Hotel of the Year award from Gallivanter's Guide in 2010.


The Cliff Pool overlooks the Adriatic and another swimming pool and terrace is being built on the south side of the island.


Aman Sveti Stefan has 58 guest rooms, cottages and suites, including 8 suites that are part of the Villa Miločer. The Villa Miločer, which was built between 1934 and 1936 was the summer residence of Queen Marija Karadordevic (1900–1961). Out of the eight suites of Villa Miločer two are Queen Marija Suites forming an annex structure. Each of the two suites cover 125 square metres (1,350 sq ft) with a bedroom, bathroom, living room and dining room. These are grand suites which are larger, with Juliet balconies, and are decorated in cream and brown shades, with leather upholstery, silks and woollen rugs. All other rooms are also elegantly decorated in a double storied layout providing excellent views of the ocean from the first floor room; the living room and bedroom have fireplaces.

Every room, cottage and suite on the island is said to be different, but are all luxurious and retaining the ambiance of the historic village with preserving the original walls and using traditional doors and windows. The bathrooms of the suites contain free-standing bathtubs and parquet and antico stone floors.


The main dining of the resort on the island of Sveti Stefan is The Piazza, an open-air square in the heart of the island’s village which includes the Taverna, Enoteca, Pasticceria, and an Antipasti Bar and a Cigar Room. The Taverna serves straight-forward Continental and American breakfasts and fresh and pastoral Mediterranean dishes for lunch and dinner. TheEnoteca, is located on a terrace facing the sea with cellar-like interiors and sells al fresco tapas and drinks. The Pasticceria (bakery) serves traditional pastries for breakfast and lunch. The Antipasti Bar generally comes into use in early evenings and the Cigar Room, with rich wood and leather furnishings, serves selection of fine Cuban cigars and rare spirits.The three main dining venues on the mainland part of the resort are the Queen’s Chair, serving Pan-Adriatic – Italian cuisine and overlooking the Bay of Budva, the Olive Restaurant, overlooking the beach, which serves a range of cut-to-order meats and seafood prepared on two signature wood-fired grills and an olive-wood-fired rotisserie and the Beach Café, in an alfresco setting, flanked by shady cypress trees and century-old olive groves. Inside the Villa Miločer, the Dining Room, overlooking the Miločer Beach, with its seven-table dining space and grand open fireplace, is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as is the Loggia, with its colonnade, and the Living Room which serves locally caught seafood and produce.



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