The fortress on Mamula Island can be found at the entrance of the picturesque Bay of Kotor. It was originally built in 1853 under Austro-Hungarian as a naval base to prevent the enemy from entering the bay.
In more recent times it was turned into a concentration camp, under the orders of Mussolini during World War II. From 1942, over 2000 people were imprisoned in the camp under terrible conditions. For this reason the plans to build a luxury hotel has caused great offence to the families of those who had been imprisoned there.
Undeterred by the controversy caused, the Montenegrin Government has given the green light for Mamula Island to be turned into a luxury resort for upmarket, wealthy clientele. The Swiss-Egyptian developers, Orascom, have taken on this opportunity to redevelop the site. They are hoping to create ‘around 200 new jobs and bring €7.5 million of revenue for the Montenegrin state over a 15-year period’.
The resort will include an infinity pool, marina, wine bar, restaurants, and a water sports centre. There will also be a museum or memorial on the island and the fortress will be restored and preserved during the renovations.