Former Concentration Camp to Become 'Party' Hotel

Montenegro's parliament approves plan for resort at Mamula
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 14, 2016 10:01 AM CST
Former Concentration Camp to Become 'Party' Hotel
Not everyone loves this plan.   (Mamula Resort)

Thousands of people were held at Campo Mamula, an island concentration camp off Montenegro, during World War II, including 130 who died there. Soon, people will mostly go there to party. Despite protests from relatives of those imprisoned at the site, Montenegro's government has approved a plan to transform the fortress on the small island of Mamula, at the entrance to Boka Bay, into a luxury hotel with a "party ambiance." Initially built at the end of 19th century to stop the approach of enemy ships, the fortress was used as a concentration camp during both World Wars before becoming a prison, reports Forbes. Today, it's a popular tourist attraction, with visitors raving about the "stunning views" and "chilling beauty"—facets developers will now take advantage of.

An artist's rendering of Mamula Resort shows the fortress will keep its round shape, and a memorial room and museum will also be built to comply with the site's status as "a monument of culture." And while the government says the plans will "(maintain) the character of cultural heritage throughout the entire period of the lease," a woman whose mother was imprisoned at Campo Mamula says the hotel will "ruin every memory of Mamula and what it really was." Indeed, the developer tells the Balkan Insight the site will be "the best hotel on the Mediterranean," and the government argues the hotel will help boost the local and national economy. It will include a spa, wine bar, dance floor, restaurant, and staff and guest accommodations. (Only one mass escape occurred from a death camp, and the last surviivor recently died.)

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