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Croatian Tourist Board Awards American Journalist David Farley at Golden Pen Awards


Croatian National Tourist Board Awards the Grand Prix Written Prize to American Journalist David Farley at the Golden Pen Awards in Zadar

Russia and Italy were awarded Grand Prix prizes in the broadcast and blogger categories, respectively. The “Zlatna penkala” or Golden Pen ceremony was attended by 24 world-renowned travel journalists and bloggers

New York, New York – April 8, 2019 – On an annual basis, the Croatian National Tourist Board (CNTB) celebrates the top travel journalist from its various markets at an awards ceremony to recognize the top foreign journalists and bloggers who have contributed to the promotion of Croatia as a tourist destination in the various print, online, television and blogs around the world.

The awards ceremonies are held in various destination around the country and this year, the CNTB along with its partners and main hosts and organizer, were the Tourist Association of the Zadar County and the Zadar Tourist Board which welcomed 24 of the top journalists from 16 countries to the 15th Golden Pen Awards. The awards, Zlatna (Croatian for Gold) penkala (Croatian for pen) was named after Croatian engineer and inventor of Dutch-Polish-Jewish descent, Slavoljub Eduard Penkala who invented the mechanical pencil in 1906, then named the “automatic pencil” and the first solid-ink fountain pen in 1907.

“We aim to nourish and maintain the tradition of recognizing foreign journalist who strive to contribute to showcasing Croatia to their audience and believe they are an extremely important part of the mosaic in the tourism industry. These talented story tellers have built a tremendous level of trust with their audience, therefore, each written word, photo or tone contributes to the promotion of Croatia’s tourism industry and the building of the country as a desirable tourist destination,” said the director of the Croatian Tourist Board, Kristjan Staničić. Furthermore, Mr. Staničić added, “the exciting Golden Pen program, which took place in Zadar city and Zadar County during the three day event is an excellent prelude to the tourist season ahead for 2019.”

The award ceremony, along with the director of the CNTB and its directors from its international representative offices, was also attended by State Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism Mr. Tonči Glavina, Zadar County’s Mayor Mr. Božidar Longin, Zadar’s Mayor Mr. Branko Dukić, the Director of the Zadar County Tourist Board Mrs. Mihaela Kadija, and the Director of the Tourist Board of the city Zadar Mr. Mario Paleka, as well as many other guests.

The Golden Pen celebrates the important work of the Croatian National Tourist Board, recognizing the country’s best tourism ambassadors and foreign media representatives, as nearly 90 percent of the country’s tourism sales are from foreign markets.

Grand Prix goes to the United States, Russia and Italy

The most important recognition during the Golden Pen are the Grand Prix awards, which are given in three categories: best article in the print media (national newspapers or magazines), best broadcast media (TV, radio), and best blog (bloggers, social networks). Nominations for material from 2018 were received from Great Britain, the Netherlands, Russia, Italy, the USA, Germany, Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Hungary, Ukraine, Sweden, Denmark, Spain and Slovenia.

This year’s winner of the Grand Prix for Best Print is David Farley of the United States. Farley, a journalist with articles published in The New York Times, AFAR, The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, National Geographic, among others, with a focus on travel and gastronomy. He won the CNTB’s top print award for his article on Dubrovnik, which was published in National Geographic Traveler magazine titled, “Sun Sea Savor.” The Dubrovnik Stradun adorned the magazine’s cover of this issue and the famous Croatian town was presented on 14 pages.

The winner of the Grand Prix for best broadcast media coverage is Vasiliy Andreev from Russia. He is a well-known producer of Russian national television Rossiya 1. Andreev won the top broadcast award for his 20 minute piece on Zagreb and Croatia titled “Advent in Croatia.” In addition to Zagreb’s sights, the program showcased the traditional production of flour, fritters and kroštula in Slunj. The host of this episode was the popular Russian actress, Olga Kuzmin, who brought the Christmas spirit of Zagreb and Croatia during the popular Advent season closer to Russian audiences.

Italy’s Chiara Marchi won the top Blogger award. Marchi, from Trieste has edited her highly acclaimed and popular blog called “Missclarie” in 2015. The winner blog of the publication “Cherso le 7 cosa da sapere” talks about the untouched nature of the island of Cres, its untouched beaches, a relaxing holiday by the sea, or the seven reasons why the island of Cres should be visited.

Unique statues of recognition for this year’s Golden Pen Award by especially made by the Antique Glass Museum from Zadar and the ceremony was held in Petrcane in Zadar, and the entire program, which includes three-days experiencing the sites and attractions of Zadar and Zadar county, including Starigrad Paklenica, Ugljan and Kali, Nin, as well as numerous other tourist attractions.

By holding the “Golden Pen” awards, the Croatian National Tourist Board emphasizes the importance and value of professional travel journalist showcasing Croatia in the foreign media. Previously, the awards were hosted in order of the awards inception, in Zagreb, Split, Rovinj, Opatija, Dubrovnik, Čakovec, Osijek, Otočac, Zadar, Šibenik, Split, Opatija, Mali Lošinj and Osijek.

About Croatia

Stretching along the Adriatic Sea, just a stone’s throw from Central Europe, Croatia is a country defined by a rich cultural legacy. Today, history perfectly combines with a youthful spirit and vibrant energy that prove irresistible to those seeking diversity. Breath-taking natural beauty, endless coastlines, diverse gastronomy, adventure, sports and wellness, can be enjoyed all year round. Whether exploring the old city of Dubrovnik, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, island hopping around the Split archipelago, truffle hunting in Istria, paragliding across the Plitvice Lakes, delving into Zagreb’s streets and hidden passages, birdwatching in Kopacki rit, partying the night away at Zrce beach in Novalja or taking time out with the family on Zlatni Rat beach, there truly is something for everyone in Croatia. For more information, visit:

CNTB US & Canada Media Contact:

Truc Nguyen

Croatian National Tourist Office – PR and Media Relations


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