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Review 28 Nov 12

Blaznavac: A Generally Intriguing Kind of Bar

Named after a general and decorated with reminders of his moustache, Blaznavac is a fine place for an early evening drink.

David Galic

Named after a not-so-famous Serbian soldier and politician, Blaznavac is among best places in downtown Belgrade to grab a drink before heading out to your favourite club.

Obviously intrigued, I tried to do some research to see if there was a reason for naming the venue after General Milivoje Petrovic Blaznavac, and discovered that the home in which the bar is located previously belonged to a Zivojin Blaznavac, who may have been a relative of the general, who died in 1873.

Blaznavac was a former prime minister and some believe also the illegitimate son of Prince Milos Obrenovic.

For whatever reason, the owners of the bar have taken a liking to the general, especially to his very fashionable moustache, which has become the trademark of the bar.

The venue had great success this summer, showcasing one of the best outdoor seating areas in the city, but it’s just as great to visit in the winter.

Located in the heart of upper Dorcol, Blaznavac is a place to grab a drink at the weekend before venturing to an all-night club. It is located a stone’s throw from popular nightspots like Francuska Sobarica and Tube.

Blaznavac is well aware of its role in Belgrade’s nightlife and even calls itself a “pre-club bar”. It works from 9pm to 1am, the ideal hours for drinks before heading elsewhere.

But if you don’t enjoy roaming the streets until the wee hours of the morning, Blaznavac will keep you entertained as well. Though it works every night, from Thursday to Sunday the bar offers live music and DJ sets to its patrons as well. On Noveber 10, the bar had a John Scofield Tribute band playing on Friday and some of Belgrade’s premier DJs spinning over the weekend.

Another aspect of the bar is that it doubles as an art gallery. Currently, there are photographs on display by Belgrade artist Dejana Batalovic and many more art exhibitions and sales are announced for this season.

As if having a great programme and concept wasn’t enough, the interior and space are exceptional. Although half the fabulous outdoor garden area closes for the winter, space in front of the bar still functions as an atrium-like section. A biosphere-like enclosure brings trees and garden into this indoor space, which makes it a one-of-a-kind interior in Belgrade.

It is very spacious, with four separate seating areas. The atrium-like middle section boasts its own bar. Another is located at the entrance, and also has its own bar. There is also an attic-like upstairs with seating and a room that looks like a dining area.

The bar is decorated with comfy and big vintage armchairs and wooden tables. Other than the art on exhibition, the bar has a collection of empty gilded picture frames on most walls. And of course, there are many interpretations General Blaznavac’s moustache all over the bar, the most notable example being the neon red moustache that graces the DJ’s booth.

The prices are a bit steeper than average, but it’s obvious that Blaznavac aims for an older and more sophisticated crowd and not people who are looking to get drunk on cheap alcohol before heading off into the night.

With its interesting design, flare for decoration, commendable promotion of young artists and excellent location, Blaznavac is well placed to maintain a reputation as a fun place to prepare for a crazy night out or relax with drinks and music no matter what season of the year it is.

Address: Kneginje Ljubice 18, Belgrade

Tel. +381 11 3285-857

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