News 31 Jul 12

Tito's Furniture on Auction in Dubrovnik

More than hundred objects from Tito's luxurious villa in Dubrovnik are about to get new owners at affordable prices.

BIRN
Dubrovnik

After the Villa Lapad, known also as Tito's Villa, was returned to their pre World War 2 owners, the Banac family, the Croatian Restitution Agency decided to put all of the objects from the former state residence on public auction.

Amongst 115 objects on offer the most expensive ones are Bernstein piano valued at 3,000 euro and a small table adorned with marquetry valued 2,200 euro.

The starting price for one of the most interesting objects on sale, the bed on which Josip Broz Tito slept, is about 500 euro.

Couches, tables, beds, closets and chairs are also listed for auction – some of which were made in 19th century.

One of the reasons for such low prices is most likely the fact that Tito did not really like the Villa Lapad that much so he did not reside there often, as well as the fact that a lot of the objects are damaged.

The experts on antiques say that the prices are “realistic” having in mind that the varnish is damaged, and that pests had attacked some of the furniture.

Starting price for all the objects at the auction is about 30,000 euro in total.

Tito, the founder and life long president of socialist Yugoslavia, was known for his penchant for high life.  He owned numerous villas across the country, some of them purpose built for him and some seized from its previous owners.

One of his favourite houses was on the Croatina island of Bironi, which he used as a summer residence where he held receptions for world leaders and organized the Communist party meetings.

The Villa Lapad was built in 1936 by Karlo Banac, rich businessman from Dubrovnik, and was expropriated by the communists after the end of World War 2.

Although Tito was never a great fan of the villa, many officials from the previous Croatian governments resided here, like ex-president Stjepan Mesic and ex-president of the parliament Vladimir Seks.

Although the decision to return the villa to its original owners was made in 2003, it became legally binding only this year.

 

 

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