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Faithful To Tradition, Oriented To The Future

Company Delta Real Estate hasn’t only succeeded in preserving the purpose of the Sava Centar and the authenticity of the building’s external appearance, but has also managed to maximally preserve the interior while adapting it to new standards and requirements. Everything has been implemented with great attention to detail, expertly and carefully, in order to avoid dashing expectations. And that’s why the result is so impressive

Instead of the promised 50 million euros, more than 118 million euros has been invested in the reconstruction works. And the result is the largest and most modern congress centre in this part of Europe, able to stage gatherings with more than 5,000 attendees and to accommodate up to 8,000 people at any given moment. But that’s only a fragment of its possibilities…

Despite fears that the look of the building would be changed, Delta Real Estate preserved the recognisable appearance of the Sava Centar and adapted it to 21st century needs and standards. What do you think architect Stojan Maksimović would say to you?

― Delta Real Estate’s team has been in contact with our celebrated architect since the launch of the reconstruction project.

We not only managed to preserve the purpose of the building and the authenticity of its external appearance, but also maximally preserved the interior, while adapting it to new standards and requirement. The renovation of the façade was implemented in accordance with Stojan Maksimović’s original project. The new glass is almost identical to the original, but these glass panes are more functional and energy efficient. The interior is still decorated with the recognisable world map, open and visible ceiling installations, orange hydrants and concrete elements combined with glass, which are all characteristics of this building’s specific architectural style. The initial reactions of visitors who’ve seen the renovated Sava Centar tell us that we can be satisfied with the way we’ve carried out the reconstruction works.

Were you aware of the importance of this project for Belgrade and Serbia, but also the entire region, when Delta Real Estate bought the Sava Centar?

― We all have memories connected to the Sava Centar. We all feel some emotion regarding the Sava Centar. It is a venue that brings prestige to Belgrade, where some of the most important world events have played out. It was the pride of Tito’s Yugoslavia, while today, following its reconstruction, I am fully justified in saying that it will be the pride of Serbia. The interest of the public in the sale and subsequent comprehensive reconstruction testifies to the importance of this facility. That’s why we carried out all the works with great attention to detail, expertly, taking care not to dash expectations. And we succeeded in that.

What do you think visitors to the renovated Sava Centar will like the most, when it comes to both those who previously considered it one of the city’s most important venues and those who will experience it for the first time?

― What they will like the most is the fact that the Sava Centar has remained the same, and yet is new and modern. The congress zone now has a capacity that’s three times greater than it was in terms of halls for hosting gatherings, so instead of 16 halls we now have 46 of various capacities, while we’ve also increased the number of seats in the Great Congress Hall, where we’ve preserved the cascade elements and recognisable wall tapestries, and expanded the exhibition space to an area of 8,000 square metres. One of the new facilities that only a few buildings around the world can boast of possessing, and which hasn’t previously existed in Serbia and the region, is the Immersive Hall, representing a specialised multifunctional space with the possibility of projecting videos on all its walls. I expect this space to be a genuine attraction for organisers of events, conferences and celebrations wanting to provide their guests with a feeling of total immersion in the content being screened.

The initial reactions of visitors who’ve seen the renovated Sava Centar tell us that we can be satisfied with the way we’ve carried out the reconstruction works

Another new addition is the winter garden, representing a green oasis of more than 1,000 square metres, with natural lighting and a genuine green wall adorned with suitable greenery, which will contribute to creating a better atmosphere for visitors. Future users and visitors can also expect a modern, functional, flexible and technically equipped business-commercial section. The lower level will include renowned retail chains and luxury brands, while the upper level has been reserved for office spaces with various capacities.

You’ve already stated that the number of conference halls has increased from 16 to 46, as has the number of seats in the congress hall that’s equipped with new audio-visual systems. Given the centre’s connection with the adjacent hotel, is this set to be the venue that will host the region’s most important gatherings?

― The fact is that the Sava Centar is the only venue that can functionally host gatherings with more than 5,000 participants and can accommodate as many as 8,000 people at any one time. When we add to this the quality and aesthetics of this facility, then the connection with the Crowne Plaza hotel and its close proximity to other hotels, combining all of that with the closeness of Belgrade airport – then yes, we are convinced that this venue will host the most important future events not only for Serbia, but also for the region. Several thousand people at a single congress means all hotel accommodation capacities in Belgrade being full, but also extra work for restaurants, taxi drivers and many other service providers. This is a huge development opportunity for the capital city and for Serbia. Already during the reconstruction, we actively worked on building it up for the staging of congresses.

The congress and business section has already began operating, but when will the great hall welcome its first visitors?

― The plan is for the Blue Hall to receive its first visitors next summer. The hall has retained the blue colour that gave it its name, while the number of boxes has been increased and it has received new seating that’s much more comfortable and includes 4,000 seats instead of the previous total of 3,672. It will also be equipped with the latest audio-visual equipment. The lobby area in front of the hall, where we eagerly awaited the screenings of hit films or the performances of international and local music stars, will continue to be lit by an impressive chandelier, which is known in our city as ‘nebo’, the sky. Everyone in Belgrade, but also a large number of foreign visitors, know the Sava Centar as the place where they’ve made some of their most important memories, from FEST, from important business and political congresses, celebrations and receptions. We say that it’s now time to create new memories, and the Sava Centar is once again there to help us do so.

Congress with 1,500 participants held on first day

On the very first day of operations following reconstruction, the Sava Centar hosted the European Nutrition Congress, with over 1,500 participants. It has already been confirmed that this famous congress centre will host the Congress of the European Society for Cardiovascular Surgery, then the 2025 Heart Failure Congress of the European Society of Cardiology, with more than 5,000 participants, and a year later it will host the Congress of the European Association for Endoscopic Surgery. There is also an entire array of major congresses that cannot yet be announced until the international associations officially announce them in their own events calendars.

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