House Hunting in Croatia: A Modern Mountain Villa for $1.2 Million

This three-bedroom vacation home sits in the heart of Croatia’s mountainous Gorski Kotar region, a northwestern pocket of the country — known as the “green lungs” of Croatia — that stretches down to the Adriatic Sea.

Completed in 2019, the three-story house sits on a sloped quarter-acre lot and features the traditional wood construction often found in Gorski Kotar, which is known for its woodworking. The primary materials are locally sourced Siberian larch and iron, in keeping with the owner’s wish that the 2,368-square-foot house be constructed with sustainable materials by local laborers. Even the furniture and shelving were made by local craftsmen from solid wood. The exterior cladding is meant to shield the home from harsh Croatian winters.

“My guiding idea was longevity and resistance to the extreme weather conditions, because it’s Gorski Kotar after all,” said the owner, who asked not to be named for privacy reasons. “But I wanted it to be as natural as possible, with as few chemicals as possible, so that it blends into the pristine nature of the area.”

Designed with a minimalist Scandinavian aesthetic, the house features moss-covered cladding and floor-to-ceiling reflective glass windows that open the main living areas to views of the mountains. “It’s truly a Croatian product,” said Mirjana Micetic, a broker with Croatia Sotheby’s International Realty who has the listing.

Entering through the lower-level two-car garage, the basement has an entertainment lounge, sauna, bathroom and a wine cellar designed in the style of a Croatian tavern, Ms. Micetic said.

A pathway ascends from the driveway past a landscaped garden to the main entrance. On the ground floor, an iron fireplace separates the kitchen from the living room, which has wall-to-wall windows and a door that opens to the platform deck, heated pool and spa. The kitchen, also accessible through glass doors on the side of the house, has a table that seats 10.

The second floor, which cantilevers slightly over the deck, has three bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, the largest of which looks out to the forest through a wall of windows. A fire pit, barbecue, open dining area and garden are in the backyard.

The property is in the village of Ravna Gora, which sits between the larger towns of Delnice and Vrbovsko. Risnjak National Park is about 30 minutes away; Plitvice Lakes National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a popular hiking destination, is within an hour and half. Rijeka, a port city about 45 minutes west, is a melting pot of European influences with a growing tourism scene and an international airport. Zagreb, the Croatian capital, is about an hour northeast.

Croatia was one of a few European countries to react quickly to the coronavirus, ordering a full quarantine in mid-March that successfully tamped down the spread of the virus. The lockdown was lifted in May, and in June a flood of tourists and buyers poured into the country,

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Snowfall alerts issued for mountain passes in B.C.’s Southern Interior

a train covered in snow: Weather conditions at the Pennask Summit on the Okanagan Connector on Tuesday morning.

© DriveBC
Weather conditions at the Pennask Summit on the Okanagan Connector on Tuesday morning.

Snowfall warnings have been issued for several mountain passes in B.C.’s Southern Interior.

Sent out by Environment Canada on Tuesday morning at 10:42 a.m., the warnings say drivers should be on the lookout for adverse weather conditions and take safety precautions.

The national weather agency says a strong frontal system is moving across the province, and that freezing levels have fallen in advance of the system.

Read more: Snow and wind warnings in place for much of B.C. Tuesday

It added that 10 to 15 centimetres of snow is expected Tuesday, with an additional 10 to 15 centimetres possible in the evening and overnight.

The national weather agency also issued special weather statements, including for:

Highway 3 (Paulson Summit to Kootenay Pass)

Highway 97C (Okanagan Connector, Pennask Summit)

Highway 1 (Eagle Pass to Rogers Pass)

Yoho Park / Kootenay Park.

For the Coquihalla, Environment Canada says snow has changed to rain but is expected to switch back to flurries near the summit overnight.

For the Pennask Summit and Kootenay Pass, snow is predicted to taper off Tuesday afternoon, with 15 centimetres expected.

Read more: Cool B.C. temperatures spark annual crush of swapping to winter tires


Town of Hope: 41 metres (134 feet)

City of Kelowna: 344 metres (1,128 feet)

City of Revelstoke: 480 metres (1,574 feet)

Town of Merritt: 605 metres (1,984 feet)

Eagle Pass, Highway 1: 550 metres (1,804 feet)

Coquihalla Highway Summit: 1,210 metres (3,969 feet)

Rogers Pass, Highway 1: 1,330 metres (4,363 feet)

Paulson Summit, Highway 3: 1,446 metres (4,744 feet)

Pennask Summit, Okanagan Connector: 1,717 metres (5,633 feet)

Kootenay Pass, Highway 3: 1,781 metres (5,843 feet)

For the latest road conditions, visit DriveBC.

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Family’s years of hell living next to mountain of rubbish in neighbour’s garden that ‘smells like a sewer’

A FAMILY have told of their hell after living next to a mountain of rubbish in their neighbour’s garden that “smells like a sewer”.

James Flanagan, 26, and his mum Linda, 58, have considered moving from their home in Hall Green, Birmingham, due to the stench. 

James and Linda Flanagan peer over their fence into next door's garden


James and Linda Flanagan peer over their fence into next door’s garden Credit: BiPM MEDIA
The rubbish is draped in tarpaulin, taking up the whole of next door's garden


The rubbish is draped in tarpaulin, taking up the whole of next door’s gardenCredit: BiPM MEDIA
A heap of tyres, broken toys and plastic bags lies in next door's garden


A heap of tyres, broken toys and plastic bags lies in next door’s gardenCredit: BiPM MEDIA

The mum and son had begged Birmingham City Council to have a 30ft light-blocking hedge cut down next door.

But when workers removed it last month – and replaced it with a new one – a huge pile of rubbish was revealed, including a dumped fridge-freezer, dozens of bike tyres, plastic bags and shopping baskets.

James said: “We couldn’t believe it. As they took more of the hedge away, you could see it just looked like a skip yard.


“It’s unbearable the smell. I can’t describe it – it smells maybe similar to what a sewer would smell like.”

“We complained about the hedge and how it blocked light for us and was breaking our fences. We suspected some hoarded rubbish – but not this much.”

The mound of rubbish was uncovered on August 27 as the hedge came down.

James said: “Because of how long it’s been going on we have thought about moving away –  but we’ve decided we’re not going to be pushed out so we’re staying.

“The 30ft hedge was frustrating being there, but the positive thing about it was it was blocking the smell.

“Now it’s not there, the smell is definitely the main issue.

Since the hedge was removed the family have been complaining for the rubbish itself – and source of the stench – to be removed.

They say a housing manager finally called to tell them the garden would be cleared by September 24.

A spokesperson for Birmingham City Council said: “This is a complex case involving vulnerable individuals.

“Some furniture has been found in the garden and has been scheduled to be removed within ten days.

“We have since provided additional support to the tenant of the property so that their conditions of tenancy can be maintained and no further issues regarding the state of the

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Nvidia launches GPUs from Jen-Hsun’s kitchen and AMD now sells mountain bikes. What gives 2020?

Following Nvidia’s announcement of the RTX 30-Series GPU’s we’ve now discovered that AMD is switching things up a gear and is selling road and mountain bikes from its US fan store. That’s right, you can now whizz around on your snazzy two-wheeler, sporting the AMD logo as a form of free advertising for the brand.

The road bike, or cruiser (via Guru3D), isn’t the fanciest of its kind, but looks kinda swanky with its arched frame, and may have a place for those who don’t mind sitting a little low and far back from their handlebars. You do have to pedal backwards to break, though, which is not to everyone’s taste, and there’s only one gear. We just have to hope that’s not an allegory for the upcoming AMD RDNA 2 release.

The AMD mountain bike’s list of features is a lot more comprehensive, with a dual suspension frame, 21 speeds, and Shimano twist grip shifters, which I assume is the cycling equivalent of fancy flappy-paddles. I hope this makes sense to some of you out there, because I deal in computers, not cycles. As we all thought AMD did—until today.

Both the AMD road and mountain bikes are retailing at $299—which doesn’t necessarily bode well for the high-end pretentions of the mountain bike especially. There are a couple of black or white paint-job combos, each accentuated with vibrant tangerine features. I mean, look at those tires. These bikes ship anywhere in the US for just 50 bucks, but don’t export to any other countries… way to exclude half your fan-base, guys.

Although such merch is all marketing, as opposed to AMD having a newfound genuine dedication to the world of cycling, it’s certainly a clever way to cash in, what with everyone’s newfound cycling obsessions surfacing over the lockdown period.  The bikes obviously aren’t actually made by AMD itself, there are no 7nm TSMC transistors anywhere near them after all, but the logo’s on it, so it counts. 

But we’re still anticipating some compelling new GPU things from AMD around October time, alongside the new Zen 3 Ryzen CPUs, so let’s hope the company can keep up the product cycle and it ain’t all torque. 

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