“A friendly base in a hidden historic townhouse, right next to Dubrovnik’s cathedral and 2 stunning palaces”
Deep in the middle, hidden between 2 piazzas and behind the cathedral and Rector’s Palace, is an unassuming wooden door. Through it, and up a flight of uneven stone stairs, lies Fresh* Sheets, a chic guesthouse-hideaway that feels as much home as hotel. The stylish design and relaxed feel come from Croatian-born Sanja and her Canadian husband Jon, who rent the historic building from the Vatican (previous tenants: Sisters of Mercy). They wanted to create a really special base for visitors to this bustling city - a 'fresh' take on the Dubrovnik hotel experience, that offered a sense of escape from the crowds, along with comfort, style, and the local knowledge of actually living here. They have more than succeeded.
- The warm welcome from Jon, Sanja and manager Alex: a platter of cheese, bread and olives, a cold beer, and masses of tips on cafés, restaurants and untouristy day trips
- Beautiful décor, including huge mirrors, black and white photos and upcycled furniture, which reflects the building’s heritage
- Just 6 light-filled bedrooms, all with high ceilings and fabulous, unobstructed views over the Old Town
- A superb central location above Gundulic Square yet little noise; we slept undisturbed with the windows open
- The option of triple rooms and a Family Suite, meaning this suits friends, families and couples
- No meals served but there's a communal kitchen/sitting area for guest use, and cafés and bakeries nearby, plus a daily market
- Not cheap, but the location is unbeatable
- As with most accommodation in the old town, you need to climb a few flights of stairs to reach your room
- Room 8 has an external (but private) bathroom
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Boutique Guesthouse
- 6 rooms
- No meals served; restaurants nearby
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Communal kitchen/sitting area
The 6 thoughtfully put-together bedrooms have unobstructed views over 3 of Dubrovnik’s key landmarks - the Rector’s Palace, Pucic Palace and the cathedral - which is a real rarity. Design is simple but effective: a palette of soft greys and clean whites produces a feel of tranquility and escapism from the bustling city; quirky lighting and individual antiques give each room a unique personality.
As we sat in armchairs in our Double Room (Trubadur), we peered over an old Singer sewing machine table topped with a single cala lily, and looked out at the statutes and intricately carved pillars atop the cathedral. Such an amazing view. We were even treated to live jazz, which drifted up from a bar below.
Things to note: Katedrala (Superior Double) can be booked alone or with a small twin room, Palace, to form a Triple Suite or Family Suite, with 1 shared bathroom. Room 8 has an external private bathroom. Dubrava (Studio) has a small kitchenette.
- Air conditioning
- Coffee / tea making
- Cots Available
- Extra beds
There are no meals served at Fresh*, but you're treated to a welcome platter of homemade bread, local cheese, olives and cured meats. For breakfast, the morning market, Gundulićeva Poljana, is right on your doorstep: pop down to pick up pastries and takeaway coffees, or whip up something fancier in the communal kitchen.
There are excellent restaurants and cafés all around, including those with outdoor tables in the square by the cathedral. Our favourite was Azur (a 4-minute walk), which serves Asian food with a Mediterranean flair. The spicy and creamy vegetable Thai red curry was a real winner, especially followed by the refreshingly light coconut pudding. Head to Restaurant Dubrovnik just outside the city walls for brunch or dinner with breathtaking views. Just avoid the restaurants on Stradun; they rely on their location, and the food tends to be bland and overpriced.
- Coffee / tea making
- Restaurants nearby
- You’re in the heart of Dubrovnik’s old town; we loved exploring once the day tourists had left. Saunter along the city walls, check out the 15th-century Rector’s Palace (housing the City Museum), and admire the cathedral and the Franciscan monastery
- Buža is a tiny bar that clings to the cliff face just outside the city; go for an early-morning swim and orange juice, or a sunset drink
- Jump in the cable car and ascend Mount Srdj for exceptional views of the old town, Lokrum, the mountains, and out along the coast
- If you’re in the city for more than a few days, do something unusual: kayak around the old town or try a local cooking lesson
- Extend your trip and visit Kotor in Montenegro, or Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina; Jon, Sanja and Alex can help you arrange it
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Boat trips
- Cooking classes
- Historical sites
- Museums / galleries
- Shopping / markets
- Wine tasting
Children of all ages are welcome, though it's best suited to babes in arms or older kids/teenagers. Parents will find the communal kitchen useful.
Babies (0-1 years), Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)
Family friendly accommodation:
The Studio (Dubrava) can fit a baby cot, or its sofabed can be made up as an extra bed; parents will find its kitchenette useful too. The Family Suite is Katedrala and Palace, a connected double and twin bedroom with a shared bathroom. Trubadur (Double Room) and Dubrava (Studio) can also be connected to form a Family Suite that can sleep up to 4 adults and 1 child (book both rooms separately)
Baby cot and high chair
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
- Airport: Dubrovnik (20 mins' drive)
- Shop: 1 minute walk
Fresh* Sheets is in the heart of Dubrovnik's pedestrianised old town, in southern Croatia.
Fly into Dubrovnik (20km); click on the links below for a list of airlines. Fresh* can arrange a transfer in advance, or you can take a taxi or airport shuttle when you arrive, all of which will drop you outside Pile Gate (a 10-minute walk from the guesthouse). If you're planning to explore the wider area you may want to hire a car, but Dubrovnik is not the easiest city to drive around. Roads are narrow, parking is very limited, and the old town is pedestrianised, so you might be better off just taking a taxi here.
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.
More on getting to Croatia
- Dubrovnik 20.0 km DBV
- Beach 1.0 km
- Shops 0.1 km
- Restaurant 0.1 km