Dear fellow crystallographers,

As you know, the 29th European Crystallographic Meeting (ECM29) will be held in Rovinj, a coastal Croatian town where subtle Mediterranean grace, traditional Croatian hospitality and rich history and culture coalesce in a unique and uncomparable blend of beauty and harmony.

The Executive Committee of the Croatian Crystallographic Association (CCA), at its meeting of May 23rd, 2011, decided to accept the invitation of the European Crystallographic Association to present the bid to host the ECM29 in Croatia. We opted for Rovinj as the conference host town. Rovinj is a true pearl of the Croatian northern Adriatic, located on the western Istrian coast, in the very heart of Europe. With its century long tradition in tourism, wide range of accommodation and convention facilities, as well as the unique natural and cultural treasures in and around the city, Rovinj was an utterly obvious choice. Worthy of mentioning here are the marvellously preserved Roman amphitheatre in the nearby city of Pula, and Brijuni National Park – an enchanting archipelago that used to be a sumptuous summer residence of the Croatian potentates throughout its turbulent history – from Austrian emperors to Yugoslav political elite. The ECM29 venue is the Adris exhibition and convention centre. Located just steps away from the historical town centre, within the walking distance from the majority of hotels, from the city port and bus station, this fascinating convention venue is a renovated old tobacco factory complex which offers all the activities of the ECM29 to be organized “under a single roof”. The complex is listed as a historical monument of the fin-de-siècle industrial architecture. Rovinj is just 36 km away from the International Airport of Pula, while the airports of Rijeka and Trieste are at ca. 100 km from the city. A direct speedboat line connects Venice and Rovinj. A brand new highway connects Rovinj with the Slovenian border (70 km) and further to central Europe, while its other branch leads to the Croatian capital, Zagreb (240 km). In just six hours drive or so, Rovinj can be easily reached from many cities and research centres spread accross central Europe.

May I suggest you, at the end of this welcome note, not to miss the splendour of the Istrian beaches, historical monuments, hospitality and a superb cuisine based on the local products, excellent wine and exquisite olive oil. And, even with a risk to sound a bit biased, I’ll tell you also that a drive along the ravishing Croatian Adriatic coast, down to Zadar, Split and Dubrovnik, after (or before) the ECM29, might turn to an unforgettable experience.

Croatia is a member state of the European Union. All visitors from within EU/EEA are allowed to enter Croatia with their valid ID or passport, and citizens of many countries outside EU/EEA can also enter Croatia without visa. The visa policy is syncronized with the EU. Croatia is also recognized as one of the safest tourist destinations on the Mediterranean. For more practical information please visit the info section of the ECM29 website.

The Organizing Committee, together with its partners from Globtour Event Ltd. (PCO), Maistra Inc, as well as from the Croatian national tourist board, will make every effort to ensure the safety and well-being of all the participants of the ECM29. Please follow the news on ECM29 here and on social networks, and feel free to share, like and comment. I am very much looking forward to seeing you all in Rovinj in 2015.

Yours faithfully,

Aleksandar Višnjevac

Chair of the Organizing Committee