Interview with Thomas Swieca, General Manager of the new “Radisson Blu Old Mill Hotel Belgrade”

Only a few days to the opening of the first Radisson Blu hotel of Serbia. We reached Mr. Thomas Swieca, its General Manager, to learn more about the hotel that promises to become a benchmark in terms of accommodation for tourists and businessmen headed to Belgrade. Turismo in recommend it to anyone claiming the best in services, food quality and comfort.


TITLE: General Manager
WHERE: Radisson Blu Old Mill Hotel Belgrade

Thomas Swieca (51 years old) was born in Germany. He has always worked in the hotel industry. In 2005 he started to work with Rezidor Hotel Group, in particular for the brand Radisson Blu.
First as General Manager of the RB Media Harbour Hotel Düsseldorf, then the R.B. Resort El Quseir (Egypt) and R.B. Resort & Spa Cesme (Turkey), up to lead the new Radisson Blu Hotel Old Mill Belgrade (Republic of Serbia).

With the Radisson Blu Old Mill Hotel Belgrade, the Belgrade hotel offer takes glamour. The hotel is built where there was an old mill and that enhances the charm…
When it comes to hotel services and guests needs, we all have the challenge of meeting expectations. Our hotel enjoys a prime location next to the Belgrade Fair and above one of the city’s most important thoroughfares offering excellent access to the traditional “Old Belgrade” neighborhood as well as to the “New Belgrade” business district.
Besides 236 rooms with Radisson Blu distinctive character and style, the property will comprise a restaurant and bar, 500 square meters of meeting space, a fitness area, and parking facilities. Our benefit will be the different buildings where the past and the present come together.
Our guests will not just see the history, but they will be able to stay in it, to feel the spirit of the old mill. The hotel concept is to reflect the details of the mill. We used the old cobblestones, old wooden panels and many more from the real old mill and installed these into some parts of the old buildings.
The buildings architecture is industrial character and driven by its function. The Radisson Blu Old Mill Hotel Belgrade ★★★★ has been reconstructed. In combination with the modern architecture of the hotel, the entire scheme makes a single unit composed of historic and contemporary design. The strength of our company, also lies in our unique “Yes I Can!” spirit: our special ethos that differentiates us from the competition. “Yes I Can!” defines our corporate culture and our service philosophy: it is both our mission and vision. Embraced by every employee, “Yes I Can!” lies at the core of all our operations, ensuring each individual guest – and partner – is treated with a truly helpful and positive attitude.
Our special Z-factor zest inspires our employees to do things differently. We use our fighting spirit to deliver our promises: to say “Yes!” and to mean it. Where else in Belgrade you have these kind of experiences?

Radisson Blu Old Mill Hotel Belgrade

Old Mill Hotel Belgrade

What kind of customer you aspect?
We are expecting to welcome guests from all over the world. Most of the people that visit Belgrade are business travelers, so our main focus will be on corporate business through meetings and events, trade fair business and company contracts. On the other side, we expect to attract tourists since our hotel has a unique story with numerous possibilities and has a prime location close to the center, main city attractions and Ada lake.

What do you think about the growth of tourism in Belgrade in recent times?
Belgrade has been investing in making tourism a strong factor of economic growth and is recognized in the region and across the globe as a friendly and dynamic place to visit and live. Belgrade is attracting tourist from around the world thanks to numerous cultural events, many sporting championships, a well-established range of places to eat and stay, as well as an attractive nightlife. The city is consistently developing and has a huge potential as large industrial, commercial, tourist, cultural, educational and political centre in the region. We are very pleased to be the part and to grow together with this unique city.

I know that there is a special restaurant in the hotel. Tell me something about it…
For the Rezidor Hotel Group we are implementing a new restaurant concept. It is an integrated concept reaching well beyond just the Food & Drinks aspect – we will have one of the best restaurants and bars in town – into architectural elements, design, music and appearance of the tableware or even the staff’s uniforms. OMB LARDER + LOUNGE is showcasing the Old Mill’s iconic postindustrial heritage and recreating Serbian traditional cuisine with all new contemporary approach. As such, we provide an extraordinary experience to our guests. And certainly, our aim is having them return to us.

Is there also a winery for tasting?
I would not give too much away in advance but we will have a special wine cellar. Investment value of this project is 250.000 € and our clients will have exclusive opportunity to organize unique private events up to 20 persons.

Why have you choosen “Turismo in” as one of your italian partners?
The Radisson Blu Old Mill Hotel Belgrade ★★★★ and the website Turismo in share the same passion about beautiful city of Belgrade. We want to present the unique spirit of the city to Italian travellers as an ideal, yet close travel destination. Together we have a great opportunity to do that in the best way.