Zagreb

Eagle’s nest

27 November 2020.

Written by Matija Čaić

Above Berchtesgaden, Hitler had his eagle’s nest in the Kehlsteinhaus villa. On Medvednica above Zagreb, Ante Pavelić had his nest in Villa Rebar.

The eagle’s nest


When the Nazi puppet state Independent State of Croatia was formed in occupied Croatia in 1941, Ante Pavelić was elected its leader. Following the example of Hitler, Pavelić wanted to have a safe place from where to carry out the will of the Nazis and take refuge in case of danger. He chose Villa Rebar, built in 1932 on the southern slope of Mountain Medvednica.


After moving into the villa, Pavelić made some alterations. He built defense bunkers and escape tunnels. The tunnels had two entrances, one on the ground floor and one on the first floor, and exited further into the mountain.


The villa in its full splendor was very beautiful. After the war, it housed a mountain lodge and later a restaurant. It was at this time that a fire broke out which was allegedly started by a disgruntled employee of the restaurant. The wooden part of the villa was completely burnt down and has not been restored, so only the stone ground floor has been preserved.


In the golden age of electronic music in the mid-1990s, rave parties were held in the tunnels under the villa.

F.C. Dinamo and villa Rebar


This villa also marked the end of the career of the top football player Stjepan Lamza, a member of the golden generation of the Dinamo football club.


In 1967, in the semi-final match of the Fair Cities Cup, the forerunner of the UEFA Cup, Dinamo defeated Eintracht 4 – 0. The victory celebration took place at Villa Rebar. After a few liters of rum, Stjepan Lamza was so drunk that his teammates decided to lock him in a room to rest. Lamza tried to escape from the room over the balcony but fell and irreversibly damaged the balance center in the brain. He never got back in shape after that accident.


Dinamo then defeated Leeds in the finals and won the cup.

The only inhabited river island

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