Less than a year after Beyonce revealed her baby bump to the world at the Hula Hula Beach Club on the island of Hvar, Croatian media
reported on June 22, 2012 that her daughter Blue Ivy has been given honorary citizenship on the tourist island which was named as Lonely Planet's number 5 destination in 2012.
The island, which is famous for its sun, nightlife, lavender and celebrity draw thought it had seen its premier celebrity moment in the summer when Prince Harry jumped into a swimming pool at a Hvar nightclub, but the media attention associated with Beyonce's appearance in a white bikini with husband Jay-Z was also very widely reported in the international media.
Interest in the Hvar visit resurfaced earlier this year as Beyonce announced that the inspiration for her daughter's name was taken from a tree wrapped in blue ivy on the island.
"The story of the origin of the name of your daughter has brought enormous media attention and therefore tourist promotion to the town and island of Hvar," wrote Mayor Bebic. "Because of this, I have decided to confer on your daughter the status of honorary citizen of the town of Hvar."
Bebic, a charismatic character, who was voted best mayor at the 2011 Days of Croatian Tourism awards, is no stranger to international media attention. An invitation to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to visit the island was attached with the promise to rename a neighbouring islet Facebook Island
in honour of his visit.
More recently, Bebic was spotted in Monte Carlo at the Monaco Grand Prix, where his promotion of exclusive Hvar tourism included dinner on a private yacht with Bernie Ecclestone and Eric Clapton.
While Hvar's celebrity image is attracting increasing international attention, it is only one side of the island's tourism, and next week sees one of the most important cultural festivals of the year, the fourth lavender festival in Velo Grablje, as far away from the jetset lifestyle, and yet equally as important in the tourism makeup of the island which has the oldest organised tourism in Europe.