Wine Cellar Living on the Danube | Croatia / by Nancy Kočiš Galetić


Klara and Daniel Zajec dreamed of owning a winery. Daniel is the grandson of a Croatian winemaker in the town of Moslavina. Klara has roots in Zmajevac—a small, ancient town at the center of eastern Croatia’s Danube Wine Region.

One evening the couple was walking through the streets of Zmajevac and quite by accident discovered a “for sale” sign posted on the old doors of a wine cellar. They immediately knew that this was a sign. The following day they purchased the property.

It took a year to restore the cellar, which included many improvements to its original design. Guest accommodations were added in the cellar. Klara and Daniel then purchased their first vineyard and now have 1.5 hectares (4 acres) under vine. Soon after, they opened to the public as the Zajec Family Wine Cellar. The dream was realized.

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Today the accommodation options include a “holiday” home with four bedrooms, two baths and a kitchen. Across the street, the Zajec’s added two, three-bed, single-bath apartments.

As news of the rural guesthouse and wine cellar began to spread, inquiries from tourists became more frequent.

I recently spent a weekend in the “holiday” home, so I can attest to the beauty and rural charm of the accommodations. The fireplace was a bonus and added to the historic charm of the wine cellar guesthouse. It is perfect for groups of adults or families with children.

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If you are planning a trip to the Slavonia region, the Zajec family offers this as a centrally located lodging option and base of operation for exploring the local wine. Notable producers like Antunović, Feravino, Iločki Podrum and Kalazić are within easy driving distance.

These accommodations can be reserved through