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"SKENDERIJA CENTER" Top 5 Page for this destination Sarajevo Things to Do Tip by neodue

Sarajevo Things to Do: 501 reviews and 1,067 photos


We were walking by th Miljacka river through to NOVO SARAJEVO saw that 60's style building and saw that cultural and sport hall.

Due to a lack of an exhibition and sports-centre within the fast expanding city of Sarajevo of the late 1960s, the city-community planned to build the new Skenderija-centre. It was opened on November 29, 1969 by hosting the première of the Movie "Battle of Neretva". The name Skenderija, which means "Skender's place", comes from the famous Bosnian bay Sand?ak beg Skender paša, who build the first trading-centre with 11 shops and the first Muslim monastery of Bosnia from 1499. Soon the Skenderija was a well known and widely used centre for several cultural events of the former Yugoslavia. One part of the Skenderija is a youth club called "Dom mladih". Before the war, this was one of the modernist and most western styled clubs of Yugoslavia. It was a very popular place among young people, and big stars of Balkan pop-music, like Dino Merlin, had started their career here. Also a big shopping-mall is included in the centre, called "Privredni grad".

In 1977, when Sarajevo was voted to host the XIV Olympic Winter Games in 1984, they discovered that they needed more than only the brand-new building Zetra to host every figure-skating and ice-hokey event. So they started to reconstruct and expand the Skenderija into a real state-of-the-art ice-sports centre. It was also chosen as the centre for the representatives and press-reporters.

In 1992, when the war started, the Skenderija was set under shell-fire. The main structure of the building survived without major damage, but the youth-centre was burned out and made unusable.

After the war, there was no need for the centre and it slowly went into disrepair. But in 1999, the city-government of Sarajevo wished to have an exhibition-hall to build up a new economy and trade in Bosnia and Herzegovina. So they rebuilt the Skenderjia slowly from 2000 to 2006. It was financed by many private companies, so it is under the ownership of these private bodies. However it now has all of the old functions restored and is back in service today. It is estimated to have over 500.000 Visitors each year


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  • Written Mar 22, 2008
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