Tacoma’s Sister City Since 2015
Hvar is Tacoma’s 13th Sister City. Located off the Dalmation Coast in southern Croatia, in the Adriatic Sea, Hvar is the number one holder of Croatia's superlatives: the most luxurious island, the sunniest place in the country (with 2,724 sunny hours each year) and, along with Dubrovnik, the most popular tourist destination.
Hvar Town, the island's capital, is all about swanky hotels, elegant restaurants, trendy bars and clubs. Hvar is famous for its lilac lavender fields, as well as other aromatic plants such as rosemary and heather. The interior of the island hides abandoned ancient hamlets, towering peaks and verdant, largely uncharted landscapes.
Beginning in the 1870’s, hundreds of immigrants arrived in Tacoma from the Dalmatian Coast (southern coastal area of Croatia). Because of the geo-politics of the time, they were identified as Austrians. After World War II, they became known as Yugoslavs and today, people from this area are members of the nation of Croatia, formed in the 1990’s following the breakup of Yugoslavia.
Since 1901, many of these Dalmatians or Slavs kept alive their traditions by becoming members the Slavonian American Benevolent Society, located on North 30th Street in Old Town Tacoma. Most of the Tacoma Dalmatians come from the islands of Hvar, Brac, Vis or Korcula.