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Nama – The Charming Centuries-Old Zagreb Department Store

Nama in the historic Zagreb building (photo credit: jatrgovac.com)

Nama in the historic Zagreb building (photo credit: jatrgovac.com)

Before the era of modern shopping malls, the department store was the place to go for a variety of goods under one roof…

The most famous department store in Croatia is the iconic Nama store. Nama was the largest retail chain in the country and today there are still two stores operating, one on Kvaternikov square and the other right in the heart of downtown Zagreb just off the main square. The immortal, time-less department store is still a favourite with locals, especially the sentimental ones.

In the 1870s Austrian traders Carl Kastner and Herman Öhler decided to open a trading store in Zagreb. After operating from a number of addresses, the finally moved to the location next to the main square on Ilica in 1889. In 1906 the building was used as a famous hotel. The hotel died out and after the first World War it concentrated on the retail business, growing in levels over the years.

Inside the charming Nama on Ilica (photo credit: Sandra Tralic)

Inside the charming Nama on Ilica (photo credit: Sandra Tralic)

The second World War bought some changes and immediately after the war on 6 December 1945 the traders organisation “Narodni magazin” opened Nama in the iconic building.

Visiting the store on Ilica is a opportunity to experience the feel of a traditional old Vienna department store. That atmosphere, and not to mention the impressive building and charm, is what makes Nama still popular among Zagreb locals today.

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