Gheg and Tosk Tradition
The city has its genesis at the time of the Ottoman Empire ruled over most parts of the Eastern Europe. Most Albanian families set out to built cities to avoid Ottoman Rule; their houses were designed in a grand fashion to accentuate the presence and power of the indigenous people. Every house was in itself a fortress. Ottoman laws obligated inhabitants to build a surrounding wall 4.2 meters high, and each house resembled a small fortress.
During the 1900s the house was the property of Filip Shiroka, a well renowned writer, who was exiled by the Ottoman Empire in Egypt and later died in Lebanon.
Through the years, the house became property of Krajave, who were close family friends of Shiroka family and the right arm of Luigj Gurakuqi. The last member of the Kraja family had no successors and was viciously persecuted by the dictatorship. Though his property was often used in for movie filming due to its monumental values, it would not be recognized as a cultural asset.
Fortunately for the estate and its owners, the house became property of Duke Gijal family. Though forgotten throughout the years, the house had many elements Shkodra’s architecture and after 14 month of restorations it became a permanent asset to the city of Shkodra paying homage to its architectural authenticity, gastronomical delicacies, costumographical legitimacy, and cultural values.
In 2004, the property functioned as a bar and restaurant, later it expanded its cultural services to a traditional museum while during the last year it serves as a hotel.
The new owner’s European experience in Italy and other Western European countries, motivated them to reclaim the estate’s former glory, an idea borrowed from Sicily and Bryzhi. The very souls of such places feed on those traditional elements that increase the desire to remain part of a cultural legitimacy, to protect and strengthen its core cultural values.
Another motivational aspect was the reaction of fellow citizens who did not share the same sentiments about tradition, values and culture. From 2004, when the doors of Tradition opened, much appreciation goes out to the incredible recognition of those clients that remain faithful to tradition, for their moral support and appreciation for traditional hosting.