Most of Ricks recommendations for lodging in Croatia were fantastic for our 2013 trip. Friendly people everywhere. We usually skew toward more budget accommodations. Standouts included Palaca Stafileo in Trogir and Villa Fortuna in Mostar (Bosnia, not Croatia).
Our best Rick recommendation was a little more spendy that we usually do, Casa Garzotto. Some of the best customers service we ever experienced in Europe. We had drinks as we checked in and our car was parked by the attendant, far away, and dinner reservations were made for us. Then we got a call at the reception, the attendant "wants to know if we want our wine taken up to our room also." I respond, “where is the car parked so we can get our bags.” The car has already parked the car just outside of town and he has taken your bags to you room. I feel guilty at this point, our bags became heavy after we started driving and we could have lightened them in the car. The room was adorable and the doorman says “I only ask because you might want it, it is very good wine”, like he ‘appreciated’ our wine enough to be nice and drag it a half mile for us. Our room was at the top of the Baladur Pavan building. Off the beaten track, up some windy streets and just outside of the touristy base of the town. The door to the building was on a small square at the foot of a church, and small group of locals were playing music in the square at night. Great. I get the most out of alternatives to Ricks recommendations on these message boards, so here is one. Mirka Rosso in Hvar. Hvar accomodations book up early, and you usually have to hike up steep hills to reach them. This lodging is run by really nice people, has what might be the best view in Hvar, has (relatively) few steps to climb, and is reasonably price especially if you have a large group (5 people). Plus the rooms and kitchen are fantastic.
Rick also had some tasty food recommendations: Lady Pi-pi in Dubrovnik, Sadrvan in Mostar (again Bosnia, not Croatia), and La Puntuleina in Rovinj. The best place we ate was Konoba Menego in Hvar. I had a good feeling about this place when we observed the host was carving prsut off a leg at the entrance. The waiter was the best. We were fussing about what to eat and in the most relaxing voice, he said "this is what we are going to do." We ended up with a cheese plate, beef pasticada with gnocchi, and a mild pepper stuffed with some minced meat. We came here twice! A good tasty rick alternative in Korcula is U Maje i Tonke.