When you walk the main streets of Mostar, the Marsala Tita Street and pass by the mosque under the lime tree, which is officially called Nesuh Aga Vucjakovic and descending towards the National Theatre, it is impossible not to notice a beautiful old building.
On the corner of Main Street at number 132 and Mala Tepa Street, there is Magaza of Mujaga Komadina, very beautiful building of a rich history and nicely restored in the last few years.
Ottomans left Mostar with more than five hundred stores and similar commercial facilities and the new Austro-Hungarian authorities continued to build similar facilities during their rule. Magaza of Mujaga Komadina was built in 1883, at a time when the legendary mayor of Mostar built several other significant buildings.
The building itself had two purposes. On the ground floor there was a shop run by Mujaga Komadin, and the top floors consisted of a especially designed rooms-musafirhana. Musafirhana are special institutions which were brought by Ottomans to our region. They were intended for travelers, usually for the poor. They could have a completely free residence for themselves and a horse, usually on a period of three days.
Musafirhana were generally built near the main roads. Each founder has determined how many days a traveler can stay in musafirhana and what he or she can eat. Each of these institutions had few rooms in which the passengers were sleeping, stable for horses, kitchen or mutvak, and a bakery.
According to the previously mentioned, the location of this building fits perfectly with the demands. In these streets, on the corner Magaza Mujage Omadina is, main roads always headed from north to south. How it was before, so it is today. North to Sarajevo, south to the seaside.
The mayor Komadina had its own shop, and the upper two floors he offered free of to poor travelers who did not have money for more luxurious accommodation and hamam (public bathroom).
Mujaga Komadina, during his rule, helped citizens during natural disasters. Moreover it is recorded that he shared wood and flour as well.
Building belongs to the classical Austro-Hungarian magaza with floors. Local impact is visible on the iron parts on the windows. The building is characterized by a stone sign on the roof, which symbolized musafirhana, and by which the traveler knew that on that place there is an open shelter. Moreover, the building is characterized by the wedge-shaped stone, on which the text in Turkish and Arabic numerals were engraved. The stone was located above the entrance portal and from which the origin of the building could be learned. This stone sign exists even today and it talks about the rare institution of this kind in Mostar – musafirhana.
The Agency Old Town, with money given by the City of Mostar, renewed the whole building in 2014. The storeroom was officially opened on 3rd July 2015 as part of the cultural-historical event “10th anniversary of entry of the Old Bridge in Mostar Old Town on UNESCO’s World Heritage List”.