Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?

Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?

It’s no secret that the island of Ibiza isn’t what it used to be.

Gone are the days of dancing on the beach until sunrise, to loud, but wonderful music. Unless you find somewhere out of earshot.

It’s harder to find a place to lay your towel in some of the more sought-after locations. As many beaches have now been ‘bought’ by sea-facing restaurant owners. Offering guests day beds for a (not so little) fee.

€10 flights each way are a thing of the past, especially for visitors travelling from places such as the UK.

And the cost of hotels, apartments and villas have sky rocketed over the past decade.

But, with anything popular comes a demand.

And with that comes inflation.

We remember the days of sitting on deckchairs, along the sandy rocks of the sunset strip.

Listening to what would soon become some of the most iconic sounds in Ibizas clubbing history.

Blissfully unaware of our surroundings, and just taking the moment in our stride.

Nowadays it’ll cost you a pretty penny at some of those venues. To experience something that was once, so laid-back, relaxed and unique.

In terms of party culture, the island has changed drastically too.

The fun-filled days of Bora Bora are no more, and have been replaced by Playa Soleil.

A beautiful, bohemian-inspired, rustic beach club restaurant. Which has also had a pretty decent DJ line-up to date.

You can still party the day away, but it comes at a price. And you can no longer dance on the tables dressed as Spiderman.

Some see it as a blessing. Whilst others? Not so much.

Paulo Marques aka ‘Spiderman’

The once ‘biggest club in the world’ (Privilege), is currently being demolished. After one of the islands richest and most prominent names in local business, Matutesmade the purchase in 2022.

The former venue was home to some of the best parties on the island over a 40 year period. Having occupied under both the names Ku (1978-1995), before becoming Privilege until closing in 2019.

What it will become is still yet to be seen.

Another club? Possibly.

A new hotel? Even more likely.

Only time will tell. 

The Matutes family are no strangers to the world of hospitality and tourism.

Co-owning the biggest and best open-air club on the island, Ushuaïa.

If that’s not enough, the former-political family also owns the Palladium Hotel Group, which as of 2020, had an impressive accumulation of 48 hotels worldwide.

Some of these include the Hard Rock Hotel in Playa d’en Bossa, and the 5 star, adults-only all inclusive TRS in San Antonio.

Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?
TRS – San Antonio

They truly put Monopoly’s ‘Milburn Pennybags’  to shame, that’s for sure.

In fact, it’s rare to find a popular venue or hotel on the island that isn’t owned by the small handful of the established, collective business-owners based on Ibiza.

It’s nothing new, but it is starting to become a lot more visible. Especially with the number of once-cherished local establishments recently closing down, and reopening under new ownership.

In all reality, anyone who says that they wouldn’t do the same may be kidding themselves somewhat.

This is how many businesses work.

They expand when they have the opportunity to do so.

And we don’t blame them for their dedicated, entrepreneurial skills.

With that being said, it doesn’t leave much ‘wiggle room’ for those who are used to their regular haunts. With very familiar faces serving them during their visit.

For some, a holiday can end up becoming an annual jolly to the same location, with all the family. Over many decades.

A generational escape from the norm.

And also a recognisable one, that feels like a home-from-home.

Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?
Bar Anita – San Carlos – Unchanged, authentic and welcoming

For those who haven’t been to the island for many years, will indeed notice the drastic changes that have taken place upon their return.

Especially if they’re coming back for the first time since pre-covid.

AND THAT’S NOT ALL!

As if that’s not enough, the world-renowned club Space (which closed in 2016) has picked up it’s big, bold name and plonked itself at Eden on Fridays, starting from tonight.

Whilst many were hoping that the move would be heading to Privilege, there’s no way it would have been ready in time for the 2024 season.

The line up for this new residency doesn’t disappoint.

And whilst the venue will provide a completely different atmosphere to the original one in Playa d’en Bossa, we don’t doubt that the move will be a much-welcomed addition to San Antonio this year.

There’s also been a lot of talk lately about the cost of accommodation here.

Not only have the prices of holidays shot through the roof in recent years, but the amount that residents are now having to pay for rental properties has become unbearable for many.

Pushing some to relocate, and head for pastures new.

Whilst Ibiza is a (mostly) summer home to the rich and famous, it’s also home to year-round local residents too.

Residents who rely on summer tourism to survive the winter months, when a lot of venues close due to lack of high-tourism.

The average monthly salary doesn’t even cover the rent for many these days.

Forcing people to share their homes with others to keep costs to a minimum.

It’s not ideal for anyone.

But unfortunately, it’s the price people are having to pay to be able to survive here.

Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?
The Old Town

There’s a stark contrast between the rich and the ‘poor’ on the island.

Something which tends to get overlooked by those who pull the strings, in terms of housing and employment.

The cost of living compared to the annual (or seasonal) wage doesn’t compare.

Just like many other parts of the world.

It’s a sign of modern times, and not necessarily a positive one.

It’s not all sunshine and parties.

A paradise lost for many? It seems so of late.

Indeed, there’s been a lot of big changes all round for Ibiza over recent years.

But let’s not pretend that it’s the only place in this situation.

Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?

Now this article may seem like a dig at the island as a whole, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Ibiza is still very much a simply magical, beautiful and inspiring place to live and visit.

It’s home to a world of opportunity.

The beaches and natural surroundings are just as mesmerising as the first time we laid eyes on them, many moons ago.

Rich in culture and history, dating back to the Phoenician times, around 654BC.

With wonderful walks through the cobbled streets, or up to the top of Dalt Vila.

Views from the top of Dalt Vila

There’s still an abundance of lovely restaurants that welcome diners too, regardless of status and income.

You’ll never struggle to find a decent bar for a drink either. No minimum spend required.

The night life is still second to none, and the white isle provides a vibe that cannot be replicated anywhere else in the world.

You can always find somewhere to explore, relax or party.

From yoga on the beach to shopping at the Hippy Markets, or dancing through til morning at one of the amazing ‘super clubs’.

There’s always something amazing happening.

It’s still very easily achievable, you just sometimes have to dig a little deeper to find what you’re looking for.

And don’t forget, the famous sunsets always have a way of humbling people, and reminding us that we are all one in this life. And that sort of realisation, cannot be bought. 

Regardless of cost or unsettling changes, it hasn’t stopped the millions of tourists from continuing to visit Ibiza each year.

The ‘traditional‘ Ibiza tourism industry isn’t completely lost.

It just needs a little nudge back in the right direction.

A nudge that not only benefits those on a high income. But also those that wish to collectively enjoy everything that this beautiful little place has to offer, without requiring a second mortgage.

We love to have a mix between higher-end dining, when we fancy a nice dinner somewhere. Yet also the availability of popping to one of our fabulous local, family-owned eateries for a fair price.

A blend of both worlds on our doorstep.

Nikki Beach

By all means visit the amazing clubs, exclusive restaurants and luxurious hotels. Or even treat yourself to VIP at a beach-club.

It’s fun and you’ve earned it.

But don’t forget, you don’t have to spend your whole time doing those things.

Especially if it doesn’t suit your lifestyle or budget.

We know a number of smaller, local businesses that would be more than happy to welcome you, for a fraction of what you’d spend elsewhere.

You’ll often find the you’ll receive a much more attentive, personable and dedicated service too.

HELP SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESSES AND YOU’LL BENEFIT TOO

Everyone should at least once in their life, experience the island of Ibiza. In our humble opinion.

We cannot stop times changing. That’s how life works.

All we can do is adapt, embrace and be grateful for the fact that we still get to call this little slice of heaven our home.

Would we really want to be anywhere else in the world, regardless of all its recent trials and tribulations?

Absolutely not.

Is it still worth visiting Ibiza? Most definitely, yes!

 

Alexandra Ellis

ARC Ibiza

 

 

2 Replies to “Is it still worth visiting Ibiza?”

    1. Yes exactly. You can spend as little, or as much as you like. And enjoy it however you choose. Thanks for the comment!

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