Talamanca, Ibiza, Spain
Telling people that you’re off to Ibiza for the weekend seems to conjure up lots of presumptions and pre-conceived ideas as to what you might be up to, in my experience. But although the Isla Blanca may be the land of the all-night nightclub with a hedonistic history, I personally prefer the hippie history of the island and the chilled vibe which exists in many parts (thankfully) as yet undiscovered by the disco divas.
On this trip, shared with four forty-somethings, we checked into the super smart OD Talamanca Hotel, which is located six miles/10km from the airport on a quiet bay close to Ibiza Town. It is an elegant refuge from the non-stop party atmosphere elsewhere and the impressive first impressions included a tight attention to detail in everything - from the design (interior and exterior) to the wonderfully accommodating and friendly staff as well as a modern menu and creative cocktails.
Designed by Rahola Vidal architects and the interior designer Mayte Matutes, I totally loved the mix of mid-century and modern. Dry stone walls and sauna-like wood feature heavily outdoors around the pool area, with white walls and large windows throughout the bedroom spaces in the main buildings. Fans of designer chairs will be in heaven with repro Eames, Jacobson and Wegner styles, to name just a few. For me, the walk-in wardrobes of the suites were an incentive to actually unpack – which I don’t always get round to on weekend trips – and the wide, comfortable beds made for easy, relaxing slumbers, way beyond what I’d get on a busy weeknight at home (which is a terribly un-Ibiza thing to say I imagine).
Location, Location: In terms of location, the hotel is at the eastern end of Talamanca Bay, which is about a 5-10min taxi ride or a 30-minute walk east of Ibiza Town. You can walk down to the sea in a couple of minutes. It’s not the prettiest beach in the world, but it is nice for a swim with shallow waters underfoot and soft sand. We loved the Bodega tapas bar down by the beach – I had been there before back in 2014 and it hadn’t changed, with its hipster vibe plus really tasty tapas at very reasonable prices; perfect for a late night flight arrival. The the ‘secret find’ of the amazing local Fish Shack restaurant is only about 10 minutes up the beach path also. If you’re partying at Pacha or Ushuaia it takes about 20mins/25 euro to get there by taxi. Likewise, it cost us £25 euro to get to our fave beach club El Chiringuito by private car.
Rooms: All bedrooms and suites, across both main buildings, have at least a partial sea view of Talamanca bay and the Dalt Vila (old part) of Ibiza Town beyond. I loved our room’s pool view and balcony as well as the walk in wardrobe and open bathroom with its dual basins and a rain shower, plus some zingy citrus fragranced products.
Extra, Extra!: Book a loft room and a Smart Cabrio car is included as a nice bonus. [My partner and I hired one of these babies a few years back in Formentera (Ibiza’s little sister island) and we adored whizzing around the beautiful white sandy beaches of the playboy’s playground.] The first fill of the minibar is free, which is an extra welcoming touch [THAT I DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT UNTIL I RESEARCHED THIS BLOG BACK HOME!]…
Super Staff: The staff from the door to floor reminded me of those trained by the Starwood Group. They were all super polished like the beauties and babes of the Hudson in NYC or the W Barcelona, but with extra (genuine) Mediterranean charm and an eagerness to please. Even the gorgeously Nordic looking blonde female DJ spinning tunes in the lobby on Sunday afternoon was smiley and welcoming in a warm and friendly way.
A Tavola: The kitchen is open all day which helps in Ibiza when you might well be keeping odd hours. Mediterranean-Asian fusion dishes include tuna tataki and wagyu burgers. Room service includes tempting options such as a toasted aubergine sandwich with burrata and rocket. Breakfast – my favourite meal of the day - is available from 8am until midday with an excellent buffet and a menu with lots of healthy options including eggs pretty much any way you like, plus smoothies and bowls with every on-trend ingredient imaginable.
La Cuenta Por Favor: Our double rooms cost £1200 for 2 people for 3 nights, although we also had an upgrade to a suite as one of the party had stayed before…
Who stays there? Well, when we stayed there were groups of cool baristas from Italy, sponsored by Red Bull. We also met some Norwegian bankers and a DJ/talent agent plus one or two musicians. It doesn’t seem overly family-orientated, but there were a few cool Euro families with beautiful kids lounging by the pool and eating quietly at breakfast. No screaming tantrums on my watch anyway.
My only disappointment? No gym or spa, but I am told these are en route. And that’s good, because I’ll be back.