Pauline Quirke Academy to Open in Ibiza

There’s a popular saying that goes “if the whole world is a stage then why are all the clowns in Ibiza” and for all those frustrated young thespians there’s an exciting new addition to Ibiza winter activities as the Pauline Quirke Academy of Performing Arts is opening in Ibiza.

The Pauline Quirke Academy is a weekend performing arts school for 4-18 year olds – and the newest Academy is opening here on the White Isle on Saturday 22nd October.

Speaking of the brand new Academy, Pauline said, “When we opened our first academy in 2007 our mission was simply to provide the very best performing arts education. We’ve grown a lot since then, but that mission hasn’t changed. By working with people we believe are outstanding in their field, we aim to bring the widest, most exciting experience to our students in an environment that is both friendly and rewarding.”

PQA’s core modules in Comedy & Drama, Musical Theatre and Film & Television teach a comprehensive range of skills, which are useful for everyday life, not just a career in the performing arts. All classes are taught in English.

As well as many in-house productions and showcases students get the chance to see their short film projects on the big screen of their local cinema, where they get to walk down the red-carpet just like the Hollywood stars, it’s a glamorous event that students and parents will never forget!

PQA Ibiza is holding a free open day on Saturday 22nd October from 9.45am – 1pm at Palacio de Congresos de Ibiza, Av. Dr. Camacho 9-1, 07840 Santa Eulalia del Rio, Ibiza.

For more information please visit or call +34 657 237 906.


IBIZA SELL OUT: any room for normal clubbers?

The rumours are true after it emerged that the Pacha Group is on the verge of being sold to a Private Equity firm for a price of around 350 million euros. 

Pacha founder Ricardo Urgell revealed the news himself in a detailed interview with the ‘Diario de Ibiza’ confirming the sale which also confirms that Ibiza has gone through a seismic shift in a little over 5 years.

In an emotional interview 79 year old Urgell, one of the most respected club owners in the world, painted a picture of a weary man who has had grown tired of the ‘new’ Ibiza : “it is important that the island does not lose the magic. If we do not take prompt action, it will die of success”, ironic really then that he is selling to a private equity company. 

Trilantic Capital Partners by definition is a profit driven company who will be looking to make money on behalf of investors so it will be interesting to see whether there is a clear change of dynamic for the group. Pacha almost singlehandedly invented the VIP table phenomenon in Ibiza but without Urgell as its soul the bean counters will be calling the shots. 

For all his verbal bluster and political denouements Urgell has his heart on the island and also understands Pacha’s position and what makes it tick so without him at the centre it will be interesting to see the direction that the newly owned group will take. Time will only tell but expect Pacha bars in every major town in the world and maybe a festival or 2 as the new owners try to cash in on the name. 

Coming so soon after Space in Playa den Bossa closed its doors for the very last time this is also a worrying period for the ‘normal’ clubbers out there who don’t want to spend 1000’s of euros on a small wooden table and champagne but want a few beers, a Bacardi and coke and to just dance the night away.

Space made its name by being all about the music whereas Pacha was more about style and being seen, 2 completely different clubbing experiences but both uniquely Ibiza. 

With the Space building looking like it will be turned into ‘Ushuaia by night’ the normal clubbers feel they are being marginalised by the VIP culture. This could be an ideal opportunity for other clubs to fill the gap, Sankeys has done a great job so far with organic growth and maybe Eden and Es Paradis can also be part of giving the clubs back to the clubbers.

So with a couple of hundred million in his back pocket Ricardo Urgell will concentrate on projects close to his heart whilst Pepe Rosello may or may not open a hotel in San Antonio to carry on his presence on the island. 

These 2 men have done so much for the island but are both now handing over to a new generation of club owners whose priorities will be different to theirs. Whether ‘normal’ clubbers figure in their new business plans remains to be seen.

Ibiza Residents v Tourists: Prou! Mobilise Against “Abuses of Tourism”

pic: Mari/Diario de Ibiza

The continuing battle between Ibiza residents and tourists has taken a further twist with the forming of “Prou!”, a new pressure group that wants to combat the “abuses of tourism” that many feel are occurring on the island.

Prou held it’s first public meeting last week at the ‘Club Diario de Ibiza’ filling the auditorium and exceeding its 200 capacity, a sign of the growing discontent of the direction the island is going. 

Vicent Planells, a former bank manager, explained that the group has emerged spontaneously through Facebook. “We are ordinary Ibiza people who are fed up with what is happening on the Island”

The group announced that it will hold “peaceful and silent” protests against harmful or illegal tourism activities when institutional action does not work. To do this the group has “a hundred people to perform these actions,” explained Sandra Serra.

Historian and teacher Neus Escandell opened the meeting by saying that “tourism must serve to improve the quality of life, not to make it worse.” Highlighting the importance of the industry to the economy of the island but saying that “the culprits are not tourists but businessmen and politicians who have allowed us to reach the current situation,” characterised by the “privatisation” of the the beaches, noise pollution and illegalities of some companies.

Lawyer Rosa Redolat said it would be sufficient if existing laws were enforced. “There is a general feeling of passivity and neglect. Had laws been enforced from the outset we would not have come this far”. Redolat said whilst accusing politicians of “passing the buck to each other” citing a lack of coordination with the posidonia* situation or the large mansion given the go ahead to be built on protected land near Cala d’Hort. 

School teacher Agustin Garcia further explained “the word collapse is on everyone’s lips, Ibiza is in danger of becoming a theme park due to lack of control, tourism must have limits, as a matter of survival”. 

Vicent Planells continued “the whole island is being converted into a one large discotheque. A hotel is a nightclub, a boat is a nightclub and a country house also becomes a nightclub.”

Prou reinforced this by inviting a child to explain that on the night of Space Closing the music was so loud that inside his bedroom it felt like he was in the nightclub.

Prou! has promised regular meetings and is preparing a strategy for the coming months and summer 2017. 

*Posidonia oceanica (commonly known as Neptune Grass or Mediterranean tapeweed) is a seagrass species that is endemic to the Mediterranean Sea. It forms large underwater meadows that are an important part of the ecosystem.

Source: Diario de Ibiza

Mallorca Court Grants Amnesia Extension

A Mallorca court has overturned San Antonio Council’s ban and ruled that Ibiza Super Club Amnesia can stay open until midday on 9 October for their closing party. 

The San Rafael discotheque went to court in the Balearic capital and argued that not to be given the extension would cause serious economic damage to their business, employees and 3rd party contractors. A judge in Palma agreed and Amnesia was given the green light for the extension. 

San Antonio Council immediately acknowledged the court order and issued the following statement: “In compliance with the injunction ordered by the Administrative Court No. 2 of Palma, the Town Hall shall suspend the execution of the decree revoking the authorization for the extension of the closing time of the nightclub Amnesia on October 8, 2016”

Although slightly embarrassing for San Antonio Town Hall who have been unable to enforce their own rules this could be viewed as a win/win. The Council hasn’t backed down and Amnesia have got what they want.

Source: Diario de Ibiza

Amnesia ask for Closing Extension

Ibiza Superclub Amnesia has asked San Antonio council to lift the suspension on extended opening hours for their closing party this coming Saturday. 

The company maintains that the suspension is due to “an error of assessment” last Monday when the club closed at the correct time. 

Amnesia explained that “since the club promoter had organized an after party starting at 12pm midday at another venue many people remained in the car park once the club had closed its doors”. 

This, according Amnesia, “led to an error of assessment” by local police who filed a complaint. 

Amnesia Group argue that even though the party will bring hundreds of people to the island from all over the world they are being penalised for an obvious human error so have officially asked for the reinstatement of a 12pm midday closing time on Sunday 9 October. 

Source: Periodico de Ibiza 

Space Ibiza: The End?

There will be plenty of misty eyes as Space closes its doors in Playa den Bossa for the last time ever this Sunday (2/10/16) so it’s only right that I should dedicate a blog to this famous venue. 

The story starts and ‘ends’ with Pepe Rosello. The man behind the myth, one of San Antonio and Ibiza’s favourite son’s who’s history of clubbing included venues in his home town’s West End but whose name will always be synonymous with “the worlds greatest club”. 

It’s amazing really when you consider that in 1989 he opened Space in the car park of Ibiza’s largest water park in what at the time was the islands premier family resort. Playa den Bossa of 1989 was a whole different world with family hotels, cafes and very few beach bars except those that sold burger and chips to the masses.

Space’s stroke of genius was to OPEN at 6am when all other clubs were closing therefore capturing the after hours market. It was also mainly open air giving that fun in the sun vibe that is so popular today. 

As you can imagine for a venue that opened its doors at 6am there was a distinct atmosphere fuelled by those who refused to go home and go to sleep. The Space terrace soon gained notoriety as the place to be and where to meet the wild and wonderful. Legends were born (and buried). 

Throughout the 90s Space on Sundays became the party of parties that attracted the great and the good from all over the world and many Sunday afternoon and evening flights were missed as a result of the club that never seemed to stop. The rise of Manumission in the mid 90s saw the Tuesday morning ‘Carry On’ that became infamous as part of the holy grail of Space to DC10 to Manumission then back to Space. 84 hours of pure madness. 

Without even realising it Space changed the boundaries of a ‘clubbing experience’ and as its reputation grew the awards started to pour in, routinely voted ‘World’s Best Club’ due to its hedonistic mix of Balearic house and an anything goes ambiance and I mean ANYTHING GOES.

Before the age of the superstar DJ some young Ibiza talent made their names there. Brandon Block, Alex P, Jason Bye, Jonathan Ulysses to name but a few. Some went on to conquer the world while others disappeared in a haze of self destruction, Ibiza is no place for the weak willed after all. 

Nothing lasts forever and a radical change of laws in the early 2000’s saw the club sound proofed and a roof put on the infamous terrace – home to a thousand parties. Most importantly the club couldn’t open before 4pm taking away the ‘afters’ trade, the unique selling point that made it’s name in the first place. 

For some Space would never be the same again but it quickly reinvented itself from a quirky specialist venue to a fully functional Ibiza Super Club with 5 separate rooms not counting the car park on opening and closing weekends (the official start and end of the summer). Space on Sunday still soldiered on causing casualties on a weekly basis and Carl Cox came onboard and became the face of the most famous club in the world. 

Cox’s close relationship with Pepe Rosello forged something special that rose above the other venues and CC’s Tuesday night became another pioneer starting in the evening rather than the early hours like other clubs. 

After years of rumours it was left to the big man himself to reveal to the world that 2016 would be Space Ibiza’s 27th and final year after its lease on the building expired and wouldn’t be renewed. Pepe Rosello stayed in the background as usual thanking everybody for the good (and bad) times. 

Space Ibiza is now a global brand but the Bossa club will be no more. The bricks and mortar will still be there but the venue will change back to its actual owners, the Matutes Group, who own Ushuaia and the Hard Rock Hotel amongst many other things. They plan to carry on using the venue as a club and will open in 2017. Plans have yet to be finalised but it makes sense for them to use it as somewhere to funnel the post Ushuaia crowd into. 

For some the closing of Space is a watershed moment whilst others like the ‘new’ Ibiza with all its glitterati and VIP’s. Like everything times move on and the island has changed drastically from those legendary mornings on the Space terrace sitting on wooden chairs in the open air surrounded by all your mates (old and new), drinking cold beer and jagermeister while listening to incredible tunes from Peezee, Blocko and their entourage. 

If you don’t embrace the change then you become the bitter and twisted person in the corner constantly reminding people that Ibiza “isn’t what it used to be” and that they “missed out on the best years” and you don’t want to become that person. 

Whether we like it or not Ibiza has evolved into a global brand that immediately conjures up images of natural beauty, world class clubbing and hedonistic pursuits and right at the forefront of that is Space. Whether or not the club carries on in another venue it’s history has already been written and its legacy is assured and more importantly Pepe Rosello will be remembered not just as a pioneer but also as a very decent man.  

Bravo Señor Rosello, Bravo.

Keyboard Warriors Changing the Face of San Antonio

News that Ibiza Rocks Hotel has had its concert licence temporarily suspended* has once again highlighted the ongoing battle in San Antonio of residents versus tourists.

Residents are now no longer willing to accept the 4 month compromise that seasonal tourism brings to any resort but especially to San Antonio where residents and tourists are so closely intertwined. So far the new left wing local government has come down firmly on the side of residents (as they said they would in their election promises), after all it’s residents who vote not tourists. 

What’s fueling this sea of change is social media or namely Facebook. It used to be the cafes and bars where people would get together and gripe however now anyone with a score to settle, an internet connection and an appetite for a fight can make waves that will reverberate all the way up to the Mayors office.

There’s several pages on Facebook where vocal San An residents can take their complaints,  harness support from ‘friends’ and trolls alike and believe that this gives them a mandate to act. 

San Antonio councillors have openly admitted that they keep an eye on Facebook to see what local people are talking about and many of them take their political and heartfelt messages to the masses via their social media homepage rather than in a press conference. 

‘Reinicia’, San Antonio’s 3rd largest political party, who have 4 seats in the council chambers was almost entirely born out of a Facebook protest group that snowballed leading to Pablo Valdes becoming Deputy Mayor in June 2015. 

On closer inspection though you see the same names over and over again on the Facebook pages and it becomes apparent that rather than a broad cross section the dialogue is only between a handful of self interested parties. You get the same people ‘debating’ so in a town of 16000 voters you have less than 1% of the voting population trying to steer the ship into areas that affect everyone. 

These figures might be OK for an industrial city in the north of Spain but in an island town that relies 99.99% on tourism it’s a dangerous situation with so few people calling the shots and riding roughshod over the rest of the local population who are too mild or computer illiterate to get involved. 

Rather than take a sensible approach it seems that ‘he who shouts loudest’ in San Antonio now gets the quickest response which is ironic really given that noise seems to be the main issue. 

*Ibiza Rocks Hotel situation is only temporary until a few issues are resolved. An IRH Spokesperson said that it will be business as usual for next summer.