Ibiza Service Levels: Good Enough?

Having travelled extensively around Asia over the last 5 years I’ve been amazed at how good the service levels are in the private hospitality sector of that part of the world. Nothing seems to be too much trouble, professional people taking pride in their job and delivering quality service. Then once I return to Ibiza it’s the not the same, some staff even scowling and begrudgingly serving you.

Now before you write that comment below, not all places in Ibiza are like this but to be a truly world class destination too many still are in my opinion. Many businesses on the island are a well oiled machine and like anywhere in the world successful businesses have a team of fully trained, dedicated, motivated staff who are the most important part of the magic formula. As any owner will tell you, their business is only as good as the people who work there.

A Spanish friend who runs a very successful restaurant told me his story recently. Out of his 40 employees he has 20 hard working, dedicated ones who return every year. Another 10 are OK but their focus is not specifically on work but that’s understandable and as for the other 10; they couldn’t care less just taking the wage as a means to to getting out and about on the island.

The irony is that I constantly get asked about work in Ibiza: Are there any jobs? How difficult is it to get work? When I reply that there’s always a shortage of dedicated staff I get an incredulous response especially when I tell them about the average wage.

It seems that many dream of living and working on the White Isle yet don’t want to take the leap of faith required to move here full time. Then again many who say they want to work on the island don’t actually want to work, they want a summer of fun but also earn a little pocket money to get them by in between guest lists. This is no good for serious employers who need dedicated staff.

So an idea for our Island government (in between murdering goats, changing pedestrian crossings to non-gender symbols and constantly bickering with the opposition), why not set up an elite training school or college for those wanting a genuine career on the island in the service industry. Not one forced upon the unemployed but somewhere that breeds success. This could be a good way of attracting quality staff which could be used as a breeding ground for future generations. It’s a win/win/win. More staff to choose from, service levels go up and client satisfaction goes through the roof.

It’s very dangerous to view our biggest and only commodity as walking wallets who are only there to put money in pockets. Tourists are more wise nowadays and if any product doesn’t consistently improve then others will always grasp the initiative.

Cream to Leave Amnesia: End of an Era

It hasn’t been officially confirmed yet but news has leaked out that Cream is set to leave Thursdays at Amnesia after a massive 22 years at the Ibiza super club.

The Cream in Ibiza story started in 1994, the year that saw 2 giants – Cream on Thursdays and Manumission on Mondays – start their residencies at Privilege, the worlds biggest nightclub which had just reopened and rebranded after being previously known as ‘Ku’.

After just 1 summer at Privilege, Cream switched across the road to Amnesia in 1995 where it stayed for 23 fun filled and action packed summers. As other promoters came and went, Cream became stronger even when their spiritual home in Liverpool closed down. It was a phenomenon in Ibiza and world clubbing terms as they always stayed ahead of the game (even featuring heavily in the ‘Kevin and Perry Go Large’ movie in 2000).

Cream Ibiza were the first to focus on DJ’s rather than brand names, until then it was all about the night rather than the name. In many ways it was Cream who invented the superstar Ibiza DJ as they focused on the headshot and personality rather than the whole nights package.

Behind the scenes it was the late great Mo Chaudry who was largely responsible for getting Cream Ibiza into its lofty position in the clubbing world using his dry Scouse wit and relentless personality. He stamped himself all over the brand and made it into a world class success before handing over to Nick Ferguson who brought youth, enthusiasm and guile to the night and took it to whole different level.

Paul van Dyk, FatBoy Slim, Paul Oakenfold, Calvin Harris, Above and Beyond, Armin Van Buuren, Tall Paul, Seb Fontaine, Tiesto, Deadmau5, Eric Prydz, Laidback Luke, Ferry Corsten, Sasha, Jason Bye, Sander Van Doorn, Eddie Halliwell and many many other Ibiza legends owe a debt of gratitude to Cream as they were able to showcase their talents to huge crowds on the Amnesia terrace on a weekly basis, many then went on to host their own nights on the White Isle.

Cream’s August Radio 1 parties will go down in history as a ‘I was there moment’ as the brand went from strength to strength however all good things come to an end and Ibiza’s shift to daytime pursuits plus serious competition from other clubs with deep pockets saw summer 2017 turn into a bit of a struggle.

When you look at Ibiza’s recent clubbing history Cream was there right at the beginning and even though it’s rumoured to be heading to Hï on Sundays it’s the end of an era in many ways.

Cream was the last of the big 90’s mega-nights that started it all, along with the previously mentioned Manumission at Privilege, We Love Sunday’s at Space, Judgement at Eden, Miss Moneypenny’s at El Divino, Clockwork Orange at Es Paradis and Ministry of Sound at Pacha, these were the club nights that created the Ibiza brand around the globe and made it into the clubbing capital of the world that it is today.

Note: on 09 March it was announced that Cream would be at Hï Ibiza on Sunday nights