Santa Eulalia: Ibiza’s Next BIG Thing

Ibiza is constantly evolving and the island has seen dramatic changes over the last 5 years that many thought were impossible.  Only 10 years ago the White Isle was still considered a small summer holiday island with a few big clubs yet in 2018 it’s now a bonafide world destination along with the likes of New York, Monte Carlo and Dubai.

One of the biggest changes is the type of hotels and hostelries that are now available to the more discerning traveller. As the jet-set has discovered the island the needs of the travellers have changed and the island has changed with it.

20 years ago the island was made up of small family hotels along with local chains catering for families in high season and couples in low season. These very same hotels have now been transformed into cutting edge brands offering weekend breaks at eye watering prices focussing on the ‘Dinkys’ – double income no kids.

To back up my point, here’s a little quiz: What are these 2008 hotels now called? Answers at bottom of page – no cheating!

1 Hotel Playa d’en Bossa – Family Hotel
2 Hotel Don Toni, Playa d’en Bossa – Family Hotel
3 Hotel Sol Pinet, San Antonio Bay – Family Hotel
4 Sol Sargamassa- Family Hotel
5 Playa Real, Talamanca – Family Hotel
6 El Paraiso, San Antonio – Thomson young fun
7 Club Med, Playa d’en Bossa – All inclusive family hotel
8 Hotel Bahia, San Antonio
9 The One Hotel, Talamanca

Now another change is about to happen and with it will see the emergence of Santa Eulalia as the next big Ibiza destination. Following on from the Hotels Fenecia, Aguas de Ibiza and ME Ibiza, the Orquídea Hotel in Ibiza’s 3rd largest town is about to have a massive makeover and become the ‘W Hotel’ for summer 2019. This chain has over 50 hotels worldwide and is part of the world class Marriott group of hotels. Their press release says “W Ibiza will embrace the destination’s eclectic roots through bold and innovative design, capturing the free spirit of Ibiza whilst elevating the experience to a new level”.

What’s interesting is the choice of location for such a world leading hotel.  Santa Eulalia is the epitome of middle class Ibiza with a strict town hall who has clearly stated that beach clubs aren’t welcome and who continue to tightly control what happens in their municipality.  It’s a peaceful part of the island and the big hotel chains obviously view this as a positive for their upwardly mobile client base who want luxurious peace and quiet and are prepared to pay a premium for the privilege but also have access to other things on an island that measures just 220 square miles.

Only a few years ago it would have been unthinkable that these large brands would be investing tens of millions of euros on hotels on a small island in the Med but as Ibiza has risen up the rankings it has become big business and hotel chains view the ‘cool factor’ as important when it comes to managing their portfolios, not to mention the big yields. 150 euros per person per night in May is now a small price to pay for a weekend getaway on the White Isle.

The W Hotel opening will be another watershed moment for an island that has now become accustomed to these moments. The Ibiza of 2018 is a totally different animal to that of 2008 and how far the island can continue to rise remains to be seen but when it comes to a choice of world class hotels then Ibiza has never had it so good and Santa Eulalia is right at the forefront. Who’d have thought!

Answers: 1. Ushuaia Beach Hotel 2. Hard Rock Hotel 3. Sol House 4. ME Ibiza/Nikki Beach 5. Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay 6. Ibiza Rocks Hotel 7. Palladium 8. Ocean Beach Hotel 9. El Destino

Author: Martin Makepeace

Englishman living and working in Ibiza since 1991. Entrepreneur with a passion for villas, boats, sunsets and San Antonio. Read my blogs, listen to my podcasts and catch me on Radio One Mallorca every Tuesday morning.

5 thoughts on “Santa Eulalia: Ibiza’s Next BIG Thing”

  1. The town hall also seems to be intent on removing all the old character of the town, perhaps that’s progress, but their disregard of necessary infrastructure to keep the town alive as anything other than another sterile theme park open to tourists but unusable on a daily basis by locals, is I think becoming more than evident by its residents.


  2. Having been a regular visitor to Ibiza for over 25 years using small family run Hostales. The price of these places is already high but more large high end hotels will most likely push these prices up again attracting one kind of tourist! Santa Eularia the new Cannes ? Not much originality left for us long time lovers of this amazing Island !


  3. I have had my fair share of “good times “ in Ibiza but have stayed in Santa Eulalia on a few occasions when we wanted to be near but far enough away…..great place and of course allows you to get your head down…great article Martin


  4. Hi Martin, thank you for sharing the information with us.
    I now the island for 9 years now, and it is really a plesure to see how it is developing. It is important to have the big players on the islands since they know how to market and manage premium ressorts, their brands are well known among the target group and of course, huge investments are necessary for funding the transformation.
    As far as I can see one of the local chains even has the potential to become global player
    However I fear that it is not enought to have only hotels managed by top companies. How about restaurants, stores, malls ( still missing), beach clubs, transportation…… Guests are expecting a seamless high quality branded experience.


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