Safe Spaces Rule the Roost in Ibiza

It’s been a busy week for live performances on the White Isle. Not only did I witness the Robbie Williams ‘techno rebrand’ but I also spent 2 days at the Ibiza Rocks Hotel watching 3 young British hip hop artists, namely Aitch, Arrdee and Central Cee.

You may think that this is a strange place for a middle aged man to be and you’d be correct but when you have teenage kids the lines can become blurred. It wasn’t my kind of music (I’m not their target audience anyway) but a couple of thousand youngsters would heartily disagree with me, especially my own offspring who loved every minute if it.

The Ibiza Rocks Hotel has grasped the nettle and remodelled itself into a sleek pool party venue where a predominantly young crowd can party to their hearts content in swimwear while sipping cold drinks in the sunshine. The headline acts of DJ’s and Live PA’s are well organised, there’s plentiful staff and security watching over proceedings and the best thing is (for me anyway) that it’s all done and dusted by 10pm.

The amphitheatre with pool, terrace and VIP balcony is locked off from the outside world and standing in the streets outside you wouldn’t know that inside is a controlled venue designed to give maximum fun with the fewest possible problems. Of course there’s drama – we’re talking young, hormonal people drinking alcohol in the hot sun – but it’s a secure environment so any minor incidents can be efficiently diffused and dealt with by the conscientious staff who act quickly should there be any particularly disruptive individuals. Woodstock ‘99 this ain’t!

This isn’t reinventing the wheel, nightclubs have operated a similar policy for decades but daytime partying in the sun is now firmly established and throws up its own challenges with an exuberant young crowd but the venue is safe so you feel you can really let yourself go, which is what a holiday is all about.

Daytime partying continues to go from strength to strength in Ibiza and one of the main reasons is that the customers are in a safe space away from the parasites and hawkers. O Beach is another good example of a venue that you feel able to relax in, girls especially love it there as it ticks all the boxes (food, drink, surroundings, Instagram) and they know that security is on hand should any issues arise.

Ushuaia, Destino, Nikki Beach and others follow the same model – controlled spaces designed for maximum fun and, of course, maximum profit. This isn’t charity, it’s a 2-way street and the beach clubs know that if they create the right vibe that is safe then the customers will relax, enjoy…..and most importantly spend. It’s a lucrative business if you can get it right, the recently announced closure of Bora Bora, Ibiza’s original beach club in Playa den Bossa will in all likelihood reopen as a high end beach club and who can blame them.

Outside of these venues only serves to underline why safe spaces are so desirable. Peak season parasites lurk around trying to sell cheap plastic crap, laughing gas and other needless items while pirate taxis hustle for an expensive fare to go a short distance.

Ibiza Rocks and the ever growing list of daytime venues have positioned themselves for certain segments of the market. Fun in the sun with live acts, entertainment and big bottles posted on instagram is here to stay and the secret is in the environment that each separate venue creates and regardless of whether it students on a budget or billionaires buying big bottles, safety and security is top of that list.

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.

7 thoughts on “Safe Spaces Rule the Roost in Ibiza”

  1. Bora Bora’s closing .. wow?

    As you say it’ll probably reinvent itself, isn’t it part of a complex though..
    When I first went to Den Bossa 15 years ago, Murphys was a proper “irish” pub with really great live music. That got turned into a club a few years back.

    Be interesting to see what happens.


  2. Safe spaces, no, just the big boys and disco mafia controlling everything and squeezing every last drop from the conveyor belt of guests. Also ‘peak season parasites’ sounds like a ‘tory terminology, I for one have no problem with the looky looky crew selling their bits and pieces, always find them very easy going, and add to the flavour of the Island.


      1. I have 3 children, now young adults, who have grown up in the Balearics. What about the bars that sell drugs or the gangs of European dealers that frequent sunset strip or the west end ? You make no mention of these? Not every Looky Looky man deals drugs.


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