Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Ca N'Arabi, Ibiza

Just three kilometres from Ibiza Town, and pootling through a relatively dreary suburb, you certainly might feel a little anxious or confused on the way to Ca n’Arabi. But once you leave the urbanizacion, just a few hundred metres bring a complete change in scenery. It isn’t wild by any means, but you cannot no longer hear traffic and are surrounded by vineyards and orange groves.

The country hotel, or agroturismo as they’re known in the Balearics, is an old finca which has been refurbished and landscaped to provide the best of Ibiza shabby chic. The style is different to the billowing whites of Provence and Tuscany though. Ibiza is quite far south and the next stop is Algeria. While whitewashed houses do exist in abundance, there are Moorish influences everywhere; the terrain and cuisine are mountainous and meaty rather than delicate and floral, and so fiery hues of red and orange reflect the red earth.

Rooms are equally Ibicencan rustic – bold tiles, peasant artwork and lots of that oversized, broody Spanish wooden furniture. The inside area has deep sofas for relaxing, excellent wifi throughout and a few tables for breakfast. But the real appeal here is the outdoor space.

The pool combines hut tub, splashing around room and lap pool in a singular handy layout. Loungers surround it, as well as a few day beds to escape the sun. With about twelve rooms total, your chances of nabbing the best spots are good, given that many people will visit the beach. It’s perfect for that late afternoon post-beach flop and snooze.

Gardens are beautiful too. The buildings are laden with bougainvillea as well as quaint rural artefacts, and the surrounding area features ancient, gnarled olive trees as well as citrus and pomegranates, serenely framed by vines stretching into the distance.

On to matters of grape and other refreshment, unlike many of the more upmarket agroturismos on the island, it’s a little bit more DIY here. You can order drinks from reception, but the property is so compact that it’s easier to grab them from your minibar. Prices are very affordable; €3 for a beer, €15 for a bottle of wine, so it’s a no-brainer.

Breakfast is the usual Spanish continental, with a good range of meats and cheeses. The lovely, low key staff bake cakes and other treats throughout the day which are grab, as are Nespresso coffees.

Overall Ca n’Arabi is a fantastic place to stay in Ibiza, where it can be quite hard to avoid the hordes, or at the other end of the spectrum, to avoid paying €400 a night for not very much. The location is spot on – 5 mins drive to Ibiza town and about 15 to the southern beaches and airport. 

Prices here range between €150-250 depending on the month (Ibiza is incredibly seasonal, even May and October are a steal) and offers the balance of the luxe outdoor setting but without servile fawning which doesn’t sit right in Spain anyway. Ibiza isn’t Thailand, so get up and grab your own beer! One small pointer – as it's Ibiza, some hidden speakers with some chill-out music by the pool would be a nice touch in the afternoons.

No dinner, but see here for my previous post - a guide to Ibiza eating.

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