Google top party islands in Europe and Ibiza will always be the first hit. Yet while the Spanish island may best be known for its relentless clubbing scene, over the past couple of years it has started to establish itself as a popular wellness destination for the international jet setter (world-renowned wellness brand Six Senses has even just opened a ginormous 12-hectare resort on the island’s northern tip).
Running along the same lines, OKU Ibiza is all about offering an alternative way to experience the White Isle, encouraging a slower place of life close to the quaint cove of Cala Gració bay on the west of the island, which is well known for its delicate powder sand and pristine turquoise waters.
San Antonio and the sunset strip are both a 15-minute walk away, while if you’re looking to venture out for lunch, we highly recommend Cala Gracioneta beach club and La Torre, both just a five-minute drive away. There’s also beautiful cliffside walks right on your doorstep, while the helpful hotel concierge is more than happy to arrange activities such as private boat trips to Formentera and nearby islands, sunset kayaking and guided walks through the Ibiza’s incredible terrain.
The second hotel from the hip new lifestyle brand OKU – its flagship opened in Kos earlier this year – OKU Ibiza boasts award-winning minimalist design inspired by the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi. In layman’s terms? Quintessentially Balearic, expect plenty of earthy tones and natural materials such as rattan, wood, straw, jute and concrete that reflect the simplicity of beach life and barefoot living. You’ll also find bespoke commissions by LA-based painter and sculptor Steve Tapas lining the walls too.
There’s not one, but a whopping four pools at the hotel, including the largest on the island which, at 50m, is great for laps. Unfortunately two of the pools are private – you’ll find one at the resort’s standalone four bedroom villa plus a semi-private pool serving six swim-up rooms – but the main one comes lined with clay-grey sunbeds, large slouchy beanbags and thatched umbrellas, plus a fully-stocked bar making it a great spot for a post-dinner night cap.
DJs play chilled-out house beats from early morning to early night, and while it’s at its buzziest at the end of the afternoon, be sure to bag your spot early as beds fill up fast. There’s also a second smaller pool for families or those nursing a hangover and looking for lounging that’s a little more chilled.
Natural tones continue in the hotel’s 185 boho-chic guestrooms and suites, which include ocean-view penthouses, a 140sqm signature suite with its own bar, and a four-bedroom villa complete with private pool.
We were staying in a superior room facing the forest (other views include pool or hillside) which, while admittedly quite compact, had plenty of room for a plush double bed which lifts up to allow extra storage for suitcases. You’ll also find a sizeable walk-in stone shower, bath robes, Marshall speakers, USB outlets for charging plus a handy Nespresso machine and small terrace on which you can enjoy a post-dinner glass of rosé.
Believe us when we say that the breakfast at OKU Ibiza is the best on the island. Now we’re obviously not saying we’ve tried every breakfast in Ibiza, but it’s hard to imagine a morning meal that can beat the smorgasbord of breakfast staples on offer at this champion of buffets.
Take a seat under the open-air wooden pergola or inside the expansive restaurant To Kima and help yourself to traditional bacon, eggs, sausages, pastries, fresh fruits, yoghurts and the most perfect slices of creamy avocado, plus pancakes, French toast and omelettes on request. If that doesn’t convince you, there’s free Moët on tap too, so fill your boots in preparation for the afternoon’s lazy long lunch at one of Ibiza’s hip beach clubs. Be sure to hang around for the hotel’s weekly Sunday brunch though, where a rotating programme of the island’s best DJs and live music acts perform by the main pool.
There are two restaurants to choose from at OKU Ibiza – the namesake OKU, the hotel’s main dining destination, and the more relaxed To Kima which offers up light dishes with Mediterranean accents. Menus at both restaurants have been carefully curated by executive chef Mark Vaessen of SUSHISAMBA London fame, with the former only open for dinner and serving an impressive selection of international fusion cuisine with a strong Asian and South American influence. Think tapas, grilled meats and fish, plus a raw menu sushi, sashimi and nigri, highlights include the wagyu gyoza, black cod and honey miso eggplant, all designed to be shared family-style.
Health and wellness are strong themes running throughout every aspect of OKU Ibiza, with daily complimentary yoga on the rooftop yoga shala, a spa with five treatment rooms offering a thoughtfully-curated menu of treatments, plus a glass-fronted fitness studio filled with stylish NOHrD and Casall equipment and personal trainers on hand. There’s also a juice bar for smoothies and recovery shots made to order with fresh produce from local organic farms if you’re still suffering from the night before.
As with most hotels in Ibiza, OKU closes at the end of the season (this year that’s the end of October), but it will open again in May 2022.
Room rates from £312 per night on a B&B basis.
Address: Camí del Portixol, 2, 07820 Sant Antoni de Portmany, Illes Balears, Spain
Phone: +34 971 34 84 77