These days, the success of a hotel no longer just depends on the style of its rooms, the size of the swimming pool and service with a smile – to be truly successful means ticking the box next to a multitude of factors, and high up on the list is world class cuisine. Guests want to be wined and dined on their doorstep; they want a five-star dining experience and memories to remind them of sun-drenched days long after the plane has touched down on home soil. It’s in all these categories that Aguas de Ibiza really excels. With a privileged coastal spot in the Santa Eulalia marina on Ibiza’s east coast, Aguas de Ibiza’s reputation as a tranquil haven is well established. A hotel dedicated to sustainability while simultaneously providing laid-back luxury, people come here to restore and rejuvenate mind, body and soul, relishing in an attention to detail that’s unique to the property. This attentive theme weaves its way throughout every aspect of the hotel, and is especially prevalent in its two stunning restaurants, Vi Cool and Alabastro, now officially bona fide destinations in their own right.
Those not yet aware of Vi Cool will understand the restaurant’s myriad successes as soon as they learn that the entire project is the brainchild of much famed Spanish chef, Sergi Arola. Awarded a Michelin-star for his prowess and innovation in the kitchen, Arola’s concept at Vi Cool is taking the traditional idea of Spanish tapas and giving it a uniquely intriguing twist – in flavour and in presentation. The result is a series of multifunctional dishes, perfect for sharing with friends over dinner at the chicly cosmopolitan restaurant. Examine the menu in detail to discover that a whole world of gastronomic novelty awaits. Try cold plates like steak tartar with soy sauce, wasabi and ginger, or sea bass tiradito with ponzu and a spicy rocoto kick. Hot plates include the quintessential Vi Cool bravas potatoes – a must for anyone visiting the restaurant for the first time – chicken wings with kimchi sauce, and roasted, curried prawns with fresh mint. Elsewhere the coca pizzas are a huge hit, topped with typical Iberico ham, fresh Burrata cheese, basil and orange zest. Finish on a sweet note with chocolate served in many textures, burnt Catalonian cream with tangerine sorbet or of course, a cocktail taken on the spectacular alfresco roof terrace.
Meanwhile, Alabastro is found in the hotel lobby, and specialises in plates to be enjoyed by the pool during daytime, or indoors on the relaxing sofas by night. With another great chef at the helm – this time Aitor Monteagud – here, two menu concepts are showcased. Alabastro Pool is all about relaxed, easy dining, whereas Alabastro Slow has been designed around the zero kilometre premise, meaning all food is produced, sold and enjoyed locally, helping local artisans to make a fair living from their trade, and supporting the community in the process. Culinary highlights of this menu include the Balearic garden of textured vegetables, olive sand, bean sprouts and flowers, and ajoblanco of local almonds with lobster, sun-dried tomatoes and cardamom to start. Mains include baked John Dory with black garlic alioli, baby vegetables and pickles, and suckling lamb with pearls of squash, beetroot, courgette and demi glace sauce. And for dessert, delectable options like cheesecake with fresh cheese, mango and citrus fruits, and café caleta cream with Hierbas Ibicencas jelly. The Alabastro Pool menu offers dishes like watermelon salad with organic tomatoes and feta cheese, and sirvia ceviche with tiger milk.
Two restaurants, three contrasting menus, and three entirely different concepts – all united by a passion for local food, an innovative approach to cooking and two star chefs dedicated to ensuring guests receive the very best in ingredients and flavour on the plate. Add in Aguas de Ibiza’s continued commitment to excellence and some superbly relaxing but stylish spaces in which to dine and there’s no doubt that this gem of a hotel really does tick all the boxes.