Where time stands still

Of all the things we yearn for in life, perhaps it’s time that is the most poignant. Time is the property we’ve not quite been able to master; the concept we wish we could slow down; it’s the one thing we wish we could get back when we’ve lost it. On holiday, time is the primary factor around which everything pivots – we can only breathe, relax and recover if there’s time. These ideals sit firmly at the centre of 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza’s ethos. Opened just last summer, this sprawling, luxury resort complex is there to facilitate time on your behalf – a beacon of stillness in a rushed, chaotic world.

Comprised of a string of stunning suites sensitively built amid a traditional, coastal village  backed by native pine forest and looking out across miles upon miles of sparkling Mediterranean plus a five-star wellness centre, two high-end restaurants and an exceptional sunset cocktail lounge, the space is open to islanders in addition to hotel guests. Located on a spectacular clifftop between the stunning cove of Cala Codolar and the iconic beach of Cala Conta, 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza deservedly generated quite a buzz in its debut season and yet, further improvements have been ushered in over the winter months, transporting the hotel to the upper echelons of excellence.

“Seven Pines Resort Ibiza deservedly generated quite a buzz in its debut season and yet, further improvements have been ushered in for 2019.”

With spring finally in the air and the re-opening date set for May 1, 2019, this year is the perfect time to visit 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza. Not least to appreciate all of the hotel’s incredible vistas – including the famous limestone outline of Es Vedra on the south of the horizon and the iconic Ibiza sunset on the west – but also to witness a restful giant slowly but surely coming back to life, and its beautifully landscaped gardens along with it. Wandering around the hotel’s sprawling grounds, there’s a sense of easy, mellow calm in the air – here, nothing is too much trouble. In fact, all troubles seem to just melt away… 

Those seeking the full 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza experience can choose from 186 luxurious suites — some with sea or garden views, others with private pools, but each with a private balcony, kitchen and decor inspired by the soothing shades of the island. The aim with each suite was to create a home away from home, so all mod cons are there to ensure your stay is comfortable, while other little luxuries act as a gentle reminder that no matter how ‘at home’ you feel, you’re still very much on holiday. Then there are the first class facilities, located right on your doorstep. Small wonder people never want to leave.

Take the hotel’s instant-icon infinity pool as an example. An adults-only space that overlooks Es Vedra and the Mediterranean, lounging here allows you to fully relinquish time. Over in another part of the hotel, the Laguna pool has been designed for children under the age of 16 and fittingly, fun inflatables are provided here for kids to play around with, while the kitchen serves up Thai food. Both pools are, of course, open to hotel guests, and this summer, island residents or visitors can also secure daytime pool passes, making it simple to drop in for a dip and a cocktail, or even a meal, with poolside barbecues taking place every Saturday.

Speaking of dining, 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza features two unrivalled dining spaces. The View is a gastronomic experience serving modern Asian-inspired fare, specialising in sizzling grilled fish and fresh cuts of meat cooked on the Robata grill – all executed with distinction, served with professionalism and enjoyed in a clifftop space that offers panoramic views of the stunning natural landscape below. Breakfast is also served at The View and there’s no better way to start the day than with the ever-inspiring blue hue of the Mediterranean within touching distance and the incredible à la carte and gourmet buffet options on offer.

“It’s easy to see how time at 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza really does stand still.”

Cone Club, meanwhile, is an easy-going bar and restaurant designed with socialising, sunsets and sensory overload in mind. Open from midday daily, come for a Mediterranean-inspired late lunch amid the cheerful decor and spend the afternoon enjoying the company of friends – just be sure to stick around till sunset, when the sky bursts into a kaleidoscope of colours and you can savour a tasty cocktail on low slung seating and comfy sofas. This is dubbed the Sunset Ritual and once you’ve experienced it once, it’s easy to see how one may want to incorporate this custom into their daily life.  

For something with a dash of urban chic, make a beeline for the stylish Pershing Yacht Terrace. Designed in conjunction with the world-class yacht makers, this has fast become Ibiza’s newest, most elegant sunset hotspot. A sleek, sophisticated space serving top shelf spirits and liquors, signature cocktails and a very impressive wine list, this is where the island’s style setters come to say farewell to the sun each night. A small selection of tapas is available if you feel peckish, and in summer, the sun dips beneath the horizon to the gently undulating sounds of live music. 

For those looking to feed the soul, high-end wellness centre Pure Seven has been designed to do just that. A haven of wellbeing inspired by the island’s healing properties, here, some of the best therapists from around the globe work their magic and impart their wisdom. This season, an all-new visiting practitioner programme introduces a slew of specialists to the island for special, one-off residencies. Ayurveda specialist Suraj Varma is onsite between June 17 and 29, offering Ayurvedic massages and treatments; yoga guru Hamir Kaur (aka Hayley Shoesmith) will run daily yoga sessions between August 15 and 25, and Chinese Medicine Practitioner Dr. Rui Pedro Loureiro provides a range of acupuncture treatments between September 1 and 11.  

An exhilarating range of face and body treatments are also available at Pure Seven. From hot stone therapy and deep tissue massage to Udvartana; from the rejuvenating Pure Seven Body Ritual and ESPA series of facials to osteopathy – the mind, body and spirit is indulged, healed and pampered. Monthly full moon yoga sessions are held with Es Vedra as a backdrop; a gym is located on the upper floor for those who want to work out with a view and the sauna and steam circuit is the perfect place to unwind after any kind of wellness activity or treatment.  It’s easy to see how time at 7Pines Kempinski Ibiza really does stand still. Maybe we’ll never be able to stop it, but at least, thanks to places like this, we can harness it. And in this moment right now, what more could we ask for than that? 

Disconnect to reconnect

For those who feel passionately about mitigating the effects of climate change, it can be tricky to understand how we, personally, can make a difference. But it goes without saying that even the smallest changes in our lifestyles can help, and it’s why ecotourism is currently at the forefront of every traveller’s mind. It’s heartening to know that in our little corner of the world, there are places like the luxurious but eco-friendly Ibiza Agroturismo Can Martí which is making it possible to live and holiday harmoniously alongside nature. Surrounded by pine forest in the quiet foothills of San Juan, Can Martí is simply another bump on the gently undulating landscape. Entirely at one with nature, the hotel is encompassed by hardy shrubs and blooming flowers, ripe vegetables and lofty trees. Close your eyes and you’re taken aback by the chirruping chorus of cicadas and the soft rustle of gardeners tending to herbs; open them once more and suddenly there’s a donkey chewing grass by your ankles, or a butterfly stopping for rest on a nearby branch. It’s enough to evoke an arresting sense of ease – after mere moments here, the load disappears from your shoulders.

Owned by the same Swiss family for over two decades, Can Martí was always a project that had sustainability at its heart. Peter and Isabelle Brantschen started the hotel 25 years ago, but even then, it wasn’t just a concept – it was a belief. “We always wanted to make as little impact as possible,” explains their son, Tom. It was with this ethos in mind that they went about renovating the farm and the 400-year old finca at the heart of it. Permaculture was integrated into the plans, organic vegetables were planted, and even the finca and surrounding buildings were restored and built with eco materials, respecting construction techniques used in the past. “For as long as I can remember, my parents were always very careful,” Tom continues. “They made us realise when we were very young that we needed to look after our planet.” Instilling this consciousness early on did the trick – it meant that when Tom went on to take over the management of Can Martí he was ready for the challenges posed by running a commercial project that aims to exist in unison with the environment. He admits it’s not always easy but remains dedicated to the values at the core of the project, and that’s what makes Can Martí a beacon on the horizon of sustainable tourism.

Can Martí is also a uniquely stylish, comfortable hotel. But naturally, there are some differences. “Everything is natural here, including our cleaning products,” Tom explains. “We recycle and filter all our water, which we use for watering the plants, and we produce 60% of electricity with solar panels.” Aiming to use less electricity means there’s no air conditioning, of course, and bed sheets are made from organic cotton. This is also exactly what the majority of our guests want. “More and more people are specifically looking for somewhere that’s eco-conscious,” Tom says. “They know that just because a place is environmentally friendly, it doesn’t have to mean it’s uncomfortable.” Spend a night at one of the laid-back but luxurious suites and this becomes immediately clear. Despite its glowing reputation, Tom and his team go to work on Can Martí every day, determined to improve it little by little – it’s a palpable labour of love visible everywhere you look. (“We don’t just do it because it’s work,” he affirms). That’s why they’re now proud owners of Ibiza’s first entirely natural swimming pool (it doesn’t have chlorine but it does have frogs), and why each season, an abundance of fruits and vegetables are planted so that they can be served as part of the scrumptious, bountiful breakfast, or sold in the onsite, organic shop. “We are constantly learning and there are always things we’re trying to develop,” he explains. “But once people see and understand what we’re doing here it becomes hard for them to go back to anything else.”

In years to come, Tom hopes that more places on the island follow suit. “The way we look after the environment isn’t sustainable, and if we trash the island we’re also trashing our own businesses – everything is connected,” he says. Meanwhile, he takes solace in the gardens of Can Martí, where time seems to stand still, and the light faintly flickers. “I like to wake up in the morning and feel the peace,” he explains. “It’s a bit like being in a bubble that allows you to disconnect from our crazy, busy society.” So let’s meet here and gather our thoughts, then let’s take that inspiration and march on towards saving the planet.

Visit the White Ibiza hotels guide to read more and enquire with Can Martí