Atzaro

Sant Joan, Ibiza, Spain Book from

Reviewed by Liz Simpson
A seriously hip rural retreat where the A-list ladies lunch, this 21-room hotel is the perfect place to join the party
First impressions matter - and at Atzaro our first impression was excellent. We arrived at night, driving along rough tracks to reach the secluded hotel, then walked down candlelit steps, past leafy flowerbeds, a floodlit lily pond and Buddha statues to reach the 300-year-old finca. Crickets were chirruping and the air was rich with aromas: oranges from the grove in which the hotel sits; lavender, thyme and rosemary from the flowerbeds; jasmine and geraniums.

Inside, things were colourful and cosy - our room a lovely blend of orange, golds and bronzes, with wood beamed ceilings and thick stone walls. By day, we discovered gorgeous grounds - the stone pathways lined with palm trees, pink bougainvillea and objets d’art. The whole place exuded calm and the Balinese spa made you desperate to don a white waffle robe and settle in for some pampering. We were seeing Ibiza in late October but could well imagine the outdoor beds and many chill-out areas being filled with the bronzed and the beautiful come summer. Simply put, it was cool with a capital C.

Highs

  • Everywhere you look there’s something to admire: stone statues, bronze Buddhas, a wooden bench shaped like a crocodile, a totem pole
  • Vast bathtubs big enough for 2 and a whole host of luxurious toiletries, including a complimentary perfume
  • Fantastic food - and lots of it - in the hotel's 3 restaurants, one of which is located on the beach
  • Lots of secluded nooks to relax with a partner, with daybeds scattered everywhere
  • A 6-temple, outdoor Balinese spa offering massages, beauty treatments, yoga classes, an aerobic pool, sauna, juice bar... if that doesn't cure your post-clubbing aches, nothing will

Lows

  • Noise carries in the finca so bring earplugs if you’re a light sleeper
  • Though delicious, the menus in the onsite restaurants only change seasonally and you’d perhaps feel limited if you were staying a week
  • High season had taken its toll in places - some of the seat cushions were stained and the in-room bathrobes tatty, although they have since been replaced
  • The WiFi doesn't work in every room

Best time to go

The most popular time to go to Ibiza is during the summer months, when the clubs are open, the sun is shining and the towns are heaving. Hotels book up months in advance from May-Sept, so if you plan to come then, make your plans well in advance. However, there are definite advantages to visiting in the off-season months when things are quieter. In autumn the island is beautifully green and the days are often warm enough to go to the beach; in March, the almond trees are all in blossom and the countryside is stunning.

Our top tips

Pack loose, light clothing, preferably white. The relaxed hippy vibe is at full force here; expensive outfits that look thrown together are best. Belts, sandals and silver jewellery are also advised. If you’re going clubbing, bring your most outrageous outfits; anything goes out here. You’ll also need sunnies, swimming costumes and sun cream for by the pool. If you’re coming in autumn bring warm clothes, summer clothes, and an umbrella. The weather is pretty unpredictable off season.

Great for...

Beach
Foodie
Spa
Wedding
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 21
  • Restaurants and bars (open daily)
  • Not ideal
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
Room:

Rooms

The 21 bedrooms are split between the finca and a separate annexe across the road. The finca’s rooms are typically Ibizan: thick whitewashed walls, tiny windows, exposed Sabina wood beam ceilings and antique furniture. Our Superior Suite had an outside seating area, with 2 cushion strewn sofas, as well as a daybed and a second seating area within the actual room.

The decor was a blend of Asian and European furnishings and it was bursting with wow factor: a wood-burning fire, a comfy four-poster bed loaded with pillows and top-quality white linen, plasma TV and DVD player, and two dark-wood wardrobes. The floors were terracotta tiled, and a smattering of silk bronze and gold cushions plus a scarlet Rajasthani rug gave it some warmth. Best of all though, the more you looked around, the more there was to see: a totem pole in one corner, a vast modern painting on the wall, hand-painted screen doors to the bathroom and a gorgeous copper lantern. The only downside was the noisy air con, but in high season this is probably a godsend.

The bathroom was equally decadent, dominated by a vast sunken bath and large skylight. Ibiza del Campo goodies were provided for pampering, and the added extras were fantastic: shaving kits, dental kits, complimentary bottles of perfume.

The more modern bedrooms in the annexe across the road were also lovely (bright colours, funky paintings, walk-in rain showers) but lacked the rustic charm of the finca, so state your preference when you book. Honeymooners should opt for a Superior Deluxe, which are vast (70 sq.m) with their own plunge pool and outdoor shower in a private garden area.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Central heating
  • Coffee tea making
  • Cots Available
  • Dvd player
  • Extra beds
  • Fireplace
  • Internet access
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Plunge pool
  • Radio
  • Safe box
  • Toiletries
  • Tv
  • WiFi

Eating

Atzaro’s The Orange Tree restaurant has a great reputation on the island - and deservedly so. You sit in a lovely dining room with apricot tadelakt walls, wicker chairs, mosaic tables and floor-to-ceiling glass doors. In the summer guests spill out onto the terrace, but in autumn the place is made cosy by a wood-burning stove and bronze silk scatter cushions. Chill-out music provides a great ambiance without being intrusive, and the staff are really friendly.

While we were browsing the dinner menu, the chef sent us some heavenly truffle croquettes and homebaked olive breads to whet our appetite. Frankly, the menu itself was doing that. You could choose from a mixture of exotic tapas platas (tuna tartare with quails' eggs, caramelized octopus with hot potato foam) or an a la carte 3-course menu. We went a la carte: my noodles with red prawns, rock mussels and clams were excellent, and the crispy suckling pig with roasted pineapple and cardamon also got rave reviews. If you're wiser than us, you'll leave room for a seductive-sounding dessert: coconut brioche with strawberry infusion, chocolate torte with passion fruit...

Or if you fancy something a little different, you could always opt for their sushi menu, oh and there's a tapas bar in the chill out area.

Next morning’s breakfast buffet was equally impressive: fresh fruit platters, homegrown OJ, pastries, Spanish cheeses and hams, yoghurts and a range of cooked choices (French omelettes, scrambled egg with mushrooms). We were particularly taken with the homebaked breads - their sweet carrot bread with a dollop of jam was way too moreish.

The beach restaurant-cum-bar-cum-music venue, Chringuito, is open for lunch, dinner and drinks with views over Cala Nova beach and the ocean. Feast on traditional, home-cooked, Mediterranean dishes such as paella and freshly caught fish, or tuck into freshly barbecued, local meat, while listening to live music, before indulging yourself with a massage from the onsite masseuse.

In 2014, the hotel’s spa also gained a restaurant, The Veranda, which serves healthy local dishes. It’s open throughout the day offering a choice between an a la carte or a 5-course tasting menu. Breakfast is now also served here, and there's Bubbles Bar which serves small plates from the restaurant, as well as juices and other drinks.

If you fancy something a bit lighter for lunches, or just want a snack, head to the poolside bar (high season only), or Argo where a limited, and light, menu (salads, pastas, fish) is available throughout the day.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Coffee tea making
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Organic produce
  • Restaurant
  • Room service
  • Vegetarian menu
Eating: The Orange Tree
Activity:

Activities

  • Bliss out in the hotel's Zen Balinese spa - an awesome 6-temple mecca with an aerobic pool, sauna and steam rooms. The range of treatments is heavenly - Ole Henriksen Facials for Glowing Beauty, Reiki, Cupping, Zen Shiatsu massages, deluxe Asian cream baths
  • Begin the day with the morning's complimentary exercise class, which consists of yogalates, stretching and crossfit
  • And finish the day with one or 2 sundown cocktails at the Chill-out area - a big outdoor bar space, with daybeds for lounging on and a vast projector showing music videos - or on the beach at Chringuito
  • Hit the clubs: Pacha in Eivissa is always popular, Privilege and Amnesia in San Rafael both have sunrise dance floors and Space hosts the hugely successful 'We love Sundays', which goes from 8am on Sunday to 6am Monday
  • Clear a morning head with a brisk swim in the lagoon pool, then go back to sleep on a lounger
  • Spend a day in Eivissa, Ibiza's capital, and wander through narrow streets in the stunning Old Town up to the hilltop cathedral, with fantastic views of the island
  • Play golf, then go riding, sailing, fishing or diving: reception can organise various activities and excursions
  • Visit the various pottery shops in trendy San Rafael, or call in at one of the many outlet stores and pick up beautiful ceramics to take home
  • Head to the south of the island and visit the Ses Salines salt plains, then chill out on the beach with the same name
  • Get shopping: the hippy markets at Es Canar (Wednesdays) and San Carlos (also called Sant Carles, Saturdays) are great: handmade jewellery, fab leather goods, lovely clothes and various forms of art

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Fishing
  • Golf
  • Historical sites
  • Horse-riding
  • Nightlife
  • Sailing
  • Scuba diving
  • Shopping / markets
  • Snorkelling
  • Swimming
  • Well being
  • Yoga

Kids

Children are allowed but it's not an ideal atmosphere for them. The main clientele are couples/groups of friends, so it can be quite noisy late at night.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

Cots Available, Extra Beds Available

Babysitting:

Babysitting available by arrangement

Baby equipment:

Baby cots available on request

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Kid Friendly: Chringuito

Our guests' ratings...

7/
Rooms
7/
Food
7/
Service
5/
Value
7/
Overall

{{ review.firstName }}{{ review.countryName ? ', '+ review.countryName : '' }},

Rates for Atzaro