The iconic White Isle is truly back to its pre-pandemic, vibrant and popping best, and OKU’s chic and bewitching hotel is a jewel in the Balearic Islands crown when it comes to effortlessly fusing hedonism and wellness, creating a one-stop shop that it’s almost hard to tear yourself away from. Sophie Everard reports on her stay at Oku Ibiza…
ARRIVAL AND FIRST IMPRESSIONS
Think San Antonio (AKA, Sant Antoni De Portmany) and you would be forgiven for imagining the party central hive of debauchery typically associated with the North Western Coast of Ibiza. But peacefully nestled a hop and a skip from Sant Antoni’s centre, you’ll find the 5 star OKU, a relatively new addition to Ibiza’s crop of intoxicatingly beautiful hotels (it opened its doors 2021). A stone’s throw from a number of crystalline bathing spots including Cala Gracio (remember your snorkel and mask as the swimming is truly otherworldly beneath the surface in Ibiza), and chic hot spots including beachside eateries Cala Gracioneta and Hostel La Torre (a firm favourite of Ibiza’s well-healed set to watch the splendorous Spanish sunset).
Checking in to OKU the experience starts from the bat when the kind and helpful parking attendants and bell boys quickly welcome you to the OKU compound (I say compound because OKU is pretty huge). Design is at the forefront of OKU, and the bohemian undercurrent so loved in Ibiza is indeed present, with lulling waving palms and the scent of pine rich in the air, commissioned art, architecture and construct make for a truly eye catching hotel that snags your attention from the second you turn into its drive. A swift-check in and we were headed to our room, walking past the main event of OKU, it’s 50 metre pool (the largest on the island apparently), where a resident DJ was spinning on the decks, and plentiful loungers and beds lined the pool (there’s a separate, smaller kids pool), so impressive it could have come straight out of a Slim Aarons photograph.
Bearing in mind the very name “OKU” means “inner space” in Japanese, the bedrooms are indeed reflective of this ideology: calming scented hallways already lull you into a sense of peace, and in our “Superior Room”, the stunningly sleek and paired back bohemian chic of the hotel’s design manifesto is well presented. From the oak and hessian touches, the rainforest shower, Le Labo toiletries and well-thought out lighting and automatic air conditioning functioning with the opening and closing of the terrace door, the room is well-stocked and very well managed (housekeeping was spot on and kept the room pristine).
WELLNESS & BALANCE
Where the magic of OKU also lies is in that it can be whatever you want it to be: it’s a perfect location for party lovers to absorb the Ibizan vibes, take in music around the pool and enjoy a build-up pre-night out (the on-site bar is excellent with a vibrant cocktail and wine menu), or, as a soothing antidote to the night out: highly comfortable and relaxing loungers and setting, a gym so beautiful it’s very fixtures are covetable, pre-breakfast yoga classes on the roof with panoramic views, a stacked spa menu with CBD facials, massages and PT, and retail therapy courtesy of a rather excellent boutique (rare bikini brands, locally made flowy Ibiza-style beachwear). It could be the one place many of its holiday makers choose to visit and stay: it’s pretty much got most of what you need, and with the soothing shores of the North Coast and the Ibizan countryside so close, no wonder it’s built itself a solid reputation already.
I tend to measure 5 star hotels by their breakfasts, and OKU didn’t disappoint: a vast array of delicious local fare; eggs, fruits, pancakes and hams, fresh juices and cereals, vegetables and dripping local honey with attentive staff serving out fresh orange juices and freshly brewed coffees to stir the party-tired folk (you can roll in late for breakfast: they stop serving at 11am). On-site you’ll also find their signature OKU restaurant, a decadent affair designed by former Sushisamba chez Mark Vaessen. Expect refined fusion dining; a sensory journey of Japanese, pan-Asian and global flavours, with sharing plates focussed on delivering sustainably-sourced fare. Yes, this is high-end fare at a high-price point but it’s a unique experience complemented by a DJ set and killer cocktails.
OKU is a very-well thought out hub of bohemian luxury and wellness, of party-infused fun and bewitching design, and visual and olfactory (the hotel scent is clearly thought out well and is delicious) subtle stimulation. A true one stop shop whatever your Ibiza holiday jam is – partaking in it’s infamous party scene and getting the vibe going on-site and having your recovery, or as the soothing antidote to a hedonist’s Ibiza – a wellness hive of subtle soothing pleasure.
Liked this review of Oku Ibiza? Read about our stay at Pikes Hotel Ibiza