Living Travel:

Why Ibiza Will Always Hold a Special Place in My Heart

Words by Athena Calderone.

Ibiza and I have a beautifully long history. This magical island not only holds a very special place in my heart but also in my personal evolution as a woman, a wife, a mother, and I suppose as my very dear friend, Ben Pundle would say, as a raver. But truthfully, coming back to this sacred place, with all of its raw and natural beauty, most certainly has me thinking of the many versions of myself over the 23 years I’ve had the privilege to spend summers in Ibiza. It’s funny how a place can become a marker of significance in your intimate journey. Coming back here in August to The Beach Caves after a few years’ hiatus has me looking back, and yes, shining the spotlight on my “more than one thing-ness.” 

Alberto Alcocer
Alberto Alcocer
Why Ibiza Will Always Hold a Special Place in My Heart

It all began with a 24-year-old version of Athena who was, at her core, a dancing club girl. Newly married to her truest love and best friend who also happened to be a techno DJ. Hence my first version of Ibiza—blissfully dancing in the DJ booth behind Victor followed by more dancing until the sun rose at DC10. Fast forward just a few years later and Ibiza represented something very different—it became our very first holiday as a family with our newborn baby, Jivan. Yes, Vic still dipped his toes in the nightlife side of the island, but I was very much immersed in the beauty of motherhood. So many firsts on that trip: Jivan was 5 months old and it’s funny the things you remember, but he took his first sip of sparkling water as we had lunch by the pool in the north of the island looking out to sea followed by getting stung by a bee (which I will never forget as my very first freak out as mom). Suffice it to say, he was unfazed and I was a neurotic mess! 

Why Ibiza Will Always Hold a Special Place in My Heart

“This magical island not only holds a very special place in my heart but also in my personal evolution as a woman.”

In the years that followed, we would spend (at minimum) four weeks on the island and this was when I really began to experience its magic, to explore all of the pockets of the raw and rocky coastline, to develop beautiful friendships (mostly our Copenhagen family that we still have to this day), and to offer our son a taste of life in Europe and a point of view other than his own. Sure Victor would still be a significant part of the nightlife—it was what continually brought us there year after year—but I was now at a different stage in my evolution as a woman. A mom, a yogi with a meditation practice, exploring sunset drumming circles on the beach as I watched the sun slip into the sea while Jivan was in utter bliss rock climbing to the beat of his own drum. I was also a woman with a newly budding passion for food. I would stay at our Finca and cook for friends and explore the local produce and delicacies in my kitchen. As you can see, from my mid 20’s to my late 30’s, Ibiza represented many different things to me. 

Fast forward to this past summer when our dearest Ben invited us to Six Senses Ibiza to experience his most recent endeavor, the opening of The Beach Caves in the north of the island. This also coincided with a gig for Victor at DC10. And likely for the first time in almost 20 years, I embraced all the versions of myself, and most of all, those earliest incarnations of “Athena” where she was oh-so-fun and frisky, dancing once again until the sun rose (okay fine, twice on our five-day trip) and also dancing at the edge of the sea at The Beach Caves as the sun set. 

Why Ibiza Will Always Hold a Special Place in My Heart

I give you this long-sorted history of the many things Ibiza represents for me because my experience at the beach caves somehow mirrors my own Ibizan experience. That a hotel stay can also be many things—yes, you can have exceptional spa treatments and delicious food and services that tap into all of your senses BUT we are on an island known for nightlife so YES you can go a few levels down to immerse yourself in ALL the eclectic things Ibiza has to offer. Sure it’s a hotel but it’s also a nightclub with cultural programming, a state-of-the-art recording studio, and an incredible plant-led local menu to feast on as you listen to live shamanic house. It’s truly a celebration of all things Ibiza—sophisticated, eclectic, and fun, with passion, entertainment, and community at its core.

This trip and this property reminded me of all of the things that make me ME, that have made my marriage what it is, and made our family so unique. We are, after all, the sum of all our parts and a very huge part of me is that dancing fool who loses herself in both mice, dancing, and beauty. Also, I am in the business of elevating ALL the senses and I felt each of them viscerally!! Thank you Ibiza for your magic and thank you, Ben, for this incredible invitation to The Beach Caves. And also for this invitation back to the early me!

Why Ibiza Will Always Hold a Special Place in My Heart
Why Ibiza Will Always Hold a Special Place in My Heart
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