Updated: Aug 31, 2021
I love a party and try not to judge a place before I give it a go, but when I was told that I would be reviewing O Beach Ibiza, my heart dropped. I haven’t escaped the headlines and rumours of its larger-than-life owner, Wayne Lineker over the past year. He casts an ominous shadow across social media: misogynistic, brash, seedy. Could this poolside party club be anything more than a playground for unashamed Peter Pan creeps with deep pockets, and bikini clad teenage simpletons, happy to spend their sugar Daddies cash? Was I walking into a cringe fest, or could I have found my new Ibiza hotspot?
Before you’re allowed to enter this club (from 1 pm), whether you’re on the guest list or not, you will be subjected to the kind of pep talk I haven’t had since my collage art class went to Amsterdam. The bouncers, weary from a season of navigating the safety of wired kids, intent on steeling the famous orange cups, getting high, drinking to the point of passing out from dehydration, and drowning in the pool, led us through the do’s and don’ts of the club before searching us and making us wait for a tedious amount of time to embark on attacking our minimum spend at our garden table.
The check in system here, could do with some addressing, it seems unnecessarily longwinded and unfair considering the money you will be spending inside (I will get to this later).
Walking in, the vivid fake grass, glowing white seats, floors, and tables, plastic neon pink flowers and scent of chlorine gave me the feeling of being in Tim Burton’s Wonker’s Chocolate Factory. When women wearing blow up unicorns as skirts danced through the pools shallow waters, followed by a bald man pulling a fake tug boat, I wasn’t altogether sure that I hadn’t been transported there. That, or my champagne had been spiked, both felt possible at this point.
There’s very little shade in the club, which works wonders for the bar tab but crucifies your makeup and skin. Keep your suntan lotion well topped up and keep the water flowing to match the quantity of vodka at the very least. It’s thirsty work, lounging in the sun and trying to look fabulous while sweating buckets, and turning a certain shade of British lobster on holiday pink. The drinks are expensive, so sadly we’d blown our minimum spend by 5pm. More on that later.
As the afternoon slipped by to early evening I realised we were all having a fantastic time. One great thing about a club having an owner who LOVES and has always LOVED to party is that they know their music and DJ’s.
As part of the ‘older crowd’ (shock, horror; at 40 I still like to go out) at O Beach I wasn’t prepared to know all the songs, but I was lucky enough to go on a day when the vibe was 90’s garage, the way being led in force by O beach’s recent regular Tom Grimes. I’ve seen a few of Tom’s, epic house-led sets over my years visiting Ibiza, in various venues (look out for nights run by Mischief if you want to catch these), which is normally what I want from my night’s out. However, this garage set was fun, playful, and pushed all the right buttons to keep the crowds singing along and smiling, whatever the age. I hadn’t banked on singing to Shola Amor in 2021, but it’s not been the oddest thing about this year.
I was a convert to this venue pretty quickly, but, as with most clubs, if you want to hear honest opinion of your fellow patrons, brave the smoking area. As Covid has rendered this venue, along with the rest in Ibiza, a predominantly seated venue (although you can freely mix in the pool, but not at tables; go figure), the smoking area, is the one place you can check out the types of people you’re sharing your party experience with. It’s also up on the first floor, overlooking the club, so a great place for observing! I was surprised that alongside the fitness models, influencers, and plethora of reality celebs, were a huge amount of ‘normal’ good people who’d worked and saved hard for their day in the sun at O Beach. I met a 34 year old care home owner, a 21 year old gardener, 4 friends there for a 40th Birthday bash and three 29 year old teachers. OK, the crowd is hardly diverse, I was definitely one of the ‘older’ ladies there, but everyone seemed to having an equally good time, and none griped about their experience of the venue. There were many smiles to be seen and shared on the day I visited.
If I’ve convinced you that this is the worst place on earth, or perhaps heavenly, it’s worth considering that this is an advance booking, minimum spend venue (https://www.obeachibiza.com/). The circular day ‘beds’ are small for four, but allegedly seat six. The minimum spend here is around 700 euros + 200 euros booking fee, depending on the day that you visit. For a Garden Booth, table like ours be prepared to dig deep. An 8 seater garden booth comes with a minimum spend of 1,400 + 200 euro booking fee. We went as a group of 6/8 (two of our tribe had to dash for their plane home at 7 P.M #totallegends), and to be honest it’s a bit of a squeeze too.
You get a small amount of food for your money, but you do receive it on massive plates. Seriously though, it’s good quality and the serving team are a hell of a lot nicer than I’ve encountered in many Ibiza venues (I’m looking at you Blue Marlin, and Café Del Mar). It turns out that part-time models don’t make the best waitress’s, but that memo seems to have missed the white isle.
I love to be surprised. Perhaps that is why O Beach appealed to me so much. Just when I thought Ibiza had it all, O Beach rocked up offering something else; some much needed, tongue in cheek fun. The antithesis to the strong holding chic of Pacha, flash of Blue Marlin, cool of Ibiza Rocks, chill of Ashram, or the dirt of the West End.
Go to O Beach expecting the music to be good, the atmosphere friendly; and you won’t be disappointed. It’s a kitsch, plastic, fantastic, vacuous pleasure pool, not too dissimilar to many of its patrons, and I happen to love it.
See you again next year O Beach!