Get lost with Roger Sanchez

nickclayton

Active Member
The Independent on Sunday carried this interview with Roger today. Not surprisingly, he likes the island. Unfortunately either he or the journalist who interviewed him have made a few deliberate mistakes. See how many you can spot...


Quiet Ibiza: A Classic Selection

This Balearic island is best known for its clubs. And one of the hottest DJs pumping out tunes there is Roger Sanchez. But where does he go when he wants a bit of peace and quiet? Interview by Ian McCurrach

Published: 28 January 2007


I first visited Ibiza in 1995, a little later than many British DJs, so I'd heard a lot about it. I went to play a club called Ku in San Rafael, which is now called Privilege. At the time, it had a roof that opened up and let the morning sun flood in on to the dance floor and the pool area - it was the most amazing introduction to the island.

Ibiza really reminds me of the Dominican Republic, where my parents come from, in that it feels like a tropical island. What makes the place special to me is not so much the clubbing side but the fact that the island has a vibe that echoes my Latin roots. Spanish is my second language, so I feel completely at home on the island - even the taste of the air seems familiar. For other Ibiza lovers, I think it's the air of tranquillity and spirituality juxtaposed with the excitement of the nightlife that draws them to the island.

In recent years, Ibiza has been much maligned and has received bad and misleading press about being a den of drunk or drug-crazed youths. Essentially, the press has narrowed down the entire scope of the island to four blocks in San Antonio, which is populated by the lowest element of lager louts. It's insane - like rubbishing the entire state of Florida because of the antics of the kids who go on spring break to Daytona and get off their heads.

For most visitors to Ibiza, if you don't know where the half-dozen superclubs are you won't necessarily come across them. Especially if you head for the northern side of the island towards Portinatx and Cala Jondal, which tend to be very chilled and family oriented. There are so many places like that across the island.

Ibiza for me is about visiting tiny coastal villages and exploring the densely wooded and hilly interior. Drive from Ibiza Town to San Antonio along the San Josep road and you're surrounded by lush vegetation and mountains, with the ocean in the distance - it's almost like being on a nature retreat. Get off that road - or take a ride down the Sant Joan de Laritja road - and you'll drive through lots of tiny pueblos, or hamlets, with their small terracotta Spanish-style low-rise houses and fincas, humbly made but beautiful inside. It's like stepping back in time.

At the opposite end of the scale, head towards the east coast, near Cala Vedella, to find a tiny beach resort called Es Xarcu, with its amazing millionaires' villas. Athina Onassis Roussel has one that is on five levels cut into the cliff. All the really cool people who go to Ibiza either rent or have villas in the countryside or near the water.

One of my favourite places on the island is Cala D'Hort, the small beach that overlooks Es Vedra, a huge rock that juts out of the sea off the west coast. The local legend says it's the most magnetic point on earth. To get to Cala D'Hort you have to drive along dusty twisting roads through a wooded area before suddenly breaking out on to the cliffside and then driving down to the beach. It has some great beach restaurants where you can eat sensational freshly caught seafood.

Sa Talaia is the highest mountain on the island. Drive up to the antennae at the top and, just at its side, you'll find a beautiful, secluded wooded area - a great place to have a picnic. You can almost see the entire island from up there, it's stunning. Just beyond Talamanca, outside Ibiza Town, is a nudist beach and beyond that is Sa Punta, where there is a wonderful seafood restaurant I go to called Chiringuito (00 34 971 348 338). It's a great place to spend the day.

If you want to get away from it all, one of the best beaches is Atlantis, near Cala Vedella. It used to be a stone quarry. You can either get there by boat or take the hard route and climb down this insane cliff to reach it. From Torre des Cap des Jueu, the old pirate watchtower at the top, there are great views of Es Vedra.

When I started visiting Ibiza I used to stay at Pikes (00 34 971 342 222; pikes hotel.com), the rock'n'roll hotel that was used as the backdrop for the Wham! video for "Club Tropicana". Tony Pike, who owns the place, is a wonderful guy. He knows everyone in the music industry and is such a superb storyteller. One of the other great properties is Na Xamena (00 34 971 334 500; hotelhacienda-ibiza. com) set on a cliff on the north coast near San Miguel. It is Balinese in style with a terrific spa and it has great chill-out terraces that are perfect for watching the sun set into the sea - so romantic and peaceful.

In Ibiza Town I like La Torre del Canonigo (00 34 971 303 884; elcanonigo. com), an intimate hotel above the medieval ramparts in Dalt Vila, the Unesco-protected old town. The tower dates back to the 16th century - it's a fabulous spot for lunch even if you're not staying there. Dalt Vila is reminiscent of such medieval places like Eze in the south of France. There are some stunning old houses that have been converted into lofts that you can rent. Up at the top is a magnificent cathedral: it's humble on the inside but gorgeous on the outside.

There are also some amazing restaurants. Cana Joana (00 34 971 800 158; canajoana.com) is a little known place just outside San Josep in the countryside, with great views from the garden. It's family run and Joana is a terrific Ibizan chef. One of her signature dishes is eggs with potato purée and truffles in pastry - delicious. Her husband and the maître d', Jean Michel, is always welcoming - he reads the menu and talks about the food like it's a novel. You need to book in advance because it's quite small and romantic and those in the know make a beeline for it.

The best place for seafood is Es Xarcu (00 34 971 187867), which is on the beach in a kind of shack. It serves the most amazing gallo de San Pedro, a white fish that tastes like it's melting in butter and comes with a white wine sauce. Everything is made right on the spot from what they've caught that morning. The view is phenomenal. Again you have to book ahead. Last year, I took Dannii Minogue and a couple of other friends of mine there and we had such a great time.

For the finest Italian food in the world - and I'm including Italy - I go to a restaurant called Trattoria del Sole (00 34 971 800 006). It's on the Ibiza-San Josep road just before you get to San Josep. What makes this place unique is that it's run by a bunch of Neapolitans. They are my favourite people; they are so madly passionate about everything. These guys fly over their ingredients weekly from Italy. They make the pasta on site and one of my favourite dishes is paccheri di crostacei, which is pasta with lobster, prawns and homemade tomato sauce. It's fantastically fresh. I love it. They also do great carpaccio. My favourite Moroccan restaurant on the island is called El Ayoun (00 34 971 198335). It has a wonderful garden. The signature dish is lamb couscous.

In town, I like going to the Rock Bar, at Calle Garijo 14, in the port beneath Dalt Vila. It's run by people I know and frequented by a really funky crowd. I always see friends there and the people-watching is fab. Depending on when you want to pop in, the bar in the El Hotel Pacha (00 34 971 315 963; elhotelpacha.com) by the marina in Ibiza town is kind of cool. Wednesday evenings are the best. It's very minimalist - a bit like the Delano in Miami.

Just before you get to San Rafael, on the San Antonio road, you'll spot a sign marked Km5 (00 34 971 396 349; km5-lounge. com). Don't be fooled. It's not a road sign but the name of one of the coolest bars on the island. It's a bar-cum-lounge and it has this wicked tented area where you can chill out on day beds. The owner, Patrick Soks, and his partner, Philip, are great hosts and put on interesting events, such as art shows. There's a small club that's enclosed if you want to dance and there's a restaurant that does great steaks.

Outside San Antonio, there's a wonderful place on a cliff called La Torre (00 34 971 342 271; hostallatorre.com). It has a sublime restaurant on a terrace. The sun sets directly in front of it. One of my happiest memories of the island is sitting there with two of my very close friends talking about life. It was one of those deep, deep conversations you have while watching the sun go down. The owner put on some sunset music - those wonderful overtures and tracks. We stopped talking and just sat there listening. It was pure magic.

Roger Sanchez's 'Choice - A Collection of Classics' is out tomorrow on Azuli (azuli.com), price £11.99

My dream drive

This runs from Ibiza Town towards the cliffside end of Talamanca beach. As you motor up to the cliff's edge it becomes more secluded. You can drive right up to the top with someone you are in love, or in lust, sit and just watch the sunset.

My favourite view

In January, the cherry blossom blooms in San Mateo, a small town near the north coast surrounded by mountains. It has a 14th-century church and there is a huge field of cherry trees with these beautiful pink and white petals. It's one of the most amazing sights and the scent is intoxicating.

My favourite shopping

I love going to the hippie market on Saturdays at Las Dalias. It's set within the grounds of an old manor house. You can find incredible bargains; there's everything from arts and crafts to homemade jewellery, leather goods, tie-dye hippie gear, hats and a million different kinds of incense and burners.
 

Morbyd

Moderator
Where to start? They've got KM5 on the wrong road, Cala Jondal on the wrong side of the island, and couldn't quite decide if they wanted to write San Jose/Sant Josep in Spanish or Ibiceno :confused:
 

Dr Mick

Active Member
I first visited Ibiza in 1995, a little later than many British DJs, so I'd heard a lot about it. I went to play a club called Ku in San Rafael, which is now called Privilege. At the time, it had a roof that opened up and let the morning sun flood in on to the dance floor and the pool area - it was the most amazing introduction to the island.
According to the Privilege MySpace page, Ku got a roof and changed its name in 1991, so either Roger got the date of his first visit to Ibiza wrong, it had a different kind of roof in 1995, or he imagined he saw stars when really they weren't there at all.

:?::?:
 

puppylover

Active Member
Vadella is on the West and i thougth Es Xarcu was up north but maybe i am confusing that with Xarraca...

On the plus side - lots of handy telephone numbers for this year to use...8)
 

Morbyd

Moderator
No, Es Xarcu (assuming they really mean Es Xarco, as I remember it being spelled on my map last summer) is down in the South/Southwest. Beautiful villas out that way in Porroig.
 

fatphilb

Well-Known Member
nice article though, more good press for the island instead of the usual scare mongering nonsense
 

grego

Active Member
to add to others

a few deliberate mistakes. See how many you can spot...

I went to play a club called Ku in San Rafael, which is now called Privilege. At the time, it had a roof that opened up and let the morning sun flood in on to the dance floor and the pool area (Ku was called Ku then but i'm not sure it ever had a roof that opened up, it was just open air)

Especially if you head for the northern side of the island towards Portinatx and Cala Jondal, which tend to be very chilled and family oriented. (wrong side of island as has been said)

At the opposite end of the scale, head towards the east coast, near Cala Vedella, to find a tiny beach resort called Es Xarcu, (neither are east coast and vedella is not near es xarco)

If you want to get away from it all, one of the best beaches is Atlantis, near Cala Vedella. It used to be a stone quarry. (is it really a beach at all??)

Just before you get to San Rafael, on the San Antonio road, you'll spot a sign marked Km5 (00 34 971 396 349; km5-lounge. com). (wrong side of road like morbyd said)
 
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