In the heart of Ibiza Old Town lies 105 by La Cantine, the Balearic reincarnation of its glamorous Dubai address and heir to the Parisian hot spot La Cantine du Faubourg. Unlike its two predecessors, the Ibizan venture is joined by 105 Suites: seven luxurious apartments each accommodating two to four people. Inspired by the French Riviera of the 1960s and 1970s, designer James Michael Lees of the London-based Studio Hopscotch brings Mediterranean chic to the slightly shabby waterfront in Marina Magna. With a fifty-shades-of-blue colour scheme and nautical textiles, 105 effortlessly echoes its seaside setting.
Located at the foot of Dalt Vila, Ibiza’s medieval Upper Town, and amidst the island’s celebrated nightlife, there is no shortage of activities on offer. Despite its Spanish heritage, there is undoubtedly a French presence in the Old Town. Just listen out for the symphony of French voices along the promenade to understand 105’s choice of location. Make sure to wander the steep cobbled streets shaded by canopies of bougainvillea flowers, if only to get a killer Instagram photo.
The suites are stylish yet understated, with textiles and ceramics in turquoise tones juxtaposing the typically Ibizan white interior. 105’s blue and white colour scheme acknowledges vintage Slim Aarons photographs as its inspiration, displaying them throughout the spacious suites. Comfy wicker chairs play a vital role in the apartments’ laidback ambiance while the bathroom appeals to both our luxurious side and our beauty regime with lavish Molton Brown toiletries and a walk-in shower. Small touches don’t go amiss either, whether that be the seasonal makeover of the classic snow globe, now featuring a millennial pink flamingo, or the glossy hardbacks offering a photographic peek into the island’s history. Sitting on the flower-adorned terrace overlooking the vibrant harbour below, you’ll feel part of the action despite being some height above it. The suites are also equipped with a kitchenette but you would be missing out if you didn’t head down to the restaurant below.
Mirroring the colour scheme of the contemporary suites is 105 by La Cantine, the two hundred-seat terraced restaurant attracting passers-by and yacht-goers alike, the latter of whom can pick up a gourmet 105 picnic basket and cruise in style. If privacy is more up your street then head to the indoor private table d’hôte which seats up to sixteen people. Al-fresco dining in Ibiza, however, is where the real magic lies. Large marble tables fill the terrace amongst the foliage-strewn partitions, art-deco ornaments and chilled music playlist. The statuesque tree in the centre of 105 took our fancy with its overhanging branches brimming with glowing golden lanterns.
The restaurant might be French but it’s definitely functioning on Spanish time, livening up at around 10pm and staying open until the early hours of the morning. We indulged in the 105 signature cocktails, a refreshing Balearic Sour and French Martini, as we sat gazing vicariously at the glam yachts. 105’s food concept revolves around tapas-style sharing plates but expect larger dishes with French and Asian influences. Pour commencer, we had a trio of outstanding starters: a zingy king crab leg on a bed of avocado with lemon vinaigrette, perfectly seared beef carpaccio and a refreshing yellow fin tuna ceviche. The latter was the true pièce de resistance, with generous pieces of fresh tuna lathered in the highly addictive sesame and sweet onion vinaigrette marinade, reminiscent of the Hawaiian poké craze.
Pour suivre, we lusted after a rich lobster linguini with courgette and basil pesto, glad to see that the chef didn’t skimp on the chunks of the fresh meaty lobster, and the tender Ibérico pork with garlic and parsley. Despite feeling suitably satisfied, dessert has a compartment of its own n’est-ce pas? Our eyes lit up when the towering Ice Cream 105 to share, a favourite in Dubai, arrived at our table, featuring layer upon layer of creamy indulgent ingredients and caramelised macadamia nuts. Lunch the following day had an equally enticing à la carte with an array of lighter dishes such as brunch-style eggs, healthy salads and fresh fish. We opted for the salmon tartare and the creamy burrata, tomato and peach salad, with an olive oil and sweet balsamic dressing that acted as a divine dip for the crusty French bread.
We should all learn from 105’s minimalist décor, which is like a page out of vintage Vogue. It is an elegant and fashionable destination for those partial to the party lifestyle or a sophisticated séjour. The sixteenth century prophet Nostradamus is believed to have predicted that “Ibiza will be Earth’s final refuge” and we know where we’ll be holing up if that’s the case.