“You boys big drinkers?” quips Jordan, as two scrawny teenagers begin their journey to lad-hood on Ibiza Weekender. Their flat caps squeezed tight to the ears of their ‘grade one on the sides’ haircuts and bulky time-pieces glistening from their wrists and into the sunlight.
Two more beefa’ enthusiasts, this time from Brighton, also rock up to the hotel. This duo, however, come packed with added squeals of over-enthusiasm and enough girlish giggles to give you that feeling of unicorn dust sprinkled down your spine.
Just like the boys, both girls are 18-years-old. Hell, one of them has never even been abroad before.
And this is supposed to be a reflection of Ibiza . . .
On episode six of the ITV2 series and there were four teenagers jumping aboard the Ibiza Weekender party wagon. What a cocktail of ebullient, hormone fluctuant and ear-piercing energy that would be. Not for me, thanks.
You see, according to stats from Thomas Cook and the tourist hotspot of Ibiza has matured over recent years. Nowadays, one in six tourists have moved from the under 30 category and into the 30-39 range. While I’m not saying that Ibiza has become a hotbed for the more middle-aged, it has rarely been viewed as a budget tourist attraction for those just sprouting into adolescence. That would be Greece.
The idolised ultimate beach and clubbing destination of Europe has always came at a price. Whether it’s the expense of alcohol, villas or even own-branded bottles of waters inside the long list of mega clubs, people choose Ibiza because they are going big. It’s never someones third choice summer getaway. That would be Greece.
Yet on Ibiza Weekender and across its seven series there has been little to glamorise one of the most popular destinations in the world. In fact, it’s been made to look like any old 16-25 year-old holiday destination.
Having developed itself from The Magaluf Weekender, the Ibiza version has followed all the same formalities when it comes to a ‘boozy holiday’. There’s a semi-budget hotel with room-share accommodation, onslaughts of cheap tacky cocktails, tongues rammed down throats around every corner and plenty of so called ‘party games’. The problem is that anyone who has been to Magaluf and Ibiza will tell you that the two are very different. Very, very different.
But, due to the winning formula in Magaluf and ITV producers decided to pick up the show, plonk it in Ibiza, and continued where they left off. Long into the beefa’ spinoff and it doesn’t look as if the format will ever change. The show has become a mockery of the White Isle.
There is nothing within a 45-minute episode of Ibiza Weekender that captures even the smallest of details about Ibiza and its character a holiday destination. There are no pool parties, no sunset sessions and no long queues heading into clubs. Come to think of it and there are confusingly few trips to the beach, nothing is filmed after 2am, and the majority of clubs look spookily dead inside.
Of course, these are just the droning thoughts of a man who has never actually been Ibiza.
But if Ibiza Weekender is the advertising board, well I don’t fancy it anyway.