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Review: A day on the waves with Smart Charter Ibiza

This is the life.

How many times have I walked past those big shiny luxury yachts moored in Ibiza Town Marina and wondered how many Leonardo DiCaprios were on board today? On Monday, while many of you were desk-battling through a giant scourge of unread emails, I was making like a Leonardo and stepping gracefully and importantly onto one of the most pimpin' boats in the marina, Smart Charter Ibiza's Sunseeker Predator 82. And yes - the Sunseeker Predator 82 is as badass as the name suggests.

I found myself in such an enviable position thanks to Ibiza Smart Charter's invite of a day out, where guests are shown the luxury experience enjoyed by all who hire a boat with Smart Charter. In case you aren't already jealous - we were Formentera bound.

It was an unusually windy morning, which did make the journey across a little lumpy, but a keen eye on the horizon and a firm hand on deck kept it real - and we made it through the great and terrible tempest/moderate swell in one piece with drinks largely unspilled, crucially. Dropping anchor a few hundred metres out from the blissfully lonely (don't get used to it) shores of Formentera's Espalmador, we were floating upon some of the most clear and brilliant turquoise waters I've ever seen. So beautiful, that despite the relatively cold water temperatures of May everyone flopped into the water post haste, either for a quick swim or to make use of the water toys at our disposal. Meanwhile the Sunseeker Predator 82 was casually morphing like a transformer, with decks smoothly sliding up, awnings coming out and who knows what other robo-moves designed for ultimate convenience and comfort. Did I mention this boat was badass?

I pounced on the standing paddle board, cruising around with slow, confident strokes; graceful as a bleedin' swan, if you ask me, but apparently the paddle was backwards. Next we tried out the SeaBob, a mini rocket-shaped contraption which you hold on to as it drags you racing through the water, the speed adjustable with a touch of the thumb. These things are amazing. They respond really easily to direction changes so you can quickly dart up, down, left right and explode onto the surface like a dolphin, or a really excited human wearing goggles and spitting seawater. Between swimming and water activities we would flop onto the comfy beds at the front and back of the boat, sip on cold drinks and bask in the sun.

For lunch, we were taken on the dingy over to the other four Smart Charter boats moored nearby, where we all had a picnic of delicious baguettes and quinoa salads from FeelGood, finished by a caramel slice/nutty flapjack which I had about four or five halves of, because a whole one was just too much for my petite appetite. While we ate we were amazed by magic tricks from the lads from Urban Magic, who turned cards into other cards, put balls and fish where there were none before and generally treated the laws of physics and logic with utter contempt. Highly entertaining! Later a few of us asked to be taken ashore to walk along the white sands of Espalmador, where we poked about in the sand and explored the deserted dunes.

The trip back to the mainland was much calmer, and we chatted on the bed at the back of the boat, getting in a few final beverages as the sun sank lower and we drew closer to Ibiza and our non-celebrity existence. We were all a little downhearted as we docked back to the Marina, dragging out the goodbyes and prolonging our time on this little slice of luxury. But all good things must come to an end, and pretty soon we dispersed and made our way home to lather on the aloe vera (doh).

Smart Charter Ibiza is a luxury to be sure, but not an unattainable one. There are many different boats to choose from (20 in fact, the largest range on the island), at different prices, so you can splash out or keep it real and still get an awesome experience on the waves. This time we had everything taken care for us, but as long as you have the right license, at least half of the Smart Charter boats are available to hire on your own. There's no better way to appreciate the beauty of both Balearic waters and coastline than by boat, and if you're going to do it - you might as well make it special.


WORDS | Jordan Smith PHOTOGRAPHY | James Chapman

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