Welcome to The Farm Ibiza, the farming universe of Alonso & Francesca. July 2021. San Miguel de Balasat, Ibiza.
Alonso Colmenares, a biologist by training, farmer and publicist by profession, together with his Chilean wife Francesca, a floral artist, settled in an old XNUMXth-century farm in the north of the island to make it their life project. The Farm Ibiza It is an agritourism with an agricultural exploitation in continuous evolution, a very alive laboratory from which, in addition to the organic garden, a floral workshop and The Farmers Club, a farmer training project have been born. The organic garden produces mainly native vegetables and greens. And from here, under the model "from farm to table" the genre is served to restaurants on the island. Francesca inside her greenhouse, inspired by the flowers of the Mediterranean and those of her own garden, gives free rein to her imagination to create the most exquisite flower arrangements on the island. The interior of the house follows the same philosophy, there is nothing new here, send the vintage, the old and the pieces with soul rescued in the San Jordi market, unpacking, or auction houses.
WHAT IS IT ABOUT IBIZA THAT HAS CAUGHT YOU?
Francesca - To settle as a family is the ideal place for the freedom that is breathed. As I grew up in Chile under a dictatorship, it was always clear to me that my children had to live in freedom. Be free to be who you want to be.
Alonso - Ibiza is made by the local people, but also the people who have been coming to the island, it is extraordinarily cosmopolitan. There are interesting people from all over the world who arrive with a great background behind them, and start a second life by deciding to settle here.
HOW DOES THE FARM IBIZA START?
Alonso - After meeting Francesca, we started with the idea of building an agritourism. And in that search, they called us to show us this Indian house from 1870. I had imagined a house with a forest or terraces. And this house was totally far from what I had in mind. They were 8 flat hectares and the building with its characteristic Indiana façade was more important on the façade than the traditional peasant house. The house was not love at first sight, until I entered the living room and immediately changed my mind, spacious, with a brutal energy charge and different from any interior of a house in Ibiza. Buying it was the best decision of our life. And the fact of being 8 flat hectares has allowed us to reach what is today The Farm Ibiza.
Francesca - Much more has been developed from the idea of building a hotel. The purpose was for our children to be born here. This house has given us a lot, we have developed on a personal and professional level, it has given us a garden, flowers, children, interior design, having a project as a couple in common as well as the family.
WHAT DOES YOUR FARM CONSIST OF?
Alonso - We started the farm from scratch, it had been without activity for 40 years, we did a permaculture design, we planted the 1800 pomegranates, then the almond trees, the olive trees, vegetables and greens and the last the flowers and recently chickens. Olive and citrus trees are more for self-consumption. But with the rest of the harvest we serve it to restaurants on the island. Planting pomegranates is a more long-term project because we plant them one year old and we will not have pomegranates for another five years. The objective of this plantation is to make our own pomegranate juice.
WHERE DOES YOUR LOVE FOR FLOWERS COME FROM?
Francesca - I have always liked flowers. I had my children and I stopped working, and as soon as I had my space again, it was totally natural, I had the idea in my head, they started kindergarten and I went to study in London. In my philosophy it was also very important to cultivate the flowers to close the circle. In Ibiza there is only one supplier of flowers and growing them was a necessity, I love the idea of having our own organic ones.
This laboratory is an absolute happiness, having a space where you can create and work with flowers right in front of a field of flowers, it connects you so much with them! I look at them, take care of them, water them, clean them ...
"We don't buy anything, things find us, that's the great vintage wonder"
WHAT IS THE MOST REWARDING THING ABOUT HAVING YOUR GARDEN?
Alonso - Here we are very purists in regenerative agriculture, we work all winter to ensure that the soils are the most fertile and thus have the best gender. The most gratifying of all this is the delivery to the restaurants, I take the two horses, put my boxes and I start to distribute. My contact is directly with the cooks and chefs and when you see the high they have with the quality of the product you give them, all the work, all the effort and all the love that you have put in have been worth it. They are our allies, they value it and that is a luxury.
WHAT IS THE FARMERS CLUB?
Alonso - It is helping people to have the same things that we have here. It is a farmers school, people who are not Farmer but she has the house and the land, and she is motivated by this care for the environment and herself. With this project we want to give back to the island everything it has given us, here there are only 8 hectares, but in this way we are recovering what was the island in a much more organic and holistic way.
HOW CONNECTED IS YOUR LIFE WITH THE DECORATION OF THIS HOUSE?
Alonso - We like to give things a second life, we are the soul of a flea market. We try not to buy new clothes, we try to make it all vintage, consumption for fashion consumption does not apply in this house, we love the concept pre-loved. We like the old, the patina, the rust, what has had a life. And the same in clothes. When we get out of the vintage, we try to support brands committed to the environment.
We do not buy anything, things find us, that is the great wonder of the vintage. When I go to a market I am not going to buy anything in particular, it is the other way around things find you. And that is for me one of the greatest pleasures in the world. Here there is neither order nor reason, this is eclectic, we are putting things in. Travel has had a lot of influence, so much so that we choose destinations for their markets.
"Working the flowers right in front of a flower field, it connects you so much with them!"
HOW DO YOU SUMMARIZE YOUR PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE?
Alonso - I am in the process, I continue to do it every day, we are building the whole path towards sustainability day by day, it is not that we are like that, it is that we are doing it. This has been given to us by this house, it has been given to us by Josian, my partner and teacher. But the one who has radically changed my way of seeing life has been my son León. It is he with 4 years who is doing me 100% like this, he is the one who really has no doubts, he is honest with himself and I am behind. He is radicalizing me in caring for the earth, because I see it in his eyes. While Lola lives it and enjoys it in a more naive, she watches, touches, eats and tastes it.
Francesca - We believe in regenerating the earth, it is our way of life. At first we weren't like that, but living on a farm has changed our priorities.
Here we leave you our favorite places, walks, coves, restaurants and artisans on the island.
Located in the north of the island just above the sea, it is eclectic, fun and cool as are its owners. It also has the best shopping on the island with a very special curatorship.
Renting our house in summer is an experience, the luxury of simplicity, of "Farm to table", of the connection with nature and its cycles.
It is in a lost cove, you eat the best salt fish and crayfish on the island. You can go day or night is always wonderful.
In a more modern beach bar with exceptional fish and seafood.
We have a fisherman's hut, it is in the Es Cubells area, we have a tiny dinghy that we leave in the sea all summer and when the island is full we have our place in the sea just for ourselves, a paradise! Next door is this restaurant, a place without any pretense, its owners are fishermen and they have a spectacular genre. Padrón peppers, Calm peppers and a good baked fish do not fail.
Farm to table food, a mix between Italian and Middle East. In a wonderful place with the most delicious waiters and atmosphere on the island. It is Total child friendly, something very important to us.
It is a creative hub, a concept store, also with a restaurant, it is eaten simple and delicious, it is beautiful, it is full of toys, games, there are workshops and creative spaces for children and adults. We love to have breakfast and afternoon tea, it is next to the Santa Gertrudis playground. At home we live all summer in her organic cotton dresses.
Without a doubt the best Italian on the island, an institution.
It opened a year ago and is the new hot spot, located in Santa Eulalia, it is a small place without pretensions, but with the best food on the island, young, traveled, fun and very professional.
The best Japanese in the city of Ibiza, he Japanese, she peasant Ibizan, unpretentious like a restaurant lost in Tokyo.
CALA DE EN SERRA
It is our favorite beach and it is lost in the north of the island, without a beach bar or chairs, it is wonderful, the best bathroom on the island.
THE CHIRINGAY BEACH
It is the closest thing to Formentera on the island, the sea itself, you have to walk from Es Caballet and that in summer is scary, but it is so worth it.
I am addicted to vintage In Ibiza, we always buy here for our house and to dress. There is a position called @loveibizavintage, she has sensational pieces, mixing big brands with beautiful clothes from the 60's '70's and' 80's.
Alba is an artist who makes natural silk kimonos that she dyes with botanical dyes with flowers and fruits, each piece is unique, works of art for a lifetime.
Daughter of the best nose in Spain, she has created a collection of candles based on the smells of the Ibizan countryside, totally natural essences, at home we are addicted.
Unique pieces with a brutalist tendency, with soul and a lot of character.
Deco and fashion, an inexhaustible source of inspiration.
Clothes and accessories for children and mothers.
Your store in addition to the collection of dresses and kurtas from India that are precious, you have a whole part vintage where I love to lose myself to find treasures.
DRESS TO IMPRESS! If you want something to go out and dazzle on one of those crazy Ibiza nights this is the place.