Interview with captain Glen McDonnell on The Balearic Islands
Which is your favourite Balearic Island?
Probably Mallorca, simply because it’s the most cosmopolitan of all of them. I like that I can do many activities here like wander through the city or go and hike in the mountains. I love the food, beaches and so many other things… I think in Mallorca you can find activities 365 days of the year. What I like the most about Mallorca is that every time I jump into my car I can discover new things.
There are so many things that surprise me about the island; the festivals and Christmas lights which get me into the festive spirit. All these things make Mallorca unique and different from any other island in the Balearics.
And in second place has to be Menorca. It is a beautiful island and although I haven’t explored it so much, I have done a bit of touring around. Ibiza is my least favourite island because I feel it’s too much of a party island, I prefer to do other activities besides partying.
What are your hobbies here in the islands? (Sport, culture, gastronomy)
My favourite hobbies on the island of Mallorca are golf, going to the beaches and hiking in the mountain. Actually, I have hiked around Valldemossa, Puigmayor, Sant Elm, and so many others but there are still many more I want to discover.
Can you tell me a fun experience you had in the Balearic Islands?
One of the most amazing experiences I had recently was here in Mallorca, it was the European Ballooning championships and it was just so beautiful. The championship consisted in 85 hot air balloons flying in the skies of Mallorca and it was absolutely stunning, especially because I shared this experience with my daughter. This is one of the things I mean when I say the Island is always surprising me.
Describe each of the Balearic Islands in one word?
Firstly, Mallorca for me is a “cosmopolitan” island. Menorca is the “hippie” island. Thirdly, Ibiza is the “party-zone”. And lastly, Formentera in my opinion is considered “little Italy”.
Have you heard about Palma Boat Show?
Yes I have, and I think is great. I love to go whenever I have the chance. What I love about this fair is that every year it’s starting to expand and I think it’s starting to get a lot of attention around the yachting industry because there are more boats coming and also more people. I think going to the Palma Boat Show is great networking opportunity because there are people from all over the world in the event.
What differentiates Palma Boat Show from others?
What differentiates it from other fairs is that the Palma Boat Show is a little bit more intimate because you don’t need to have credentials to go and visit things. I like it because it’s a local show and there are a lot of people that I know there.
- Which is your favourite beach in the Balearic Islands?
Probably the little cala in Cas Català because I live near there and one of my favourite restaurants is there. It’s not the best beach of the island but it’s my local beach. There is a little chiringuito called Bugambilia, it’s just a little restaurant down the beach and they do the best paella on the island and I feel at home there. I can go to the beach to drink a cold beer and enjoy the view. There are millions of beautiful beaches on the island, but this one is definitely my favourite.
For you, which is the most unique building in Mallorca?
My favourite building without doubt is the cathedral, I love the place and sometimes go there to meditate. The construction took so many years to complete and it’s so amazing to have the opportunity to appreciate it.
What is your opinion about the future of the yachting industry in the Balearics?
I think is great to get some exposure from the island but I don’t want to see it spoiled. It’s about finding that balance between effective yachting tourism, but not messing it up. There are a lot of yachting hotspots in the world that have been “ruined” because it’s so overcrowded with yachts. I like being in areas which are a little bit less populated by yachts, and actually this is one of the nice things about Mallorca because you still have the ability to visit secluded bays.
So the Balearics need to be a little bit careful with over-promoting, they should promote but in a controlled manner which benefits the islands. If too many boats come suddenly to the islands it takes away the unique character.
What advantages do you think the Balearic Islands have, compared to other yachting hotspots?
The amazing thing about this group of islands is that it is a very small geographical area, so you can cover the area in a two week period really easily. Every island has its own and unique character. From a Yachting destination perspective it makes our job easier because the guests can entertain themselves easily here.
I think for the Balearics in general is a good thing that is not considered a big yachting destination, but this also leaves a little bit of mystery on the table.