Monica, 34, is a tall blonde Swede, with long tanned legs that were made to stretch out across the deck of a super yacht. But she says that since coming to Mallorca she has had enough of boys with boats. “Nearly every married man on the island has tried to make a pass at me,” she complains. “They think that because they have money and a boat they can get what they want and that because I don’t have a husband I must want them. “I came here to have a simple life with my daughter, but socially it’s quite complicated. The wives feel threatened by me because I’m on my own and attractive, the husbands gawp, and I feel lonely. I don’t like going to bars unless I am with a group of friends, but I haven’t met many other single people to go out with. Anyway, it’s not like Stockholm – there, it’s normal for girlfriends to go out to bars.”
Monica is not the only one who feels it is hard to meet people on the island, although not everyone has had such a negative experience. Geoff, 52, thinks if you are single in Mallorca, you are wasting your time hanging out at bars on the island – your best bet is to get on a boat and head for Ibiza. But, having said that, he’s had no shortage of girlfriends in the 20 years he’s been living here.
“Ibiza is small enough for people to travel around and get to parties all over the island. Mallorca’s problem is its geography; because of the hills and mountains, tunnels and winding roads, it is geography rather than nationality that divides people.” Apart from the island’s geography, Geoff says there are several other reasons why it is hard to meet people on the island. “Firstly, the Mallorcans who live here are conservative and it’s hard to get to know them, and the foreigners tend to settle as families. There are also very few places where you can just hang out, except for a few yachtie bars and you won’t fit in unless you know your port from your starboard. There’s also the fact that there are so many nationalities living here. If you are single and only speak English, it’s very hard to find a Spanish or German partner unless they speak good English too. Another big problem is trying to pin people down. I once met a nice lady and suggested we meet at my favourite tapas bar in Palma. She wanted to meet me four months later because she doesn’t go into Palma between May and September!
“Actually, there’s a lot going on around the island and I suggest that if people want to meet other singles they do their homework, find out what’s happening and get out there and socialise. The live music venues are always a good bet and the bars in Deia are friendly – probably because they attract a more free-thinking, arty crowd.”
Dieter Klien has been bringing single people together on the island since September 2001 – not without a few difficulties. His club, Single-Treff Mallorca, started with three or four people and now has around 25 members, aged 30-60, from all over the island. He is not concerned about match-making, but bringing people together to have fun and nice outings. “The man-woman thing they can do on their own,” he says, admitting, however, that three couples have been successfully matched through Single-Treff. Membership is €60 per annum and members meet every Tuesday at 8:00 pm at a restaurant, as well as go on various outings. “This summer we’ll be having a beach party at Portals Vells on June 22 and we’ll also have sailing and hiking excursions. We welcome new members of all nationalities. Anyone interested should call me on 609 621 277.”
Pedro, 33, says that although he’s Spanish he’s also found it difficult to meet people in Mallorca. “I’m from the mainland and don’t speak Catalan and sometimes I’ve been treated like an outsider in my own country. I am quite shy and don’t like going to bars or clubs, but I haven’t been invited to many people’s homes either. I am also a practising Catholic and it’s hard to meet people who share my values. In Mallorca too many people worship money! A friend of mine met someone nice through www.catholicmatch.com, so I think I might try that.”
Someone else who is interested in Internet dating is Jenny, 35, a former entertainer on a cruise liner. She says that because she has spent so many years travelling, she’s never been in one place long enough to meet someone special. “I’ve put down roots in Mallorca now, but most of the people my age are married. There are some really cool bars in Palma but all the single guys are 23! I’ve seen someone I fancy on the www.WhereHeartsMeet.com website but so far haven’t plucked up the courage to contact him.” WhereHeartsMeet.com is a dating and friendship site created by expats for expats. According to its creators:
“Dating in Spain and meeting other Spanish singles is never easy. All too often expats tend to live in small communities where everyone knows each other. WhereHeartsMeet.com changes this by allowing members to meet a whole new circle of people online.”
Alexia, an elegant Londoner in her 60s, knows all to well about the confines of living in a small community. “I live in Portals, which is like an island within an island. It is easy to be alone here because I have so many friends and feel so comfortable in my community, but is it easy to meet people? Absolutely not! “In London I made so many more male friends because there is so much more happening. I was always going to openings, art exhibitions and festivals. One of the problems I have living in Spain is that everyone likes to go out so late and I like to go to bed early. I think the best way to meet people is to join a club; golf, bridge or tennis. But let’s face it, it is never easy to meet that special person who you really connect with, no matter where you live.”
But take heart, Mallorca does have several success stories – you only have to look at the number of foreigners married to Mallorcans to see this is true.
Helen Cummins, publisher of abcMallorca, is one of the many people who have found love on this beautiful island. “I came here on holiday with my girlfriend, feeling it was about time I met that someone special. We went for dinner in Portals and my friend suggested we go for a nightcap at the Havana Moon. A guy approached us at the bar and asked for a light for his cigarette. After hanging around chatting for about half an hour, he introduced his friend Georg. Little did I know that I had just been introduced to my future husband. Georg asked me what I was looking for in a man. “A man who can challenge my mind,” I replied. “Well”, he said, “I would like to try…” The rest is history.
The new promotions group at the Virtual Club, offers different theme nights at the trendy Virtual Beach Club & Restaurant. Chill out in the comfort area overlooking the sea “Cafe del Mar” style (20.30 – 00.30h). Dance the night away rubbing shoulders with the most glamorous on the island (from 22.30h).
Wednesdays R&B (with a soulful flavour) from 06.07.2005 Thursdays Absolut! (70’s, 80’s, 90’s Old School music) Saturday Funky & vocal house music, monthly programme, Summer Groove, Vibe, London Nights with Nigel Benn (former World Boxing Champion) once a month
Tel. +34 661 548 658
Bars / Restaurants / Clubs
El Horizonte de las Estrellas
Hotel Horizonte, Vista Alegre 1 Palma de Mallorca
Darsena de Can Barbará, Palma de Mallorca
Made in Brazil
Paseo Marítimo, Palma de Mallorca
Opio Restaurant und Bar
Puro Hotel, Monte Negro 12, Palma de Mallorca.
Puerto Punta Portals 23-24, Portals Nous
Lunes Piano Bar
Puerto Punta Portals 65-66, Portals Nous
Puerto Punta Portals, Portals Nous
C/Sant Magi, Santa Catalina, Palma de Mallorca
Son Brull Hotel & Spa
Crta. Palma-Pollensa km 49,8, 07460 Pollensa
Restaurant Las Terrazas
Av. Illetas, 52A, Illetas