There is no party like the party in Ibiza. Beginning in mid-May until October, might clubs and bars tend to remain open all night, never giving those dancing feet a rest. Considered the main party place in Europe, it could well be the party capital of the world. Ibiza is a multi-lingual town and a place where cultures tend to merge together. While exuberance hits a high mark, violence is rare, with the most noticeable feature a ribald camaraderie and a willingness to share the high-spirited fun. Some of the reputation for camaraderie was tarnished when a fight broke out between Justin Bieber and Orlando Bloom, but in a town that is rapidly gaining the patronage of celebrities, perhaps this is to be expected.
Ibiza’s reputation as a party town began during the beatnik and hippie era, when international travellers began settling in and calling the relaxed, liberal town their home. Beatniks and hippies mean plenty of live music, and it didn’t take long for entrepreneurs to figure out that the best way to run a business in Ibiza was to open a nightclub. What began humbly became a contest for King of the night life, with club life ranging from students in tee shirts and jeans to the uber-rich enjoying a swinging holiday. Even if you find the night clubs a bit too expensive for your tastes, there are plenty of festivals you can catch with live music and free food and drinks.
Nobody does it quite as expertly as Ricardo Urgell, 75-year-old owner of the world famous nightclub, Pacha. The music gets loud; it gets banging; but it brings some of the best entertainment from DJ to techno. The club is packed on the weekends and drinks are expensive. The cover fee is £60, making it the typical destination for the high-roller. If you want room to dance instead of just room to cheer and shout, the best time to go is on a weeknight.
On the less crowded evenings, you will realize the actual enormity of this popular hangout. The 3,000 capacity venue has five different rooms. The main room is for house music and techno. If your preferences lean more toward disco, you will appreciate the Funky Room. The Roof Terrace has a lounge and a place to chill-out and just bask in Ibiza’s tranquil evenings. If you like Retro Pop, no problem. The Sweet Room will cater to you. If you want a bit of Pacha’s original flavour, they’ve kept it preserved in the Global Room, where the rocking sounds range from rhythm and blues to modern day hip-hop.
Back in the day, when all night parties became the battle cry for evening entertainment, “Space” was the place to go and continues to be a popular attraction for those who wanted to dance ‘till dawn. Still a primary destination, the club that began in the 1990's as a roaring funky music scene, now officially closes around 6:00 and reopens at 19:30.
Cover charge will range between 30-60 Euros, depending on the day of the week or the events scheduled. Security is a little tight. You might be checked for drugs or for cameras before being allowed entrance. The dress code is relaxed although the better you dress, the better your chances will be of getting in. Beach wear is not strictly forbidden, but you must wear something on your feet.
Get down, get rocking, catch the all night fever at “Amnesia”, the traditional meeting point for idealists and counter-cultural revolutionaries. Situated in an eighteenth century house turned discotheque, the party place has a long history of rock and roll artists who escaped to Ibiza to vacation their minds but brought their music with them. Here the Rolling Stones kicked back on a holiday and Pink Floyd added his compositions for the movie, “More”. In the summer of 1978, Bob Marley gave his unforgettable performance, while “Saturday Night Fever” showed its premier release.
There’s nothing like rocking down at an open-air party, charged with the best in state-of-the-arts sound equipment. From four bars, Amnesia’s staging area has increased to sixteen, with over two hundred employees during the summer months. International top bands perform on the stage, with names like Underworld, Snoop Dog and Etienne de Crecy. The club has received a number of awards, including the Certificate de Excelencia, the IDMA winner and is the three times winner of the “Best Global Club” award.
Clubbing in Ibiza is usually frenzied and wild, catering to the young and uninhibited, but you can escape to a mellower social life. Discreetly located on a back street in the shadows of the castle walls at Dalt Vila is the Teatro Pereyra. The wood-beamed, high-ceilinged neighbourhood salon offers a relaxing café environment by day, and a funky jazz musical scene by night. Normally attracting a more mature, mellower crowd, the feet still begin to move on their own accord by midnight. The sounds become increasingly spontaneous and improvisational, adding to the spirit of Ibiza’s cheerful nightlife.
Use your radar to discover the sounds that fit you best. Along with the world famous clubs, there are plenty of bars and taverns that will whet your appetite for the freedom loving sounds of Ibiza, even if you’re not into techno or House music. Parties are often held in country villas, tucked away into the woods for underground Trance music, or simply on the streets in all-day, all-night festivities.
While Ibiza is indisputably the most active night life centre in the world, in recent years, authorities have been trying to change the image a bit, offering venues for entertainment that are a little more family oriented, although the cry continues; “viva la fiesta”.
Additional resources we recommend