Friday, September 17, 2010

Postcard From Ibiza

Well we finally made it to Ibiza. I always said I wanted to come here just once in my life. My life has revolved quite a lot around dance music and clubbing for some time now, although the doofing scene of partying in the wilderness has caused me to see clubs much less in recent years. So just once, I thought.

I was under the impression that Ibiza had lost it's charm a long time ago. I saw that Real Ibiza reality TV show years ago. Over time I've spoken to a lot of people who have DJ'd here or partied here or just have an opinion about the place. Some friends with taste keep coming back each year, but I've had a lingering feeling for a long time that I missed Ibiza's glory days, perhaps with a little hope that I was wrong.

Bottom line? I like nice things. I like music and culture and style. We're due in Barcelona next and I like Barcelona. Loved Barcelona actually, but we still chose to extend our stay in Ibiza. I like it here a lot. I've had nothing but a good time in spite of friends who have never been here assuring me that it's a horrible, tacky place with nothing to offer but drunk Brits. With all due respect, they have no idea. I thought maybe it was going to be a bit like Surfers Paradise in Queensland; it's nowhere near as tacky as that place.

Yes there are drunk Brits. Pasty flesh rubs shoulders with the taut and tanned. You will bump into ugly, tasteless people wherever you go. But even in the most crowded club or beach party, everyone I have encountered appears to be here to party and have fun. I have not seen any agro... well a couple of people got thrown out of Pacha by security but I don't know what that was all about and I don't care.

Ibiza town is a nice place. Stylish little town with plenty of good food places about. Ibiza is not all about house music, drugs and drinking. There is plenty of that if you want it, but it's very easy to get away from all of that.

The first night we were here we went to Space nightclub. We are very lucky because a friend works there and we got in for free and were given free drinks. This is the one downside of Ibiza's short party season; it can be shockingly expensive. 60 Euro will get you through the door. Enjoy dancing sober because the drinks are horrendously expensive. We went to Pacha the following night with no contacts, and it was 60 Euro each to get in, 34 Euro for two JD and cokes. And I have to say it wasn't really worth it. The night was called Flower Power and the music was retro. I like California Dreaming etc, but this was just one cheesy cliche after the next with no mixing and it wore a bit thin after a while. The place was rammed and I just couldn't get into the vibe. The vast majority were having a blast though, smiles everywhere, not an agro drunk Brit in sight. Maybe it was just the shock of handing out so much money for so little. I don't normally care what it costs to have a good time but that was a shock, especially when you do tha exchange rate math. We can fly from here to Barcelona (next Tuesday) for the same amount it cost for two drinks at Pacha.

Oh and did I mention I got lost trying to get out? These places are big. Home in Sydney has a capacity of 1500 or something. I think places like Space and Pacha are about twice as big and I took a wrong turn, The Dreaded One was engulfed by the crowd and I wandered lost for about half an hour. My phone buzzed with texts from The Dreaded One but my eyes are fucked and I can't read my phone without my glasses. I knew what she would be saying anyway - where are you what the hell are you doing I'm waiting for you outside. It was a bit embarrassing. I kept finding my way to the same rooms I didn't want to be while Mama Cass belted out that tune I used to like so much but didn't want to hear ever again. In the end a security guy saw and recognised my confusion and showed me the way out. He seemed a little amused. I like to think I'm not the first to have been lost in Pacha. I was fucking glad to get out.

Anyway, a night or two later we went to a place called, I think, Kumares. Beachside place where Nightmares On Wax were playing a live set as the sun went down. A totally classy evening, sand and couches and beach-beds, white wine, friends and fire twirlers. I remember looking around and thinking how can you improve on this? Upbeat chilled music (been into NOW for years now) surrounded by cool people while the sun and clouds put on a pretty show... I like Ibiza a lot.

We're going to try to get to Cafe del mar probably today. Might also go back to Bora Bora. It's a club that spills onto the beach, and around 4.30 the relaxed vibe ramps up a bit until the beach and inside the club are one big, thumping party, planes roaring in low for landing at the nearby airport with party-goers cheering a welcome to the new arrivals.

You can knock places you have never been to and I really did think I'd come to Ibiza just once and probably never come back. But I'm staying longer than I expected to and I really wouldn't be surprised if I find myself back here again. Next season, perhaps. Or 2012, around Boom time.


tobydecks said...

To be fair, Ibiza has got a pretty bad rep in the UK of being full of twatty, shirt wearing types who like to fight a lot. You've seen those Club Rep type programs? Also when I was going clubbing a lot, the fluffy nice people wouldn't have considered going there at all. That was about 15 years ago though, so I'm sure it's changed. Glad you're having a good time though :)

Lee said...

Hey Toby. I know the TV shows and I know the reputation the place has. But I also know people who I respect who have been coming here for years, and they are not fluffy nice people... well some of them are. Like I said, I kind of expected Ibiza's tacky reputation to come through and thought I'might not like the place. God knows I can't deal with clubs back in Sydney most of the time - I need outdoors with my doofing family.

We've been staying in Ibiza town and you mostly hear Spanish accents. Went to San Antonio today and it was geezer central. Horrible accents and somewhat wanker attitude all about, but everyone at that stage was still well behaved. Had a good, chilled time watching the sun go down, thousands cheered as the sun finally vanished and it was quite smiley stuff. Glad I'm not staying in San Antonio, glad I went.

I'm very happy here. My friends here have always been around quality prople and I dunno, you can find the good stuff if you look for it. There is plenty of it here. It's not Rainbow serpent or Boom, but it is fun.

Guyana-Gyal said...

Please say hello to Gaudi's mosaics for me.

Lee said...

GG, I love Gaudi's work. I didn't find the two blue fish mosaic last time I was at Parque Guelle, but I will find it this time, put my hand on it if possible and say hello for you.

Guyana-Gyal said...


Y said...

The lovely lady looks very tanned. Actually, every one looks well browned in that picture. B and I would stand out like sore thumbs. I'm afraid to say I've always had that negative impression about Ibiza too, even though I have yet to visit. Glad to hear the majority of it is actually the total opposite.

Lee said...

The tan suits Ann very much. And Ibiza is a mixed bag. It's not all bad and there's no point slagging a place off until you have been there. It's not all good either, but where is? It helps that we have lovely friends here, both new and old. I hope to be back. Have had more club and beach action here than I have in years in Sydney.

Hope you are well, Y.