USHUAÏA

The one with the sky

Places

This is where the future of audio is being shaped right now - places that are full of music and great sound. It’s where people who love to innovate and experiment are drawn. Where they treat themselves and others to phenomenal audio experiences. “Places” invites you to take a look behind the scenes at these “places to be” in audio, from remarkable music clubs, to legendary recording studios and even art and audio conventions.

A club that closes when the others are just opening? Where the music turns off and the lights go on at midnight, in Ibiza of all places? That can’t work. But it does.

  • Author: Knut T. Jordaan
  • Photos: Romain Pissenem (DJ Marketing and Communication Ltd.)
  • Video: DJ Marketing and Communication Ltd.

And how. Just look at the lineup. And the stage. Or the pool and the clientele. In just the past five years, Ushuaïa – located on the Playa d’en Boss, the two-kilometer long party beach in the island’s southeast – has become Ibiza’s most popular beach club. Ushuaïa is both a party location and a hotel – hence the parties’ abrupt end at midnight.

Behind the white plastered walls, an open-air space as big as a football field awaits visitors. A curved pool glistens between the palm trees and white pavilions. The hotel rooms’ balconies and terraces also point inwards – after all, the goings-on there are much more interesting than a good view. In the afternoons, DJs spin on a stage facing the pool, one that would likely satisfy even the Stones’ needs. And about those DJs …

Monday: David Guetta. Tuesday: Hardwell. Thursday: Armin van Buuren. Friday: Martin Garrix. Sunday: Avicii. According to DJ Mag, those are five of the world’s seven best. Any questions?

Young women in high heels dance with young men in tank tops. At Ushuaïa, it doesn’t matter what you are or aren’t wearing. Most are just coming in from the beach anyway, and stay half-naked. As the evening progresses, the beats get louder and the names on stage get bigger. The 5,000 fans push their way to the stage, singing refrains and melodies, hands in the air. The entire dance floor turns into a sea of endorphins.

The cover charge is – no surprise – stiff. Sometimes it’s 35, other times 50 euros if you pay in advance. Paying at the door costs more. But for that price, you get sensational shows. The spotlights bathe dancers in various colors, lasers throb, fire rains down – and the equipment pumps out perfect sound. The speakers are so loud that the airplanes – flying just a few meters overhead as they approach the nearby airport – can’t be heard.

“We try to make the place a bit better every year – and so far we’ve succeeded,” declares Yann Pissenem, Jürgen Klinsmann-style. Pissenem built Ushuaïa together with Ibiza’s best-known real-estate mogul/politician/island patriarch, Abel Matutes, in a formerly run-down hotel. This year, they’ve added fire-spouting towers among the palms, on which dancers bend their bodies in bright costumes.

Whether Ushuaïa hosts the best parties in Ibiza? Yann Pissenem smiles modestly. It’s the smile of certainty.

Address: Playa d’en Bossa 10
Capacity: approx. 5,000
Dress code: Anything goes
Opening hours: Parties generally run from 5 pm to midnight
Cover charge: Depends on DJ; usually 50 euros
Homepage: www.ushuaiaibiza.com