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Clubbing like a boss: Ushuaïa

The 'playground for adults' on Ibiza.

Ushuaïa has catapulted itself into the Ibiza clubbing major league in no time. Formerly just a beachside hotel, the Playa d'en Bossa property in 2011 was transformed into what it is today; a sleek, modern and trendy hotel and open air club in one. Right from the start, Ushuaïa always had a few biggies on their line-up and in year four, Ushuaïa is the club that presents all the biggest artists on the mainstream end of electronic dance music. David Guetta, Hardwell, Axwell & Ingrosso, Armin Van Buuren and Avicii all hold weekly residencies at Ushuaïa.

While some people regret the musical direction the club's taken, mostly focussing on the big room sounds and the biggest artists, compared to earlier seasons where the line up was definitely more varied, I feel it needs saying the above mentioned artists are simply perfect for the festival-like layout and stage of the venue. In my opinion a lot of the underground heroes simply don't fit into Ushuaïa as well as Guetta and his compadres do, so fair play to team Ushuaïa.

Here are my tips for Ushuaïa.

Daytime action. Unlike most other clubs, Ushuaïa is not a nighttime venue. Most of the events kick off at 5pm and the parties run until midnight. The headliners almost always play the last slot from 10pm to midnight. But hey, it's one of the few actual open air venues, so you should take advantage of this and come early! If I go to Ushuaïa I always try to arrive around the 7pm mark, which means I still get a nice chunk of daytime raving, get to see a lot of the artists and watch the night unfold.

The pool is 'Area 51'. Yeah I know, the swimming pool really looks inviting, and on a hot ibicenco summer evening many people would love to do a quick dip. But believe me, if you don't want your party to be stopped abruptly, you better stay clear. See 'places to chill' further down for an alternative!

Production champion. As the name suggests, for show elements, lights, dancers, performers and generally anything visual, Ushuaïa is the king on the island. You can easily see no expense is being spared on the production and show side of things so, whilst we don't support excessive camera phone holding in place of dancing, you might want to get a few snaps of this one.

Drink smart. Ushuaïa also does drink deals, ask for details at the bars. If you're in a group or a big drinker it does make a difference if your bottle of beer is 12€ or 10€.

Places to chill. There's a paddling pool towards the back of the dancefloor which is perfect for cooling down your feet after a few hours of straight dancing. It's a great place to make friends, but careful with splashing, not everyone is up for a water fight! This area is also the quietest one of the venue where you can relax a little. What also often happens is that some hotel guests residing in the ground floor rooms invite you on their terrace. Always good to make new friends!

Getting hungry. As Ushuaïa is a hotel, there are obviously also restaurants. As a party attendant, you basically don't get into the restaurants just like that, but if you make the bouncer understand you're hungry, they'll sort you if there's space available. On most evenings you can also purchase a tasty burger at the very back (beach end) of the venue - it's a step up from the basic (yet dependable) hotdog stands.

DJ set times. The playtimes are always published at the bars.

Cloakroom / ATM. No cloakroom. There's no ATM inside, but outside just before you get through the ticket line to the left. Simply remember to top up on cash before you come in.

Best views. Depending on the day, the huge VIP in the very back is often open for everyone - with great views on the whole scene from up there! That said, make sure you spend some time on the dance floor at the front. As Ushuaïa's pool cuts the venue in half, it's an entirely different experience partying in the front compared to the back, and it pays to experience both. Finally, many people don't realise you can walk right around to the back of the giant Ushuaïa stage - here you'll get a closer look at your favourite DJ, or watch the dancers and acrobats getting ready to go on stage. Make sure you play it cool though, no one likes a stalker.

Ushuaïa nighttime. There are normally only two times a year when the festivities at Ushuaïa go past midnight, the opening and the closing party of every Ushuaïa season. The musical direction for those two parties is much more 'underground' than what's presented over the course of the season (apart from ANTS on Saturday which is currently the only event touching the more undergrund side of things). And the best thing of Ushuaïa opening and closing is: the party continues until almost sunrise!

Want more Ushuaïa. Just partying at Ushuaïa isn't enough for you? Well then just stay there! As mentioned, it's a hotel and it's directly bookable through Ibiza Spotlight. Of course entry to all events at Ushuaïa is included if you stay at the hotel.

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WORDS | Michael Stivanello

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