LIKE it or loathe it, the hedonistic contours of Ibiza’s legendary club scene are being reshaped by the Western world’s crazy obsession with celebrity. But this isn’t just another mindless attack on the grim perils of social media addiction. Because in this instance, selfie culture may actually be leading its disoriented followers into the light.
When it comes to posting Ibiza snaps on their socials, clubbers visiting the world’s summer party capital are preferring to share their daytime party experiences over their post-midnight ones. Why? Quite simply, images laden with sunshine, designer shades and bikinis translate more intelligibly than dark, subterranean nightclub vistas when you come to view the action back online.
Not only that but celebrity culture has also been promoting a reality replete with bottle service, poolside dancefloors, plastic boobs and perfect abs for years now. And that type of reality is best captured at 3pm in afternoon, when the Balearic firmament is cobalt blue and your ripped body evident for all to see.
At 3am, however, even your best Ibiza photos will often be ruined by redeye and seek-and-destroy lasers. Consequently, your party holiday won’t look anywhere near as sexy on Instagram and people on your network won’t be nearly as jealous as they should be.
In a world where the quality of the image outweighs the quality of the audio every time, Ibiza’s more traditional after-dark nightclubs, which open between the hours of midnight and 6am, are beginning to feel the pinch. That leaves the island’s top beach clubs, where the backdrop is more Insta-friendly, to slowly usurp control of the market.
And while it’s hard to take anyone armed with a selfie stick seriously, the paradoxical upshot of all the creeping narcissism is the indisputable fact that young ravers are now choosing to engage with Ibiza in a much healthier way than ever before.
Take a time machine back to the late 1990s, for instance, when the clubbers of the day wore T-shirts emblazoned with a ‘F*** The Tan’ message. Those kids were out every night and rarely saw the sun. Today’s raver, however, is a very different animal. Looking healthy is important to the hedonist of 2019. Getting a tan is important. Taking photos and posting snaps online in real time is important. And the only place you can do all of these things at the same time as sipping Dom Pérignon and stomping around to the best DJs in the world is at a high-end Balearic beach club where it is compulsory to look your best.
Indeed, tanned abdominal muscles have replaced pasty fishbone ribcages on Ibiza’s best dancefloors. Whey protein is the preferred powder of the day. And drilling German techno is being ousted by blissful shamanic beats that vibe with the open air. And it’s the internet we’re carrying around in our back pockets driving the change, the polished surface of our iPhones acting like a mirror. So those of us shaken into action by the darkness of our own reflections are currently hauling the best sound rigs in the world out — into the light.
Voted Best Beach Restaurant three years running, it celebrates ten years at Sol d’en Serra bay. This is the place for morning yoga, healthy breakfasts and outdoor cinema. amanteibiza.com