THE HISTORY OF PARTY ISLAND IBIZA
Until the end of the ’60s Ibiza is a rural island, the poorest of Spain.
Cereals are grinded in the mills, people work in the salinas and the population lives by fishing and subsistence farming. Ibiza is a special place. Ibiza has been a hedonistic sanctuary for generations where "let yourself go" has taken on a whole new meaning. The island has grown through the legendary clubs and its countless partygoers. In turn, the island has been a major influence on the global fashion scene and various youth cultures.
The first tourists
Whom arrived because of the breathtaking and unspoilt beauty of the island in 1950. Ibiza is a paradise with beautiful bays, crystal clear streams and beautiful beaches. The number of tourists that discovered Ibiza increased rapidly, so that the island quickly grew into a prosperous place. At the same time, Ibiza was also a safe haven in politically turbulent times. Spain was in fact in the grip of the fascist regime of Franco from 1936 to 1975.
The quietness of the island convinces many hippies from all over the world to move here, trying to live up to their ideal of a natural life. All of them are positively impressed by the tolerance and the peacefulness that they find in the local people: 'simple families' that do not make a row about anything and let them enjoy life, looking at these 'peluts' (as the local people call the hippies at that time) with curiosity and smiles, while the maintain their way of living and their habits.
It is the beginning of many crazy years, during which the hippies share music, food and thoughts…
Ibiza's image as a refuge gained permanent status when The Rolling Stones spent a few nights on the island in 1964. The carefree lifestyle that is so characteristic of Ibiza has ensured that the island has always had a great attraction for the hippies.
Legend has it that Bob Dylan lived in the iconic windmill in Pilar de la Mola for a while. La Mola also features on the cover of the third Pink Floyd album 'More'.
Subsequent to the bohemian naturism, we attest a new way of getting dressed, the Adlib fashion, of which the Princess Smilja Mihailovitch becomes the icon.
The first hippie catwalk is organized in 1971, declaring the hippie style official.
In 1968 the hippie dream fell to pieces in the rest of Europe (think of the Prague Spring and the protests against the Vietnam War in Paris). Ibiza therefore quickly became a haven for the hippies. That image was confirmed by the 1969 film 'More' (the soundtrack of this film was provided by Pink Floyd ). The film paints a sunny and utopian picture of the island. Ibiza was, according to the film, a place for free love, decadence and recreational drug use. This reputation has never disappeared since.
Thanks to the film 'More', Ibiza and Formentera are recognized worldwide as a hippie paradise.
In the late 1960s, Ibiza began to attract mass tourism. Not only more hippies went to the island, but also the mainstream audience that was in for a party. Hence the idea to open a large club. The gigantic project was completed in 1972. Until 1974, the club was therefore the place to be. Unfortunately, fate also struck this year and the owners had to close the doors of Festival Club Ibiza, due to the oil crisis and expensive airline tickets.
In 1973 opens the first nightclub of the island, Pacha, following the homonym club inaugurated in Sitges few years earlier.
Another legendary place, Amnesia, is launched in 1976 and the old aquatic center of San Rafael becomes the Ku club (today called Privilege), here for the first time day and night fusion whilst people dance by the pool
A casual entertainment, with youngsters lying on the floor, fans getting in direct contact with the musicians, VIP actors and artists talking with peasants… everything flows in Ibiza, the elite has no fear of the paparazzis, the atmosphere remains open-minded, pleasant, in perfect co-existence.The population grows on the island and develops trading, that makes some businessmen rich, while many Ibicencos are still living in poverty. Since then, Ibiza has a harmonic contradiction of Ferraris and tractors.
The year 1975 is considered the end of the hippie era, many artists complain seeing “too many changes on the island”.
In 2016, a statue was unveiled by the owner of Pacha, which will always remind us of the hippie era.
Pacha's owner, Riccardo Urgell, donated this bronze statue. It is located near the iconic Can Pou bar. Created by Cio Abelli, the sculpture pays tribute to the origins and influences of the hippies on the island.
The statue is based on a famous photo taken in 1968 by Toni Riera of a father and daughter walking together. It is a photo of actor Sandy van der Linden and his daughter Rahdna, which was used for a now famous Pacha poster of the famous Flower Power party.
The hippies who decide to stay have finally a job: the tourism promotes their markets which rapidly become real attractions. Las Dalias and Punta Arabí are now meeting points, social platforms.
The chiringuito El Bigotes, since 1979 is the place to be, famous because it has been able to melt the Spanish culture and the local food with the new international crowd.
The ’60s and ’70s have passed under the flower power rhythm, of which Bob Marley has marked the peak, honoring the island with a concert in 1978.
With the ’80s a new rhythm starts: the techno music represents a 'new wave'.
In the Pykes hotel Mick Jagger is partying with many other high-caliber artists. In the 1980s, the big clubs invested in huge, powerful sound systems. Pop music had become popular thanks to artists such as David Bowie and Madonna. At the same time, different styles of music began to blend and the boundaries between the different movements became blurred. Pop, funk, hip hop and soul were mixed in the clubs of Ibiza.
This style was embraced by, among others, Alfredo from the famous club Amnesia.
In 1986 Eric Clapton and Thin Lizzy give one of their most unforgettable concerts. On May 9, 1987, a stage is installed for the concert of Freddie Mercury and Montserrat Caballé.
In 1987, DJs Danny Rampling, Nicky Holloway, Paul Oakenfold and Johnny Walker visited the island. They were immediately captivated by the music they heard and the open-mindedness of the people.
On June 22, 1991, Amnesia took on new management. Thousands of young people flocked to the club. It was the beginning of a very lucrative time for clubs in Ibiza. Admission and drink prices rose steadily and visitors kept coming. The clubs became famous all over the world and the dress code became more and more commercial.
In 1999, the UN officially named Ibiza a World Heritage Site due to its rich culture and biodiversity. Ibiza continues to develop in the 21st century.
The big names from the dance and house scene often play at these parties. David Guetta, Martin Garrix, Armin van Buuren, Hardwell and Axwell and Ingrosso; all world class, and many have their "own" evening in one of the clubs. They flock to Ibiza during the summer months to play in one of the many clubs.
Today, the island remains a very important destination for the crème de la crème of the creative industry.
Ibiza becomes the temple of the electronic music.