Review: Defected @ Ushuaia Beach Hotel
When we die, we hope to end up at Ushuaia. There’s nothing more that Ibiza can hope to offer than what this hotel provides when it teams up with the prolific record label, Defected. Starting June 25th (and every Saturday this summer), D
efected will be throwing larger and larger parties for its guests and anyone else to attend at Ushuaia’s beach/pool/dancefloor resort before continuing into the night at the iconic club, Pacha Ibiza. Dancing Astronaut was lucky enough to get an invitation to the launch party — hear all about it after the break.
House culture seems to embody a wide range of spirit, from the joie de vivre of the hippie movement, to the class and style of the global jetset. Ushuaia and Defected work to bring both these aspects together for their weekly parties.
For starters, the venue is unparalleled in Ibiza when it comes to day raging. The hotel features a dancefloor capable of holding 5,000 right in its own backyard — which has an amazing view overlooking the Mediterranean. Equipped with a stage, lights, and sound system to match its size with intensity, Ushuaia could easily pass for a club or concert hall rather than a hotel. But the treat for attendees is the pool and freshwater rivers that meander around the hotel. These canals let you swim up to your room, to one of the many outdoor bars, or right up to the dancefloor, making this quite a unique place for any veteran partygoer. The poolside cabanas and tables also provide another way to enjoy the parties, as well as to pop bottles or escape the dancefloor moshpit if you’re so inclined. Should you wish to take a break from the party, the beach is mere steps away.
If the hotel itself isn’t enough to win you over, the party will be — Defected definitely knows what it’s doing. The label is hosting premiere DJs all summer — including the talents of Bob Sinclar, David Morales, Frankie Knuckles and Junior Jack and Kid Creme, and Pacha resident DJ Sam Divine. Their show on the 25th featured acclaimed DJ Chus & David Penn, Sam Divine, and Copyright.
The highlights of the night were probably the two divine sets from resident DJ Sam Divine. He both opened and closed the party with a blend of tracks that had the entire hotel jumping in unison for the better part of the set, which ranged from ethereal interludes to destructive club bangers. One of the marquee tracks she featured was a remix of Tom Middleton’s loungey “Cicadas” that built up the audience.
Tom Middleton – Cicadas (Maya Jane Coles Remix)
A party that goes from 5pm through Pacha to 8am is enough to wear down anyone in attendance, but Sam Divine kept up the crowd’s spirits with her amazing drop of the aptly named “Finale” towards the end of the set.
Copyright followed up the Sam Divine set with an equally impressive one. Channeling the crowd’s energy right up to the climax of each song, he did a great job of pacing his setlist, dropping both heavy-hitting club bangers in addition to melodic gems. That kept the crowd both on its feet and completely entranced by the change-up of songs being dropped Copyright into the evening. Two of the set highlights were his drop of “Trinidad” by Roul and Doors and his own “I’m All Yours (Main Room Edit)” featuring the vocals of Nuwella Love.
Copyright f. Nuwella Love “I’m All Yours” (Main Room Edit)
Chus & Penn brought the energy to the end of the party with a nonstop set that kept rolling into midnight. In Ibiza, 5pm is an early start for a party (many islanders are just waking up), but even from the start, the crowd was already packing into Ushuaia in anticipation. With absurdly low-flying planes that seemed to hover right over the DJ booth, it was spectacular to watch Chus & Penn at work. One of the set highlights was an awesome track by the New Iberian League called “Keep On Jumpin’,” which got the crowd — along with the DJs — jumping to the climax.
As the evening continued on and more partygoers arrived, Chus & Penn progressively ramped up the energy of their tracks to match the crowd’s building energy. The stage lights, which had previously been stagnant, sprang to life as the party kept building, with a remix the just-released of “Story of My Life” as an homage to fellow DJ Copyright.
The highlight of the set, though, was undisputedly Chus & Penn’s drop of Vandé & Gross bootleg of Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep,” which had the crowd going insane at the latter part of the night. The decks were then handed back to Sam Divine to close out the show out before the migration to Pacha would take place.
Adele “Rolling In The Deep” (Vandé & Gross Bootleg)
We’ve found that the folks in Ibiza are geniunely nice and helpful throughout the island — and this is especially true of the Defected staff. Much like any of the premier clubs on the island, entry to the party at Ushuaia and Pacha is quick and painless, and from bartenders to bouncers, everyone working the event makes an effort to be accommodating. The label pairs with its venues of choice to throw an unparalleled party, and it would be a mistake for anyone visiting Ibiza not to put this on their calendar.