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An unforgettable summer as an Ibiza Spotlight intern

2019 clubbing intern Jo reflects on her first summer working on Ibiza.

Even now as I sit down to write this article, only a few weeks have passed since I left Ibiza, yet it feels like a lifetime ago. I left thinking, "what the f*** just happened?" Did I dream the whole thing? No. I actually just spent all summer living on Ibiza working my dream job.

Ever since my school days, I would proudly proclaim that my goal was to work in the music industry on Ibiza. For how long didn't matter. Neither did the job. Little did I know at the time, what was in store just a few years down the line.

Upon finding out about Ibiza Spotlight's internship, it sounded too good to be true. Although eager to apply, I assumed I'd be one of the unsuccessful ones, destined for another summer in Scotland.

However, once that all important email of acceptance came through it was all systems go. Within a month I had scrambled to finish my college coursework early, handed in my notice at work and booked a one way ticket to Ibiza.

How do you mentally prepare for making the move? You can't. You just have to completely and utterly wing it. No amount of planning can prepare you. But as I am about to show, it was a risk worth taking. Here's the low-down on my summer as an Ibiza Spotlight intern.


Ibiza's musical heritage

During summer, I witnessed Richie Hawtin define techno at Cocoon, I got hot and sweaty at the spectacular Octan opening party and even found myself in the booth with Seth Troxler at DC-10. On Ibiza, there's a party for every taste, every night of the week.

Ibiza invokes such a free spirit, if you want to try out trance or delve into disco, then you'll always feel welcome whichever party you decide on. The same attitude goes for the dress code.

Don't be fooled by misconceptions you might find on Instagram. Everyone loves to dress up, (particularly if it's an elrow affair!) but the reality is nobody cares what you wear. Everyone is just there to have a good time and enjoy the music. It's that simple.

Though it may sound daft, I hadn't anticipated there being that purity on the island when it came to the music. I feared I might be hitting the island ten years too late, after it had succumbed to the age of the social media influencer.

I guess Ibiza's music heritage is just something that will never die. The sensational playlists I returned home with are testament to that.


The best beats are off-beat

Whilst I made some amazing memories at Ibiza's most iconic clubs, from witnessing Kraftwerk's Ibiza debut at Ushuaïa, to chatting to Patrick Topping at Paradise, Ibiza's best charms are often those found naturally.

You don't lose the White Isle spark by veering off the beaten track. You might even find you enjoy not being constantly in the company of fellow British workers?

Pikes at its liveliest best

Clubbing wise, Pikes and Cova Santa are a little more off-radar, but they can still easily compete with the top dogs.

Cova Santa was my personal discovery of the season. I absolutely did not expect to find such an alfresco, hippy-like venue on Ibiza. Never mind that it pulls in huge names in music such as Solomon and Tale of Us.

Another highlight was Ibiza's Old Town, where I also found myself having one of the best nights all summer. We stumbled across an intimate gathering a pub owner told us about. I never dreamt there would be insane parties to find in the cobbled streets of Dalt Vila.

Of course, there's more to Ibiza than just its vibrant clubbing scene. Even the most dedicated of ravers have to take a break from it sometimes. It's in these times of rest and recuperation that you find yourself experiencing the true beauty of the island.

Grab a bus, rent a car, just do what you have to do to make sure you spend some time outside of San Antonio.

Magical Es Vedra rock is a must for anyone. I still remember watching the sun go down on the rocks opposite, with a cheap carton of wine and friends beside me, thinking “this is as good as it gets”.

From endless beaches and hippy markets to the abandoned Festival Club, there's plenty more places to explore. I'll leave the rest of the island to your imagination.


So you want to be an Ibiza Spotlight intern?

Ibiza Spotlight's work experience programme is not your typical internship, that much is clear from the word go. What does the position actually entail?

Well, primarily we attend all the hottest parties. Sometimes we're even fortunate enough to be given a few drinks tokens or maybe even a VIP upgrade. On occasion, we even get invited to eat at some of the island's most prestigious restaurants.

Some days we even found ourselves spending a couple of days “at the office” sipping champagne, whilst reclining on luxury catamarans. It's a hard life, right?

Loungin' on deck

I'm not exaggerating, I did all of the above and more, but there is a catch: you have to work for it.

Opportunities in this industry don't come around often, so be prepared to put the graft in.

Days in the office during the week (the actual office, not deluxe seafaring vessels) are mandatory. That sick party you want to go tonight is all well and good, but you'll still be expected to show up for work on time the day after, not matter what antisocial hour you rolled in at.

Used to a heavy workload and having to enforce my own self-discipline, this wasn't anything new to me. But believe me, it's still hard watching all of your mates head down to the beach, knowing you've got to crack out a 1,000 word feature!

Learning new skills, building a network and immersing myself in the electronic music scene is exactly why I came to the island. I am passionate about this business and thrilled with the opportunity given to me. To squander it, would've been wasteful.


Be the last man standing

You can take that heading one of two ways. It's great to be amongst the crowd of keen ravers who last until the bitter end of the night, but it's equally as important to last an entire season with your sanity intact.

Sound like a breeze? Wait until the end of August and watch as seasonal workers start to drop like flies. That's not even including the ones who spent all their money in the first month and find themselves on an early flight home. There's only one fail safe way to not be that guy…

Take a break. As Ibiza Spotlight's clubbing manager Stivi always says, “it's a marathon, not a sprint.''

Class of '19: Ibiza Spotlight clubbing team during the Clubathon

At the beginning of the season you feel like you can take on the world with bundles of energy. After our insane clubbing marathon in July that stopped just shy of 24-hours, I found myself heading out again the night after, and the night after that too!

By October, the partying has taken its toll with clear signs of wear and tear. I rekindled the romance I once had with my bed, but of course still struggled to say no to a party - especially at closings.

Undoubtedly, it's the people you meet and the friends you make that get your through all of the above.


Ibiza for summer, friends for life

Moving to an island I had obsessed about, but never previously visited, I didn't realise how daunting it would be as a 19-year old at the time. Living with five complete strangers who took me in via Facebook put me out of my comfort zone and into the big wide world.

But there are no words for how happy I am that I did.

These are the people that pick you up when you feel down, bring you a can of Irn Bru when you're homesick and tell you to stop being an idiot and meet them at Amnesia in an hour.

Making friends with Audiofly (left), toasting friendship made for life (right)

You meet some of your best mates in some of the weirdest ways, but they all end a part of your Ibiza journey.

At the end of the season, it seems impossible to go home and live a life not seeing them everyday. That's when you know you're going to be hit with a serious case of the Ibiza blues.

Hell, I even miss seeing the people behind the counter at my local Spar in San Antonio.


Should you choose to only follow one tip, above all, make sure it's to enjoy every moment of your summer. It absolutely flies by. Don't waste a second of it. I am so grateful for the opportunity and, as far as mates go, they're friends for life.

Jo alongside fellow 2019 interns Sasha and Hannah all aboard the IBZ boat party

Reflecting on my amazing summer as I put this article together, I realise I haven't settled back home in Scotland as much as I initially thought. As I type, I catch myself opening up a new browser tab and scrolling through flights headed back to the White Isle.

If you're currently in San Antonio and at a loose end, my order is a pint of dark fruit cider - have it ready and waiting, I'm on my way!


If you want to learn more about Jo and her daily activities, then check-out her entry into our Ibiza workers series.

News of of our 2020 intern programme will be announced in the new year. If you think you've got what it takes, stay tuned.

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