Space in Ibiza during 1999 is one of my vital time travel destinations.
My first introduction to Space was hearing Pete Tong’s lead-in to Oakenfold’s Essential mix: “to Home… at Space… in Ibiza…” while Nalin & Kane’s beautiful “Open Your Eyes” slowly built in the background. When listening to that mix, I felt like I could glimpse into that other world across the globe, where thousands of people were experiencing a united journey, in a place where the music reigned and the dancing never stopped.
Ibiza was a mystical location to my 18 year old self, a place where you could walk from club to club all night, then watch the sunrise on the beach while listening to a DJ create a soundtrack to your visions, surrounded by people who loved the music with as much passion as I did. There was something special there, I just knew it, even if I never experienced it for myself. Whether or not it would have lived up to my expectations isn’t so important, it’s that it had the power to convince me from a college town in Colorado that it was in Ibiza where I would find my version of music heaven.
And to me, there was no greater place than Space – especially in 1999. It was the location for that epic Essential Mix, Sasha’s Global Underground destination, where one of my favorite DJ photos took place. This Radio 1 gem of an archived website gives a glimpse into what a Summer in Ibiza in 1999 sounded like:
Space was the one that had somehow permeated my consciousness half a world away. Now seeing how many years it went on successfully, how many awards it had won, how many DJs felt honored to have the opportunity to play there, I can see why it was The One.
And now it’s gone.
27 years is a good number, and an incredible accomplishment. All things change. But I still find that my heart hurts for the symbolic end of an era, for this mecca that I never was able to visit, full of nostalgia for a time and place that I only knew third-hand, with thoughts of a community of people all dancing together in pure bliss, no smart phones, no social media, just music. Is it strange to be nostalgic for a place you’ve never been? I know how that time felt though, the energy of the music that altered my life’s destination. I know that if I were there it really would have felt like Home.
So I’m still holding out hope for time travel, to get a chance to experience what it felt like to be in Space during a time when Ibiza was not a place to be seen, but a place to discover yourself. I want to dance under the sky to the sound of vinyl, to flowing rhythms and melodic breakdowns, alongside free spirits, and happy souls.
Maybe I’ll meet you there.