THERE are men in women’s wigs playing volleyball on the beach and holidaymakers on banana boats in the Med. There are women sunbathing in tiny bikinis and pub DJs blasting out the latest chart hits and telling punters that if they get to the bar now, their drink is free.
Welcome to Magaluf.
There are also families splashing around in hotel pools, people on bike rides, others blinking into the sun on balconies and young couples sipping cocktails in bars that are more chilled than a frozen margarita.
The brash, popular resort has had a makeover. While still catering for those after some lively fun in the sun, it is now also attracting a more discerning crowd.
Think of a nightclub you know, then make it five times bigger – that’s BCM!
Swanky new hangouts on the beachfront offer big white sofas and waiter service. Some say Magaluf is fast becoming Mallorca‘s alternative to Ibiza’s too-cool-for-school nightlife hangouts – while eschewing the latter’s astronomical prices.
There was only one way to find out.
I put on my dancing shoes and headed to BCM, which this year (2014) was voted into the top five of the world’s nightclubs.
It’s the biggest club in the Balearics and has been pumping out the beats since 1988 when it was started by Bartolome Cursach Mas (BCM, geddit?).
I arrive at 1am. On the way here I’ve passed streams of young Brits out for a good time and also managed to swerve having my photo taken with the huge yellow Boa constrictor.
The club has been open two hours already but the night is just getting started and things won’t wrap up until 6am.
Think of a high street club you know, then make it five times bigger – think 4,000 people on three floors and dancers gyrating on high platforms.
The message was clear, it was even written on the entrance: Planet Dance.
Once inside there’s a free bar and depending on what night you’re here, headlining acts from the UK and around the world.
Tonight it’s Rudimental who won best British Single for Waiting All Night at the Brit Awards 2014 supported by DJ Monki.
When DJ Leon and trumpeter Mark came on 2.30am the deep booming bass rose through the club while partygoers screamed an explosive whoop when the lights flashed back on and the crowd punched the air. It was enough to loosen dental fillings.
The buzz was electric. Experiencing the combination of the infectious music and spectacular laser displays meant I didn’t want to sit for long – you’ve just gotta dance.
Two hours later, I headed off to find a cocktail and rest my aching feet.
I opted for water instead – and decorated my face with it.
After about two minutes I was back on dancefloor. I had after all come all this way to dance and this place is built for it.
There is something about Magaluf that has a strange affect on you. Time slows down in the day but speeds up at night.
Two hours later, I limped back the short walk to the three-star Sol Trinidad hotel as the music continued to blast away.
As I made my way down the sunny road, the streets were busy with funseekers.
But within ten minutes I was sound asleep.
When I woke up at 11am with my BCM wrist band still on the sunlight streaming in my window seemed very bright.
The hotel wasn’t luxurious, but it was clean, the staff were friendly and I had a balcony overlooking the pool next door.
But this isn’t the type of holiday where you spend a lot of time in your room. I put on a summer dress and headed out for a wander. I only returned in the evening to change ready for another night at the club.
But earlier as I sat in a cafe drinking coffee, with my sandals off to give my aching feet a rest, I wondered if there was anything I’d change about much-maligned Magaluf. They’ve pumped a lot into it – even the beaches have been revamped with extra sand – and I reckon they know their market and have done a pretty good job.
As for me, I’d change just one thing – next time I’ll bring more comfortable shoes.