Glass does Wake Up Call at the W Barcelona

THE idea of camping outdoors at a music festival isn’t everyone’s idea of fun. Often there’s long queues for the shower, unpleasant portable toilets and heaps of mud if the weather isn’t blessed by the sun gods. Luckily the festival scene has welcomed a new, more evolved approach to enjoying music that sees all the same fun without the hassle of camping. After experiencing a weekend at W Barcelona’s Wake Up Call festival, I decided there was no going back.

Party at the poolside

The W is perched on the secluded strip of Passeig Joan de Borbó far from the busy tourist centres. The scene of surfers riding waves on colourful boards fills my eyes with technicolour. Walking along the seafront, I enjoy the exclusivity of the beach and soak in the noise of the waves before I exchange them for the upbeat sounds of the evening’s lineup of DJs. The lobby area is always buzzing and filled with festival goers and hotel guests. With three stages spanning Wake Up Call, the music flows through the hotel from day to the early hours whilst maintaining all the important duties of a luxury hotel.

The Wet Deck stage

The Wet Deck stage is where everything starts. The DJ booth is situated next to the outdoor pool so my bikini stayed present underneath my festival wear as I knew the time would come to take a dip and cool off. As the day turns into night, the party people gather and slowly migrate from the outdoor stage to the indoor Frequency Stage in time for dance giants Gorgon City. A screen of bright graphics illuminated the crowd and it suddenly occurred to me that I was at a rave in a luxury hotel. The ability to stroll over to the bar for a drink without queuing was a refreshing experience. Everything felt effortless and the night was young.

Fireworks over the Wet Deck stage

By midnight the festival is in full swing and we prepare for dance giant Robin Schulz. Things go on late at Wake Up Call, but it’s the reassurance of knowing your bed is only a few floors away that makes you want to party harder. Schulz took the stage whilst a group of  dancers dramatically arrived in unison taking to the podiums dotted around the venue. Dressed in head-to-toe cyber-goth attire, the dancers moved to the beat with the rest of the crowd until the set ended. Whispers of after parties spread across the hotel after the music stopped and soon the crowd dispersed.

A Wake Up Call DJ

The sight of the sea is the only motivation you need to get out of bed. A morning of paddle boarding followed by a binge at the breakfast buffet had me ready for the second night. An array of workout sessions are on offer throughout the day along with relaxing treatments at Bliss Spa. The day time gives a window of freedom but soon the music starts to creep into the late afternoon and it’s time to go again.

Pete Tong playing his set

Setting the tone for evening two was club legend Pete Tong who delivered an all-too-short set of classic electronic house. Tong’s casual arrival on the intimate Wet Deck stage was surreal as he DJ’d to a crowd a quarter of the size of an Ibiza nightclub in broad daylight. By the time Martin Solveig took to the stage, the entirety of Wake Up Call was dancing in unison under the moonlight as fireworks exploded over us like a real life music video.

“The party continues on the 26th floor” read a large sign after the last headliner ended. Flocks of ravers made their pilgrimage up the hotel while I returned to my room and watched the city’s lights sparkle like a disco ball from my window. I’m suddenly plunged into darkness as the electric blinds close like theatre curtains. The show was over.

by Katrina Mirpuri

About The Author

Glass Music Editor

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