Promoter of Ship Faced DJ Marco Loco.

On a recent trip to Ibiza, I was enticed, early one morning to board an underground boat party in San Antonio at 5am. I had to double check with the person offering me the €30 ticket, that the party was about to kick off in under 2 hours from San Antonio port. My new found mate, was press-ganging a motley crew of sailors from the narrow streets of the West End, with what sounded like a deadly idea – a sunrise after party, on a boat setting sail at 7am in the morning! Limited to 30 people, and its crew consisting mainly of San An workers – Ibiza’s true party people, the sales pitch was tempting. Messy was the first thing that sprung to mind, followed by an inability to swim, lack of sun-glasses and a wingman, so I decided it was best not to tempt fate. I had forgotten about the incident until I read recently, that the party had gained some notoriety, after it was boarded by the Guardia Civil on Thursday morning and shut down, as 300 guests waited to board an ex-Navy minesweeper ship, turned luxury yacht named the Mojo, whose colourful history included a stint as a Walt Disney movie character. Yes, this was a legendary story that could only happen in Ibiza!

Party Flyer.

The cleverly named Ship Faced party, promoted by Glaswegian DJ Marco Loco, had been quietly establishing itself as the underground event of the summer. With an astute marketing campaign, which limited numbers to thirty people and a €30 ticket price, urban reports of the event soon started to circulate on the underground network of the Ibiza workers scene. Every club owner and promoter in Ibiza worth their salt, knows the networking value associated to the Ibiza worker concept. They are seen as the go to people for unbiased advise about the best parties and venues on the island. When David Vincent of Sankeys was establishing his club in Playa Den Bossa, he shrewdly invested in the Ibiza worker concept and invited them to free parties at the club so that they would promote the venue on the streets. Marco Loco understood this business module also and put together a stripped down, no bullshit event that centred on the music and vibe, making it a true Ibiza experience that has not been seen since the days of Manumission. Last Thursday after a successful summer, Loco spectacularly hired an ex military luxury boat named the Mojo, and put the word out that the mother of all parties was about to take place and in double quick time, the party sold out to 300 guests.

At about 6am last Thursday, the party goers quietly started to assemble around the back of Eden nightclub, so as not to draw attention to themselves. A catamaran with room for 60 people was used to ferry the guests to the Mojo, which was anchored out to sea near Es Vedra. Unknown to the organisers, the Guarda Civil had been tipped off by an environmental group called GEN and the whole event was under surveillance. Not long after the first group of 60 guests arrived on board the Mojo, the police raided the ship, searching everybody on board and locking down the Funktion sound system where DJ’s Cajmere (Green Velvet), Sonny Fodera, and Marco Loco were playing in separate rooms. As the raid was taking place out to sea, local police swooped on the 240 people waiting to board the catamaran in San Antonio. It was a sad case of game over ball burst, as the authorities dispersed the crowd quicker than a Jamaican sprinter on amphetamines. The story made the headlines in the local paper diariodeibiza earning the distinction as the first boat party in the history of Ibiza, to be shut down out at sea.

The Good Ship Mojo

The free publicity that Ship Faced garnered from the affair is pure marketing gold to the organisers, who deserve a mark of respect for their creativity and ingenuity. It’s events like Ship Faced that put Ibiza on the party map and displays the talent and free spirit ethos that is present on the island. After the depressing Peru drug mule story, Ibiza needed something to brighten up the party scene and thankfully the Ship Faced story delivered a welcome breath of fresh, Mediterranean air. According to police, the party was shut down for technical reasons as the boat did not have the proper licences which is a strange story, but then this is Ibiza and anything is possible. The organisers of the event felt they had taken all the necessary steps to ensure that the party was legal and the police raid came as a big surprise to everybody connected. Hopefully the shut-down will not have any long term negative effect on the party and next Thursdays event is planned to go ahead. We wish the organisers the best of luck with Ship Faced and look forward to the return of the good ship Mojo to Ibiza waters in the near future.
SHIPFACED ibiza boat party from kuma on Vimeo.