Pleasure Palace

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Throughout the sprawling clubspace of Ibiza, the installers relied on Martin Audio speakers to bring the music to the crowds. WASHINGTON, DC-Ibiza is a 30,000 square-foot, three-story temple of pleasure with seven bars, a rooftop lounge with a small pool, cabanas, and a view of downtown, plus five dance floors and more than enough room for 3,000-plus people.

It was created by co-owners Jon Han, Adam Needham, Allah Tung, Aldo Vuong, and Eric Clay to elevate the art of partying to its highest and most luxurious form of expression. To that end, Ibiza also includes what's being billed as a "million dollar sound system," a 50,000-LED dance floor light wall, high-def video feeds, numerous plasma screens, VIP lounges-even subtle extras like oxygen with flower fragrances regularly pumped through the air, and a lounge that easily morphs into a coffee shop with its own Starbucks for late-night energy boosts.

As the centerpiece of any club, both for its ability to literally move the crowds and attract top DJ talent, the audio system involved a critical decision-making process by the ownership. According to Adam Weiner of ITI, the installer for Ibiza along with partner Bill McClure, the process started with a product demonstration for the owners. Mike Scarfe of MHA Audio in Hagerstown, MD set up demos of several brands, but Martin Audio impressed the owners the best.

Given the size of the club and all of the different areas that had to be covered, the installation was challenging from the beginning. "It was a design-build project and we started working with the owners about two years ago, just working through various possibilities, what system was going in to the room," Weiner said. "From the beginning, it was important to them that the system had top-quality equipment for sound and lighting."

The audio installation basically involved four areas. First, there was a large, two-story 100-foot x 70-foot main room. For this critical space, Weiner and McClure flew five Martin Audio W8LC compact line array enclosures with one W8LCD downfill speaker on either side of the DJ booth, supported by eight WS218X subs ground-stacked in a single center cluster underneath. An additional complement of two Martin Audio Blackline H3s were used for rear fill on the dance floor along with four F12s and four S18s for fill in the VIP area and two H3H as DJ monitor speakers.

With more than enough speaker power for a small arena, the owners wanted to cover any eventuality. As Weiner explained, "One of the reason this club went with line arrays is that they want to be able to transition to live acts without bringing in 'racks and stacks.'"

In addition to the main system, there is a secondary system for the smaller room which doubles as a house room that includes four H3s, four WSX and two WSX218 subs, five F12s for balcony fill and two F15s as DJ monitors, more than enough for many club's main systems. A complement of nine F12s, two WS218Xs, and S218s drives the audio in the restaurant and lounge.
Asked about the challenges over the two-year life of the installation process, Weiner mentioned the "constant changes in design as new investors came on to the scene. In fact, just a few weeks before the installation happened, they decided to change the orientation of the room, so instead of dealing with the shorter width of the room, we had to spin it 90 degrees and do it lengthwise, which resulted in 40,000 feet of feeder cable and a whole lot of labor. Co-owner John Han was onsite for every phase and intimately involved with every brick in that project, and he'd get an idea and we'd move it in that direction."

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