The island of Solta was the place to be on August 4, 2018, as luxury boutique hotel Martinis Marchi put on its annual spectacular party, with this year’s theme ‘Life is a Cabaret.’ TCN was there, complete with video camera.
Where are the coolest parties on the Adriatic?
One location which definitely is up there with the best of them is luxury boutique hotel Martinis Marchi on the island of Solta, a short 45-minute ferry ride from Split. TCN sent our young and talented Polish documentary intern, Kinga Bialek, to capture the magic of what was by all accounts a spectacular evening.
Every year the Matinis Marchi organizes an extravagant themed party for their guests. Already in its 7th year, the theme chosen for this year was the 1920s. 250 guests from over 15 countries from Europe and around the world made it to this year’s fiesta.
It is the fourth of August, 2018 and I’ve bought a ticket to Rogac on the island of Solta. From Rogac, it is only 20 minutes away to the seaside village of Maslinica. Located at the mouth of Maslinica’s port is a beautiful castle which has been transformed into Martinis Marchi hotel. The marina is full of luxury Sunseekers from one of the event sponsors, Sunseeker Adriatic Group. The property runs along the sea not far from the center of this small, adorable village. I’m there before 6pm – 2 and a half hours before the event was supposed to start. Afternoon activities, such as optional kayaking and art at the marina from Vicko Buktenica have already helped to entertain local arrivals. In the lobby, I observe tens of workers running from one end of the hotel to the other in preparation for the amazing show. “This is the best summer party organized in Dalmatia.” I could overhear from the eager guests. Outside, I could see the red carpet running from the seaside amphitheatre to the hotel, odd metallic structures being assembled by workers, and young women adorned in shiny dresses.
At 8:30, everything fell into place as the party officially started, titled “Life is a cabaret”. Everyone directed their attention to the amphitheatre as the first act of the program kicked off. There was not a seat to be found as the amphitheatre filled up with guests, tourists, and locals alike. It’s time to start the cabaret! The announcer welcomes the crowd in English, German and Croatian to assure that all the guest felt at home. For the next hour, this evening is brightened by cabaret music from the 1920s, fire dancers, various singers, and beautiful women with feather boas who elegantly move their body to the music. The public applauds each act, enjoyed. From time to time, an ambler approaches me to ask about the shows and stands next to me for a brief conversation. After an hour of performances which takes us back 90 years ago to the roaring 20s, we are transported again back to 2018 for the unveiling of the BMW 8 Coupe from local dealers Tomic & Co – one of the first in the world to have this latest addition to the BMW range. All of this is accompanied by sparklers and the sounds of camera shutters fluttering.
However, everything good must come to an end, as the tourists gradually shuffled out, bystanders continued their walks, and hotel guests walked proudly along the red carpet, heading back to the hotel. It’s time for dinner and I walk into the hotel behind the women in fancy dresses and feathers – this time they are accompanied by men in suits and hats. The hotel staff kindly point us to the garden. There, in the setting of vibrant green grass, luscious trees, white blankets and live music, guests entered a world which closely resembled that of the Gatsby. The buffet which offered a smorgasbord of food, and the open bar which served every type of alcohol, gave the Gatsby atmosphere a reality. I’m watching how guests applaud a hula dancer with hoops which swirl around her hips, belly and chest. Meanwhile, other guests either take funny pictures in a photo booth or browse over to the selection of Rolex watches on display.
To complete the idea of the 1920s, the next part of the night is a pool party. The adventurous guests dive into the multicolored pool with enthusiasm and character. All the while, the live music plays along to the rhythm of the night. As I sit by the pool, I can hear a voice coming over the speakers which informs guest that they have reached halfway point of the party and reassures them that there is still much for which to look forward. A young dancer emerges from the darkness, making the next part of the night particularly pleasing for some of the guests as she removes pieces of her clothes in an erotic dance which encapsulates the audience. The dance finishes as she swirls around a martini glass which is the size of a small adult. The guests applaud wildly. Then, a section of the party slated specifically for the females in the crowd: a fashion show. Models dressed in Buba Bu design stroll around the outside of the pool – and hearing the comments from the male guests in the crowd beside me, I felt as though this section of the party was also for males. After the fashion show, a DJ gets on the microphone and informs the crowd that “the party is just beginning” – an announcement which was met with much applause- as the guests began to dance not only to the music of the 1920s, but also to Latin music and pop songs. The guests danced surrounded by soapy bubbles, various visual and sound effects as well as spontaneous jumps into the pool. Looking at their relaxed and smiling faces, it was perhaps the best party of the summer.
The biggest applause belongs to the organizers who made sure that every element and every moment was packed full of energy and excitement. A special recognition to Marija – organizer of Theatrum Weddings & Events who until the last minute was making sure that everything went as planned and who moved everyone into the 1920’s: years of amazing costumes, gentlemen and ladies, years of feathers, trinkets, hats and cigars. It was only missing Jay Gatsby, otherwise I would doubt that I would still be in the tiny town of Maslinica on the island of Solta.
That video again, as well as Ancient Rome 2017 at Martinis Marchi, and more photos of a very memorable evening.