Germans, Salsa, Beach, Spain
Is a very unique combination for this very intimate event.
So this was my first stop on my European Salsa Adventure, I flew into Barcelona Airport, depending where you’re coming from you have multiple options of getting here. Most of the Germans flew into Girona, Costa Brava airport and catch the train to Roses, for me I caught the train from Barcelona to Girona.
Iris who is the event organiser, was absolutely amazing collecting people from the trainstation to save a further bus ride down to the coast.
The event is a combination of hotel and festival, we all stayed at the Maritim hotel in Roses, Spain. Personally I think I got a bit lucky and had a pretty massive room for 1 person, though the reason I say I was lucky, is a few people who were sharing were in room almost 1/2 the size of mine.
Hotel had a great breakfast to start the day, along with lunch and dinner which were reasonable, each meal had a chef available making free extras such as omelettes and eggs for breakfast or different meat’s/fish. With everything located in the 1 venue it made it very convenient. And with the beach literally on the door step nothing was ever too far away.
Just be aware the pool isn’t heated, and was a little on the chilly side when I first jumped in!
This was a small festival, as such there was no real registration process at the event, which was really easy and was another positive for these small festivals. Rocked up and did workshops, did I also mention that this festival went for 7 days!
With this festival numbering < 50 people, it was great to see small intimate workshops, the selection of teachers prior to the event being all the way from Australia I had little knowledge of them. But they proved to be some great teachers, with the small group and reasonably even numbers you received a lot of personal attention and 1 on 1 instruction.
Workshops covered most of the usual latin and then some more, Salsa, Bachata, Kizomba and Semba and levels ranged from beginner to intermediate/advanced classes.
A good and a bad thing is there was only 1 workshop ever running at a time, the positive of this is your not forced to decide between which workshop your going to do on a given hour. The bad is not a huge selection of workshops, but given we had 6 days of workshops there was certainly more than enough to sate my taste buds.
My only complaint about the workshops, is when they taught ON2 Salsa, it was a very weird version, which to this day I’ve yet to see anywhere else in Europe/America/Australia. At the time when I brought it up with the instructors they informed me this is how ON2 is danced in Europe and given I had just arrived I took their word for it, 3 months later I’ve yet to see it being taught anywhere else.
One of the instructors was particularly flirtatious.., behaviour that of course happens at festivals all around the world but generally more discreetly.
There seemed to be some confusion with the music at the venue, as we were sharing the venue with non salsa dancers which led to very late starts and due to the hotel policy the parties did not extend too late into the evenings. Given the intimate nature of the festival it made for some great dances, as everyone continued to get to know each other, and the Germans’ started to be less German Post parties was drinking, looking out over the ocean, though a bit chilly at night it was never the less picturesque.
The instructors were available for dances during the evenings, and there was some impromptu events where a local with a saxophone would come in an the party would change up a tempo, which was a lot of fun and occasionally a few locals joined in on the parties at night.
For a week long festival, it was a brilliant start to my Salsa travels. I got to meet some really great people, with the organiser (Iris Wombacher) wanting to keep the festival on the small side, it will be great to see that this event stays the intimate event that it is. So many festivals seem to want to grow and be massive Goliath’s, but there is certainly a place in the scene for these festivals.