The Hottest Beach Clubs in Europe


It's summertime on Europe's most-exclusive rivieras, which means the champagne is chilling, DJs are grooving and everybody is on their way to this year's hottest beach clubs.

There have been a few changes in the rules since you were last at the beach, like Nikki Beach giving up its longtime location in Sardinia, and Mallorca's Puro Beach spreading its flag to mainland Malaga.

Here are our picks for where you should rent your lounger, flop your bag, and chill for summer's best European beach scene.

Puro Beach -- Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Club Tips
: Guests arriving by sea can dock directly at Puro Beach and take advantage of its yacht services while using the restaurant or lounge.

Perched atop a seaside peninsula with 180-degree views of the Bay of Palma, this beachside spinoff of the acclaimed Puro Hotel offers an all-day sanctuary for the spiritually evolved and fun-inclined. Guests begin arriving at dawn, as gentle meditation tunes pulsate through the sound system for those on hand for sunrise yoga, Tai-chi and spa treatments followed by a casual breakfast.

As the midday sun hits, DJs spin progressive house while guests soak up the rays on terrace sun beds while noshing on salads, fresh smoothies and fruit plates. The all-black pool deck is made of Balinese pebble stones, warning for sensitive toes, blending an Asian aesthetic into this decidedly Spanish social scene.

La Voile Rouge -- St Tropez, France
Club Tips:
Try to speak at least a few words of French, and snag the loungers as close to the water as possible.

The birthplace of topless sunbathing, La Voile Rouge is a seaside sanctuary of French aristocracy. One of the most famous institutions of the 31 beach clubs along Pampelonne's Beach, La Voile Rouge is a dining, drinking and be-seen stretch of sand no more than 200-feet long yet famous worldwide.

Loungers, or Matrasse Service, rent for around $50 per person, and that doesn't even include alcohol. Beachside seats sell out fast, and by noon, there are just a few scattered stretchers to be had in the shade, at least during peak summer months.
The crowd consists of all ages (and sometimes the Beckhams), but is nonetheless bronze, chic and irresistibly French.

Via Notte -- Porto Vecchio, Corsica
Club Tips:
Dress to impress. Think white-linen, flowing dresses and low-cut shirts. Don't forget the tan.

Just south of Porto Vecchio (where Corsica's best beaches are found), one of Europe's largest outdoor dance clubs is discovered on a grassy bluff above the Mediterranean. During the off-season, sandy winds blow through the mammoth-sized club like a ghost town.

By the end of June, life returns as DJs find their way to the turntables and begin to entertain the beautiful masses that seek out the beach club.

Guests arrive sporting their finest Italian yachtwear but maintaining the most dignified of French behavior. By night, the club explodes into dancing mayhem with imported DJs like Philippe Corti and Erick Morillo.

The club features stunning views, an oversized swimming pool and one of the sexiest beach crowds in Europe - -- at least till September's closing.

Phi Beach -- Porto Cervo, Sardinia
Club Tip:
Celebrity revelers should seek out the beachfront VIP lounge equipped with sassy staff offering surprisingly affordable bottle service.

Its location in front of a 18th Century naval fortress couldn't be more idyllic, removed from the hustle of Porto Cervo but still close enough to make it back for dinner at Cipriani.

Phi Beach hit the Sardinia scene in 2005, and the open-air club and outdoor bar have quickly made it the hottest beach club in Sardinia.

It's built along a saltwater swimming pool and free-form dance floor that often feels like an unorganized bonfire.

By day, the space is used as a lively beach club for the neighboring hotel as well as 20-something locals in search of loungers that don't require a $1,500-a-night hotel room.

The restaurant is one of the best in the area, known as Chiri Sur with its menu of grilled seafood and Mediterranean dishes for light lunches and causal dinners. By night, the space comes alive with a rotation of international DJs spinning beach grooves under the starry sky.

Bagni Internazionali -- Capri, Italy
Club Tips:
During high season, keep a lookout for private parties and firework shows on busier holiday weekends.

On the bay of Marina Piccola, home to Capri's better beach clubs, Bagni Internazionali opened shortly after the fall of Mussolini as the beach's very first bathing establishment. It's immediately recognizable from its collection of colorfully painted wooden beach huts of green, blue and yellow pastels.

The beach club is built over four levels beginning with a pebbly beach and outdoor bar above splattering waves of the greenish-blue bay.
Three tanning levels are arranged from the beach to the rooftop in front of the iconic cabanas with private changing rooms and umbrellas available for individual usage.

A rooftop terrace is a bit far from the water during warmer months, but also the only loungers likely available if arriving anytime after 11 a.m. It's also where you'll find the in-house restaurant and path to Villa Brunella, the hotel, with views of the Faraglioni and collection of fashionable locals.

Nikki Beach -- Malaga
Club Tips: Open from April through September, the nightlife and local social scene are best during July and August high season.

They're the reigning princes of beach club -- a collection of Miami-based promoters who launched an international franchise built around minimalist beach furnishings, meticulous guest list and locations that make you want to play all day long in the sun.

Today their clubs are the hottest beach venues in St. Bart's, Cabo San Lucas and even Malaga, where it operates in the foreground of Don Carlos Beach Resort just outside of town.

Even without a Nikki Beach VIP card that grants you exclusive access to worldwide clubs, you'll most likely arrive to an array of available white loungers topped with hardly modest singles looking to shake and shimmy through afternoon DJ sets while enjoying bottle service of rosé. Around 4 p.m., the scene shifts from the sun to the bar as locals get an early start on the night with lively dance party and occasional champagne shower.

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