Lío is part cabaret, part supper club, part decadent performance. No one night is the same, and the celebrated nightlife brand that started in Ibiza, now has an outpost in Mykonos and is preparing to open a show in London and a pop-up in Dubai. It’s seductive and captivating—having attracted the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, David Guetta, Anne Hathaway, Gerard Butler and Idris Elba as guests to sit under the dim lighting or in the open-air, downing truffle mac and cheese alongside tender Wagyu beef.
How do the shows differ between Ibiza, Mykonos and now London? A Lío show is always fun, sexy and interactive, no matter where it is. That said, the show adapts to its different venues. For example, in Mykonos we have created an oasis in an open air garden in the center of Mykonos town; whereas in London we will open in a 97- year-old cabaret venue—the former Café de Paris. It is important that each venue has a sense of place, and that is the real point of difference. We are always evolving and no two nights of the show are ever exactly the same as we have 50 acts, and we use 25 each night. We also have four or five guest acts appearing in each show. Even in Ibiza, which has been going for over a decade, I’ve been countless times and I never get bored!
Where and how do you find your performers? The performers are the heart of our show and we are always looking for the absolute best. We audition every year in locations around Europe and based on the success of Lío, people come from all over the world to audition.
That said, castings are never enough, and we are all about uncovering hidden stars, so we are always checking and scouting through social media, contacts and visits to other shows around the world.
I know there was a “right place, right time” moment—but can you tell me a little bit about how Lío first began? Lío was created during a time when the main entertainment offered in Ibiza was electronic music night clubs. We wanted to create something that was completely unique, and that allowed guests to combine a dining experience with entertainment so that their whole Ibiza experience could start earlier than the club.
How has the show and the overall concept grown and changed over the years? The quality of the show has increased exponentially since the launch. We have invested in better casts, choreographies, wardrobe, lighting, effects and all kinds of artistic and technical production. We’ve also been able to attract new and exciting acts to join the troupe, so the variety has improved. In terms of our audience, this has definitely become more diverse over the years. We now see all ages enjoying the shows—and by the end everyone is dancing.
The menu has been described as “decadent Mediterranean-inspired fare”—who is behind the food at Lío? In Ibiza we have two Spanish chefs, Pau Barba and Adrián Marín; and in Mykonos we have a a Greek chef, Alkis Vardaramatos, bringing a local sensibility to the dishes. We are lining up an exciting name for Lío London too. As with the show, we want to keep our menus fresh, evolving them year on year.
Do you design the show and then look for performers who can fulfil certain roles, or do the specific skillsets of performers influence how you choreograph and develop the show? We first create the show and the concept, and then we look for the talent to match the roles we have created. To make the most of each artist, once we have all the cast, we also think about creating bespoke acts for each performer. At Lío every artist in the troupe is given a solo act during, so they can show off their best skills.
Lío is totally immersive, and interactivity with the crowd is key, all of our performers understand the importance of this and share the same mindset. There’s a definite je ne sais quoi about our performers. Yes, we can teach them the dance moves, and they can learn the acts, but they all have an intrinsic star quality that can’t be taught.
I love this idea of ‘turning dinner into a party”—tell me about that? And why was it important to serve dinner in the first place? Dinner in Spain is always a party atmosphere, so we thought why not combine the two and create something spectacular. Initially, Lío was more of a restaurant, but we are Pacha and partying is in our DNA, so we felt that is needed to offer more. We wanted to create something that reflects the Pacha spirit, which is all about creativity, fun, glamour and music. “Have fun to make others have fun,” is Lío’s motto.