Setting up on the main drag between the Pyramid and Other stages back in 2011, the Beat Hotel arrived with the mantra EAT, DRINK, DANCE emblazoned on its iconic sign outside. A simple summary of what has been, and is, on offer, the venue has since grown each year, becoming a mainstay of the Festival, situated in the markets between Silver Hayes, John Peel and the Pyramid.
Returning for its 5th year, and in a new location (head 70m west of where it has been previously), the Hotel remains an amalgamation of stimuli to satisfy all senses. Here, some just stay for the morning, gathering thoughts and gazing outward on a new day. With American buttermilk pancakes, the real kind of coffee and Bloody Marys giving life to depleted souls, they leave readied, roused and replenished.
Others come in search of solace from the afternoon’s bustle: plans are hatched over cocktails and the “low-and-slow-smoked” BBQ offerings of Seth Troxler’s Smokey Tails. While some move on, many stay the night. And who knows, maybe the next. The pace is as fast or slow as you like. After all, this isn’t just any hotel: it’s yours.
Music plays an ever-important role too, as some of the hottest DJ talents assume responsibility for your stay’s sonic pleasures. With daytime sets covering reggae, Yacht Rock and sunny Balearica, evening time sees the tempo step up as the sun goes down, with some of the finest in disco, house and techno checking in over the five-day programme (Wednesday – Sunday).
2016 guests include headliners DJ Tennis, Simian Mobile Disco, Maceo Plex, and Mano Le Tough alongside a series of exclusive back-to-back sets. Thursday night sees resident meat smoker-cum-selector Seth Troxler playoff for a 3-hour set with ever on-point party techno protagonist Tiga.
Friday night boasts an extended set between three of the UK’s most revered: Midland, Joy Orbison and Ben UFO, blending every conceivable strand of dance music, for a 3.5-hour onslaught. On Saturday night, taste-making UK indie imprint Young Turks take over the venue, bringing a special b2b between fellow musical genius Four Tet and Floating Points before Hivern honcho John Talabot makes a welcome return to the Beat to close.
Elsewhere, the line-up includes Glastonbury debutants Ruf Dug, Moscoman, Pender Street Steppers, and Francis Inferno Orchestra whilst party mainstays Crazy P, Bugged Out’s Little Bugger, PBR Streetgang, and Bill Brewster bring in the fun. On Sunday night, Mike Skinner shows his mettle behind the decks and Hotel regulars Greco-Roman close the festival with a label showcase featuring Karma Kid, Roosevelt (DJ), Joe Goddard and Greco-Roman Sound System.
Sleep might not be in great supply in this hotel, but if you want to EAT, DRINK and DANCE from dawn til dusk (and then some), just follow your senses, for the Beat goes on…