Location: Porto Belo, Brazil
Situated just outside the holiday resort of Porto Belo on Brazil’s southeast coast, open-air venue El Fortin has become something of a Brazilian clubbing institution since opening its doors back in 2006 — though this only partially explains the venue’s frequent appearances towards the top of polls such as this one.
If you drove past El Fortin during the day, you wouldn’t think it was anything other than a collection of old out-buildings nestled in a tree-lined hillside. Yet at night the venue comes alive, with up to 6,000 clubbers able to dance indoors and outdoors to a mixture of leading Brazilian DJs and international artists.
The club’s greatest calling card is undoubtedly its unique “gangster house, nu disco and Brazilian techno”-focused main room: a giant wooden beach hut-come-pyramid equipped with a weighty Funktion-One soundsystem and a ground-level booth that ensures maximum interaction between headline DJs and the crowd in front of them.
Throw in two other alternative dance spaces — one dedicated to trance in all its forms and an alfresco area where the grooves are noticeably slower and less intense — and it’s easy to see why El Fortin has become one of Brazil’s genuine “destination clubs”. It’s certainly a magical place to dance all night under the stars.