1. The Sultan of Brunei’s 50th Birthday Party
When some dude holding the title “Sultain” throws a birthday banger, you know that’s something you had better make time for. In ’96 Haji Hassanal Bolkiah threw a two week long rager that included a military march with all of the regalia, a full blown polo match against Prince Charles, and a private Michael Jackson concert. The party supposedly cost around 27 million dollars, about 16 of which went straight to the MJ concert. The most worst part? The Sultan didn’t even attend the concert.
This nightclub might be the closest thing to Hell on Earth… in a good way. The disco is located in a former power plant in Friedrichshain, Berlin and sports an interior dominated by concrete and steel. There are no VIP lists, no VIP areas, no mirrors of reflective surfaces, no photography whatsoever, and the club almost never closes. The dance floor features 60 foot high ceilings and accommodates somewhere around 1,500 sexy, sweaty, technoheads. Special darkened rooms are maintained specifically for guests to engage in debauchery and freely indulge their sexuality. For some, Berghain might be a dark and scary, place, but for the right crowd, it’s a chance to finally do what you really want.
3. Truman Capote’s Black and White Ball
In 1966, Capote released a masterpiece novel entitled “In Cold Blood”. The book sold like LSD soaked gummy bears at a Major Lazer concert and soon after, the author decided it was time to get down. The party’s guest list was capped at 540 and there were more than a few rumbles from members of society who didn’t make the cut. The soiree was held at the Plaza Hotel (Ooo, fancy!) in New York City and commanded massive media attention.
4. The Hell’s Angels and the Merry Pranksters Meet at Kesey’s LSD Ranch
In the summer of 1965, Hell’s Angels, the infamous, Harley-Davidson piloting outlaws met with a colorful, psychedelic group of hippies known as the Merry Pranksters in La Honda, California. With a pairing like that, you know this get together had to be pretty memorable. This event was the epitome of the classic catch phrase “sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll” and accordingly, the event drew some of the era’s most notable intellectuals and writers including Allen Ginsberg, Hunter S. Thompson and Neal Cassady.
5. Mr. and Mrs. Bradley Martin’s Party
In 1897, these New York socialites took over the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel and spent an unfathomable amount of money (for the time) in a single night. The gala was so lavish that it was widely regarded as a travesty given the current state of the nation’s economy. The Martin’s were only willing to endure so much punishment for their crimes before fleeing to Great Britain. While it may be true that the affair was ill timed and socially irresponsible, any party that’s so boss that the hosts are forced to flee the country is undoubtedly a bangin’ time.
6. Paradise Garage Closing Party, New York
This notable downtown discotheque was a major part in the development of modern dance and pop music. While the club served neither food nor liquor, it was one of the hottest dance spots in the world during its heyday. The farewell party for this iconic movement factory lasted five days and saw the likes of Diana Ross, Madonna and Keith Haring.
7. Mrs. Astor’s Fifth Avenue Balls
Caroline Webster Schermerhorn Astor was Ms. Fancy Pants in New York City from the 1850s onwards. Astor hosted some of high society’s most notable get-togethers in her multistory mansion on Fifth Avenue. Most notable were the annual balls where no expense was spared and only 400 of the city’s top echelon could be found. Needless to say, being one of those snobby enough to make the list was quite an honor.
This one you already know, but let’s review: Arlo Guthrie, Santana, The Grateful Dead, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Janis Joplin, Sly & the Family Stone, The Who, Jefferson Airplane, The Band, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Joe Cocker, Johnny Winter, Jimmy motherfucking Hendrix. Buckets of drugs, sex in public, and what may have been the best attended mud wrestling pit of the century. Need something more? If yes, you should go sit down and have a long hard think about how you’re living your life.
9. Boston Tea Party
Out of the ten, this is definitely the party I wish I could have attended. American badasses like Paul Revere (the famed “the British are coming” loudmouth) and Sam Adams (you know, the guy that makes beer) dressed up like Mohawk Indians, boarded an tea laden East India Company vessel docked in Boston, and chucked all their shit into the drink. Random destruction of property? Hardly. These guys were pissed about paying taxes and living under someone else’s rule. Want a party to really get your adrenaline going? Try doing something illegal with a whole mess of righteous anger behind it.
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