What better way to not have to worry about your belongings getting stolen or damaged than to throw a house party in an abandoned building. Your only problems are getting kicked out by the Police (ok that is quite a big problem) and generating the power that will run your (huge) speaker system.
The first and hardest step on this process is to find the right location. You will have to do some exploring. There are a few tools that can help you narrow your search. You can look for abandoned buildings in your area using Google Search. Try a few different keywords like ‘abandoned buildings in……’ or ‘derelict building in……’ You get the idea. You can even jump on Google Maps and double check the buildings you find online.
You will have to do some exploring by foot, car or bike as well to go and check out the shortlisted buildings. Keep in mind how well protected each location is, has the owner made a big effort to keep other people out? If it’s obvious that the owner is pro actively keeping people out then that might not be the best place. You should be able to tell if people other than the owner are regularly visiting the site.
Think about how close the site is to other occupied residencies. If there are lots of other houses around it will be hard to play music for longer than half an hour without someone calling the police. If you have a bonfire then this will quickly alert other people attention.
If you live in New York, London or Hong Kong it will be harder to find abandoned buildings than less expensive areas. We had no trouble finding this amazing building over looking the Indian Ocean in Bali. It had clearly been left half done by the developers and there wasn’t much else around. We weren’t looking for a party location when we found it but we took the opportunity to explore that we were given.
The photo above was the ideal location for a party. It looked out across the Indian Ocean and had a swimming pool (full of rain water) there wasn’t anything inside it that could be damaged or taken. There was no security and houses or hotels too close that would be alerted by our music. It was hard to find originally but was easy to direct friends too.
There was a perfect place where we hung the hammock across. There was an old sofa and bed that was in a terrible state but was comfy enough to sit on. We entertered through a door in the back but the noise and lights were directed out to sea, so only the Balinese fishermen could see what we were upto. If you have some time and tenacity to explore there are these kind of places dotted along the coastline.
Keep in mind what kind of sound system you’ll need. If you’re taking things up a notch you might need a portable generator that provides electricity by burning petrol. In a lot of cases a battery powered music player will do the job just fine and is a lot less hassle.
Other things to bring include hammocks, drinks and glow sticks, but never bring too much in case the cops come and you have to get out of there quickly. Most importantly let lots of friends know and tell them to be subtle when they arrive. Go a few days before at the same time of the day that you want to throw the party to check that there won’t be unexpected traffic at that time of the day.
Make sure your guests understand that you don’t necessarily have permission to be in this location and if things go pear shaped they have to find there own way out and take responsibility for themselves. This should be obvious, but for the dummies out there.
Be respectful to the owner of the land, never damage any part of the land or building. Don’t leave any trace when you leave, and especially don’t leave rubbish. If you do anything, tidy up some of the rubbish that is there when you first come because it’s everybody’s responsibility to keep the planet clean. Never damage anything or leave graffiti. Come, party, leave without a trace.