Splashing around at Splash House
With both weekends of Splash House now wrapped up, we got the chance to see dozens of premiere acts make their way to the desert to perform at one of three hotels in Palm Springs! Featuring acts like Dom Dolla, Whethan, and Green Velvet (Weekend 1) along with Gorgon City, Camelphat, and Bob Moses (Weekend 2), there was no shortage of great music to dance to. Starting in 2013, this festival has transformed into an explosion of fashion, music, and community in Palm Springs – bringing such a unique environment that Goldenvoice (the company that brings you Coachella and Stagecoach) has been partnered since the event’s second year.
A stage was located at each of three Palm Springs resort destinations – The Renaissance, Saguaro, and Margaritaville hotels – where partygoers were treated to a slightly different vibe at each venue. The Renaissance was the largest hotel and had the most space; thus it was treated as the mainstage, hosting the biggest names of the event. Saguaro was the home of house & techno all weekend – and arguably the most colorful and decorative! Margaritaville (named after the famous Jimmy Buffett song) had the largest pool for attendees to cool off at and curated a more blended musical experience. The biggest (literally) surprise of the weekend took place at the After-Hours event which was located at the Palm Spring Air Museum – where we got to see artists perform from a fighter jet. Surrounded by decades of aviation history, the museum was a venue that will not be soon forgotten!
The biggest downside of the event was something outside of the festival’s control – the heat. Reaching temperatures of 110 degrees at one point, it became nearly unbearable to be outside without being in the water or shade (which was hard to come by at some points). Additionally, most of the festival takes place during the day, along with the temperature staying well into the 90s throughout the night. If you can afford it, we would definitely recommend a room with a balcony view, so that you can dance to your favorite artists from the luxury of your air-conditioned room!
Logistically, the event went very smoothly considering the volume of people that flocked to Palm Springs over the two weekends. Shuttles provided transportation between each of the three hotels during festival hours, with another shuttle for the After Hours event as well. It was possible to wait in lines for up to an hour, but only during peak transport times. Free waters were provided at the shuttle stops, but were not allowed to be taken into the event space. This was our biggest issue, as there were no free water refill stations and water cost $3 per bottle! The rest of the food and drink seemed reasonably priced (for a festival), although we did not have the opportunity to try any.
With a highly diverse lineup of heavy-hitters, the music at Splash House was easily the highlight of the festival. Artists from all over the world flocked to the desert over these last two weekends for the opportunity to perform at one of the first major festivals back! Being one of the first festivals back, we were treated to a crowd of new and longtime festival-goers alike. The 21+ crowd brought a more mature vibe with a lot of attendees being much older than at typical 18+ events – oftentimes feeling like a Las Vegas pool party. Overall, we had a very enjoyable experience at Splash House and would definitely attend again! The lack of (free) available water was our main complaint with the event but the great music and venues provided an unforgettable first experience.