There are not many parties that can transform the way you enjoy socializing and dancing. Upon venturing to Palm Springs for the semi-annual Splash House event, we discovered a new way to party and it included poolside hoppin, hotel hoppin, and many Uber rides throughout this desert oasis.
It took us two hours on Saturday morning to drive from LA to Palm Springs. The town lies within a vast valley full of succulent plants and palm trees. Throughout Palm Springs you can find a ton of beautiful boutique and modern resort hotels. The vacation vibe hits you as you enter the city and Splash House was the talk of the town this weekend.
We first visited the Riviera Hotel to meetup with friends. We found street parking and then emerged through a bush in the parking lot to find a scene straight out of Spring Breakers. There were people blasting music out of their hotel rooms, red party cups in hand, and girls in bikinis dancing around. It looked like the pregame festivities were well underway throughout the courtyard of this resort. Making our way through the halls of the hotel it seemed as though everyone was hyped for day one of Splash House.
There are dozens of hotels throughout Palm Springs but Splash House is only hosted at The Riviera, The Saguaro, and The Renaissance, so in order to stay at one of these three hotels you need to book your room as soon as they go on-sale with the festival. These rooms fill up with festival goers but it all becomes worth it when you are surrounded by the party. It's almost like music festival camping where there is nothing but like-minded people and good vibes all around.
The Riviera's pool had a massive pyramid for its music stage. The DJ booth sat just above the pool and was surrounded by tons of palm trees. As much as we loved the vibes, we decided to head to the Renaissance in time for DJ Susan's set.
The Renaissance was easily the biggest resort of Splash House. It had a Las Vegas feel with massive towers of rooms surrounding a huge pool and the main stage. Everyone was already going hard by the time DJ Susan started at 2PM. He brought a huge energy to this stage with music from his label Hood Politics. His music is colored with layers of groovy percussion, infectious bass lines, and clever samples. He debuted his new track 'Fiesta Forever' and shook away at his maracas as everyone lost their minds to the music. Finally he closed his set with a slapping tech house edit of Duck Sauce's 'Barbara Streisand'.
Following his set we caught Rambo and then Illyus & Barrientos. Both artists brought good disco vibes to the floor as we splashed around in the swimming pool. Illyus & Barrientos played a lot of their Toolroom smash hits as well as more of their deeper tech and percussive house tracks. What threw us off the most was seeing them drop OMNOM's 'Fo Free' towards the end of their set and then ending with a nasty little edit of Justice's 'We Are Your Friends'.
After Illyus & Barrientos we decided to catch an Uber to the Gay District for some food. We found a spot called Black Book that was a 3 minute drive away. There were tons of high rated Yelp spots near the resorts and we were able to enjoy a nice sit-down meal before hopping back into the festival madness.
After grabbing food we headed to the Saguaro Resort. This is always the most visually impressive stage of the entire festival, so we naturally saved the best for last. The pool was poppin. People were everywhere and there were misters blasting clouds of water all around. Each balcony had hilarious decorations and it felt as if we had just linked up with the most important vibe of the entire festival. It was here that we caught an amazing performance from Dirtybird's Kill Frenzy. He went in on his vibey originals and classic disco tracks. The set ended on a darker note with some minimal techno and it couldn't have been more perfect.
Finally we made our return to the Renaissance for the end of Pete Tong's set. We caught him just as he was getting deep with some melodic techno. Towards the end of Pete Tong's set the stage began to crowd up for Justice's DJ Set. We decided to skip the crowd and went straight into the water. Instead of being in the swarm of people we were in the pool with plenty of room to dance.
Justice hit the stage with their classic track 'Genesis' and went into a mashup of Guns 'N Roses' 'Welcome To The Jungle' followed by a dank bass house track from Dustycloud. Their entire set seemed like a troll, in a good way. Justice threw down all of their most hype tracks from all their records but mixed them with original classic rock tracks. They also through in a ton of disco music from deep cuts to wedding hits such as 'YMCA'. Overall their performance was completely unpredictable from start to finish; they won Splash House by afar.
We eventually headed to the Air Museum, Splash House's official afterparty location. When I heard that they were having an afterparty I assumed it was a nightclub, similar to CRSSD's afterparties. Little did I know the Air Museum was actually a massive outdoor museum with tons of airplanes on display and a gigantic outdoor stage. We had just entered another music festival. There were porto-potties, food trucks, bars, a VIP lounge. This was like Splash House meets Coachella.
Performing was Dom Dolla and Shiba San, both artists destroyed their sets. As if the night couldn't get any better we ended up going straight to the biggest Splash House mansion party around hosted by Lee Wells and Bones of House Heads. They opened up their place to all the industry professionals and we were able to party it up with friends from all over, a more exclusive kind of event.
By the time we woke up the next morning we had seen it all. Three resorts, several afterparties, and a whole lot of savagery from friends and strangers. If you have the energy then there are parties to be found around the clock here at Splash House and the entire thing added up to one of the most amazing festival experiences yet.
If you're interested in attending Splash House then you're in luck. Their August installment is coming soon with announcements on the way. See you out there!