When a music festival sells most of its tickets before the lineup is even announced, it probably isn't much of a "music" festival anymore. Some might say that those blindly buying tickets to Coachella, which starts today, are just confident in the reliably great lineup. A more observant person would say, though, that the bands are no longer the focus of the festival. "It doesn't matter who the artist is onstage," a concert-industry trade magazine editor tells the LA Times. (And even some of the acts are starting to feel that way.) So what is it about then? Why in the world would anyone want to drive (or fly by private jet, which they can do for the right price) all the way out to Indio to stand in the dirt and sun for several days? To one-up your peers in a battle to spend money in the most exorbitant ways over a three-day period, to engage in some "attainable aspiration" (a nice marketing-ese way to say "pretending that you are richer than you actually are for a weekend"), and to see and be seen. Here are all the lavish ticket packages and luxurious on-site amenities that Coachella is offering this year in one unbelievable list:
· Get a fully-furnished, two-person, air-conditioned "Shikar style tent" with electrical outlets and two queen-sized beds with linens for $6,500 (seen above). Price includes a golf cart shuttle between the festival and your tent.
· For an additional $225 on top of your basic pass price, sit down to a communal table for a four-course dinner prepared by "celebrated chefs," as the festival's site describes them.
· Are you going to be needing more than one fancy meal to complete your weekend? A "$1,024 gourmet dining package" is also available.
· Sleep in a totally authentic two-person tipi for $2,200. It's already set up for you (obviously) and includes two cots, pillows, and sleeping bags. At least this includes two one-weekend passes.
· Did you buy tons of beer for the weekend? If it's Heineken, you can keep it in the company's on-site cold storage for the weekend. At drop-off and pick up, they'll use your thumbprint as your key to cold boozy goodness.
· You probably came all this way to spend the whole day on Facebook, so pop into the Samsung Experience tent for A/C and free WiFi. Charge up your phone while you're there so you can Instagram to your heart's content.
· Hit up the concession yurts for gourmet walnuts, cold-pressed juice, artisanal cotton candy, and handmade ice cream. (All of these are actual vendors, and not just something we stole from a Portlandia sketch.)
· What's a concert without a cocktail bar? $799 VIP passes get you access to the VIP-only cash bar. There are also extra restrooms, so drink up!
· Coachella festival's luxuries eclipsing its music and arts [LAT]