Warning: This article may force you to visit Tomorrowland next year! But there might be one little problem: If you do, you will maybe be spoiled for the majority of outdoor festivals... Be warned! ;)
This years’ edition of ID&T’s Tomorrowland took place in the recreational park in the Belgian town of Boom. The city is located between Antwerp and Brussels. But during these couple of days it hosted people from all over the world and became the international center of Electronic Music and Euphoria.
The diversity of the nations could easily be seen on every stage due to the raised flags of dozens of nations. Among them far travelled people from countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, Argentina, Chile, Canada and many many more. When asking these people if this festival was worth the voyage, the answer was unisono: Every f…. kilometer of it!
The spirits were high on the opening day on Friday. The weather proved to be a festival lover and the sun was shining with warm 30 ° Celsius. The other days where slightly cooler but still mainly dry, except for a short shower on Saturday afternoon and rain on Sunday evening. The party crowd was very lucky with the weather this year. But the rains didn’t diminish the good atmosphere of the crowd at all but got mostly welcomed as a nice cooling off from the whole dancing, jumping, shouting and partying in general.
The sixteen stages dragged the party people to their favorite DJs; though sometimes it was hard to decide which stage to visit first due to the high class DJs playing at any point of time and the overwhelming atmosphere. ID&T made again huge efforts to decorate the stages and the whole festival area with so much love for the little details that make this event the best event worldwide. In the trees you find knitted Teddy bears and colored lampions, the surrounding woods are alighted in different colors and the stages showed a richness in detail unknown to other events. The service personal always gave their best to meet the needs of their guests.
But the hosts of this event do not stop their efforts then. The guests are also offered a luxurious width of choices for spending an unforgettable time on the event. Be it the free Ferris wheel behind stage 1, the free visit of the “Church of Love” for all loving couples or the fun of the moment, the Refreshment stations at every toilet station offering free deodorants, hairbrushes and toilet articles, the wide range of fresh and delicious food ranging from Luxe Burgers, Italian and Asian Food to Frozen Yoghurts, Ice Cream, Belgian Waffles and freshly made fruit smoothies. The food areas were furnished with lots of clothed tables and seats to relax for a couple of minutes. For the owners of a Comfort Pass the access to four comfort zones on the big stages was open and increased the luxury by miles. And the people took well deserved use out of these passes. In the Comfort zones different types of food got served, just like the grilled lobster in the comfort zone at the main stage, and different types of drinks, ranging from fresh made and handshaked cocktails to 15 liter bottles of Champaign. A new offer this year was the Michelin-Star restaurant above the comfort zone at the main stage, where the Chef Wout Bru offered his guests a starter and main course accompanied with a glass of wine while the guests could watch superstars like David Guetta or Avicii perform in front of a boiling crowd.
ID&T also managed to organize the whole event in a manner where the security was guaranteed at any point of time, there was no inconvenience waiting overly long for the entrance, buy tokens, at the toilet facilities or while ordering drinks and food. The stages were big enough to fit for the crowds even for the world star acts. The huge LED signs indicated every guest where to find the next 1st aid tent, the nearest exit and even nice suggestions like: “Drink water, it’s very warm” or “Use sun protector” where posted on them.
Through the whole three days a story got told through the whole event on the stages. The “Book of Wisdom” a huge video-installation opened itself for the visitors at the main stage every day and a magical face announced the acts with a compelling introduction. The well planned bits of the story in combination with the breath taking special effects, consisting of fire, water fountains, smoke, lights, lasers, daylight fireworks in differing colors, confetti and fresh blossoms whish got dropped over the crowd by helicopter and the astonishing fireworks during the night, as well as the gorgeous decorations made this a three-days-jaw-dropping experience; even for those visitors who thought they had seen everything before.
The range of music offered at the festival ranged from House, the ancestors of today’s Techno, atmospheric Trance at the Group Therapy stage, Hardstyle and Hardcore at the Q-Dance stage over recently recovered and electronically arranged Lindyhop and Swing Sounds to very experimental stages with Minimal and Techno sounds. These sound all got presented on loveable smaller and bigger stages, although the “Pearl” stage is one worth to mention as an especially great one: the holders of the Comfort passes here got access to a special Comfort zone above the Pearl stage tent. This area was constructed half under the open sky and sunshine and halfway under white tents. Everywhere were benches, sofas and little cocktail tables in white, neat flower arrangements and the favorite spot of the weekend: a pool. The water was a more than welcomes possibility to cool off or just get soaked in the water while the Champaign-drinking surrounding crowd kept dancing to the pushing House beats from the Pearl DJ’s.
Another great idea of ID&T was to change the floors every day. So you always had the chance to see each floor at least once during the festival and not being stuck on one floor with your taste of music.
By the Tomorrowland-App for IPhones every visitor could decide upon an individual time schedule and route through the festival according to his or her needs. The favorite DJs could be marked and one got informed a quarter hour in advance about the forthcoming set. The only problem was the question whether to leave the actual floor with the boiling atmosphere and stop partying for the short walk to the next floor or just to continue to enjoy life as good as it gets?!?
And if you had a couple of spare minutes between your favorite DJ’s it felt like exploring an unknown planet and just to have a stroll around with your mates. Who would have imagined that one of the most uplifting tracks of this year’s festival got played at the Q-Dace stage by the local DJ Ghost?!? Meanwhile Hardcore lovers dreamed to the indulging sets of Ferry Corsten or Above-and-Beyond…
We strongly believe that everybody visiting this festival had at least one moment, where he / she found themselves on a stage and immediately fell in love again with their music or a style of the Electronic music which he / she until then was not so strongly connected as after this festival. To shorten this up: It was a wonderful voyage through all genres of Electronic Music and one you could easily get lost in.
The most beautiful thing to state about this festival is that you met new friends, drifted through space and time over the sixteen stages and three days – from the main floor to the next cocktail bar to have a seat on the nearest bench and relax for a couple of minutes and back to the dancing and cheering crowd in front of the stages – and that at any point of time during these three days you felt happy and sheltered in the warm surroundings of this great atmosphere during this festival.
And this not only lasted the one day that would have been necessary to keep dreaming about this festival, the DreamVille Camping village or the Hotel you stayed in for the rest of the year, no, you had three whole days to collect all the memories you needed and many more to make this an unforgettable experience. You woke up the second morning and told yourself that this was the best festival you ever experienced, and then it came to your mind that you had two more days to come and a smile appeared upon your face that would have made the sun blush.
Even though the Book of Wisdom closed its pages for this year, in the minds and hearts of the visitors this spirit will be kept alive and be nourished until in 363 days the slogan is again: The portals to the Tomorrowland are open again.
To sum it up: The Tomorrowland festival got not only (well, well deserved) voted as THE best festival in the world, it should get its own category for its supreme quality, atmosphere and organization. So my suggestion is: Get your tickets for next year as soon as possible and spend your next summer vacation on this festival, because nothing comes even close to these three days of madness!