There are few first edition festivals that will go down as fondly in the memory as Groove Fest. Back in 2012 it was the new kid on the block that truly shook up the market because it was some damn perfect. Not only did punters have the time of their lives, but reports are that many DJs tried to extend their stays at the Groove Fest paradise. And now back for a 2nd edition, it is truly set in paradise in the heart of the Caribbean Island of the Dominican Republic is where the festival takes place. It’s a five star and premier holiday resort that can only be described using clichés like ‘holiday paradise’ and ‘picture postcard perfect’. Every place you went was a mesmerizing image of perfection – crystal clear seas, white sand beaches…
Many of the main musical highlights took place on said sandy beaches, with all sorts of DJs playing there during the day before going back to the various clubs and arenas for the night parties. So too were all pools in the resort accosted to host parties, with the likes of Soul Clap playing funk, disco and &’ vinyl with lots of animated boby popping and sun kissed fun making their set standout. Skream also made for a particular highlight with his disco leaning and appropriately sun kissed sounds raining down on the dancefloor in perfect sonic clarity. His energy behind the decks – even in the hot sun – and deep understanding of house was a joy to be a part of.
Skipping from pool to pool, cocktail bar to cocktail bar and from restaurant to restaurant all week was easy, all included in the price and a truly escapist experience. Kenny Dope Gonzalez, the famed NY legend and one half of Masters at Work with Louie Vega, also provided some great moments playing disco and retro vibes on the beach to hoards of happy party people ranging from old to young, English to pretty much every one nationality you could imagine.
Back to the music and Planet E boss Carl Craig, DC10 hero David Squillace, London’s own deep house master Alexis Raphael l plus D Edge and Warung showcases with Renato Ratier plus last but not least US house Don Terry Hunter all made their unforgettable marks on the festival with sets that ranged from tight, techy and dance to much more louche, laid back and vibe felled.
One of the best things about this festival is how you can float from stage to stage at your own leisure. There are no queues and drinks are available whenever you want them. What’s more, if it all gets too much for you, you can forget the music for a small moment and head to the beach for a surf, swim or snorkel, or just set about making new friends with any of the many lovely people who seem to attend the festival.
In summary, then, GrooveFest is a perfectly planned and well programmed event that offers so many delights – musically, visually, spiritually, that it is impossible not to recommend it to you and anyone who likes to dance in the sun. Next year is sure to be even better, so its time you made the leap!