A luxury music festival in the Bahamas co-hosted by Ja Rule was a disaster.
Ja Rule promised a "cultural moment created from a blend of music, art and food".
Tickets included a flight from Miami, a stay in a "geodesic dome" and activities including yoga and kayaking.
That could not be farther from reality. Guests paid up to $12,000 for tickets and when they arrived they found the amenities were abysmal and their hosts had no tangible plan. The well-off festival goers' high expectations were definitely not reached.
The hosts released a statement trying to blame “outside” forces for their unpreparedness.
“Due to circumstances out of our control, the physical infrastructure was not in place on time and we are unable to fulfill on that vision safely and enjoyably for our guests. At this time, we are working tirelessly to get flights scheduled and get everyone off of Great Exuma and home safely as quickly as we can,” they continued. “We are working to place everyone on complimentary charters back to Miami today; this process has commenced and the comfort and safety of our guests is our top priority.”
The promotional material severely oversold the festival: “Miles of white beach and turquoise water await attendees for a variety of sonic, communal and artistic activities,” one early description said. “A marina which serves as V.I.P. docking space for yachts is located within yards of the festival grounds. Guests can choose to stay in a variety of tented accommodations, V.I.P. housing or private yachts.”
There was complete chaos when the guests arrived. They were not given their luggage and were told to wait on the beach until things were ready. After seeing the grounds people began to flee back to the airport in a panic.
The small island airport could not handle the massive crowds and they ended up locking the doors to try and control the crowd.
The artists that were supposed to perform at the festival cancelled after I assume the saw one picture of the grounds. Blink182 released a statement that they would not perform because they did not feel they would be provided the right equipment.
The festival was heavily promoted on social media and that backfired when those influencers took to twitter to express their less-than desirable experience.