Held on Siloso Beach at Sentosa Island in Singapore, ZoukOut 2015 was truly the festival that had it all. Although the rain showered down on scores of partygoers for hours on end, the music festival successfully wrapped up its 15th edition as people left the venue at sunrise on 13th December (Sunday) with smiles plastered across their faces.
This year, the 2-night annual festival drew some 45,000 revellers on both nights despite the rain and the stiff competition from other events in region.
The multi-million dollar electronic dance event boasted a beach festival vibe like no other and featured some of the biggest global acts e.g. Armin van Buuren, Tiesto, NERVO, R3HAB, Axwell^Ingrosso, Andrew Rayel, Oliver Heldens, Claude Vonstroke, and more.
We don’t know about everyone else but for us, 15 years on, ZoukOut remains the festival that has it all. Here are some reasons why this year’s festival was such an amazing experience:
Fuss-free EZ-Link payment option
For the first time ever, ZoukOut featured a fuss-free, cashless payment system. This makes it a lot easier for partygoers as all payment for food, beverages, and merchandise have to be made via the EZ-Link smart card. The EZ-Link card can be bought at either MRT Stations or 7-Eleven outlets island-wide. ZoukOut 2015 festivalgoers can either top-up their EZ-Link smart card prior to the festival or via the kiosks/stations on the festival grounds. Psst. The EZ-Link card can also be used for a host of other things so the extra balance can be kept for future use/your next trip to Singapore ;)
Supersized VIP tent with a separate entrance
This year, Zouk Singapore upped the ante and brought the ultimate VIP clubbing experience to the festival with an expanded VIP section at a prime location away from the crowd, right next to the Moon Stage. The VIP tent offered premium tables in 3 elevated areas. Access to the VIP tent was via a fast-track (separate) entrance for guests, who also enjoyed an attentive, personalised service as well as bottle-service at their tables, topped off with a “champagne train”. And dancers, let’s not forget the dancers.
Hello Kitty came out to party!
This year’s ZoukOut was also the introduction of the very first ever Sanrio Hello Kitty collaboration with Zouk Singapore. As part of the tie-up, there was a booth which sold limited edition Hello Kitty x ZoukOut 2015 merchandise such as apparel (T-shirts, sleeveless tees, crop tops) and towels. We didn’t buy any but in hindsight, perhaps we should’ve! Oh, we also spotted some Hello Kitty balloons in and around the ZoukOut 2015 venue ;) Other branded ZoukOut 2015 included Rip Curl, LeSportsac, and Havaianas.
Quality acts to render you speechless
When it comes to festivals, our mantra has always been, “It’s not about the quantity, it’s the quality.” This year, dance music legends Tiesto, Paul Oakenfold, and Armin van Buuren made their triumphant return to ZoukOut armed with tunes to render their fans dizzy. And that’s not all, of course. The ZoukOut 2015 line-up was also beefed up with other dance music heavyweights such as Kaskade, Headhunterz, NERVO, Andrew Rayel, Axwell^Ingrosso, R3hab, Porter Robinson, Oliver Heldens, Jamie Jones, DVBBS, Claude VonStroke, Visionquest and more. Our only complaint was that it was near impossible to see them all (read: having to maneuver through the crowd, clashing set times).
“Do the rain dance!”
This was probably the first time in more than a decade that it rained almost the entire day 2 of ZoukOut 2015. But has a little rain stopped anyone from rocking out to their favourite tunes and favourite acts? No siree. The rain magically came to a halt close to 5am, about 15 minutes after Armin van Buuren took over the decks at the Moon Stage (Deep Dish was playing at the Star Stage at the same time). Just as well, because the crowd swelled up during Armin’s set set. As soon as the rain stopped, Armin said to the crowd, “Just remember, if we are united, we can make the rain stop.”
Fun activities & a jaw-dropping production
Like every year, Zouk Singapore spares no expense to ensure that ZoukOut revellers have a great time. This include providing an amazing festival experience via top-notch production of sound and visuals, LED-studded roving stilt walkers, GIF booths, fringe activities along Siloso Beach, mesmerising pyrotechnics perfectly synchronised with the DJ’s songs, and of course, a beautiful show of fireworks every few hours. Because why stop at just one when you can have a few fireworks displays throughout the night to leave partygoers gawking at the night sky with awe?
Fast service – just fast service
From the entrance to the bars, and even right down to the queues to the portaloos, everything at ZoukOut 2015 was extremely well organised. And that makes for fast service! This means that there were almost no jams getting into the venue save for the time taken for very thorough body and bag checks, close to no waiting time needed to grab drinks (very important when it’s raining), and never having to miss moments or DJs dropping our favourite tracks while waiting to use the toilet. It could be attributed to the culture in general or it could be due to the great planning. Either way, we love it!
When Axwell^Ingrosso trolled everyone
We couldn’t go without bringing this up at least once! You see, when your slot is well into the morning at 4am, you gotta do something to wake everyone the hell up. And that’s exactly what Axwell^Ingrosso set out to do. They whipped out some good ol’ “scare tactic” during the opening sequence of their set, which definitely jolted everyone awake and made them pay attention. Definitely not for the weakhearted but we gotta say though that, as tired as we might’ve been, it made us laugh out loud perhaps a little too much :)
“Easy come, easy go”
Transportation out of Sentosa Island after ZoukOut has always been a bit of a problem. It’s a bummer when you’re tired and can no longer feel your legs. But not this year, no siree. Zouk Singapore definitely beefed up the logistical issue for their partygoers as this year’s festival had free shuttle buses which operated from 2am onwards on both nights. The shuttle buses would then drop off at 3 locations e.g. HarbourFront MRT Station, Tanjong Pagar MRT Station, or Chinatown MRT Station. ZoukOut also partnered with GrabTaxi and GrabCar this year. Punters could easily book a GrabTaxi ride via the app or a GrabCar via the GrabCar Express Service at the ZoukOut exit.
What an experience! We already can’t wait to go back again next year. Special thanks to our awesome friends from Zouk Singapore for the invites.
In case you missed the live coverage from #ZoukOut2015, fret not. It’s all on our Instagram :)