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SS Coachella: Cruises shift festival from the desert to the sea

July 19, 2012|By Mary Forgione | Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
  • Coachella cruises take place aboard the Celebrity Silhouette, which has a half-acre lawn of real grass.
Coachella cruises take place aboard the Celebrity Silhouette, which has… (Celebrity Cruise Line )

Some fans love it, some fans hate it.

Cruises announced by Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival promoters Tuesday drew comments from both sides on the event's Facebook page -- and prompted at least one person to launch a Facebook hate page with a picture of a sinking ship and a profane title.

Cruises aboard what's being called the SS Coachella (really the Celebrity Silhouette) will sail from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., to the Bahamas Dec. 16 to 19 and to Jamaica on Dec. 19 to 23. The new floating fest will feature a lineup of more than 20 bands including Pulp, Sleigh Bells and Girl Talk.

But how easily will Coachella, held annually at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, adapt to water?

For starters, forget camping and roughing it. Even the cheapest cabin, an inside stateroom, comes with a TV, Wi-Fi, beds and a bathroom in 183 to 200 square feet -- posh and roomy compared with the 10-by-30-foot space for car campers or the 10-by-15-foot spots for tents.

Festival-goers usually battle triple-digit heat and desert dust with mega gallons of water. Aboard ship, it's a lot cooler -- and no need to bring your own water trough. Instead of parched desert under foot, passengers can sink their feet into a half-acre of real grass at the on-board Lawn Club. 

Bands won't be performing on outdoor mega-stages. Instead, concerts will be held at the main pool deck, at two inside performance areas and other places aboard the 16-deck ship.

Tickets for staterooms go on sale 10 a.m. PDT Saturday with prices starting at $500 per person. Contact SS Coachella for more information.

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