Here’s What a $4,699 VIP Pass Gets You at Outside Lands

Guests watching the festival from the Golden Gate Club’s Skydeck Parlor on day two of the Outside Lands Music Festival at Golden Gate Park on Saturday, August 6, 2022. Photo: Michaela Vatcheva / Special for The Chronicle

On the brink of what some are calling another Great Recession, it’s hard to believe people are willing to spend more money on gigs that are already over $500. But Outside Lands was banking on music lovers being willing to splurge for exclusive access, premium food and drink offerings and a place to get away from the massive crowds of Golden Gate Park over the course of the season. three-day outdoor event, which ends Sunday, August 7, with a headliner by rapper Post Malone.

The ultra-luxury VIP level known as Golden Gate Club – now in its third year – is one of the biggest additions to San Francisco’s first summer festival since Outside Lands introduced the grass-centric Grass Lands. cannabis in 2018. While VIP areas and private cabanas have been an upgrade option since the festival began 14 years ago, with lodges added a few years ago, the main attraction of the experience top level is the Skydeck Parlor. The elevated deck, decorated by San Francisco-based designer Ken Fulk and featuring an ADA-approved elevator, offers panoramic views of the polo field and unobstructed sight lines to the Lands End main stage.

Three-day passes cost $4,699 plus fees, $1,995 for a one-day pass. low this year (starting at $175 for a one-day ticket) even though soaring inflation has dramatically increased the San Francisco festival’s production budget.

Among the Skydeck Parlor’s exclusive offerings were bites from local culinary stars like celebrity chef Tyler Florence of Miller & Lux; Nancy Oakes and Dana Younkin of Boulevard Restaurant; and Ravi Kapur of the Good Good Culture Club and the Liholiho Yacht Club.

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Dessert served courtesy of Boulevard at the Golden Gate Club on day two of Outside Lands. Photo: Michaela Vatcheva / Special for The Chronicle

To add more decadence, the caviar happy hour was hosted by Caviar Co. each day.

“What other festivals do you go to where they have a caviar service with blinis and creme fraiche or offering caviar bumps?” said Petra Higby, who served dollops of select caviar as Local Natives wrapped up her afternoon on Saturday, August 6. “It really takes VIP to the next level.”

The most expensive caviar served over the weekend was the company’s Oestra, a large pearl caviar with a nutty flavor and buttery finish, from Israel that costs $140 an ounce. Higby said they consume a pound of caviar every day, which is about $5,000 worth of delicacies.

Other high-priced items include wines selected by Saison co-founder and head sommelier, Mark Bright. Aside from free installments of select wines, bottle service for an additional price included $300 Dom Pérignon to limited bottles of Charles Krug’s 1974 Cabernet Sauvignon for $1,500. Straight from the cellars of the Saint Helena winery, Bright said a drink could cost upwards of $500 in a restaurant — if you could even find it offered on a menu.

The Golden Gate Club Wine Bar offered exclusive wine tastings and education. Photo: Michaela Vatcheva / Special for The Chronicle

Scott said the Golden Gate Club was “inspired to create an event within the event,” which is why each day featured activities such as tarot card readings and shopping showcasing vendors from the bay area.

While the Wine Country BottleRock Napa Valley festival also offers several air bridges and luxury experiences, including a pop-up indoor spa, what makes the Golden Gate Club different is its concierge service. Decked out in green blazers (think Masters Tournament winner’s jacket), a dozen friendly assistants circle the Skydeck Parlor, on hand to answer almost any questions club members might have about the festival as well as provide a table drink service for a clientele ranging from fashion designers and actors to tech moguls.

A guest at the Golden Gate Club on day two of Outside Lands. Photo: Michaela Vatcheva / Special for The Chronicle

Outside of the elevated viewing lounge, even more concierges are available to escort club members in private golf carts — a service dubbed Mr. Fulk’s Wide Ride — to the Lands End, Twin Peaks, and Sutro stages. Once on the main concert stages, club members have an exclusive front-stage viewing area with access to a cooler stocked with complimentary drinks.

“Beyond the luxury of the club, which is undeniable, what really excites people is access to the front of the stage. To be able to get such access to artists at such an important festival is in a way unprecedented,” said Kelsey Schimmelman, events manager at Ken Fulk. “So I don’t think people are here just to feel like they’re being removed from everyone in a separate special lounge, they’re are registered with the club to get as close as possible to the artists they have come to see here.”

Golden Gate Club members on day two of Outside Lands. Photo: Michaela Vatcheva / Special for The Chronicle

For those who choose to be dropped off for the electronic dance music vibes at the SOMA tent, club members can enter through a skip-the-line route that ensures easy entry throughout the festival.

Brought layers of clothes too warm to wear on unusually hot weekend afternoons? Club members don’t have to worry about lugging everything around thanks to a locker room near Golden Gate Club’s private bathroom trailers.

And, oh, what bathrooms. While the VIP areas had already seen an upgrade of sanitary facilities with portable flush toilets four years ago, Golden Gate Club members’ private bathrooms are as close to home as festival goers. can be. Private booths are in air-conditioned, artwork-decorated trailers that come with wet wipes and, for the ladies, complimentary facial mist and tampons.

And Scott said Another Planet is already working with Fulk to figure out what other benefits the Golden Gate Club will offer at next year’s event.

“We’re still working on things,” he said. “It will never be the exact same event every year.”



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