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Groove Cruise 2024: An Electrifying Voyage Celebrating 20 Years In the Making



Groove Cruise

This past weekend, Groove Cruise celebrated its 20th-anniversary extravaganza aboard the Norwegian Encore with roughly 5,000 music lovers, artists, and industry creatives in attendance. The concept of thousands of avid dance music aficionados living their best lives on a festival cruise might sound insane to some, but the reality? It’s every raver’s dream vacation.

From Wednesday, January 24th to Sunday, January 28th, attendees got the opportunity to bask in all of Groove Cruise’s glory to celebrate such a special milestone for the one-of-a-kind festival. The unique idea of producing an EDM festival experience on a cruise ship came to fruition in the early 2000s all thanks to Groove Cruise’s founder Jason Beukema. And since then, no other festival out there has been able to match the authenticity of Groove Cruise’s ethos.

Groove Cruise

Groove Cruise doesn’t refer to its attendees as plain old festival goers. They refer to them as “captains”, allowing them to lead the festival experience they desire and be the captains of their own 96-hour music-filled nautical adventure.

Everyone aboard the ship came from different backgrounds and age groups, and some even traveled from other parts of the globe to attend. Some were music festival veterans while others were first-time ravers. But the one thing every single person had in common was that they were having the time of their lives aboard Groove Cruise.

Groove Cruise

The festival’s 20th-anniversary celebration hailed esteemed headliners John Summit, Diplo, Markus Schulz, and Tiësto among others, with this being Tiësto’s Groove Cruise debut on the private beach paradise of Great Stirrup Cay. Full of eager “captains” ready to set sail on day one, Markus Schulz, Joel Corry, Blastoyz, and Adam Scott remarkably set the tone for the rest of the weekend during the festival’s official Sail Away party that began around sunset.

Notable set highlights from the 96-hour nonstop Groove Cruise fiesta include Gene Farris throwing down some classic Chicago house music at The Atrium, LP Giobbi’s mesmerizing sunset set on the pool deck, a psytrance-heavy Trivecta b2b Blastoyz set at the Social Lounge, and Brennen Grey and Lily Palmer’s hard-hitting techno beats on Thursday evening.

Groove Cruise

The second half of the festival experience was topped by San Pacho‘s moving Latin-house soundscapes during the Rising Tides daytime party, Max Styler’s hypnotic tech-house beats on night three, Tiësto’s nostalgic performance on the breathtaking island of Great Stirrup Cay, and John Summit’s explosive closing set during his John Summit and Friends stage takeover on the final night.

With over 100 artists playing across 11 stages, there was not a single moment that went by without music pulsating through our veins. The best part about Groove Cruise is that because artists are aboard the ship for four days just as everyone else, everyone gets to party it up and experience meaningful encounters with them. It was heartwarming to see all of these artists thoroughly enjoy a festival just like the rest of us get to.

Music aside, this 2024 installment of the renowned cruise ship festival also allowed its captains to play dress up and get quirky with all the imaginative, whimsical themes curated on each day. Some themes worth noting included ‘U Are The Universe,’ ‘Dancing Through The Decades,’ ’50 Shades of Nintendo,’ ‘Welcome To The Jungle’, and ‘Naughty Nautical’. Witnessing everyone dressed up to the nines and getting creative with these themes felt like being in an adult playground, leaving us inspired and even healing our inner child.

On top of that, the festival’s nonprofit organization Whet Foundation was able to raise $20,000 to benefit the local Bahamian community of Great Harbor with the help of many Groove Cruise crew members and volunteers. This philanthropic movement provided essential items like clothing, food, school supplies, beach and community cleanups, painting and art programs, and more to those in need.

The bottom line: Groove Cruise is unparalleled compared to any other music festival concept out there. The festival’s entire ethos is surrounded by the concept of a strong sense of community – making everyone, even newcomers feel like they are truly part of the “Groove Cruise Fam.”

Passes for Groove Cruise 2025 are available now via their official website. Check out next year’s official festival announcement video below:

Currently based in Houston & Miami, I hope to inspire others through my writing. Electronic dance music has become a passion and a form of inspiration in my life, and I wouldn't change it for the world. I aspire to share this passion of mine with others and help them understand the uplifting potential it can have on our lives!