by Kaitey Marie

A hip new multi-venue music festival is making waves in the desert, and surprisingly, a young Palm Springs native is the mastermind behind it all. Tyler McLean, 23-year-old alumni of Palm Springs High School, was having a conversation with his sister Kelly one day about the resurgence of downtown Palm Springs when the idea of Splash House was born. The two agreed that the influx of young “millennials” to the Coachella Valley for Spring Break and music events like Coachella and Stagecoach is something the desert community should embrace. Palm Springs has become an increasingly popular vacation destination for twenty-somethings, but as Tyler points out, the Empire Polo Club in Indio has been the only music festival venue utilized for decades. What about a concert in the heart of Palm Springs? With the recent revamping of downtown Palm Springs with popular hotel remodels like the Ace, the Saguaro, and the addition of the Hard Rock Hotel, Tyler and Kelly saw an opportunity they couldn’t pass up. “Pools are one of our few social outlets here in the desert,” Tyler remarks, “Why not bring the music festival concept to the pool?”

The siblings envisioned creating a poolside multi-venue music festival that would become a quintessential summer concert series in Palm Springs. Being young and in college, Tyler and Kelly faced several hurdles in their initial stages of creating the festival. Many residents and venues thought the idea might be some giant “frat party” that would add additional noise and traffic to the otherwise serene desert atmosphere. However, as Tyler explains, Splash House is actually a “fresh, low-key and forward-looking festival created by locals, for locals.” Instead of invading the desert, creating surplus infrastructure and attracting rowdy teens, Splash House utilizes already existing single venues within a mile radius of each other and caters to a cultured and mature 21+ crowd. The poolside stages are connected via non-stop transit shuttles (included in the price of admission) that eliminate excess traffic and efficiently allow festival goers to get from venue to venue.

Splash House debuted last year and was an instant success, with over 1,000 music lovers dancing around Palm Springs one pool party at a time. Luckily, a representative from Goldenvoice (producer of big-ticket music festivals like Coachella and Stagecoach) had secretly been one of those music lovers in attendance and loved everything about the experience. After contacting the McLean’s, Goldenvoice is now a full partner in the production of Splash House. At its current stages, Splash House is mainly Electronic Dance Music (EDM) oriented, but the festival founders reveal that they are “very open” to all music genres and will continue to diversify the line-up in the future.


Since last year, the eclectic poolside festival has featured past Coachella artists including XXYYXX, Giraffage and Anna Lunoe. Splash House has been praised by the LA Times and Vice for being “a unique weekender that [has the potential to grow] into something iconic.” This August 8-10, Splash House will welcome impressive live musical acts like Flume, A-Track and Cut Copy across the scenic pools of the Hard Rock Hotel, The Saguaro and the Hacienda Cantina & Beach Club. Tickets are currently available at, and include admission to each venue as well as after parties. So bring your shades, your floaties and get ready to dance, Splash House is a trendy event you won’t want to miss this summer.