SAN FRANCISCO, July 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Joie de Vivre Hospitality founder Chip Conley officially launched Fest300, a point-of-view website that brings the world's best festivals to life – in one place – for the first time. Selected by Conley and his team of seasoned travel and festival experts – with pedigrees from Lonely Planet, Frommer's and beyond – Fest300 presents a curated list of the world's best festivals with a daily magazine in vibrant words and pictures.
From celebrations of music, film, and food, to rituals of the sacred, silly and profane, Fest300 explores these global events with detailed reviews, insightful and entertaining editorial, and compelling video and photography. Central to Fest300's mission is to engage and inspire a community of "culturally curious" travelers to TAKE THE PLEDGE and attend at least one festival in the coming year – halfway around the world, or just around the corner.
Fest300 Inspiration? "Given the momentum of growth in festival culture around the world, there's a nascent movement afoot. Fest300.com is a URL, yet people are seeking more IRL (In Real Life) experiences that give them a sense of meaning," says founder and editor-in-chief Conley. "I've experienced 'collective effervescence,' the positive experience of losing oneself in a group ecstatic moment, in my travels from Bali to Brazil to Burning Man. But, when I looked for a place that documented the most diverse, iconic gatherings and spectacles of our time, there wasn't one. We're creating that place at Fest300."
Why 300? Fortune touts the 500 biggest companies. Forbes hails the 400 richest people. Fest300 celebrates the best experiences. In curating this living museum, the editors are not dependent on one particular genre, part of the world, or time of year, given there are hundreds of thousands of festivals – some new and some more than 2,000 years old. Fest300 takes you everywhere, from Burning Man's scorching Nevada desert, to 30-degree below zero temperatures at China's Harbin Ice & Snow Festival, to the humid banks of the Ganges River at India's Kumbh Mela.
Fest300 intends to publish its list annually, inviting the Fest300 community to crowdsource the final ten percent. Categories cover everything from music, film and food to spirituality, sports and family-friendly. Each festival is rated with key information such as crowd size (intimate to massive), participation level (spectator to immersive), and transformation potential (minimal to life-altering). "Chip's Take" gives Conley's personal comments on each event.
In the coming months, new bells and whistles will be introduced, including a matchmaking feature that, similar to the wildly popular matchmaking tool that Conley created for his hotel guests, will "hook you up" to the best festival for your interests, personality and lifestyle. And, simpatico brands that align with the Fest300 mission will be invited to become partners in the movement.
Fest300 Launch Highlights
- Best of Fest: The 50 most influential and interesting festivals – representing over 30 countries – are announced. New festivals will be added each week, reaching 270 by year-end. The final 30 will be crowdsourced (campaign details TBA).
- Stunning photos and video
- Editorial features on the festival phenomenon such as The Joy of the Crowd
- First-person "festimonials"
- Top lists including Best European Festivals and The Best Festivals To Get Naked
- Chip's blog, where he will report his on-the-ground experiences at 40 festivals in 24 countries this year – from running with the bulls in Spain, to running after a circle of cheese in a crazy competition in the English countryside
- The Pledge: Attend one festival in the coming year. Take it, share it, and help to grow the Fest300 community of culturally curious travelers
About Founder Chip Conley
Part world traveler, cultural anthropologist, and armchair psychologist, the founder and former CEO of Joie de Vivre Hospitality has created more boutique hotels than anyone on the planet. The New York Times bestselling author of Peak and Emotional Equations, Chip has translated the humanistic theories of Maslow and Frankl and shared his methods on the main stage at TED and around the world. Few better understand the desire for transformation and meaning through travel. Also the festival correspondent for AFAR Magazine he believes, "Being culturally curious creates a more robust and resilient life, which creates a safer and saner world."
Fest300 invites you to step outside your comfort zone and reconnect with humanity by exploring the transformative territory of festivals. Join the Fest300 movement and take the pledge at Fest300.com.
Contact: Debra Amador DeLaRosa