From April 28, 2023 to April 30, 2023, thousands of music fans will make their way to the shores of Virginia Beach, Virginia for Pharrell Williams' 2023 Something in the Water Festival.

The event is finally making its way back to its creator's home turf, and everyone is eager to see what surprises the super producer and rapper has in store. The 3-day event will feature art installations, panel discussions, and of course, multiple stages featuring acts like: Latto, Lil Wayne, Jazmine Sullivan as well as Pharrell and his industry friends.

If you have plans to make your way to Virginia Beach for the festivities, we wanted to equip you with this expertly curated guide, so you can also see the best the area has to offer. From hotel recommendations and the best restaurants, to must-see landmarks, here's our insider's guide on where to eat, stay and play during Something in the Water.

Where to Stay

For nearly a century, the grand Cavalier Hotel has stood sentinel over the Virginia Beach Oceanfront. Perched on a grassy hill overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, Virginia's most iconic hotel has welcomed ten U.S. presidents, countless celebrities and distinguished guests from around the world. 

If you're looking for something a little more modern, the Hyatt Place Virginia Beach/Oceanfront is your spot. Opened last summer with beachfront access and private balconies overlooking the Atlantic, you'll be steps away from the popular boardwalk while exploring the town’s most popular attractions.

Lobby area of Hyatt Place Virginia Beach/Oceanfront. Image: courtesy of Hyatt Place Virginia Beach/Oceanfront.

Where to Eat

You're there to attend a Black-owned festival, so why not keep that support going by patronizing some of the area's Black-owned restaurants as well. For your morning fuel, consider All Good Café. If you're plant-based or vegan, Desmond’s Island Soul Grille and Cltre Vegan Jnt have you covered.

And for a nice dinner option, check out Cobalt Grille. Alvin W. Williams, its executive chef and owner, has fashioned an exceptionally divine dining experience with extraordinary cuisine and a remarkable variety of fine wines assembled from around the globe.

Granola bars made by All Good Café. Image: courtesy of All Good Café.

What to Do

While most of your time will be spent within the Something in the Water Festival gates, we suggest also carving out a few moments to check out what Virginia Beach has to offer beyond its star-studded musical talents.

Virginia Beach’s ViBe Creative District is an inspirational hub for artists and spirits, roasters and restaurants, workouts and wares, museums and more. There are also several amazing murals that can't be missed, including those commissioned by artists like: Marly McFly and Hamilton Glass.

If you're a history buff, the African American History Tour showcases over a dozen landmarks and locations, offering a fascinating window into the African American experience in the area. 

Historical marker along the self-guided African American History Tour route. Image: courtesy of Virginia Beach tourism.