Best Western Hotels to Implement Virtual Reality by Summer 2016
PHOTO: The Best Western President Hotel in New York. (Photo courtesy of Best Western).
Best Western Hotels & Resorts is embracing virtual reality (VR) and is set to roll out VR experiences at each of its branded properties in North America by this upcoming summer.
The Phoenix, Arizona-based company has spent several years working with Google Street View to collect approximately 1.7 million photos of its North American hotels.
Now, by combining the Google Street View technology with customized narration and music, the company is ready to launch the Best Western Virtual Reality Experience (BWVRE). Best Western announced this week that by this summer every Best Western branded hotel in North America will have implemented the BWVRE.
"Walking into a lobby or guest room leaves an indelible impression on what kind of experience will follow, but photos aren’t enough," said Best Western's chief marketing officer and senior vice president Dorothy Dowling in a statement. "The Best Western Virtual Reality Experience transports consumers into our hotels and a customizable narration will guide them through the experience."
BWVRE videos will be made available on a variety of platforms, including popular ones like Google Maps, Google Search, YouTube and Facebook. They'll also be developed in the highest ultra-high definition video currently available (8K resolution).
While this isn't the first time or way in which hotels have implemented VR, the launch is notable given Best Western's massive size and scale. The company boasts roughly 2,200 hotels in North America.
The BWVRE rollout is part of a larger brand-wide refresh aimed at improving Best Western properties across North America. Best Western said that hotel owners in the region have invested $2 billion in renovations.
Meanwhile, outside of North America Best Western has recently inked several deals to expand. Just last month the company signed the largest-ever multi-hotel agreement in its history in Thailand.
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