The First Ever In-Room Virtual Reality Travel Experience by Marriot Hotels Changed how People Travel

Innovation often takes some time to gain a foothold in the market. But those who adopt new technologies early often find themselves at an advantage. Here’s how Marriott Hotels made great use of VR and how you could do the same.

Marriott Hotels launched “VRoom Service” – a first-of-its-kind guest service that allows guests to order inspiring virtual reality experiences for their rooms. The experience was a first in the travel industry. The launch represents innovation that is still changing how people travel.

Guests were invited to call a dedicated VRoom Service extension or use Marriott’s Mobile Request app to request a VR headset and accompanying headphones. Once they were hand-delivered to the rooms along with easy-to-use instructions, they were available on loan to guests for up to 24 hours.

They also launched and included another innovation in the form of VR Postcards. These are travel stories users could immerse themselves in 360 3D via a virtual reality headset, featuring journeys to unique worldwide destinations. The user could follow a traveler during the experience, taking in the astounding landscapes and listening to a personal story about the trip. The first three VR Postcards were shot in the Andes Mountains in Chile, an ice cream shop in Rwanda, and the bustling streets of Beijing.

“Travel expands our minds and helps push our imagination,” said Matthew Carroll, vice president, of Marriott Hotels. “Our guests want to be in inventive spaces that help foster their creativity and thinking. VRoom combines storytelling with technology, two things that are important to next-generation travelers.”

The immersion and innovative nature of VR allow hoteliers to leverage the tech to their advantage. From a marketing standpoint, showcasing your hotel’s best features in VR is vastly superior to using static photos. With it, potential customers could get a feel for the property and even visit the most exciting events in the hotel’s organization.