PHOENIX, AZ — Best Western Hotels & Resorts now offers an immersive 360-degree virtual reality (VR) experience providing a glimpse into all of the company’s North American hotels. Through the Best Western Virtual Reality Experience (BWVRE), guests can now take a virtual tour of nearly 2,000 properties. Best Western is the first company of its size to utilize this new technology.
The VR tours offer a guided 3D video of the hotels, including narration and music. Each video ranges in length from 50 seconds to 2 minutes. Guests can access the videos from Best Western’s YouTube channel, bestwesternTV.
“Before even stepping foot on the property, guests will be able to view guestrooms, lobbies, and amenities, as if they were there in person,” said Dorothy Dowling, chief marketing officer and senior vice-president of Best Western Hotels & Resorts.
For the past three years, Best Western has worked in partnership with Google Street View to gather 1.7 million photos of its nearly 2,000 North American hotels, paving the way for the BWVRE. BWVRE videos were developed in 8K resolution, the current highest ultra-high definition video available, far beyond what is available in most homes.
BWVRE will be available on all platforms, such as Google Maps, Google Search, YouTube and Facebook, that are supported by HTML5. This method allows the broadest distribution for these video assets and the ability for Best Western to continue to enhance the experience over time.
The launch of BWVRE comes during Best Western’s brand refresh. During the past two years, Best Western hotel owners have invested $2 billion in property improvements and renovations across North America. In addition, Best Western has grown its portfolio from one to seven hotel brands.