Canary Wharf’s East Wintergarden shows how 360º VR can work for MICE

Canary Wharf’s iconic East Wintergarden has unveiled a new 360º virtual reality tour which helps prospective events managers better appreciate the space.

The tour is intended to help attract more clients, especially international organizations who might want to explore the East Wintergarden before heading off to London to visit in person. East Wintegarden says that its international clients are growing, in part spurred by the site’s proximity to London City Airport, as well as the number of international organizations with offices in Canary Wharf.

Joanne Taylor from East Wintergarden says of the VR tour:

“We are very lucky—East Wintergarden is truly special, meaning a VR tour can really show off everything we have to offer. In particular we wanted the tour to showcase how diverse we are as a venue—and the VR tour really delivers. Through the VR headset, viewers can experience the grandeur of the venue as well as its capacity to deliver on events ranging from simple meetings to full scale, production heavy awards and galas.

“Clients are busy people; we recognize they cannot possibly hope to see every venue, which is why we want to bring our venue to them.  Twenty years ago that meant a brochure, ten years ago it was a good website but VR has changed those needs again.  People want to use as many of their senses as possible when it comes to a venue tour, whilst a site visit is obviously the perfect solution–VR is a close second.”

Over the past few years, the desire to bring prospective customers into the travel space through VR immersion has grown. This digital mapping can be a more effective way to communicate the advantages of a product or experience better than still images.

In a campaign conducted last year, KLM enticed customers with a virtual flying experience that might encourage them to upgrade their seats.

SAS was the first airline to introduce a Google Street view of the cabins on its re-branded long-haul A330s, giving would-be passengers a chance to walk around the aircraft before they book.

Royal Caribbean showed-off its Voyager of the Seas cruise ship on Facebook with a 360º tour, and a number of destinations have put immersive video to work as travel inspiration.

Tourism Australia was also an innovator in this field and has a fully dedicated Android app that offers a variety of immersive tours which can be enjoyed on Google Chrome or with Google Cardboard viewers.

Related reading:

Virtual reality: All hype and no substance?

Five tech developments driving meetings and events forward

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