MILWAUKEE—Marcus Hotels & Resorts’ flagship property, The Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee, Wis., will be the first hotel in the United States to offer an augmented reality (AR) tour available to guests. To be launched during Milwaukee’s Gallery Night on Oct. 17, participants will be invited to download an AR application from their smartphone that will prompt them on a guided tour of the hotel’s art collection. The hotel company hopes to expand the technology to other locations in the future.
At launch, 10 of the items in the hotel’s art collection will be interactive, with the goal of adding additional pieces in the coming months. The tour provides a real-time, digital, full motion experience for guests, featuring games, videos, and other graphics. The free app can be used on any smartphone or Epson or Google Glass wearable.
“We now have the ability to provide millennials and tech-savvy guests the opportunity to connect and engage with a 120-year-old hotel in a modern format. What a perfect way to visually learn about the story behind the pieces and engage with the items that make this historic hotel so unique. Many guests of the Pfister are interested in the stories and history behind this landmark hotel—AR will help us tell those stories better than ever before,” said Chris Anderson, senior vice president of Marcus Hotels & Resorts.
Augmented reality, a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented, or supplemented, by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics, or GPS data, is gaining popularity among marketers. “AR is a creative way to capture our customer’s attention, and allows them to see our brand in a new way and engage with us on a completely new level,” Anderson added.
Marcus Hotels & Resorts also unveiled The Pfister Hotel’s new fully responsive website. The Marcus Hotels & Resorts design team built the new website to fit properly across all screen sizes and tablets, utilizing responsive web design techniques. As new devices are introduced, the website is able to resize itself based on any screen size.
“Marcus Hotels & Resorts is unique in that the creation of advanced technologies and websites is done by a talented group of in-house employees. Whether creating guest experiences or showcasing our properties, we feel that this approach gives us advantages in speed to market, flexibility, and innovation,” said Peter Engel, chief technology officer for The Marcus Corporation.