CHICAGO—The Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel, Chicago has announced the launch of the Art of Blu, a mobile app that allows guests to experience a curated, self-guided tour through the hotel’s lobby and permanent art gallery. The cultural art tour provides education and insight into the hotel’s design and art collection, which features pieces ranging from Chicago street photography and oil canvas to larger sculptures.
“Our guests seek interactive learning experiences, and we wanted to develop an app to engage travelers in search of a more immersive hotel stay,” says Pierre-Louis Giacotto, general manager of the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel, Chicago. “One of the conveniences of using your mobile device for travel is the ability to do it yourself, and the Art of Blu app offers guests a seamless way to learn about the hotel and the history of Chicago through the art featured within the hotel.”
The tour starts at the hotel entrance and guides the guest through the lobby and concludes in the permanent art gallery.
Created by AcoustiGuide, the developer of apps for the Guggenheim and the 9/11 Memorial Museum, this museum-quality audio art tour is a first for the hospitality industry. Once guests download the free application, they can scroll through images for more information on the building’s architecture and lobby interior, as well as the hotel’s art collection. Highlights of the tour include first-hand accounts from American architect Jeanne Gang, who introduces the Aqua Tower’s architecture; Scottish interior designer Jim Hamilton, who shares his Chicago inspirations for the lobby design; and author Richard Cahan, who talks about the Vivian Maier photography hanging in the lobby. Original video, interviews, and content take users to the Chicago streets that Vivian Maier photographed in the 1950s until her death in 2009.
To take the art tour, guests and other visitors to the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel can visit the front desk to receive a set of complimentary headphones and download the free mobile application directly to their Apple iOS or Android devices, or they also have the option to rent out a tablet at the front desk. The user-friendly app allows guests to explore works of art at their own pace and in whatever order they choose. The entire hotel tour takes 35 minutes.