Bw Launches Virtual Reality Tours For All North American Hotels
Nearly 2,000 Virtual Reality Tours Created, Reimagining How Guests View Hotels
Phoenix -- As part of Best Western® Hotels & Resorts' virtual reality (VR) experience, guests now have an immersive 360 degree look into all of the company's North American hotels. Through the Best Western Virtual Reality Experience (BWVRE), guests are now able to view a virtual reality tour of nearly 2,000 properties. These videos are reinventing how guests view hotels and choose where to stay. Best Western is the first major company of its size and scale to utilize this cutting-edge technology in this way, setting a new industry standard for how virtual reality can be used to enhance the consumer journey.
The VR tours offer a guided 3D video of the hotels including narration and music, creating a truly engaging story-telling experience. 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 guest rooms, 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. "Best Western is a first-mover in this effort, and we know our guests and our hotels will benefit from this game-changing technology."
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 consumers' homes today. As technology infrastructure improves, BWVRE provides the best quality, sharpest images available.
BWVRE will be available on all platforms that are supported by HTML5, such as Google Maps, Google Search, YouTube and Facebook. 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 transformative brand refresh, an effort highlighting the hotel company's decade of success. 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, offering travelers unique, stylish and contemporary hotel options across globe. Best Western has emerged as a global powerhouse, outpacing the competition in RevPAR (revenue per available room) and winning record levels of industry awards. The brand has continued to grow and evolve to truly become Today's Best Western for Today's Traveler.
About Best Western® Hotels & Resorts
Best Western Hotels & Resorts headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, is a privately held hotel brand with a global network of 4,200* hotels in more than 100* countries and territories worldwide. Best Western offers 11 hotel brands to suit the needs of developers and guests in every market: Best Western®, Best Western Plus®, Best Western Premier®, Vīb®, GLō®, Executive Residency by Best Western®, BW Premier Collection®, and BW Signature CollectionSM by Best Western; as well as its recently launched franchise offerings: SureStay® Hotel by Best Western, SureStay Plus® Hotel by Best Western and SureStay Collection® by Best Western. Now celebrating more than 70 years of hospitality, Best Western provides its hoteliers with global operational, sales and marketing support, and award-winning online and mobile booking capabilities. Best Western continues to set industry records regarding awards and accolades, including 64 percent of the brand's North American hotels earning a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award in 2017, Business Travel News® ranking Best Western Plus and Best Western number one in upper-mid-price and mid-price hotel brands, and Best Western receiving seven consecutive Dynatrace® Best of the Web awards for its leading hotel website. Best Western has also won nine consecutive AAA®/CAA® Lodging Partner of the Year awards, recognizing the brand's commitment to providing exceptional service and great value to AAA/CAA's nearly 58 million members in the U.S. and Canada. Best Western-branded hotels were top ranked in J.D. Power's 2017 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study - ranking first in breakfast (food and beverage category) for midscale; and second in overall guest satisfaction. Over 32 million travelers are members of the brand's award-winning loyalty program Best Western Rewards®, one of the few programs in which members earn points that never expire and can be redeemed at any Best Western hotel worldwide. Best Western's partnerships with AAA/CAA and Harley-Davidson® provide travelers with exciting ways to interact with the brand. Through its partnership with Google® Street View, Best Western is the first major company of its size and scale to launch a virtual reality experience for customers, setting a new industry standard and reinventing how guests view hotels.
* All Best Western and SureStay-branded hotels are independently owned and operated.
* Numbers are approximate, may fluctuate, and include hotels currently in the development pipeline.