Renaissance Hotels, a Marriott brand that says it "encourages guests to live life to discover," has launched Discovery Doors, an interactive film-based gaming experience that encourages travelers to find surprises behind doors to "[make] discovery easier and more fun."
The online experience, created by communications agency Anomaly and directed by Jason Zada, enables users to "explore a real life Renaissance hotel online while unlocking unexpected elements of surprise behind every door," the brand says.
According to Amy Sherman, director of digital marketing for lifestyle brands at Marriott, the game takes players through a "widescreen immersive experience" in which they can collect keys in the lobby of Renaissance New York Hotel 57, a boutique hotel in Manhattan.
Dan Vinh, vice president of global marketing at Renaissance Hotels, says the brand is featuring this particular hotel because "it represents a Renaissance hotel in that it's very boutique-y and design-forward and has a cool vibe and interesting characters that inhabit the lobby and bar lounge area."
Guests in the lobby appear with key icons over their heads. Users simply click on the icons to collect keys.
Once they have done so, players can open an elevator door into a hallway to find doors to open. When a user clicks on a door, there's something "cool, inspiring and fun" behind it, like the filming of a silent movie or an ‘80s breakdance battle, as well as karaoke and mannequins, and a message about whether the user has won a prize.
"It's sort of random fun rooms and as you're walking in, it's sort of like you're walking into something that's happening," Vinh says. "You see a snippet and walk out."
There are about 12 different rooms, Sherman notes.
"The idea is to keep playing and collecting keys," she says. "It's really fun, engaging and super-immersive."
Players can also collect keys by sharing a unique discovery on Twitter with the hashtag #RDiscovery; inviting friends to sign up for Discovery Doors; checking into a Renaissance Hotel in person and checking into a Renaissance Hotel via Foursquare.
Even though Renaissance is a brand with 155 hotels in 35 countries, Vinh says, "Our awareness is still pretty low, so we're looking for a way to get our name out there and also get people to understand we are a lifestyle hotel brand within the Marriott portfolio."
In addition, Renaissance was "looking for a creative, fun way to tap into this whole social space and gamification to do something fun to get our Renaissance brand out there to showcase our hotel and engage people on the whole discovery angle," Vinh says. "What our brand is positioned to be is ‘stay at Renaissance and help live life to discover...' We wanted to tell the story beyond guests staying in the hotel and reach a broader universe through digital communications. The game developed as a fun way to invite people into the hotel to get a sense of what we're about."
The brand says its target is so-called "discoverers," or "people who travel for business and they look forward to business travel because they see it as an opportunity to see the world and explore," Vinh says.
The target audience for Discovery Doors is slightly younger, or "future business travelers," he adds.
To launch the experience, Renaissance partnered with singer-songwriter CeeLo Green to surprise a family at the Renaissance New York Hotel 57 with a song as they opened their guest room door.
A video of the experience has 1,200 views as of August 18.
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Lisa Lacy is senior staff writer at ClickZ. In addition to ClickZ, her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.
March 19, 2014