Hotels look to the metaverse and beyond

As online and offline experiences become increasingly blurred, hotels are looking to web3 to deepen their marketing efforts. Virtual adventures are all the more appealing now that the state of travel is so, shall we say, challenging. When it comes to the metaverse and other high-tech digital experiences, physical location doesn’t matter – hospitality companies are bringing the adventure to you, wherever you are.


In our travel report published last week, we wrote about a new augmented reality experience from Moxy Hotels, part of Marriott Bonvoy’s portfolio. Bridging the gap between physical and digital, in-person hotel guests are invited to explore Moxy properties virtually using their own personalized avatar, with challenges to complete and prizes to win. But that’s just the beginning of Marriott Bonvoy’s web3 strategy. Earlier this year, the hotel portfolio announced a partnership with ONE Esports to launch Gamer's Paradise, an all-new gaming variety talk show series, and several months prior, Marriott Bonvoy became one of the first hospitality brands to create its own NFTs at Art Basel Miami Beach as part of its global “Power of Travel” campaign.


In May, M Social, a lifestyle brand under Millennium Hotels and Resorts, became the world’s first hospitality group to establish a hotel in the metaverse. Operated on the browser-based platform Decentraland, the digital M Social experience is located near Genesis Plaza, a hub that sits at the center of the popular 3D world. The virtual property has sleek, stylish interiors inspired by the physical outposts of M Social, which has locations in Paris, New York, Singapore, and Auckland. Like most digital experiences, this one is constantly evolving, and the brand has plans for plans to do product launches and other collaborations.


Luxury hospitality group Oetker Collection, the company behind some of the world’s top hotels, has partnered with luxury fashion mobile game Drest on its metaverse debut. Founded by former fashion editor Lucy Yeomans, Drest has collaborated with a long list of luxury brands, including Gucci and Prada, and offers clothing from more than 250 top designers; players act as stylists and are given daily challenges centered around putting together outfits. With this collaboration with Oetker, players can style avatars based on famous supermodels, like Irina Shayk and Natalia Vodianova, and do virtual photo shoots with them against Oetker Collection properties including Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc and Le Bristol Paris.