Eight locations are set to open across the US, beginning later this year in Phoenix.
Earlier today legendary video game company Atari announced that it is partnering with innovation and strategic agency GSD Group to develop a new chain of hotels centered entirely around both classic and modern gaming. Leading the design of these ambitious locations is Napoleon Smith III, the producer behind the 2014 film reboot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles; he’ll be working alongside Arizona-based real estate developer True North Studio to bring his vision to life in Phoenix later this year.
“We are thrilled to partner with GSD Group and True North Studio to build the first-ever Atari branded hotels across the United States,” said Fred Chesnais, CEO of Atari in the official release. “Together we’ll build a space that will be much more than just a place to stay. Atari is an iconic global brand that resonates with people of all ages, countries, cultures and ethnic backgrounds and we cannot wait for our fans and their families to enjoy this new hotel concept.”
According to the release, the goal of these Atari Hotels is to merge retro gaming with modern immersive entertainment to offer guests a one-of-a-kind gaming-focused travel destination; this includes modern interactive entertainment powered by VR and AR.
“When creating this brand-new hotel concept, we knew that Atari would be the perfect way to give guests the ‘nostalgic and retro meets modern’ look and feel we were going for,” added Napoleon Smith III. “Let’s face it, how cool will it be to stay inside an Atari?!”
Unfortunately, it’s unclear at this time what type of immersive entertainment will be included as part of the Atari Hotel experience. If I were a betting man, I’d put money on each location offering access to popular VR experiences available on existing headsets like the HTC Vive Pro and Oculus Rift S rather than developing their own original content.
This may have been a smart decision given Atari’s spotty track record with VR technology; I’m of course referencing the ill-fated Atari Jaguar VR headset peripheral. Then again, I certainly wouldn’t mind playing a few rounds of Dig Dug in VR before bed.
“Atari Hotels will be the first of their kind in the U.S., offering gamers of all ages the ultimate in immersive entertainment and in every aspect of gaming,” said Shelly Murphy. We’re excited to be working on this project with such great partners and to bring a big win to Arizona.”
The first Atari Hotel is scheduled to open later this year in Phoenix, Arizona, followed by seven additional locations across Austin, Chicago, Denver, Las Vegas, San Jose, San Francisco, and Seattle. For more information check out atarihotels.com.
Feature Image Credit: Atari Inc.