Without leaving the house, the realistic immersion takes off on board the Oculus Rift. La Rioja region and Destinia have presented a technological collaboration to join a new future that is almost here: the era of virtual travel. The project aims to discover different towns of the region, one of which is the ski resort town of Valdezcaray, featured today, to reach tourists who are even more technologically advanced and demanding. José Abel Bayo Martínez, Minister of Tourism for the province of La Rioja and Amuda Goueli, CEO of Destinia.com, rallied around the presentation of the project, created to provide a real experience that La Rioja could offer to travelers of the 21st century.
Jointly developing an experience with the Oculus Rift to discover with new eyes the Spanish province La Rioja
La Rioja and the online travel agency recognize the potential new technologies have on the tourism industry
“The province of La Rioja has always been characterized for its emphasis on innovation in its promotional strategy of the region as a touristic destination, utilizing the latest in technology to do so. This virtual journey with Destinia, a company that combines innovation and technology, is a demonstration of our focus. I believe we will be able to surprise the public and hook visitors to the region”, stated Abel Bayo. Likewise, Amuda Goueli made note of the innovative spirit which distinguishes Destinia: “We are making way for a new path in an area which we are confident will offer many possibilities and positive outcomes. Technology is advancing every second and we want to be a part of this journey from the start”.
During the presentation, a making-of was shown about the behind-the-scenes development of the project and the complex technical set. The virtual reality videos capture images in 360 degrees – seven GoPro cameras were filming simultaneously – which, thanks to the Oculus Rift, seamlessly submerges users into what they are living in a very real and natural way. At the moment, purchasing the Oculus is not necessary to enjoy the experience, as a cardboard version has been created that works well in combination with a Smartphone.
In the future, the new technology will also incorporate body movement, close objects and an environment that heightens the realistic sensation. “Our next step is to work in a three-dimensional virtual reality to magnify the immersion sensation and the tendency is to advance towards a fusion between virtual reality and an augmented reality”, added Amuda.
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