Retail chains where you try virtual reality (VR) are becoming more and more common, so it seems only natural that something similar would open in the most glamorous city in the world, Las Vegas. We’ve seen them all across the United States, but this one, Area15, feels a bit different.
Chain Store Age reports that Area15 is described as a “wholly re-imaged world” which will include immersive experiences, themed events, art installations, restaurants, bars and, of course, nightlife. Area15 is aimed at clientèle that include gamers and sci-fi enthusiasts, so we think their focus on immersive experiences just might include VR, augmented reality (AR) or perhaps even some mixed reality (MR).
Area15 is a joint venture between Fisher Brothers, a real estate development firm, and Beneville Studios, a creative agency. Both companies are based in New York, and plan for their new project to have 126,000 square foot of space for a carefully selected variety of experimental and retail businesses. There will also be a 40,000 square foot space outside which they say is well suited for live music, festivals, events and more, with retail and restaurant businesses set up adjacent, of course.
“Area15 is a radical re-imagining of retail,” said Winston Fisher, a principal of Fisher Brothers. “It will be a 21st century immersive bazaar and an entirely new concept in retail and entertainment.”
Area15 should have a little something for everything, including an ecological forest of an original bamboo structure from Bali in its “Spine” bazaar.
Multi-media company Meow Wolf has been signed as the anchor tenant, and will work with Las Vegas artists and talent to create experiences for Area15. One of Meow Wolf’s biggest investors is none other than George R.R. Martin of Game of Thrones fame.
“Area15 understands the current cultural shift into new dimensions of experience, whether that’s in telling a story, entertainment, dining or retail,” said Vince Kadlubek, CEO of Meow Wolf. “Meow Wolf has envisioned an entirely new way of telling a story — more immersive, more interactive, more exploratory than anything before — and we are looking forward to producing an otherworldly experience for the vibrant local population of Las Vegas, as well as the year-round visitors from around the globe.”
For more news on Area15 as it emerges, keep reading VRFocus.