Harding cruise ships at the heart of digital transformation

A new digital age of cruise ships is berthing as Harding Retail and Holovis join forces to give on-board experiences a multisensory makeover. The partnership was announced in the new Digital Village at TFWA through an Augmented Reality take on a ceremonial ship launching, with a vessel bursting through the Holovis exhibition stand, Booth DA-16.

In a partnership approach, the teams are redefining on-board retail and entertainment solutions under the new Harding IXRTM (immersive xperiential retail) banner using emerging technologies to bring products and brands to life and make experiences in-store, on screen and at live events, memorable.

James Prescott, Managing Director of Harding Retail, explains:

“By harnessing the power of Virtual, Mixed and Augmented Reality, multisensory immersion and apps, we will revolutionise retail design and on-board guest experiences. This starts during the design phase by visualising environments in 1:1 scale, allowing stakeholders to review in real-time and make adjustments as they go.

“For passengers, the whole guest experience will be wrapped up into one app, so their journey begins from the moment they book their trip with personalisation options, itinerary planning and interactive content to inform and entertain at every possible touchpoint.”

Once on-board, the app will be used to bring to life a wealth of content rich media and unique forms of entertainment. These can be tailored to different guest demographics and connected to the specific cruise brand and culture. From ship-wide AR treasure hunts, to AR video experiences where the guests become part of the story, interactive mini games and day trip trivia.

Holovis originally developed this ‘Extended Experience’ concept for the theme park and entertainment industry.

Stuart Hetherington, CEO at Holovis explains:

“There are no limits to what can be achieved through Extended Experience solutions and personalisation of guest journeys is now an essential requirement for our clients and the experiences we deliver. Through creative experience design coupled with incentives, achievements and leader-board status for the guests to find, unlock or win, this plays well to the desire to enter competition with family, friends and other passengers and helps operators find non intrusive ways of extending their passengers experience while driving increased revenues. We are very excited to be partnering with Harding on this exciting new venture.”