"just a logical step forward in an industry that needed change"
Daniel Salmanovich, Founder The Arcade Hotel, speaks about the connection of eSports and tourism and what the idea of his hotel can offer to the gaming community and industry.
What inspired you to realize a “Gamer-Hotel” a how is it accepted by the community?
D.S.: The idea just came to me after travelling so much for work. No one cares about the gamers. Its normal that hotels offer TV/Movies to the guest via netflix, Apple TV etc… but why aren’t there any gaming consoles. So it was just a logical step forward in an industry that needed change. As for the community, it depends on which community you mean. From the hospitality sector, we haven’t received much notice, but from the gaming community, we are on top of the fucking world. I built this place for gamers but also and most importantly, the gaming community and industry. These are the people who allow us to visit worlds of spectacle and imagination, the people who transform us into Barbarians with magical powers. So this place because the place for them to meet, converse, and create.
What do you offer your Guests? Playstation instead of Spa?
D.S.: In every room you can find an Nvidia Shield multi media streaming box. Built in with Netflix, youtube, spotify, etc.. and Geforce which is like the Netflix for gaming so you can stream AAA games at anytime. As well, you will find at least 1 retro console in your room in case you felt like reliving the classics. All new consoles are outfitted with Sennheiser gaming Headphones. In the public spaces, it is mostly retro - the lobby has 4 retro consoles and 4 old school tv’s, In the comic library you can find a raspberry Pi which looks like an old coin-op dashboard with over 15000 games built in from every console up until 1994. Then we have the Game Room which is fitted with 6 top of line MSI Pc’s with the most ridiculous peripherals + Virtual reality + Playstation 3 and 4, Xbox 360 and Xobx one and a Nintendo Switch.
Which opportunities does eSports offer as a Tourism-idea?
D.S.: E-sports are becoming the norm, it will take quite a few more years to reach the level of “Normal” sports, but E-sports which is mostly done in teams, brings people from all over the world to compete just like many other sports tournament and the tourism that follows with it. The cool thing about E-sports is that usually a team consist of 5-6 people who don’t live in the same city or even the same country. If this “team” had to meet in Europe (with players from Africa, NA, or even Asia), they would lets say compete in germany but meet at the Arcade Hotel for 3 days before going there to hang out, train in person, strategies all in the same room as opposed to online. So this can be looked at from many perspectives and various reasons as to why E-sports can bring an increase in tourism.