Virtual Helsinki is a digital twin of Helsinki that has been created by means of 3D modelling. The aim is to profile Helsinki as a centre of VR/AR expertise, as well as to attract a million virtual visitors to Helsinki in 2019.
“Virtual tourism is a globally interesting and growing theme. Consumers are increasingly aware of the climate impacts of tourism and are keen to make responsible decisions. Virtual tourism also supports Helsinki’s own goal of being a pioneer in sustainable tourism while reinforcing our reputation as a city that utilises the latest digital innovations,” explains Laura Aalto, CEO, Helsinki Marketing.
Helsinki recently won the European Commission’s new European Capital of Smart Tourism competition, the evaluation criteria for which included the sustainable development of tourism, the use of digitalisation in tourism services, an interesting cultural heritage and innovative tourism offerings. VR-Helsinki combines the same themes.
In the virtual city experience presented at Slush, visitors can enjoy an exciting tour of Senate Square, the home of legendary Finnish architect Alvar Aalto in Munkkiniemi and the recreational island of Lonna. The tour is accompanied by music and changing seasons.
While many actors in the tourism industry already market their destinations in 360-videos that can be viewed on VR headsets, the concept for Virtual Helsinki is broader. VR-Helsinki allows visitors to move about freely in the computer simulation of Helsinki, and various additional experiences can be created. In the future, VR-Helsinki will serve as a digital platform that enables also service providers to run their businesses.