The burgeoning “corporate gimmick hotel” space is expanding even further, as gaming company Atari announced that it would be opening eight gaming hotels across the U.S., with the first set to break ground in Phoenix this spring.
Atari has partnered with GSD Group, who will develop and design the hotels, and local Phoenix developer True North Studio to realize the first building. Although no concrete details have been released on the number of rooms or height of the first hotel, GSD Group has promised a suite of gaming-related amenities. That includes augmented reality and virtual reality integration and video game-themed branding (one assumes this means Atari’s games)—selected locations will also include production studios and esports venues.
Design-wise, it looks like GSD Group is banking on nostalgia, similar to the reportedly troubled Atari VCS retro console the company was crowdfunding for on Kickstarter. Atari’s swooping, triple-pronged logo will wrap the otherwise boxy first hotel, and from the rendering, it appears the bands will light up and give the project a “modded PC case” feel.
“When creating this brand-new hotel concept, we knew that Atari would be the perfect way to give guests the ‘nostalgic and retro meets modern’ look and feel we were going for. Let’s face it, how cool will it be to stay inside an Atari?!” said Napoleon Smith III, partner at GSD Group, in a press release.
The pivot towards hospitality and esports might seem like a strange choice for a company better known for Space Invaders, but experience spaces have become major growth areas lately; the aforementioned Taco Bell hotel, or any of the numerous Legolands, can attest to that.
More Atari Hotels have been planned for “Las Vegas, Denver, Chicago, Austin, Seattle, San Francisco, and San Jose” according to Atari and GSD Group.