Melbourne shopping centre’s Virtual/Chill winter village

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The QV Melbourne shopping centre is unveiling Virtual/Chill, a ‘winter village’ promoted as being complete with a “state-of-the-art new VR experience”.

From today (May 18) until June 10, the central plaza at QV Melbourne, owned by Dexus Retail, will be transformed into a “modern Nordic wonderland”.

Shoppers are invited to experience “Scandinavian cabin comfort”, a fire pit, bespoke cocktails from Teeling Irish Whiskey, live music and more. The program is free, with complimentary food or drink every night.

Virtual/Chill will also feature an “all-new completely immersive VR experience” created by “360° VR experts” Rapid Films.

According to the organisers, the experience will involve the use of real footage filmed on “GoPro’s newest flagship 360° video camera”, with shoppers “soaring 2,000m in the air past snow-capped mountains, dancing over treetops and through the valleys of the Swiss Alps”.

Participants will wear a Samsung Gear VR mobile headset and sit suspended in a paragliding harness, with “cool air whisking past their face to create a stronger sense of presence and immersion”.

“Not only is this some of the first footage filmed on GoPro’s new 360° camera, we have made the whole activation even more unique by turning it into a multi-sensory experience,” Rapid Films Executive Producer Susannah Phillips said. “Tactile or ‘touch’ elements will work to enhance the virtual reality in the real world.”