Wow. That’s all I can say, as I’m practically speechless. Because I just visited Rome and had the time of my life.
Let me be clear – this was a virtual vacation, and all along the way, I made the decisions on what to do next. Splurge or spend? Hotel or home away? Pasta or everything else? Art or architecture? Then the video took me to my preferred destination. It’s all a part of 60 Second Cites Presents: The World Your Way, and I watched and participated in the interactive video on my computer screen from the privacy of my home office. All I can say is “Wow” – and no jet lag!
Here’s how it works.
In August, Refinery 29, one of the world’s leading global media and entertainment destinations focused on women, and eko, the world’s only platform for choice-driven content, debuted “60 Second Cities Presents: The World Your Way,” an interactive video experience based on the popular Refinery 29 original series that showcases hyper-shareable tours of global travel destinations in just one minute.
Produced by Refinery29, the new extended, interactive take on the franchise allows viewers to architect and experience the getaway of their dreams, from the comfort of their own home. Part choice-driven experience, part travel show, and chock full of highly watchable wanderlust, this series draws its audience into a digital experience like never before. Available to watch on eko.com, the leader in choice driven entertainment, the new experience offers the audience a chance to:
- Explore 5 continents and 10 major world cities: Mexico City, Rome, New York, Los Angeles, Hanoi, Cartagena, Miami, Taipei, Bali, Sydney
- Celebrate over 700 local businesses
- Experience over 2,000 possible video paths
- Plan your next trip on any budget
Annie Georgia Greenberg is the gregarious host and executive producer, and she told me in an exclusive interview for Forbes.com that each video episode can translate into more than 200 possible video experiences.
It’s all up to you.
The series has also highlighted more than 700 local businesses, and in this time of quarantine, that’s a great advantage. At the end of each video, there is a landing page with charity options for those affected by COVID-19.
Said Ms. Greenberg: “It’s the world’s first interactive travel show, as you watch it, and it opens up the world for every type if traveler. So you get that endorphin boost!”
In Rome, for example, I made the choice to splurge at the Hotel de Russie, and then had the time of my life on a Vespa driven by my private tour guide. What a way to go! I since I opted for art over architecture, the show took me to the phenomenal Borghese Galley. I also chose to work out afterwards – in the inimitable style of taking a gladiator class, where I could learn how to be effective with sword and shield. Lastly, it was time for a spritz instead of wine. Oh yes, and all along the way I made the decision to pursue pasta, with a cooking class given by an Italian grandmother, who showed us that every single step in the process is important. What better way to explore La Dolce Vita!
With much of the world on lockdown, we all need a little daydream. If you’re itching to get out of your home and explore, this innovative travel show is the timely answer to satisfy your wanderlust. Even as borders remain temporarily shut, audiences can transport to international destinations, and get to know unique people and cultures all around the world — from paragliding in Taipei and a hot air balloon ride in Mexico City to champeta dance classes in Cartagena. Each episode spotlights the mom-and-pop restaurants, activities, retailers, artists, and world heritage sites that make up the lifeblood of each destination.
60 Second Cities Presents: The World Your Way is part of a multi-series deal inked last year between eko and Refinery29, based on existing Refinery29 IP including Sweet Digs Interactive, which also launched in August. Together, Refinery29 and eko are partnering to put women in control of the stories they watch. Using eko’s technology, the shows will invite viewers to make meaningful choices and decide what happens next.
So, when the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie – you know it’s time to explore The World Your Way!
For more on my Wanderlust travels, please Follow me on Instagram at @Debbikickham.