La Citéco, a Renaissance hotel in augmented reality

A former branch of the Banque de France in Paris, the Hotel Gaillard now houses the museum of economics. The tour of what was originally a Renaissance-inspired private mansion has recently benefited from an augmented reality experience.

It’s hard to miss this private mansion that looks like a castle on the Loire, on the Place du Général Catroux in Paris. The architecture contrasts a bit with the atmosphere of Haussmann. It was the Hôtel Gaillard, residence of the banker Emile Gaillard (1821-1902) who had it built in 1882, taking the castles of Blois and Fontainebleau as a model, both for the exterior and for the interior. The site then housed a branch of the Banque de France until 2006 before becoming Citéco, the Museum of the Economy, in 2019. Exhibitions (such as the one in September 2022) are held in the old vault built on the site of the original courtyard interior. Upstairs are the apartments of Emile Gaillard. From this summer, your visit can be made in mixed reality.

Designed by the RealCast studio, the experience lasts about twenty minutes, organized like a hunt for objects that serve as a pretext to admire the interior decoration, the architectural details, to learn anecdotes, from room to room.

3D virtual objects

Therefore, the visitor is equipped with an augmented reality viewer, that is, a transparent screen that does not separate him from the environment, unlike a virtual reality headset, and allows the display of virtual 3D objects on walls, doors , fireplaces, in the middle of a real room. You can manipulate digital objects, see your hands modeled and animated in real time through the viewfinder.

The tour begins at the foot of the main staircase, on whose steps virtual candles appear. It is a small animated stone bust of Emile Gaillard, just as virtual and floating in the air, which serves as a guide. The visitor is supposed to embody Frédéric Chopin. The musician was a piano teacher for the local master, but he died long before he saw the mansion, in 1849.

The illusion of the visitor to play the mazurka

The experience then implies […]

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