Cult&Rain Debuts Immersive, Blended Reality Retail Experience

The digital luxury fashion label’s metaverse experience combines its digital and physical garments into one digital experience.
Elizabeth Christenson
Editor, Retail Leader
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Pro Tip: Retail is no longer just about the physical and the digital, but also the virtual. Luxury brands and niche retailers have more easily entered the metaverse and have begun to blend the physical retail model with virtual offerings. In a world where tangible items become less attractive to consumers, purchasing items of value in the metaverse is predicted to gain momentum.

Cultr World

Digital luxury fashion label Cult&Rain pushed experiential retail forward this summer with its version of the metaverse — Cultr World. The virtual launch coincides with the opening of an immersive physical retail experience, which was designed to reflect the feeling of being in the metaverse. The London store opened in the experimental Outernet entertainment district, which is fitting since the store offers entertainment, 4D interactive wall-to-wall screens and several digital world integrations.

Indistinguishable from Real Life

Cult&Rain was developed on a new version of the internet based on blockchain (aka Web3) and originally found success with its Genesis and Drop001 NFT collections. The brand sees its future tying digital and physical luxury retail together. 

Cult&Rain’s metaverse experience Cultr World combines its digital and physical garments into one digital experience. Developed in partnership with Swivelmeta, Cultr World gives the brand’s customers exclusive access to the virtual world, which also includes areas designated for shopping, socializing and exhibitions through consumers’ avatars. The metaverse experience includes virtual waterfalls, graffiti walls and intergalactic view, but with technologically advanced photo-realistic graphics. 

“We built Cultr World because we believe today’s pixelated versions of the metaverse are NGMI [Not Gonna Make It] in their current state,” said George Yang, founder and CEO of Cult&Rain, in a release. “The future of the metaverse in terms of the quality will be photo real. With Cultr World, we think the metaverse will be so powerful that the digital layer will be nearly indistinguishable from real life, with frictionless interplay between the two worlds.”

Cult&Rain avatar

The Blended Shopping Experience

Cult&Rain designed four unique avatars that consumers can choose from to explore Cultr World. Each avatar offers a digital collection of luxury sneakers and varsity jackets from the brand’s Genesis and Drop001 collections, available for users to choose from to customize their outfits. Avatars enter Cultr World through Cultr Lounge, a space where consumers can socialize and attend events.

As an avatar, consumers can explore the Cultr Shop, a digital shopping experience where they can purchase NFTs from the Genesis and Drop001 collections, luxury physical sneakers, digital fashion collections, and a proof-of-attendance NFT badge that grants them a free exclusive future airdrop of a digital wearable. 

To bring the physical manifestation to life, Cult&Rain partnered with Outernet London to use its luxury visionary space, where physical and digital experiences blend together to give in-person and virtual event-goers a futuristic experience — complete with immense floor-to-ceiling, wrap-around, 16,000-pixel screens to create a truly immersive ‘phygital’ environment. The Cultr Lounge and Shop also are accessible via QR code-tagged displays in the physical space.

Launch Party

Cult&Rain hosted a Cultr World launch event featuring a Web3 DJ, streaming live from New York in a 2-hour set for all virtual guests while the metaverse party was mirrored and broadcast live for in-person event-goers who participated alongside virtual attendees. All virtual guests entered into Cultr Lounge as an avatar with an invitation-only link, joining from the interactive event space itself via portable gaming system and virtual reality devices that were provided. 

Expanding the Platform

The second phase of Cultr World will roll out Cultr Games and Cultr Pad. Cultr Games is a lo-fi SEGA-esque gaming platform where players win free NFTs and access to upcoming events, while Cultr Pad is a personalized, fully designed digital home showcasing NFT and digital fashion collections.

“Essentially, the metaverse is the greatest art project in the world, and it requires imagination and creativity,” Yang said. “That means that you have to step out of your comfort zone, but most companies don’t want to do that. The metaverse is not about playing it safe. The metaverse is about inspiring people, and you can only do that through art. Cultr World is a form of escapism and creativity, and it’s our version of the most incredible metaverse experience we can imagine today.”