I’ve been waiting for a site like Oyster for a long time. I’ve seen a few attempts at the concept, but Oyster really nails it.
Oyster gives you a real look at a hotel. The more hotels you stay at the more you realize that the photography presented on the hotel’s site rarely matches up with the reality available at the hotel location.
For example, here’s what The Superior Room at the Lucerene in NYC really looks like. Everything from the what’s on the dresser to the type of phone to the bedside clock to the plastic cups in the bathroom. There are 96 photos in total of a single hotel room. All the details are there.
If you’re still not sold, check out Oyster’s Photo Fakeouts section. This is where they compare marketing shots with actual shots. No models, no perfect lighting, no crops, no just-right angles — this is what it really looks like when you’re standing there.
Here’s what the pool at this hotel in Jamaica really looks like. Here’s a more realistic shot of another pool at a hotel in Hawaii. While we’re on the topic of pools, check out this crop at the Sofitel hotel in LA.
There’s a ton more to explore on Oyster. The site is really well done — one of the best executed sites I’ve seen in a long time. They get all the little things right. It’s fast, clear, and easy to get around. The photos are big and easy to browse, the copywriting is generally excellent too. It’s a model.