Step into a virtual wonderland at game-changing venue coming to Toronto

Get ready Toronto—the city’s about to get one its most high-tech venues and experiences! 

Illuminarium, in partnership with Toronto-based Secret Location, has announced the grand opening of its first Canadian location in Toronto’s Distillery District.

Joining Atlanta and Las Vegas as the third Illuminarium location in North America, the Toronto location will occupy the neighbourhood’s former Fermenting Cellar, a sprawling 13,500 square-foot complex at 28 Distillery Lane.

This partnership will showcase the fusion of cutting-edge technology and immersive storytelling. 

Through state-of-the-art technology, including pure laser projections, LIDAR sensors for interactivity, scent machines, a unique digital sound space, and programming utilizing the latest video game engines, guests will be fully immersed in a world that blurs the lines between cinema and reality. 

In fact, Illuminarium aims to place visitors “inside” the narrative, allowing them to see, hear, feel, smell, and even influence the environment around them. This “Virtual Reality, without the glasses” experience promises to be unlike anything seen before.

And Ryan Andal, President and Founder of Secret Location, is excited about the upcoming collaboration.

“Every space in The Distillery District whether it’s a retailer or a restaurant is a Canadian small business. In our minds it’s the perfect location for us to have a venue that will collaborate with and support local talent,” he says.   

“I also love the juxtaposition of this ultra, high-tech venue inside of this old fermenting cellar. Toronto has a long history of mixing old and new and I love that we’re adding to that tapestry.”

Known for being a ground-breaking global experiential entertainment company, Illuminarium was founded by industry leaders in cinematic and interactive content, architecture, and theatrical design. Partnering with Secret Location, who is renowned for its Emmy award-winning interactive VR and AR experiences, the venue will host and create digitally-projected experiences.

“Illuminarium is doing for immersive entertainment what IMAX did for film, they’re innovating at scale and providing an unparalleled canvas for creators like us. Our partnership opens a range of possibilities to create and push boundaries,” adds Andal. 

For its grand opening, Illuminarium will feature two incredible experiences. Visitors can enjoy “Space: A Journey to the Moon and Beyond” where they’ll be taken on an extraordinary galactic adventure, offering interactive and visually stunning imagery captured by the James Webb Telescope. 

They can also enjoy “Waking Wonderland,” which was created by Secret Location, that takes visitors on an interactive journey inspired by Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. It’s here, guests can get a chance to interact with the infamous Cheshire Cat, stir up mischief in the Mad Hatter’s tea factory, and even try to awaken the Queen of Hearts.

And with plans to introduce future spectacles, such as a WILD Safari Experience, Lite Brite Worlds of Wonder, and Virtual artist residencies featuring globally recognized musicians, Illuminarium will aim to continue, push the boundaries of immersive entertainment. 

Illuminarium is set to open on August 25.

Article exclusive to STREETS OF TORONTO