Christian Columbres

Situated in a new millennial enclave of Portland, Ore., the mixed-use apartment community Modera Belmont aims to lure the area’s young residents with its one-of-a-kind amenity offerings, including the community’s own virtual reality (VR) lounge.

Dallas-based developer Mill Creek Residential created the VR space to allow resident users to “lose themselves in an immersive gaming experience.” From slaying zombies to hitting grand slams, the modern gaming area with two large televisions transcends a traditional media room and is stocked with VR goggles and video games for all ages.

Although the technology stands as the focal point of the room, local architecture firm SERA Architects outfitted the lounge with modular furnishings and finishes inspired by science fiction, including an original mural and statement carpeting. The designers also opted to display and frame the custom gaming systems. Bright neon cooling elements gleam from a glass viewing window and add an extra layer of interest to the unique space.

A large sectional couch provides seating for watch parties and breaks in between the action, while a nearby kitchenette offers an area for sharing snacks and a kegerator for above-age residents.

Due to the VR lounge’s central location in the apartment building, the team also integrated additional soundproofing to buffer noise to surrounding units. Trapezoidal black acoustic panels flow from the ceiling above to the game screen wall to improve acoustics and add to the sci-fi ambience.

Security for the VR systems and area was top of mind as well. The developer incorporated custom casework with fob access to keep the controllers and goggles charged and secure, and allow property managers to track users.

Overall, the amenity has had a positive impact on the community, says the developer. Property managers report the space is consistently a hub of activity, especially after school hours, for residents and their guests.