This optical illusion 'infinity room' on board Virgin Voyages' new cruise ships has already become an Instagram sensation

  • Virgin Voyages' first cruise ship the Scarlet Lady hasn't even set sail for the public yet but already has an Instagram-famous room.
  • The infinity-esque entrance to the Manor nightclub with mirrored walls is making waves on social media, with many press and travel agents who've been to launch events posting pictures of themselves there.
  • I was one of the lucky few to spend a night on board the ship in Liverpool, UK, last week and couldn't resist getting my own shot for the 'gram.
  • The room wasn't actually designed with Instagram in mind, Dee Cooper, Senior Vice President of Design and Customer Experience at Virgin Voyages, explained to Insider.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Virgin Voyages — Richard Branson's new line of cruise ships — is yet to launch fully, but one spot on the first ship, the Scarlet Lady, has already become Instagram-famous.

The incredibly striking corridor with illuminated mirrored walls at the entrance to the ship's nightclub, the Manor, is making waves on social media.

Indeed, simply scrolling through the #virginvoyages and #scarletlady hashtags on Instagram shows a slew of photos from the optical illusion room.

Although the cruises haven't officially begun, some press, travel agents, and friends of crew have been invited on board for launch events — and I was one of them.

I stayed on board the Scarlet Lady in Liverpool, UK, last week and given that lots of influencers I follow had been invited on to the ship a few days earlier in Dover, I'd already seen the "infinity room" — which doesn't actually have its own name yet — all over my Insta-feed.

Being the basic millennial I am, I wanted to get my shot for the 'gram so I popped into the glittering room early in the evening, and I'm glad I did.

Later in the night, when the Manor actually opened, it was rammed with people trying to get their shot and it would have been impossible to do so without lots of others in the background.

Despite the room's popularity and visual appeal, it wasn't actually designed specifically with Instagram in mind, Dee Cooper, Senior Vice President of Design and Customer Experience at Virgin Voyages, explained to Insider.

"It's so different that people are naturally reaching for their phones and we can't blame them!" she said, adding that the staircase at the entrance to the Wake restaurant has also proven popular on Instagram.

The entrance to the Wake.
Rachel Hosie/Insider

"We were very excited about the mirrored corridor and when we were building the ship we knew that this space was very special," she said.

"The entrance to the Manor needed to physically and emotionally transport our sailors from one room to another. The brief for the Manor was to be the best f—ing nightclub at sea and we were inspired by the greatest nightclubs of the past which are often found in theatrical-like spaces such as Studio 54.

"We knew nightclubs were all about being viewed and being a voyeur, so being inspired by a combo of cabaret, disco, and punk, Roman and Williams created an amazing space for us. The overall result of the Manor gives us all numerous places to take pictures of the coolest versions of ourselves."

Inside the Manor.
Virgin Voyages

I think part of the reason the room has been so popular is that no one's seen anything like it on a cruise ship before — when I posted my own photo from the corridor, I received messages from people in disbelief that I was on a ship.

Cooper said that the whole ship was designed to be "the most visually inspiring and jaw-dropping experience" for passengers.

And having spent a day exploring as much of the Scarlet Lady as I could, I think they succeeded — every area of the ship is stylish and beautiful, with a unique feel to each part.

The entrance to the Manor certainly isn't the only Instagrammable spot either — there's the entrance to Mexican restaurant Pink Agave too, for example.

The entrance to Pink Agave.
Rachel Hosie/Insider

"We knew we wanted to create the backdrop for our sailors to have the most amazing time, and this is why we decided to work with designers that had never designed on a ship before," Cooper explained.

"We did that on purpose because we wanted them to have a fresh perspective and almost challenge the shipyard to do things differently.

"We have had a happy outcome in that many of our amazing restaurants, bars, and clubs across the ship created a natural back drop for Instagram, despite that not being the main focus.

"Apart from some fun pieces like the red anchor and the record player sofa we didn't design the ship from that viewpoint."

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