NYC’s Seaport Scavenger Hunt: Where Tradition Meets Web3


Manhattan’s historic Seaport district is the stage for a new digital initiative. In a collaboration between the Howard Hughes Corp and MoonPay, visitors are invited to participate in a unique scavenger hunt that seamlessly blends physical exploration with digital rewards. MoonPay, a recognized name in the Web3 infrastructure domain, has joined forces with the prominent real estate development and management entity, The Howard Hughes Corp. Their joint venture aims to bring a gamified Web3 experience to Manhattan’s historic waterfront neighborhood, Seaport.

The Mechanics of the Seaport Scavenger Hunt

Starting from August 21st and running until October 31st, locals and tourists can engage in the Seaport Scavenger Hunt. Participants are invited to undertake a digital quest, where the goal is to find ten purple “pearls” scattered throughout the Seaport district. Each of these pearls encapsulates a QR code that grants a free digital token to the user when scanned using a mobile device. Crafted by 3D artist and NFT creator Johana Kroft, these tokens portray playful depictions of iconic New York City artifacts.

Interestingly, the digital tokens serve a dual purpose: adding fun to the hunt and qualifying the participants for a weekly prize drawing. Those who succeed in collecting all ten tokens stand a chance to win various prizes, including VIP tickets to the Summer Concert Series on The Rooftop at Pier 17 and curated culinary gift boxes worth up to $350 from the Tin Building, among other rewards. Moreover, individuals are free to partake in the event several times a week.

The event, however, goes beyond mere fun and games. It serves as a data collection mechanism, capturing information such as the participants’ origin and movement patterns within the Seaport area. This data can provide insights for marketing strategies, fostering a deeper engagement with local businesses.

Endeavors Behind the Hunt

Behind the scenes of this interactive event is a robust infrastructure and collaborative effort that brings the scavenger hunt to life. MoonPay is at the helm, ensuring the secure storage of the NFTs through their powered wallets. Meanwhile, the QR technology, facilitated by Flowcode, a brand specializing in direct-to-consumer connections, plays a vital role in materializing the hunt.

Adding a creative touch to the project, the venture also witnesses collaboration with Mason Rothschild’s Web3 marketing agency, Gasoline, and Howard Hughes’ in-house creative studio. Notably, the entire experience operates on the Polygon network.

Despite the technological underpinning, the scavenger hunt has been crafted to be broadly accessible to the public. In fact, promotional materials at Seaport’s entrance conspicuously omit mentions of crypto, NFTs, or Polygon, showcasing the event as simply a digitally augmented scavenger hunt, hoping to encourage participation from a wider audience.

Another Step Towards Broader Web3 Engagement

In closing, the Seaport Scavenger Hunt is a prime example of how traditional outdoor activities can be enhanced with a touch of modern technology. By combining the physical search for pearls with digital rewards, MoonPay and The Howard Hughes Corp. are giving the public a chance to casually familiarize themselves with Web3 and NFT concepts.

Featured Image by Lerone Pieters.

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