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By Benjamin Schachtman, Port City Daily 

SOUTHPORT — The St. James Plantation, founded by WWII veteran and North Carolina native Homer Wright, is an award-winning planned community. For many potential guests, however, visiting the Plantation meant a long drive, taking time off from work and making other logistical arrangements. That is, until now.

This week St. James Plantation went live with a new, state-of-the-art virtual tour that allows a visit to the location from any phone, tablet or computer (you can take the tour for yourself). The tour features 14 aerial views and 15 ground based walk-through, which are linked together in a 3-D virtual reality interface. The effect is of being able to fly over the Southport area, swooping down into the marina, the clubhouse or available properties.

The tour was designed by Wilmington based SIS Digital, and incorporates several next-generation technologies, including high-resolution drone-based photography, 360′ photography and navigable virtual spaces. The later is similar to Google Maps street-view. Icons on the screen allow users to access site photographs, walk-throughs and information about the different locations and amenities.

St. James Plantation, which opened in 1991 as a small cluster of homes and “the Gauntlet,” a golf course. Now the community has grown to include multiple neighborhoods, a marina, a town center and parks – most of which are part of the virtual tour.

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