The designs were inspired by the University of Washington Decorated and Decorative Paper Collection
For a primer - and really digestible - grab the Eyewitness reference book to the BOOK.
"Though other panorama rotundas were built, the one in Leicester Square was thought to provide the most realistic displays. The building was designed to disorient people as they passed from the actual to the virtual world. Spectators had to walk down a long dark hallway and climb shadowy stairs before emerging onto the viewing platform. Some people felt sick as a result. More felt delighted..."
-via Panoramas: 19th-Century Virtual Reality