by Graham Pierrepoint
Luxury hotels are getting more and more outlandish, even in the face of Airbnb allowing people from all over the world to take advantage of low-cost short-term stays in people’s own back yards (sometimes literally). We all look for something a little different in a hotel break – convenience, absence of noise, amenities – you’ll get them all at a hotel that’s just been announced this week, with one particular selling point – it’s in space.
Orion Span have announced that a super-super-high-rise hotel break awaits up to twelve people and two crew staffers at a time at the Aurora Station – a ‘luxury space hotel’ which, after training, those who check in will be able to live like astronauts. The space station will be orbiting above the Earth for almost two weeks at a time, allowing those who wish to sample what may transpire to be the first space tourism of its kind at a princely sum of – wait for it - $9.5 million. That’s per person! Deposits are currently being taken at a rate of $80,000 – completely refundable – pending the Aurora Station’s projected launch in 2022.
Orion Span CEO Frank Bunger, in conversation with Forbes, suggested that the standard accommodation at the Aurora Station would even exceed that of the International Space Station – and that guests willing to pay up to $10 million for the once-in-a-life time experience will get the full platter when it comes to living in zero gravity – though you’ll need to undergo some training first before you can ascend into the heavens. “Guests will be orbiting in the hotel at 200 miles above the surface experiencing zero gravity the entire time,” Bunger was excited to advise.
Watch: ▶ Bay Area Start-Up Plans To Build First Luxury Hotel In Space
“We are also going to be doing real space research up there – like growing food in space, which we will let our guests take home as a souvenir.” But what can guests expect from the training protocol so that they can check in? “Historically, space tourists that travelled to the ISS spent about two years training,” Bunger remarked of the International Space Station. “We streamlined that process to three months making it more affordable and accessible.”
It may seem like space tourism is still in its infancy – and that it is a fairly costly hobby – but, all being well, we could open the 2020s with members of the public finally taking vacation in outer space – just as we’ve been imagining for decades!