Space Hotel Slated to Open in 2012
By Andrea Thompson
Start planning that vacation to outer space: The first space hotel is expected to open as soon as 2012, it was reported today.
The hotel, "Galactic Suites," will allow adventurous travelers to enjoy a spectacular starry view from their hotel rooms, see the Sun rise 15 times a day and take part in scientific experiments while they're not using Velcro suits to crawl around their pod-room walls.
The trip won't be cheap though--a three-day stay will cost around $4 million, according to Reuters.
There were a few design kinks the company that is creating the hotel had to work out too, especially those involving water.
"It's the bathrooms in zero gravity that are the biggest challenge," company director Xavier Claramunt told Reuters. "How to accommodate the more intimate activities of the guests is not easy."
But they have found a solution to the problem of how to allow guests to shower: a spa room where guests can float around in bubbles of water.
And forget "around the world in 80 days"-- guest will travel around the world in 80 minutes.
The hotel was no more than a dream of Claramunt's until a generous space enthusiast fronted the $3 billion needed to build the hotel.
An American company aimed at colonizing Mars has invested in the hotel, which will be built from pods connected in a molecule-like structure, Reuters reported. Other private investors in Japan, the United States and the United Arab Emirates are also in talks to invest in the company.
It is up in the air as to how many people would be eager to make the trip into space for a weightless hotel stay.
"We have calculated that there are 40,000 people in the world who could afford to stay at the hotel. Whether they will want to spend money on going into space, we just don't know," Claramunt told Reuters.