Bookings are now available at the world’s first space hotel, thanks to technology making space stations a commercially viable option for super-rich travellers.
If you fancy blasting yourself into space for the weekend, Orion Span may have just the itinerary for you — however you won’t be able to take your holiday until 2021, when the company plans to launch the service into space.
The Houston-based startup announced the launch of the world’s first space hotel at a California space summit today.
The luxury hotel is called the Aurora Station, and — if all goes to plan — will take travellers 200 miles above the earth’s orbit where they will be able to see 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours, according to the company’s website.
— Orion Span (@OrionSpan) April 6, 2018
Tickets will set tourists back a cool $9.5 million with an $80,000 refundable deposit.
And despite the long wait and sky-high price tag deposits have already been taken.
The hotel is only able to house six guests and two crew members at a time who will stay in “private suites for two” and enjoy the world’s first zero-gravity “authentic astronaut experience”, the company said.
In a blog post Orion Span chief executive Frank Bunger said it was a defining moment in space travel:
We’re proud to announce Aurora Station – our first orbital community — will launch in late 2021 as the world’s first luxury space hotel.
By early 2022, we will be hosting tourists, astronauts, space research, and manufacturing on board Aurora Station in [low earth orbit] LEO.
Bunger boasted that Orion Span has driven down costs in the design and manufacture of space stations, making it more affordable.
Orion Span will carry on the phenomenal pioneering done by the ISS into the realm of permanent commercially-viable orbital communities.
To that end, Orion Span has developed proprietary technology to drive a full order of magnitude of cost out of the design and manufacture of space station.
Private space missions have previously cost between $20 million to $40 million. Virginia-based company Space Adventures ran eight tours between 2001 to 2009.
Meanwhile, Texas-based Axiom Space is planning to put a commercial space station in orbit by 2024, and take their first tourists to the ISS as early as 2019.
However, it’s not easy taking on the final frontier.
Virgin Galactic’s plan to bring tourists to space were derailed by the 2014 crash of its spaceship that killed one of its two pilots. This month the company tested its space tourism rocket, in their first flight since the fatal crash.