Published August 17, 2011
This is one hotel that's truly out of this world.
A Russian company has revealed plans and sketches for a space hotel -- and it'll cost you. The hotel, designed by Russian firm Orbital Technologies, will accommodate seven guests in four cabins. It will take two days on board a Soyuz rocket in order to reach it.
But experts warn that the firm faces real challenges before it will be able to launch the planned space station.
And before you get too excited, it will cost $942,000 to visit the hotel. A five-day stay is expected to be about $157,000, plus the cost of the trip there: $785,000.
For those who can afford it, this could be one unforgettable trip. The company promises amazing views of Earth and comfort not seen in most space accommodation.
“A hotel should be comfortable inside, and it will be possible to look at the Earth through large portholes.”
When Orbital Tech first announced its plans to cater to the space tourism market in September 2010, it was unclear whether the state-controlled RKK Energia company (whiich will act as a contractor) will have the funds to carry out the project.
Orbital Technologies has yet to disclose the cost of the project, but Kostenko told the Associated Press last September that his company would turn a profit.
"Of course, we expect to make profit -- this is purely business," he said.
Jim Oberg, a Houston-based space consultant and expert on the Russian space program, warned at the time that that two stations in close orbits would put too much strain on tracking and communications resources on the ground.
In late July, the head of Russia's space agency made international headlines by saying the country planned to sink the International Space Station in the Pacific Ocean in 2020 -- comments the agency backpedaled from in the wake of an international outcry.
"The partners have agreed to continue the ISS operation until 2020. The partners will also approve an extended period of the ISS," agency press secretary Anna Vedishcheva told Russian news agency Interfax-AVN on July 28.
Orbital Technologies' station would be a commercial entity, however, and not a massive science project.
Due to open by 2016, visitors can choose beds that are either vertical or horizontal, while showers will be sealed in order to stop water going where it shouldn’t and toilets will use air instead of water to flush away waste. The air will be filtered to remove any smells and bacteria before being pushed back into the cabin.
Food will be prepared on Earth and reheated in microwaves, the company has declared. On the menu is braised veal cheeks with mushrooms, white bean puree and plum compote.
Alcohol will not be allowed and tourists will be accompanied by experienced crew.
News.com.au and news wires contributed to this report.