Published: Sat, April 07, 2018
Science | By Cecil Little

A new startup wants to launch a luxury space hotel into orbit

A new startup wants to launch a luxury space hotel into orbit

Blueprints for the world's first luxury hotel in space are in the making.

Orion Span aims to kick Aurora Station high up in late 2021 and begin accommodating guests in 2022.

"We want to get people into space because it's the final frontier for our civilisaturation", said Orion Span's founder and chief executive officer, Frank Bunger, a former software engineer. Now, in the age of SpaceX, Blue Origin, and Virgin Galactic, the idea that a private company would launch an orbiting hotel seems nearly pedestrian.

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Moreover, several other rival companies including Axiom Space and Bigelow Aerospace are planning to their commercial space hotels orbiting Earth very soon.

If successful, the hotel would be able to host four guests at one time where they can while away the hours looking down on Earth. Space travelers will enjoy a completely authentic, once-in-a-lifetime astronaut experience with extraordinary adventure during their 12-day journey, starting at $9.5M per person. We will later sell dedicated modules as the world's first condominiums in space. As demand grows, Orion Span will launch additional modules to link up with the original core outpost, Bunger said. Instead, it'll be in orbit about 200 miles above the Earth.

Orion Span has yet to contract with a launch provider, either for its initial flights to build the station or for customer flights. So in four years, spending time with your loved ones, or alone in space will be a real thing. The company said it's "developed proprietary technology to drive a full order of magnitude of cost out of the design and manufacture of a space station". And for the out-of-the-world experience, quite literally, one would have to spend a meagre $9.5 million (Rs 61 crore approx.), inclusive of the launching shuttle price.

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Initially, the company expects the first visitors to be private space tourists, who will get the chance to experience life as astronauts after undergoing a three-month training program included in the price.

Richard Garriott, a video game developer who reportedly shelled out $30 million for a two-week stay at the ISS in 2008, told NBC News that Orion Span's initiative is critical for "both research and private use".

The hotel will also be equipped with a virtual reality "holodeck". Arizona-based World View Enterprises developing a fleet of high-altitude platforms, called stratollites, carried by balloons to the edge of space.

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The first fully modular space station to ever debut, Aurora Station will operate as the first luxury hotel in space.

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