Even if you’ve stayed in luxury accommodations everywhere in the world, you still haven’t stayed somewhere literally out of this world. That could change as soon as 2022.
Space tech startup Orion Span is looking to launch its Aurora Station space hotel in 2021 and start booking rooms a year later—if it can actually fly Aurora into low Earth orbit (LEO). Four intrepid vacationers and two crew members will take off for each 12-day experience. The $9.5 million that a room on board will cost (brave souls can reserve a room with an $80,000 deposit) includes Wi-Fi and a virtual-reality holodeck that is the closest to Star Trek you’ll probably ever get in this galaxy or any other.
If almost $10 million sounds unearthly for a vacation, the few non-astronauts who could afford a trip to the ISS paid anywhere from double to quadruple that.
"We developed Aurora Station to provide a turnkey destination in space. Upon launch, Aurora Station goes into service immediately, bringing travelers into space quicker and at a lower price point than ever seen before, while still providing an unforgettable experience," said Orion Span CEO and founder Frank Bunger.
Floating in zero-G is just one of the many perks of staying on a hotel 200 miles in the sky. Because it orbits Earth every 90 minutes, travelers who don’t sleep at all will catch 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours. Those who do sleep will still be able to capture enough to blow up their Insta feed along with shots of the northern and southern aurorae you couldn’t possibly get while standing on terra firma.
Just in case anyone actually misses Earth, high-speed Wi-Fi makes livestreaming with friends and family back on the home planet possible.
Aurora also serves as practice for the extended journey to Mars and any other planet or moon humans may colonize if we want to become an interplanetary species. Guests will be able to participate in research experiments, such as growing food in orbit, and bring home some anti-gravity takeout.
But first, astronaut training.
You actually do need an astronaut certification if you have an intent of hanging out in space. Anyone who books this vacation will have to go through the three-month Orion Span Astronaut Certification (OSAC). Phase 1 is online, while the other two phases will be completed at Orion Span’s training facility in Houston and on Aurora Station.
"Aurora Station is incredibly versatile and has multiple uses beyond serving as a hotel," said Bunger, who wants to offer affordable charters to space agencies, provide an ideal environment for microgravity research and off-Earth manufacturing, and even sell modules as the first-ever space condos. That’s moving out of Star Trek territory and into The Jetsons.
Start saving now.
(via Orion Span)