3D rendered Illustration, visualisation of the interior of a futuristic space ship corridor.


3D rendered Illustration, visualisation of the interior of a futuristic space ship corridor.

Photo by: Westend61


Space Hotel Built for Luxury and Research in Low Earth Orbit by 2027

By: Robin Fearon

Blasting off into low Earth orbit may not be every traveler’s idea of a quiet getaway, but builders of the first space hotel are creating the ultimate exclusive destination. Voyager Station is scheduled to be operational by 2027 and will offer $5 million luxury suites, fine dining, and live shows to space tourists.

January 11, 2022

Californian company Gateway Foundation announced the construction of the space station back in 2019. Originally named the Von Braun Station, after NASA rocket scientist Wernher von Braun, the rotating wheel will consist of 24 modules incorporating the first artificial gravity systems in space.

Pilot instructor John Blincow is head of Gateway Foundation and runs the construction company Orbital Assembly Corporation that will assemble Voyager Station. “We’re trying to make the public realize that this golden age of space travel is just around the corner,” he told CNN. “It’s coming. It’s coming fast.”

But as the $5 million rooms attest to, it is not coming cheap. Projected costs for the build are estimated at $60 billion. In comparison, the International Space Station cost $150 billion and has a crew of seven, more during a handover. Voyager is projected to accommodate 100 crew and 300 guests.

Of course, when you pay so much for a space suite, it’s not just burgers and fries on the menu. Blincow aims to provide top chefs for five-star dining plus entertainment, with a celebrity roster including stars like Beyonce. On top of that, the Earth view as you spend three and a half days orbiting the planet is spectacular.

Construction will begin on Voyager station in 2026, its rotating wheel plans resembling a concept developed by NASA’s von Braun in 1952. Gateway plans to take advantage of advances made in rocket systems like Space X’s Falcon Heavy and Starship to launch huge amounts of cargo into orbit cheaply and quickly – Space X boss Elon Musk said that Starship launches could cost as little as $2 million.

First, up will be the station’s inner ring fitted with docking arms and stabilizers to hold spacecraft. Then the backbone of the station, the outer ring truss, will be attached to the docking hub using spokes. This outer ring will mount habitation modules, an access tube, and a rail transport system so people can move around, along with solar panels and radiators.

Finally, an outer habitation ring contains the pressurized housing modules themselves. Each one will have two or three internal levels and plans include a gymnasium, kitchen, restaurant and bar, and crew quarters. Privately owned modules will accommodate the hotel, villas, and commercial activity. Then government-owned modules will be used for science and training.

Artificial gravity will be created by the speed of spin on the outer ring. And to test the viability of its gravity systems the company will build a 200ft (61m) wide prototype creating gravity similar to Mars, about 40 percent that of Earth. This gravity ring will take two to three years to develop and launch, but only three days to assemble in orbit. From there it will act as a test base for technologies aboard the final space station.

The Docking Hub (Inner Ring)

Photo by: Gateway Foundation

Gateway Foundation

The Docking Hub (Inner Ring)

Comfort will be paramount for both visitors and crew, so artificial gravity is a crucial factor according to Tim Alatorre, one of the space station’s architects. “Microgravity is just brutal on our bodies,” he said. “We need artificial gravity – a mechanism to give us a dosage of gravity to give us the ability to live long-term in space.”

Larger projects will follow Voyager Station, with a spaceport simply called ‘The Gateway’ in planning – not to be confused with NASA’s Lunar Gateway that will orbit the moon as a staging post for landings and space exploration. More than twice the size of the 200m wide Voyager, guest capacity will be 1,250 alongside 150 crew.

Despite the financial risks – a competitor space station called Aurora shut down its operations and refunded all deposits – Alatorre is confident that Voyager is the true genesis for off-world exploration. It will “create a starship culture where people are going to space, and living in space, and working in space," he told CNN. "And we believe that there's a demand for that."

Next Up

The 5 Greatest Robotic Space Explorers

Our little silicon friends have been exploring the harshest environments in the universe - space itself - in humanity’s name for decades. And while tales of their robotic exploits could fill an entire book, let’s count down the top five.

Looking Ahead to 2021 in Space

As the year 2020 comes to close, it’s time to look ahead to 2021 and what’s to come in space exploration. From crewed launches to the ISS and Perseverance landing on Mars, it’s shaping up to be a busy year in space. Let’s take a look!

William Shatner Becomes Oldest Man to Travel to Space After Successful Blue Origin Space Flight

On the morning of October 13, William Shatner joined the crew of New Shepard for its second crewed flight, NS-18. Due to a few holds, the scheduled 10A liftoff was delayed by about 50 minutes from Blue Origin's Launch Site One in Texas. Despite the delays, liftoff and touchdown went off without a hitch, making Star Trek star William Shatner the oldest man to go to space.

It’s the Edge of Space for Virgin Galactic

On May 22, Virgin Galactic’s first human spaceflight successfully launched into space from Spaceport America, New Mexico. Mothership, VMS Eve, the carrier and launch platform for the VSS Unity SpaceShipTwo spacecraft, carried VSS Unity to 44,000 feet in the air and then released it as the spaceship began a rocket powered flight to the edge of space.

Richard Branson of Virgin Galactic Successfully Travels to Space

On Sunday, July 11, around 11:30A ET, Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Galactic, soared to the edge of space as a passenger aboard Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity. The space plane then landed safely at Spaceport America in New Mexico, making Branson's space tourism dream come true.

This All-Civilian Space Mission Wants to Achieve the Highest Human Orbit Ever

Last year marked a fascinating turning point in the history of spaceflight. For the first time ever, more civilians went into space than professional ones. The private companies Virgin Galactic, Blue Origins, and SpaceX all offer seats for sale, with missions as brief as just a few minutes to as long as a few days.

What You Need to Know About Blue Origin’s Launch into Space with Billionaire Jeff Bezos

The countdown has begun for Blue Origin’s first crewed spaceflight. On Tuesday, July 20, 2021, at 9:00A ET, Jeff Bezos and three crewmates are lifting off into space from Blue Origin’s Launch Site near Van Horn, Texas. Watch SPACE LAUNCH LIVE: BLUE ORIGIN & JEFF BEZOS GO TO SPACE on Discovery and Science Channels at 8:00A ET or at washingtonpost.com.

First US Commercial Crew Port Relocation to Air Live on NASA TV

On Monday, April 5, another first will occur for commercial space flight. For a look back at Crew-1's initial journey to the ISS, catch up on SPACE LAUNCH LIVE streaming now on discovery+.

Countdown To Launch: NASA and SpaceX Crew-1 Mission

After a successful NASA and SpaceX Demo-2 Mission, the first operational mission of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon with four astronauts is targeted for November 15, 2020. Get ready to launch! Watch it live on SPACE LAUNCH LIVE: CREW-1 LIFT OFF starting at 5P ET on Discovery and Science Channcel or stream it live on Discovery GO.

NASA’s Giant Rocket Test Fails (Sort Of)

It was all supposed to be great. On January 16th, NASA performed its first major test run in a long, long time. It was a test for the core stage of its upcoming Space Launch System (SLS), a beast of a rocket that will carry astronauts to the Moon, Mars, and more.

Related To: