When talking about tourism, usually people think about sunny beach sides or a metropolis with all their famous sightseeing spots. And when talking about future tourism that goes beyond this, the direction would be up and out of the globe. However, most probably we still have to wait some time before it can become reality. Although Elon Musk, Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos, amongst others, are trying hard to make it happen, space tourism has not lifted off yet. Furthermore, once available this will most probably be only suitable for the super-rich that can afford having a few millions less.
What people usually do not know about and what is overlooked frequently, is the development of underwater tourism, despite the fact that 70% of the world consists of water. This is not that strange since it only started in 2012 when Dubai was exploring the opportunity of a “Water Discus”. The idea was to have 21 rooms in a 1,000 square meter sized discus 10 meters below the water surface and provide underwater activities. Soundproof rooms and curtains of different transparency levels will ensure privacy. Large windows of the rooms facing the waters will offer views of the underwater world, coral reefs, flora, fauna and sea animals of the Persian Gulf. Room exteriors will have special lighting for macro photography and an external explorer robot to enable the guests to interact with the marine life.
Although the Water Discus is still in the development stage, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island opened its doors in 2018. With rooms 5 meters below sea level and with 180 degree panoramic views, it is the first underwater hotel where you can actually stay at. Poseidon Resort in Fiji is anticipated to accept reservations soon. Besides 48 sea shore bungalows the resort will also provide 24 suites 10 meters below sea level. And at $30,000 for 4 nights it will be more affordable than a trip to outer space.
So it seems that there is a trend coming up with focus on exploring what is going on underneath us. The question is if this should be a good development or a threat. On one side there is the opportunity to learn more about the ocean life and the beautiful creatures that can be seen in their natural surroundings. And because you are exploring it from behind windows, you don’t have the risk of damaging the eco system that usually happens through scuba diving and snorkeling. Also, hopefully through this way, people will start to respect the sea life more and will think twice about using plastic items and better control their garbage behavior.
On the other side, the construction of underwater accommodation can damage the environment or influence the flora and fauna. Although the construction team would do their best to ensure to take care of the environment, the activities from the tourism may be an added risk as well.
So what can we do to make use of those advantages while we minimize the impact on the environment? Especially now that we are unable to travel to other countries and where we prefer staying in a safe environment. Perhaps someone can develop a hotel that takes care of all of this and is able to provide both space, underwater and other forms of tourism without even having to leave your room or travel far distances to reach your preferred destination. Why not open a 5D hotel?
So how will this look like? Well, actually for this kind of hotel there is no high requirements in terms of location. Off course, it is always good that the hotel is located near shopping malls, restaurants and other entertainment spots. On the other side, the need for sea view or city view can be completely eliminated since all the rooms will be having LED/Plasma screens instead of the usual windows. This can go as far as walls, ceiling and floor being equipped with those screens.
Besides the standard facilities of bed, bathroom and Wi-Fi, the entire room is designed for 24/7 entertainment. When arriving at your room there is a path that will show you the endless opportunities for choosing your experience, ranging from sea views, famous landmarks or underwater sceneries. After you have chosen the scenery, there is the option to add supporting sound, smell and even motion. Imagine choosing the private yacht experience and your bed will be swinging like being on the ocean, accompanied by sounds of waves, a breeze of wind once in a while and the smell of a bright sun.
And to make it even more interesting, the tracking device can locate your exact location in the room and will change the scenery based on your placement in the room. Meaning it will make views larger or smaller if you come closer or further and will make you be able to “look around the corner” when you move more to the left or right.
Also for the developer, the investment needed to build this hotel should be a fraction of the expenses to build in the ocean or in outer space. Because of the lower investment and little maintenance costs, the selling price could be much more attractive. Therefore, this solution can be a win-win-win situation: Win for the environment, win for the developer and win for the guest.
It seems that I just provided an idea free of charge. Now just waiting for a creative mind to make this idea a reality. I just hope this person invites me for a free trial stay once this first hotel is ready …