Could those with extraterrestrial ambitions reach orbit even before Elon Musk manages to take them there? Maybe, if they are blessed with a gigantic allowance. A company called Orion Span has come up with an offer that is literally out of this world: four people will spend 12 days aboard the luxury space hotel Aurora Station, about 320 kilometres above the earth’s surface. Whether they choose to spend that time gazing down at the blue marble from their suite, photographing their pin-sized hometown, or registering the cold abyss around them for thousands of miles, the experience will, without doubt, be unearthly. With a 90-minute orbit around the earth, guests on Aurora will also experience multiple sunrises and sunsets a day. Launching in 2021 and hosting its first guests in 2022, Aurora Station will be available to astronauts, space researchers as well as space tourists. It also has an ‘Authentic Astronaut Experience’ that seems right out of The Martian: you can grow food in space, partake in space research, and even experience a virtual reality simulation. The pricing starts at $9.5 million per person, including space flights to and from Aurora Station.
So, if you’ve ever had celestial dreams and can afford to make them a reality, visit orionspan.com to reserve a spot on the waitlist (after an $80,000 deposit). Each individual will also have to undergo a three-month space-training programme.