Lonely Planet Writer

The first ever luxury space hotel Aurora Station is taking bookings for 2022

A unique experience that is quite literally out of this world is on its way, aimed at the bravest and most intrepid travellers around, with the first-ever luxury hotel in space having just been unveiled.

A rendering of the Aurora Station by Orion Span. Image by Orion Span

Launched by Orion Span, Aurora Station will offer an authentic astronaut experience to guests, with fully immersive 12-day trips due to begin in 2022. The concept was introduced at the Space 2.0 Summit in San Jose, California last week, with the company announcing that it is now accepting deposits for pre-booking. Named after the light phenomenon that illuminates the Earth’s polar skies, Aurora Station is being developed in conjunction with the company’s team of space industry veterans who have over 140 years of combined human space experience.

Earth from Space
The hotel will orbit Earth every 90 minutes, meaning those aboard will see an average of 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours. Image by Vitalij Cerepok / EyeEm

The first fully modular space station to ever debut, the hotel will host six people at a time, including two crew members. During their stay on Aurora Station, travellers will experience zero gravity, flying freely the station, as well as gazing at the northern and southern aurora through the many windows. They will also have the chance to take part in research experiments such as growing food while in orbit (which they can take home with them as the ultimate souvenirs), revel in a virtual reality experience on the holodeck, and stay in touch or live stream with their loved ones back home via high-speed wireless Internet access. While in space, Aurora Station guests will soar 200 miles above the Earth’s surface in Low Earth Orbit, or LEO, where they will see stunning views of the Earth. The hotel will orbit Earth every 90 minutes, meaning those aboard will see an average of 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours.

Orion Span
The experience will start at $9.5 million per person. Image by Orion Span

“We developed Aurora Station to provide a turnkey destination in space. Upon launch, Aurora Station goes into service immediately, bringing travellers into space quicker and at a lower price point than ever seen before, while still providing an unforgettable experience,” said Frank Bunger, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Orion Span. “Orion Span has additionally taken what was historically a 24-month training regimen to prepare travellers to visit a space station and streamlined it to three months, at a fraction of the cost. Our goal is to make space accessible to all, by continuing to drive greater value at lower cost.”

Prior to take-off, those set to travel on Aurora Station will enjoy a three-month Orion Span Astronaut Certification (OSAC) program. Phase one of the certification program is done online, with the next portion being completed in-person at Orion Span’s state-of-the-art training facility in Houston, Texas. Thinking of booking a holiday away from earth? Don’t sell your campervan just yet, as the experience starts a $9.5 million per person, with fully refundable deposits costing $80,000 per person.

More information on Aurora Station is available at the official Orion Span website.