Extended stay veteran plans to launch space hotel in 2021

George Sell By George Sell
25 February 2018 | Updated 25 February 2018

US: Hotelier Robert Bigelow, the owner of the Budget Suites of America extended stay brand, is planning to launch a space hotel.

His company Bigelow Aerospace aims to launch an "inflatable hotel" into orbit by 2021. The B330 is described as a line of "fully autonomous standalone space stations" consisting of two 55-foot modules that will be linked to create outer-space accommodations. Once conjoined, the unit will offer twice the cubic capacity of the International Space Station (ISS).

The cost per passenger for accommodations in low-earth orbit and cislunar space is projected in the low seven figures, but Bigelow thinks charges in the "low eight figures" would be more likely.

Bigelow's company was the first to successfully build and attach an inflatable extension to the ISS. Dubbed the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (or BEAM), it is currently undergoing a two-year durability study.

Bigelow founded Budget Suites of America in 1987. It caters to budget travelers needing to stay for an extended period. Its rooms are primarily suites featuring a full kitchen. Budget Suites owns three hotels in Phoenix, four in Las vegas, ten in Dallas and one in San Antonio.

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