Sleep with the Fishes
For anyone looking for a vacation that is different, a holiday under water might be just the thing. Take a holiday in a hotel that looks more like a spaceship than a house or tower block and sleep with the fishes, in a good way, of course.
Why choose an underwater hotel? Underwater hotels offer their guest a first-hand opportunity to view the natural world in an unusual environment, the deep blue sea. Guests get to try out activities that they may otherwise not have considered, such as taking a trip on a submersible designed for deep sea exploration, underwater scooters and top-side activities, such as motor boat trips and jet skis.
America’s only underwater hotel, Jules Undersea Lodge, in Key Largo, Florida, was a former marine laboratory, which was converted in the 1980s into an ambient pressure habitat for tourists. Guests have to scuba dive to get to their rooms, so it is not in the same as the underwater hotels of the near future.
Luxury underwater hotels
Many of these hotels are still on the drawing board or in the early stages of construction, but the released design specifications show just how luxurious they are going to be. They will offer the latest in comfort, facilities and experiences. Many will be two-tier, with some rooms underwater and some above. All guests will be able to enjoy fine dining restaurants and shopping. Some, such as the Poseidon Undersea Resort in Fiji, will include a nine-hole executive golf course, tennis courts, fitness center and private splash pools. There will also be a theater, library and conference center, which will double as a wedding chapel.
Dubai is home to several of what could become the world’s most luxurious underwater hotels, for example, the Discus and the Hydropolis. Under construction since 2007, the Hydropolis hotel will comprise three elements, a land station where guests will be welcomed, a tunnel to connect the structure to land via a train and 220 suites within the complex for guest use. The entire hotel will cover more than 260 hectares. The Discus is made up of circular modules and is built to withstand natural disasters such as tsunamis and flooding. Allegedly, the lower disc will rise to the surface in the event of danger.
Also planned for in Dubai is the Apeiron Island Hotel, which will be a mostly land based structure with some underwater areas, such as a restaurant, spa and pool. The top floors will hold a man-made jungle with insects and butterflies, while other attractions will include an art gallery and private lagoons. This hotel will only be accessible by helicopter or boat.
As these hotels are still in the planning or construction stages, details of room rates have not yet been fully revealed, but judging by the design and facilities on offer, the prices are going to be pretty steep. It might be best not to waste too much money travelling first class, but get one of the many cheap flights to Dubai and Florida. An underwater vacation could be the holiday of a lifetime and it might just be worth forking out a fortune for.