The MOON is Coming to Dubai!
By: Drew Jackson / Arab America Contributing Writer
An ambitious space tourism project could be coming to the UAE in as little as five years.
Dubai is set to approve the construction and future operation of a “Moon Resort” licensed and designed by Canadian architectural firm Moon World Resorts Inc (MRW). The 5 billion USD proposal has the potential to double tourism to the region according to architects and experts.
“MOON will form the bridge, delivering an affordable and entirely authentic space tourism experience millions of enthusiasts around planet Earth have been patiently waiting for,” stated MRW co-founder Michael Henderson to Architectural Digest.
MOON is expected to have an overall height of 735 feet and will feature an array of amenities and attractions. Guests will find a full-service destination resort made up of 4,000 suites contained in the orb, 300 2,000 square-feet “permanent resident villas”, a spa, a nightclub, and an international convention center.
The main attraction, however, will be the lunar colony and lunar surface experiences. Guests and visitors will have the opportunity to experience a round-trip endeavor to the moon for approximately 500 USD including a “low-gravity” experience on the lunar surface and spending time on the lunar colony.
Plans for the project have yet to be approved by the UAE but Moon World Resorts co-founder Michael Henderson is confident that necessary funding and measures for approval will be met. “From an architectural, engineering, and design perspective, MOON can be built,” via Architectural Digest.
Moon World Resorts Inc co-founders Michael Henderson and Sandra Matthews founded the company in 2000 when similar space tourism ventures by Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Richard Branson were also founded. Recently the venture had a major proposal for a MOON resort with Las Vegas fall through which has led them to look into other markets to position the project. Their goal is for the UAE destination to be the first of four MOON resorts, with other future locations in North America, Europe, and Asia.
Dubai was selected for several reasons as a prime market for MOON. Firstly, due to its status as the fastest-growing tourism market in the world, and secondly for the UAE’s interest and investment in space exploration.
The UAE is a pioneer for space exploration among the Arab Nations, becoming the first Arab nation, and only the fifth nation world wide, to reach Mars as part of a space probe mission. Additionally, the UAE is set to reach the moon by 2024 in the form of a Lunar Rover probe, named Rashid, in honor of the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, former Ruler of Dubai.
If the MOON project is approved it will be constructed according to the LEED Gold 5-star standard.
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