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A Michelin-star restaurant will open in outer space by next year

Inside a NASA complex on Cape Canaveral in Florida, the mission to make luxury space travel available to the public is well on its way. ‘The public’ being those in the highest tax bracket, of course.

Ever since Jeff Bezos yeeted himself into the stratosphere a couple of years back, we all knew luxury space tourism was inevitable – but how many of us could’ve predicted it would be possible by the year 2025?

Space Perspective, a company founded in 2019 to make private space travel a reality, has announced a new project that allows individuals to soar 100,000 feet (about 30 kilometres) above Earth inside a capsule suspended by a hot air balloon.

While astronaut food is typically freeze-dried and vacuum sealed, the meal served on Space Perspective’s hot air balloon will be of a different calibre. It will be cooked by two-time Michelin star chef Rasmus Munk, who owns the renowned Alchemist restaurant in Copenhagen.

The chef’s interest in catering an out-of-this-world meal allegedly comes from his personal affinity with space, sparked by childhood visits to a local planetarium in Denmark. Although Munk’s restaurant is located on our home planet, it does have a special dining area fitted with a planetarium-style dome.

Interestingly, opting to eat in outer space is what makes this ride so expensive in the first place.

Aboard the suspended capsule named ‘Space Neptune’ will be one captain plus a maximum of eight passengers.

Tickets for the 6-hour space dinner sit at a not-so-humble figure of $495,000 per head. Naturally, this means the adventure is only available to the world’s wealthiest – at least for the time being.

Is anyone getting OceanGate vibes? Only kidding. Kind of.

As they dine, passengers will watch a view of the sun rising over the Floridian Peninsula, as well as islands such as Cuba and the Bahamas. Complimentary Wi-Fi will enable guests to live stream or post about their experience to their hearts’ content.

For those hoping to catch a ride without having the meal of a lifetime, a ride into space suspended by the balloon is priced at $150,000. This price includes a custom-tailored spacesuit fashioned by the luxury skiwear brand Ogier.

That said, some may find locating an opportunity to re-wear this custom garm to be a little more difficult than scraping together the funds for the journey.

Loose ends are still being tied up before Space Perspective can begin its manned test flights, which are scheduled for the end of this year. The contraption’s first guests are expected to be welcomed by 2025.

In the end, the silver lining to that steep price tag is that all proceeds will go to the Space Prize organisation which promotes women’s education in STEM and bolsters gender equity in the space industry.

With the release of this news, it’s becoming clear that space tourism will soon be part of our not-so-distant future. How long it will take for us mere mortals to afford to hitch a ride is another question.