Designers, architects and engineers for some time now have been striving to take the concept of underwater liveable habitats off the page and into the built arena.
Despite their best efforts, many have tried and failed to develop extensive underwater facilities. Poseidon Undersea Resorts were slated to be the first undersea permanent structure back in 2008, but as yet have not been able to meet their goal.
While an underwater restaurant in the Maldives has been turned into a honeymooners’ retreat, earning it the title of first underwater hotel room, the delivery of a full-scale underwater development has never been fulfilled.
More recently, however, one serious contender for this title has come to the notice of the global industry.
The ‘Water Discus Hotel’ concept, created by Deep Ocean Technology (DOT) in association with Swiss company BIG investConsult, has come to light, bringing with it newfound hope for endeavours of this undersea nature.
“Today, the advent of new technology made the heart of the ocean a setting not only for diving, but also for luxurious holidays,” says a BIG InvestConsult spokesperson.
Slated to be built in Dubai, the underwater hotel will be constructed both above and underwater, with each section resting on disks, or circular floor plates. The lower plate is expected to sit 10 metres deep on the ocean floor, with the upper plate edging out well above sea level.
With no solid details regarding just how the designers will achieve this unprecedented engineering and architectural feat, however, at this stage the industry can only comment on the incredible interior aesthetic presented.
That aesthetic is unique, to say the least. Included within the hotel will be 21 hotel rooms, in addition to a submerged dive centre and underwater bar. Logically, given the absolute uniqueness of its surroundings, the undersea area will be the focus design element for the interior spaces. Specialised lighting will illuminate the flora and fauna outside the hotel, creating a strong connection between the inside and outside spaces, even if such a connection is not physically possible.
Further technological elements will allow for guests to zoom in on particular aspects of their surroundings through fully integrated systems in their rooms.
The rooms and public spaces are expected to ooze luxury, with side panel lighting giving the rooms a soft glow that mimics the atmosphere that one experiences underwater on a sunny day.
The room’s exterior walls are fully glassed, again, making most of the extraordinary natural surroundings.
Questions regarding just how the designers will be able to construct this hotel are still very much present as the industry waits to learn what solution they have devised for underwater building that has thus far eluded others. There is also the question surrounding what challenges the designers will face throughout the construction process.
However, there is no doubting the aesthetic excellence this development offers to bring both inside out, even if the logistics of its delivery at present are uncertain.