The race is on to see who can build the world's first flying hotel. Last year there was a great post on Been-Seen about Aeroscraft. This year, there's a lot of buzz around the Manned Cloud, a giant helium ship created by French designer Jean Marie Massaud. Instead of spending hours cooped up in a packed airliner, wouldn't it be much nicer to float through the clouds in a luxurious hotel? It would be slow travel at its finest.
Described by its designer as 'a whale that glides through the air', Manned Cloud travels at a leisurely 170 km/h. It is designed to explore the world without being intrusive or exploitative, which Massaud believes is the travel of the future. It sounds like a pretty good future, if it includes private cabins for up to 40 passengers, a restaurant, a lounge, a library, a fitness center, a spa and a bar.
For the project, Massaud Studio has teamed up with French organization ONERA (Office National d'Etudes et de Recherche Aerospatiale), who are carrying out feasibility tests on the design. Cross your fingers that it works. RM
Images: Jean Marie Massaud