News: Barcelona officials are outraged over plans to construct a 300-metre "space hotel" - complete with a zero-gravity spa and vertical wind tunnel - on an artificial island off the coast of the city.
Aimed at guests who "wish they could travel to distant galaxies", the €1.5 billion hotel designed by Spanish architect Erik Morvan would offer over 2,000 hotel suites and residences alongside a 24-hour "space mall" and a marina filled with parks, pools and beaches. Windows would feature transparent glass displays of the galaxy, which guests could turn on and off at the touch of the button.
US developer Mobilona submitted a request for planning permission to Barcelona City Hall last week, but city mayor Xavier Trias has already voiced objections. "We have no intention of turning Barcelona into a spectacle," he told Catalan news channel 3/24.
Describing the plans as "not in keeping" with his vision of the city, Trias commented: "We have no need or desire to take on projects of this nature. We are a city of culture, knowledge, of creativity, and of innovation, and our project [to develop the city] will follow a different path."
A representative from the Barcelona planning department also told the Telegraph newspaper: "This seems more suitable for somewhere like Dubai. Any plan to advance Barcelona must be in keeping with the present model of the city."
Mobilona's CEO Jerome Bottari is confident that the space hotel concept will be popular and has already unveiled plans for similar projects in Hong Kong and Los Angeles. "Mobilona creates the perfect blend of design and technology to simulate any place on earth, or in the universe," he said. "Immersive displays inside Mobilona Space Hotel on Barcelona Island will provide guests with stunning views of some of the most remote galaxies in our universe."
If plans go ahead, the building will become the tallest hotel in Europe.
Other controversial hotel designs from recent months include plans to build the world's largest underwater hotel in Dubai and a boutique hotel in a converted prison in the Netherlands.