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This luxury space balloon ride promises 360 views, Wi-Fi and a bar, too

If you have a spare $125,000, you can buy a ride on the Spaceship Neptune.
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Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer on
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Image: Space Perspective

Space Perspective, a space tourism startup, has revealed what its comfy "space lounge" will look like when the vehicle departs from Earth in 2024. 

It presents a vision of traveling in style on Space Perspective's high-altitude balloon flights with a glass of champagne, food, mood lighting, a soundtrack, and 360-degree views. 

If the project does take off in a few years, as projected, it certainly sounds better than the experience consumers get on commercial flights these days. 

The company this week revealed what its new customizable Space Lounge will look like inside its Spaceship Neptune capsule, and promises "a calming environment in which to relax, and is the opposite of the bright white utilitarian interiors you find on other spacecraft".  

SEE: A historic launch: The Axiom Space Mission 1 takes commercial crew to the ISS

Even the restroom features a large window so travelers don't miss a moment, which is good news given the tickets costs $125,000 for a voyage that takes about six hours. 

Space Perspective claims the first flight, scheduled for 2024, is already sold out. The pressurized capsule holds eight people and a pilot. It will launch from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. 

There will be Wi-Fi onboard so that users can livestream their experience. Spaceship Neptune is also "equipped with a fully-stocked bar, ready and waiting for champagne toasts at the edge of space." The seats recline, there's a telescope, interactive screens, and floor lamps.

As CNET notes, the balloon reaches 100,000 feet (30,480 meters). This means it won't actually reach orbit like rocket-based travel space services will. SpaceX's Starlink satellites orbit Earth at about 340 kilometers. 

The capsule hangs beneath a "SpaceBalloon with lighter-than-air gas" that takes travelers to "the edge of space" during the six-hour journey. For the descent, the gas is released for a smooth landing.

There's also a parachute backup system in case the balloon fails on the descent. The backup consists of four parachutes situated between the capsule and the SpaceBalloon. 

"The chutes can take over for our primary systems seamlessly and instantaneously in the event of a contingency, ensuring a safe landing. This kind of parachute has been used by space-faring agencies on more than a thousand flights over decades with a 100 percent success rate," the company assures travelers.

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