First ever space tourist revealed
The concept of space tourism is not a new one, and for some time people have been thinking about what tourism in the future could look like, and whether or not it could stretch beyond Earth. Is it feasible that in 500 years’ time you could be choosing between an annual family getaway to Hawaii or the moon? Some think yes.
One man who is spearheading human exploration into space is Elon Musk, the CEO and Lead Designer of SpaceX which plans to be the first company to send humans on deep space trips for money. Although SpaceX has not yet built the rocket (named the Big Falcon Rocket or BFR) which is set to facilitate this, they have announced that Japanese billionaire and online fashion tycoon Yusaku Maezawa will be the first ‘space tourist’ to undertake a trip around the moon.
Maezawa, the founder of Japanese fashion retail websites Start Today and Zozotown, said simply:" I choose to go to the Moon”. If carried out successfully Maezawa will be part of the exclusive first group of humans to explore outer space since 1972.
It has not been confirmed by Musk how much was paid by the billionaire to secure his trip, but it is understood to be a substantial amount.
Reportedly a keen art collector who notably paid over £85m for a piece of art by Jean-Michel Basquiat at a New York auction in 2017, Maezawa has said that he has named the moon trip #dearMoon and plans to take with him ‘six to eight artists’ who are yet to be confirmed.
He said of the plan: "They will be asked to create something after they return to Earth. These masterpieces will inspire the dreamer within all of us.”
There are still many ifs and buts about the proposed trip, including the successful completion of the BFR, but if all goes to plan it is set to launch in 2023.