It may look like the high-tech lair of a James Bond villain, but this futuristic hotel could one day rise from the waters of Australia's Great Barrier Reef.
Developed by European firm Deep Ocean Technology, the Water Discus Hotel is a unique engineering concept comprising two primary discs - one above the water, another below – anchored by five structural legs and a vertical shaft containing a lift and stairway to connect both discs.
Speaking at a marine conference in Sydney over the weekend, Deep Ocean Technology's Maximillian Zielinski said that Queensland offered exciting opportunities for integrated tourism and casino projects.
And Queensland's Great Barrier Reef – the world's largest coral reef system, made up of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands – was the perfect location for showcasing the reef to the world and helping with efforts to rescue the endangered reef.
"We have been researching very promising techniques of rebuilding the reef, where the Water Discus would be an integral part of the endeavour" Zielinski said, adding that the design of the Water Discus was "non-invasive."
Deep Ocean Technology says the Water Discus Hotel would be built in a shipyard and then towed into place for $45-$60 million.
A modular design allows for additional secondary discs to be added to the above-water part of the complex.
The underwater section is submerged to a depth of between 10 and 30 metres, with with 22 rooms – although they could equally be described as cabins – around the perimeter.
Of course, each room has floor-to-ceiling windows to make the most of the extraordinary view.
And if you get tired of looking at real fish, fire up the virtual 3D fishtank screensaver on the flat-panel HD TV.
There's also a conference room suitable for board meetings, business proposals for plotting to take over the world.
Unsurprisingly, Deep Ocean Technology says there is already interest in Water Discus Hotels from Dubai and other members of the United Arab Emirates federation.
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