Space Holidays - The Ultimate Travel Experience
Can you imagine floating in zero gravity, looking at a thousand-mile view of planet Earth below and infinite space all around? What has, until now, been a science fiction fantasy for civilians is set to become reality when Virgin Galactic launches its first commercial sub-orbital space flight. With fewer than five hundred people having ever been into space, taking a Virgin Galactic space flight means you'd be joining a very select group of individuals.
Back in 2006, Elegant Resorts was appointed Virgin Galactic’s first Accredited Space Agent; today our space team consists of Nick Jackson, Claire Meredith and Jayne Price, all of whom have been to the NASTAR Centre where, in addition to the prerequisite medical examinations and learning some of the techniques used by NASA astronauts to help them handle the effects of space travel, they have experienced for themselves the dynamics of space and the effects of G-force, during a sub-orbital space flight simulation.
Each member of our space team is available to arrange all the elements of your booking, and will happily share their personal experiences of the training. Feel free to call them on 01244 897 003 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
What to Expect - Launch Day and Your Space Flight
Following a special breakfast, you and your fellow astronauts will board SpaceShipTwo (SS2), already fuelled and secured to WhiteKnightTwo (WK2) the mother ship, affectionately known as Eve, (named after Richard Branson’s mother) and prepare for take-off.
From powering up to departing the runway, WhiteKnightTwo will take approximately forty-five minutes to climb to 50,000 feet. During the countdown to release from the mother ship, you will experience a brief moment of quiet, before a wave of unimaginable, but controlled power surges through the craft, pinning you back into your seat as you listen to the howl of the rocket motor and endure the eye- watering acceleration which, according to the read-out, is propelling you into space at almost 2500mph, over three times the speed of sound. As you hurtle through the edges of the atmosphere, the large windows perfectly reveal the cobalt blue sky as it turns from mauve to indigo and finally to black.
At this point you should be coping well even starting to relax, that is until the world contained in the spaceship is completely transformed putting all your senses back on full alert. The rocket motor has been switched off and all has become eerily quiet; the deep silence of space as awe inspiring as the noise of the rocket just moments earlier.
More significantly, gravity, which has dominated your every movement since the day you were born, is no longer there. There is no up and no down allowing you to experience a freedom that even the most realistic of your pre-flight dreams will have underestimated. Take a mid-space summersault over to the large window to see an image you’ve seen countless times before, but which now will undoubtedly provoke some strong emotions. The blue map, curving into the black distance is familiar but with none of the usual marked boundaries. The incredibly narrow ribbon of atmosphere looks worryingly fragile. It is the ultimate reward for all your training and effort; it is Earth and it is home.
Retuning to your reclined seat, you will feel gravity starting to return. The deceleration produces strong G forces, but the fact that you’re lying down, eases the intensity. The feathered wings of the spacecraft produce a powerful drag as the thickness of the atmosphere increases, although out of the windows it still looks like space. The G forces quickly ease off and the pilot announces the start of the glide home.
Later that evening, having received your astronaut wings, take a moment to catch your breath; from this point onwards, life will never quite be the same again.
The Latest News:
29 April 2013
Sir Richard Branson was thrilled to witness the first rocket-powered flight of Virgin Galactic’s space vehicle, SpaceShipTwo (SS2).
The test took place on Monday 29 April and was conducted by teams from Scaled Composites (the company that built SS2 for Virgin Galactic), Virgin Galactic, the world’s first commercial spaceline owned by Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and Abu Dhabi’s aabar Investments PJS, successfully completing their year-end goal for spaceflight and officially marking the beginning of the company’s final phase of testing, prior to operating a commercial service from Spaceport America, New Mexico.
Reporting on the event, Sir Richard Branson said:
“The first powered flight of Virgin Spaceship Enterprise was without any doubt, our single most important flight test to date. For the first time, we were able to prove the key components of the system, fully integrated and in flight. Today’s supersonic success opens the way for a rapid expansion of the spaceship’s powered flight envelope, with a very realistic goal of full space flight by the year’s end. We saw history in the making today and I couldn’t be more proud of everyone involved.”
24 July 2012
View the latest Virgin Galactic video by clicking here .
30 May 2012
Virgin Galactic, the world's first commercial spaceline, announced today that its vehicle developer, Scaled Composites has been granted an experimental launch permit from the Federal Aviation Administration for its suborbital spacecraft, SpaceshipTwo, and the carrier aircraft WhiteKnightTwo. They have already made progress with their flight test program, with 80 test flights successfully completed.
19 March 2012
Today Virgin Galactic announced another great achievement when they confirmed that they have just booked their 500th passenger/astronaut - Hollywood star Ashton Kutcher!! Sir Richard Branson called Ashton to congratulate and welcome him. He is as thrilled as they are at the prospect of being among the first to cross the final frontier (and back!) with Virgin Galactic and to experience the magic of space for himself.
During its first flight the spaceship was piloted by Pete Siebold, assisted by Mike Alsbury as co-pilot. The two main goals of the flight were to carry out a clean release of the spaceship from its mothership and for the pilots to free fly and glide back and land at Mojave Air and Space Port. Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group, who was present to witness the flight later described it as "one of the most exciting days in the whole history of Virgin". He went on to say "The sky is no longer the limit. We will now begin the process of pushing to the final frontier of space itself over the next year".
VSS Enterprise was described by Scaled Composites pilot Pete Siebold as "a joy to fly" and the company confirmed that all objectives of the flight were successfully completed. To view this exciting moment in history, click here
As safety is of paramount importance, flights to the public will only launch when deemed safe to do so. WK2 is the epitome of 21st century aerospace design and technology, representing a giant leap for material technology and has broken all moulds for carbon efficiency. SS2's design has the environment's best interests at heart too and it is expected that C0² emissions per passenger, per space flight will be the equivalent of 60% of that of a return commercial London/New York flight.
Find Out More:
Since 2005, aspiring astronauts have been paying their deposits and reserving their places on SpaceShipTwo and as a result there are now 550 people from around the world, who having booked their place in space, have not only become pioneers in a new and important industry but are part of one of the most amazing and inspiring projects the world has seen, to date.
The three-day Virgin Galactic Experience costs US$200,000 per astronaut and includes all training, required clothing, accommodation, food and beverages. International and domestic flights within the US and transfers are extra.
Not sure if it's for you? Try the NASTAR VIP Astronaut Experience
The NASTAR VIP Astronaut Experience is a two day programme held at the National Aerospace Training and Research Centre - the premier air and space training, research and educational facility in the world - and the first FAA approved centre for all training requirements for commercial human spaceflights.
The programme allows participants to experience the closest thing possible to a sub-orbital spaceflight and has been designed to deliver the core knowledge and skills required to become a safe, confident and capable suborbital spaceflight participant as well as providing future space travellers with training in a centrifugal simulator to experience G forces and undergoing a Zero G parabolic flight to experience weightlessness conditions.
Prices from USD $5,800 per person, include:
2 nights’ accommodation at The Ritz Carlton, Philadelphia, on a bed and breakfast basis
Complimentary “Astronaut themed” cocktail
Mission Kit with themed amenities
Luxury transfers between The Ritz Carlton and NASTAR on both days
Personalised Space Suit
Personal DVD video of the flights
Champagne graduation “Behind the Scenes” VIP tour of the latest simulation equipment
Gourmet lunch at NASTAR on both training days
Price excludes: flights and hotel incidentals.
Our Space Team have tried the suborbital spaceflight simulation for themselves and will be more than happy to talk to you about their experience or book your place. Feel free to call them on 01244 897 003 or email them at email@example.com for more details.