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Luxury campgrounds with Airstream trailers, canvas tents, and yurts have become wildly popular over the last few years. But Dubai-based Ardh Architects is taking glamping — a portmanteau of “glamorous” and “camping” — one step higher, literally.
Ardh’s concept isn’t for travelers with acrophobia. Instead of tents pitched in the dirt, the architecture studio’s design features tents suspended almost 330 feet above the ground and between two mountains.
The project is still in its conceptual phase and is being developed with the Investment and Development Authority of Sharjah, the third largest city in the United Arab Emirates. But Omran Alowais, the main architect, told Insider in an email that there’s a “good chance” it’ll be executed in the coming years pending expected considerations like funding, planning, resources, and regulatory approval.
If approved, the hanging campsite will have 10 two-person tents with the option for additional or fewer “pods.” By using a system similar to a suspension bridge with cables, the row of tents will be attached to a primary structure situated between two mountains. These motorized pods can then be individually lowered and raised, hanging about 328 feet off the ground depending on wind conditions.
Like most glamping accommodations, the goal is to disconnect in nature while still having comfortable accommodations. The steel-framed tents will have typical amenities like a bed, bathroom, room service, WiFi, and entertainment systems. But this interior can be reconfigured to accommodate groups like a psychedelic or business retreat.
For additional privacy, only the front of the tent will be lined with see-through material. The exact fabric used around the tent has not been revealed, but Alowais notes it has to be light, fire and waterproof, breathable, and UV stable.
To take advantage of its unique location, the property will have plenty of nearby and on-site activities like organized tours, climbs, and of course a spa. And if a guest’s fear of heights suddenly kicks in, they can always head to the ground floor’s concierge and restaurant.
If built, the floating hotel will be over an hour from Dubai and will start at an estimated $300 per pod per night, Alowais said. The campground will only be in operation from November to May when the weather has cooled. In the summer, it’ll be open during the day for spa visits and sightseeing.
“The market for paid experiences has grown significantly in recent years, and the floating retreat offers something new and different that may appeal to a wide range of people,” Alowais said.
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