Tulum will have a launch base for Space Tourism Trips of the EOS-X spacecraft
Tulum has all the conditions to host a base that will be the starting point for space travel, confirmed Kemel Kharbachi, founder and CEO of EOS-X Spaceship Company, who in an exclusive interview said that it will be in the coming weeks when the official announcement of this investment will be made, which represents a revolution in the tourism offer of the Mexican Caribbean.
Interviewed during his visit to Tulum last February to participate in the Bioferia, the Spanish investor presented his project, which consists of three take-off bases in different parts of the world: a point between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates; Seville, in Spain, and Tulum, in Mexico. This work would generate between 500 to 1,000 highly qualified jobs in Tulum, including engineers and experts in marketing and tourism.
“It is the decade of space tourism; in the 60’s professional astronauts went with a multimillion dollar investment, space programs were governmental and very expensive and what we think, as happened with Elon Musk or Richard Branson, is to lower operating costs when it comes to uploading both cargo and satellites and tourists,” he explained.
He indicated that space tourism is still very expensive and, therefore, not viable for everyone. Going to outer space with Jeff Bezos’ or Elon Musk’s companies costs between $15 million and $20 million. “With Branson we are talking about almost half a million dollars and on our part 150 thousand (dollars), which includes not only the trip but a whole experience on the ground,” the entrepreneur pointed out.
EOS-X Spaceship Company offers a five-day package in which the tourist stays in a ground complex, a very high level experience, personalized to the maximum, which includes simulators, immersive themes, Moon pavilion, Mars, and space programs. The last day is the five-hour trip to the stratosphere. This is done in a pressurized capsule (i.e., it has gravity) with capacity for seven people.
“In my category, being a middle space category, which does not carry a rocket but we use a helium balloon, I want to emphasize that it is a zero emissions company and 100 percent sustainable, anyone who can travel in an airplane can do it in this experience, you do not need special training, “said the interviewee.
Kemel Kharbachi explained that his capsules reach the limit of the stratosphere, which is 40,000 meters. From there the traveler can appreciate the curvature of the Earth. “In the case of the third base, which we have already decided 100 percent will be here (in Tulum), it will be possible to contemplate the entire Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, part of North America and part of the cone of Central and South America,” he said.
At the Seville base, starting in April of this year, five unmanned tests will be carried out first, then in November they will begin with professional pilots in the Arab Emirates complex and then commercial flights will take place.
“We climb vertically, we are not powered by a rocket, with which you get to space in less than 10 minutes; in this case as we are powered by a helium balloon in two and a half hours you are just at 40 thousand meters, you spend an hour and a half orbiting, time in which you can contemplate, take pictures, in fact inside there will be live streaming for family members and others and then the descent is 30 minutes. In fact we are the second company with the longest duration of the experience. Elon Musk and we are the longest in flight and on the ground and everything that is the program we are number one, “said the founder and CEO of EOS-X Spaceship Company.
This tour package will not be sold in traditional travel agencies; it will be done either directly on EOS-X Spaceship Company’s platforms or in an agency specialized in this type of clients; for example in Mexico and the United States it will be Nuba, a company that makes exclusive and tailor-made trips. “We do not delegate to third party companies, the hotels within the complex are ours, everything that is the experience, from end to end, is guided by us”.
Due to weather conditions, the different bases will not operate throughout the year, only in the months with better wind. During the time they operate, trips will be daily, between two and three capsules per day. “We use destinations where there is little rainfall or stable weather. The theme of the resorts is adapted to each area of the globe; in Emirates everything is very futuristic and here we want to highlight the sustainability part,” said the businessman.
Finally, he highlighted the “enormous evolution” of the tourism industry over the years: “When tourism began to take off was in the 50s, with the airlines, then in the 80s the tour operators began to massively, in the 90s and 2000s it was already super massive and technologies entered, the change in the form of marketing, where the customer can buy their packages directly without the need for an intermediary and now people are not only aware of the sustainable issue but increasingly looking for a much more personalized experience. Projects like EOS-X are for a totally sustainable tourism and for me tourism is going to change: it is going to be much more experiential, personalized and sustainable”.