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National Geographic™ Hotel Chain

If you think the pictures are stunning . . .
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For well over a century National Geographic has been delighting its readers with photographic essays of some of the most fascinating and extreme places on Earth (and occasionally off).

The National Geographic Hotel chain gives people, who have a nice chunk of change, a chance to spend it while experiencing some of the honest wonders of the world, that aren't normally easily accessible to a business exec with only a few days to unwind, or a honeymoon couple who aren't really planning on spending much time outside the room.

Luxury (or as close to luxurious as environs permit) hotels are set up in locations that would normally take weeks of arduous planning and extreme physical hardship to reach. Placement emphasis is to allow the best future geoname-dropping as well as scenery. All rooms have full-wall windows.

Would you like to see the top of Mount Everest, but haven't got the month or two necessary to organize a climb ? Curious about how cold it *really* gets a few miles away from the South Pole ? Wonder what life would've been like on Gilligan's Island ?

For a bit of karmic balance, the hotels do offer free 3-day (economy) accomodations to any travellers who get there the hard way at the more extreme locations.

A few examples:
Geographic North Pole
Mount Erebus (yup, right on the edge)
Mount Everest summit
Great Barrier Reef: partially underwater
Mid-Sahara
Amazon Rainforest
Great Wall

(note that some of these places *are* on or close to the beaten track, but none as far as I know, offer full arms-length accomodations)

™ trademark, etc. National Geographic Society

FlyingToaster, Mar 18 2010

Like this? http://www.africanluxuryhideaways.com/
Admittedly, not quite as far off the beaten path as Everest and the north pole ... [mouseposture, Mar 19 2010]

Actually, more like this... http://press.nation...odges-of-the-world/
though the recent "real thing" hasn't got seriously exotic locations... yet. [FlyingToaster, Jan 14 2015]

[link]






       I'm kind of against this for a bunch of reasons, and I can sum them all up by saying that this idea is unfeasible and, to put it briefly, illogical. However, I won't take it seriously— What's the fun in that? So [].
DrWorm, Mar 18 2010
  

       Both feasible and logical: the hotels themselves aren't lavishly decorated or staffed, neither do they serve 'fresh imported Maine lobster' (unless it happens to be in Maine); they do serve to insulate the guests from the environment, but there is always a door and available tour guides available if more than a glimpse through a floor-to-ceiling pane glass window and a quick walk around the perimeter is wanted. Call it the extreme version of sitting by the oceanside in a lounge chair without being obliged to go swimming.   

       Guest-language staff member(s) can be brought in/out on the same delivery as the clientele to serve as personal concierges as well as whatever other normal duties they may have in the hotel proper.   

       The target is millionaires though, not billionaires. Spend a few tens of thousand and take a week experiencing the North Pole without actually having the prerequisite number of frostbitten toes removed;   

       Penguin flambe by the fireside, inside; outside, -80C 150km/h wind and a burble from the lava a few hundred metres off in the crater at Mt. Erebus;   

       50C outside, sand dunes stretching to the horizon, while you and your friend tan yourselves by the pool, inside.   

       It's also to get people used to this sort of thing, for when we get orbital and Lunar trips.   

       Other NG'esque venues include (hopefully ephemeral) war and poverty zones, where a good portion of the proceeds can be directly injected into the surrounding area.   

       While I've personally been to a few seriously nifty/extreme locations (though not in the class of the ones listed), none were made any more beautiful or remarkable *because* of the hardships getting there... your mileage may vary of course.
FlyingToaster, Mar 18 2010
  

       It's the millionaire's equivalent of hopping on the bus/car and heading to the cottage, sea/lake/mountainside for the weekend. Call up the company to set dates, make your own way to the major airport closest to the site (ie: fly in on a jet in first class) and we'll pick you up, most likely in a Herc, to fly into the site (though from the looks of things a couple are going to have to be Hinds, and the Great Barrier Reef Hotel is a shoo-in to be supplied by a renovated China Clipper).   

       Costs a bundle, but still an order of magnitude away from the cash outlay required for a properly mounted expedition, and nobody has to actually spend a week or two in incredible discomfort to get there (and still be in incredible discomfort).
FlyingToaster, Mar 19 2010
  

       Wouldn’t the Great Barrier Reef hotel be permanently full of guests enjoying free stay because they got there “the hard way”, by just walking a bit to the hotel, from just over the road in Cairns and surrounding towns in Northern Queensland?
Ian Tindale, Mar 19 2010
  

       Every place becomes accessible once it becomes desirable. Nonetheless, "National Geographic" would be a great franchise name.
jurist, Mar 19 2010
  

       //enjoying free stay// The freebie for travellers who trek into the location are only for almost inaccessible places like the North Pole or Mt.McKinley, the theory being that they can entertain the paying guests with stories while mooching free room'n'board for a few days.   

       Quite a few of the chain would be in places that are inhabited, or at least near "the beaten track": Grand Canyon type of thing, Rockies, Himalayas, Panama Canal (but not near enough to pay an exorbitant amount for the land to build on).   

       The resorts would be live-in staffed similarly to more normal remote resort hotels, ie: a few people that know how to run the place and a bunch of underpaid 20-25 year olds that are there for the free experience and exotic partehs.
FlyingToaster, Mar 19 2010
  

       I'm pretty sure there is a hotel at the Badaling section of the Great Wall in Beijing. An enterprising young Chinese capitalist has beaten you to this (unless it's a state-owned hotel).
swimswim, Mar 19 2010
  

       I like the idea of a Great Barrier Reef hotel. It could be a floating structure, with the bottom floors (the submerged ones) consisting mainly of glass. Like a glass-bottomed boat, but in hotel form.
Mrlemonjelly, Mar 19 2010
  

       yup [mp] like that... a bit more separation from the environment maybe. Each room is a full suite... I'm trying for the feeling of that sci-fi story(s) where there's a transporter and different rooms of the mansion are on different continents.
FlyingToaster, Mar 20 2010
  

       Essentially this is upmarket adventure-/eco-tourism, and the invention is that it is branded and run by NatGeo? I could see them going for that [+]
BunsenHoneydew, Mar 21 2010
  

       Just thinking here about *non*-native boobies - you know, the migration, the visa issues, the process of blending in and learning the language.   

       "So, how do you get on with your new neighbour?"   

       etc.
pertinax, Mar 21 2010
  

       //eco-adventure/tourism... NatGeo...// /native issues, language/   

       Essentially it *is* National Geographic magazine, live and in 3D. *But* it runs very much like reading one of their articles, too.   

       All accomodations are well-furnished full suites (spartanly decorated since the real decoration is the the transparent external walls. Heck, every suite has broadband and at least one megasized plasma-TV, and there's masseurs (gender inclusive form to distinguish from <wink, wink> massages... bring your own if that's your thing). The menus are guest-culture's and if there's any local cuisine it's also the guest's culture's version unless specifically requested otherwise. The staff that interacts with guests are guest-culture natives: (they themselves may have to use a dual-tongue native interpreter to have guest-wishes carried out.) You're mostly supposed to open the hotel front door, say "oh crap, glad I didn't hike here" in the extreme places and go back to decompressing with the gorgeous view.   

       <annoying double-negatives>
Is National Geographic (tm) magazine written in broken <Language> ? Do their articles mostly list what can happen to you if you get frostbite or heatstroke, go on and on about snowsnakes or malaria-carrying mosquitoes ? pages written about the joys of diarrhoea in the bush ? a medical description of what a bull-elephant or polar-bear can do to your ass?
</adn>
  

       Millionaires might spend a week or two a year... Billionaires of course would just buy a suite (and manage to write off the cost).   

       //visa// millionaires (as noted in the annos) don't have to get involved with things their personal assistants generally take care of... hmm, possible speedbump: have to make any innoculations innocuous somehow.
FlyingToaster, Mar 21 2010
  

       Autochthonous boobies?   

       Cool. [+]
skinflaps, Mar 22 2010
  

       bigsleep, the object is to *not* do that, thus the name associative... and I think paying a celebrity to be a bellhop or something would be a waste of their time or the Society's money, though I could see the promo TV shows/commercials like that... something for a celebrity to put on their blog.
FlyingToaster, Mar 23 2010
  

       // Essentially this is upmarket adventure-/eco-tourism, and the invention is that it is branded and run by NatGeo? I could see them going for that [+] — BunsenHoneydew, Mar 21 2010//   

       aaaaaand <link> As usual, no credit for the hardworking Halfbaker.
FlyingToaster, Jan 14 2015
  

       After a brief scan and finding no mention of bare breasted dark skinned women, I am disappointed.
normzone, Jan 14 2015
  

       shameless exploitation [+]   

       No boobs [-]
Voice, Jan 16 2015
  
      
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