Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Glass Floored Restaurant

A 40th floor bridge of sighs that could be used, ia, as a restaurant.
  [vote for,

The idea of a high level glass floor someone can do a Wiley E Coyote on (the bit before he realises that gravity is calling) is baked; but the examples I've found are understandably half-baked.

For example, there's a glass floored skywalk over an edge of the Grand Canyon, but its structural supports are reassuringly solid. The presence of reassuringly solid supports has prevented the idea from reaching its full potential.

I propose the structural bare minimum, supported by the least reassuring looking cables possible. There should be several alarming gaps in the surface. With those constraints, it's just decking suspended over some canyon. Roofing is acceptable, as long as it's not at all reassuring. Perhaps some kind of awning could be strung from higher floors.

What I'm trying to recreate is what is, for me, the Ntunjambili feeling. Ntunjambili is a steep butte (?) attached to the escarpment of the Tugela valley by a narrow saddle. The saddle forms a bridge of sorts that feels a lot longer than it is, because for much of the way, if you step a little too far on either side of the level part, you'll be on too steep a slope, you'll lose traction, you'll slide onto scree, and in no time you'll be over the cliff edge, and there will be no point in calling the ambulance for you. The price of making a mistake is high, but it's actually quite easy to avoid doing this. The exposure is a bit scary, but actually the thrill of it really is quite cheap. Once over the bridge you have the whole of a "head", from which you look down on eagles, to yourself. Going across is propelled by the natural urge to explore, but the thought of having to go back makes you linger a bit on the other side, where the cliffs feel safer.

Maybe if the wind got up nicely, you'd have to cross back over in an undignified way, but it's not a tourist place, so your only mocker would be yourself.

So what I'm looking for is that kind of exposure. It has to tickle in your feet but not be stupidly dangerous. Maybe a narrow bridge to a central floored area would be exciting enough. Having no hand rail would definitely make the little crossing fun - especially if the wind was up. Crawling across could even be mandated, so as not to turn it into too much dare, and too little of taking pleasure in being somewhere strange.

Glass furniture, maybe? I don't want to spoil the fun by over-specifying, so let me keep some of my opinions to myself.

skoomphemph, Apr 19 2014

Sort Of, But Not So Much: Still Quite Vomitable... Fiber_20Optic_20Fie...oor_20and_20Ceiling
[Grogster, Apr 20 2014]

closer still http://www.rooftopr...taurant-Bangkok.htm
[xandram, Apr 21 2014]

Just make one of these from glass http://brainz.org/1...ying-bridges-earth/
[pashute, Apr 22 2014]

Dinner in the Sky http://www.dinnerinthesky.co.uk/
Suspended from a crane. [pocmloc, Apr 23 2014]


       Keep it simple [skoomphemph]
blissmiss, Apr 19 2014

       //Glass Floored Restaurant// I predict that it, or rather the area directly below it, will attract entirely the wrong sort of gentleman.
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 19 2014

       Perhaps they could be distracted by having a lot of glass floored outdoor showers built onto the walls of the building. A shower open to the sky above is very pleasant to use, but one with a glass floor could also be nice and frightening if it was jutting out over the street from the 20th floor.   

       These could be built on the understanding that they are also intended as a public service to the wrong kind of gentleman.
skoomphemph, Apr 19 2014

       Can both the restaurant and showers lurch sometimes with a loud creaking noise and a bit of debris?
Voice, Apr 20 2014

       //...will attract entirely the wrong sort of gentleman...//   

       You rang?
Grogster, Apr 20 2014

       [Voice] yes, absolutely. Profitability issues might limit the amount of debris that could fall onto the bridge deck, but for all the showers, each could just have its own little scree catcher down below.   

       Perhaps restaurant patrons could order shakes along with their drinks ...   

       ... This really should be the Great Bar in the Sky, shouldn't it? (Although that might bring the fun police down, demanding the retrofitting of things like guard rails and so on.)
skoomphemph, Apr 20 2014

       //will attract entirely the wrong sort of gentleman..   

       Just wear bicycle clips, that's what I do. Can't be too careful.
not_morrison_rm, Apr 20 2014

       Great timing [Grogster]!
blissmiss, Apr 20 2014

       The Vertigo Restaurant is definitely a step in the right direction. The diners don't have to crawl over a railless bridge, unstable, and barely wide enough for them, but there does seem to be a bit of glass on the floors.   

       Vertiginous furnishings and utensils are another feature I've considered. Originally I had the idea of rather Wussy, basically stable, suspended clear acrylic tables and chairs, as well as clear glass plates and clear plastic roadhouse cutlery, but having come here, I have seen the error of my ways, and I realise that instability is essential (as well as unnerving shaking at times).   

       In fact, why not push on to the next extension of the idea? You crawl over a narrow piece of almost-nothing onto a wobbly, sloped floor, where you place your order, and await your table. Said table is a slippery clear acrylic sheet, as described, and your chair is quite a precarious affair.   

       Table and chair arrive, you mount your chairs, and then you are swung out over the chasm. Who needs a floor? Each table can just have its own gantry.
skoomphemph, Apr 21 2014

       The old IBM tower in Tel Aviv has a thin stem like shape surrounded by glass. I new a cab driver that used to bend down when passing the building saying: what idiot built that thinking the glass will hold out!
pashute, Apr 22 2014

       I must be going insane, because I'm starting to have delusions that this is almost the full loaf.   

       But what if you put guests in climbing harnesses? Reduce the risks down to "real-but-manageable", but rack up the sensation of exposure as far as it can go.   

       The scary suspension bridges in the link from [pashute] make a good model for the waiting deck, I think. Take the Pakistani one, deck it in glass, but put perceptible tilt on each sheet, so the diners feel it in their feet (but maybe sneakily help them a bit not to slip by providing lots of through holes). In addition to your rope to a gantry above, the deck has nice, frayed-looking grab ropes just like the rope bridge (although the bottom edge could look more like the old collapsed bridge in the pictures).   

       However, the bridge leading out to this decking would ideally be as described: More a plank than a bridge, with no rail of any kind on the sides.   

       To offset that, you don't even allow construction workers to tap dance across it, as many could. Everyone has to crawl across. This is face-saving for the terrified, for one. (I would have to crawl because I'm sometimes prone to vertigo, for instance.) For two, crawling across would give you a much better view of the long fall awaiting those who slip.   

       Of course this would only ever really fly in New Zealand.
skoomphemph, Apr 22 2014

       This no floor entirely thing has been well done unfortunately <link>
pocmloc, Apr 23 2014

       Ah! That at least means there's a market for the idea.   

       Sadly, it looks like it all has to be done in an overly reassuring way to be viable. Seatbelts, cables that look dependable, solid table top ...   

       Brings a tear to my eye, it does. The vision I have is of a single couple out there, over the void sitting more on perches than chairs, at a glorified dinner tray, all gently swaying in the breeze, and suspended on ratty bits of string. The one-slip-and-you're dead illusion has to be maintained for the idea to reach its full form.
skoomphemph, Apr 23 2014


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