Architecture

Underwater hotel suite lets guests sleep with the fishes

Underwater hotel suite lets gu...
Room with an (underwater) view: guests at the Muraka will be given curated menus and have their own butlers available 24 hours a day
Room with an (underwater) view: guests at the Muraka will be given curated menus and have their own butlers available 24 hours a day
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The Muraka (or Coral) villa is located in the same Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort that hosts the Ithaa underwater restaurant
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The Muraka (or Coral) villa is located in the same Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort that hosts the Ithaa underwater restaurant
The Muraka consists of a large suite above the waves and a smaller one beneath 
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The Muraka consists of a large suite above the waves and a smaller one beneath 
The Muraka can accommodate up to nine guests
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The Muraka can accommodate up to nine guests
Guests who stay at the Muraka will be will be given special curated menus and have their own butlers available 24 hours a day
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Guests who stay at the Muraka will be will be given special curated menus and have their own butlers available 24 hours a day
The interior design, handled by Yuji Yamazaki, was kept deliberately sedate so as to not detract from the view
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The interior design, handled by Yuji Yamazaki, was kept deliberately sedate so as to not detract from the view
The upper above-water level of the Muraka looks pretty impressive 
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The upper above-water level of the Muraka looks pretty impressive 
The Muraka's lower level is situated 5 m (16.4 ft) beneath the waves and includes a master suite with bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area
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The Muraka's lower level is situated 5 m (16.4 ft) beneath the waves and includes a master suite with bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area
Room with an (underwater) view: guests at the Muraka will be given curated menus and have their own butlers available 24 hours a day
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Room with an (underwater) view: guests at the Muraka will be given curated menus and have their own butlers available 24 hours a day
View gallery - 8 images

Well-heeled visitors to the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort can now book a stay in a one-of-a-kind underwater hotel villa. Named Muraka, it features an expansive curved acrylic roof and allows guests to sleep beneath the waves without getting wet.

The Muraka (or Coral) villa is located near the Ithaa underwater restaurant, which was designed by the same team. Indeed, it features a similar design to the restaurant and consists of a large suite above the waves and a smaller suite beneath.

It can accommodate up to nine guests and while the upper level certainly looks luxurious, it's the lower level that everyone will want to stay in. It's situated 5 m (16.4 ft) beneath the waves and reached by elevator or spiral staircase.

That lower area features a master suite with one bedroom, bathroom, and a lounge. It's topped by an eye-catching curved acrylic dome window offering choice views of the marine life. Even the bathroom has generous glazing, so visitors will need to carry out their daily ablutions in front of the fishes too.

The Muraka's lower level is situated 5 m (16.4 ft) beneath the waves and includes a master suite with bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area
The Muraka's lower level is situated 5 m (16.4 ft) beneath the waves and includes a master suite with bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area

The Muraka's underwater section weighs around 600 tons and was built on terra firma then sunk into position by crane. The interior design, handled by Yuji Yamazaki (YYA), was kept deliberately muted so as to reduce glare and the floor is covered with silk carpet in an attempt to mitigate any reverberation. The idea is that the focus is very much on the view.

"People don't go to a theater to see the theater, they are there for the show," says YYA. "We had to make sure that the guests can have the underwater views from every vantage point of the room. More than 75 percent of wall, ceiling surfaces are made of clear acrylic. The glare and reflection on clear acrylic had to be minimized and views to the ocean had to be secured. We also wanted to give a sense of comfort. We looked at many interior design from private jet to classic Italian luxury cars, from which we learned about good details in confined spaces."

The upper above-water level of the Muraka looks pretty impressive 
The upper above-water level of the Muraka looks pretty impressive 

While it's not the world's first underwater accommodation – we've previously reported on others, including the Manta Resort and the Aquarium de Paris' underwater bedroom – the Muraka is probably the most impressive to date.

As you may have guessed, the experience isn't going to be cheap though. According to Designboom, it will set you back an incredible US$50,000 per night.

Sources: YYA, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, Crown Company Maldives

View gallery - 8 images
1 comment
Joshua Tulberg
They gotta get their moneys worth, because in 50 years the whole thing will be under water. Makes me wonder if people designing these structures allow for easy future expansion of the pillars to account for that sea level rise.