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First Undersea Restaurant

Ithaa, the world's first undersea restaurant, opened its doors earlier this year at the Hilton Maldives Resort and Spa, its acrylic walls and roof revealing the ocean's wonders to patrons. The grand opening occurred just forty short years after Jack Vance wrote about them.


(First Undersea Restaurant)

The five-by-nine meter transparent arch spans the entire room, giving every one of the capacity crowd of fourteen diners a unique view of the reef on the one side and a clear lagoon on the other. The cuisine? Contemporary Maldivian - local spices and traditional flavors. Top that, Captain Nemo!

In his 1964 novel The Star King, science fiction writer Jack Vance wrote about an undersea restaurant that would seem very familiar to patrons of the Ithaa restaurant:

A major domo escorted them along a glass-vaulted tunnel, out upon the floor of the sea. Dining rooms of various sizes opened off the passage, into one of which they were conducted, and seated at a table close beside the sloping glass dome.
(Read more about Jack Vance's undersea restaurant)

For those visiting the real undersea restaurant, which opened in April of 2005, Ithaa is reached by a wooden walkway from a nearby restaurant. Diners descend five meters down to the restaurant via a spiral staircase.

Thanks to a reader for the tip and the quote for the story.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/20/2005)

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