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"We [science fiction writers] always wanted to believe in "private sector" space -- hucksters make better characters than a government does."
- Larry Niven

Undersea Restaurant  
  A restaurant located in its entirety under the sea.  

This is a very early (and prescient) description of what an undersea restaurant would look like.

"She led him to a kiosk circled by large luminous green letters reading NAUTILUS. An escalator dropped them two hundred feet into a tall octagonal lobby paneled with rattan screens. 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. The sea lay beyond, with beacons illuminating the sand, rocks, seaweed, coral, the passing submarine creatures."
From The Star King, by Jack Vance.
Published by Berkeley in 1964
Additional resources -

As far as I know, the first true undersea restaurant was built at the Maldives Hilton in April of 2005:

Ithaa is the only all glass undersea restaurant in the world. Set five metres underwater on a coral reef, Ithaa's innovative glass aquarium design gives diners 360-degree views of the surrounding reef life, while offering an exciting and novel fusion Maldivian-western menu. Ithaa, which means ''pearl'' in the local language, promises a unique dining experience, with humans inside the aquarium and the fish looking in.

You may recall the famous Coral Reef Restaurant at Disney World (I've eaten there - the food is great - sit in the second tier of seats to get a more panaramic view). I think this restaurant was built in the early 1980's (EPCOT opened in 1982); however, it is not a true undersea restaurant. The restaurant is on dry land; one large wall is shared with a (very impressive) aquarium.

As long as I'm obsessing on this topic, the earliest description of fine dining under the sea has got to be found in Jules Verne's 1875 classic 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea:

I then entered a dining-room, decorated and furnished in severe taste. High oaken sideboards, inlaid with ebony, stood at the two extremities of the room, and upon their shelves glittered china, porcelain, and glass of inestimable value. The plate on the table sparkled in the rays which the luminous ceiling shed around, while the light was tempered and softened by exquisite paintings.

I think he saved the view of the sea from within the Nautilus for elsewhere in the book.

Thanks to an anonymous reader for contributing the quote for this item.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Star King
  More Ideas and Technology by Jack Vance
  Tech news articles related to The Star King
  Tech news articles related to works by Jack Vance

Undersea Restaurant-related news articles:
  - First Undersea Restaurant
  - Ithaa Undersea Restaurant Review And Video

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