The first YOtels were inaugurated at London’s Gatwick and Heathrow airports in June 2007, by Simon Woodroffe. Simon is the chairman and founder of the YO! company. The YOtel’s pods are lightly larger then conventional capsule hotels although pretty little in relation to a usual hotel room. Each pod is made up of a flat screen TV, an en suite bathroom and Wi-Fi. This shows a vision to the future of hotels and the details which are in store for for both consumers and the industry. So now in 2012, what do hotels of the future assures when not controlled by space-saving laws?

Aero Hotels: Some entrepeneurs, investors and architects are glancing up in the clouds as the new landing-place of the future hotels. Many proposals includes large-scale aircrafts that bear resemblance to blimps complete with restaurants, rooms and shops. Though in 2009 the first sky-bound hotel was really introduced; the Hotelicoptor is a double deck Airbus A380 priding oneself with the best in luxurious vacationing with fine dining and eighteen extravagant rooms. Up-and-coming is also the Aircruise by UK company Seymourpowell who say their aero hotel of the future will be a enormous, vertical airship flying travellers in style, comfort and luxury, promoting penthouse, bars, apartments and viewing decks.

Foldable Hotel Pods: Back to the pod theme, this is a sought-after design convention for these blue-sky thinking hotels, but here it is mobility that is the major usefulness. These hotels can be based anywhere, as well as the best white sandy beaches with crystal clear waters that the world has. Intensive research into the environmental outcome that these pod hotels would have on the local area should be carried and many analysts anticipate that once the green credentials are achieved this scheme will really happen.

Underwater Hotels: Recently the design world has seen a lot of offers, blueprints and plans composed for underwater hotels. In charge of the pack is Deep Ocean Technology (DOT) who the Daily Mail revealed on earlier this year with their design for the Water Discus Hotel. The complex building will be half-submerged with 21 rooms presenting underwater views of the exotic ocean life. Even though the Maldive’s Rangali Islands resort is plainly the first underwater hotel as it’s already, up, working and making reservations for newlyweds that would like to sleep with the fishes, literally.

The favourite spot for most of these luxury hotels is United Arab Emirates and Dubai, which are presently the world leaders in innovative architecture and advancements in the travel and tourism industry. And indeed, the price to stay in these science fiction-like accommodations is high enough to astonish anyone.

So what about the future of airports? By the year 2030 we will have twice the number of air passengers passing through our airports and due to this estimation, as well as the fact that air travel is the only way to literally connect our world cities to the global economy, airports will go under some significant development in the next two decades.

Forget cool lighting and super modern surfaces, the most pressing issue that must be addressed for our future airports is the lack of space, and the burgeoning need for compactness. Scientists, planners and dreamers are aware of the increasing difficulty of expanding on existing airport facilities, therefore it is likely that the aviation and aerospace industry will need to come up with innovative solutions to increase capacity while reducing the environmental impacts. We may see a heavy investment in vertical takeoff pads that can house the airplanes of the future, which will of course, be designed to takeoff and land vertically themselves. So rather than a few massive sprawling airports we may see dozens of mini airports clad in solar panel roofs and phovoltaic panels. Our future airports will strive to not only be energy efficient but also self-sustainable, producing their own power and recycling their own waste. The other side of the argument is the aerotropolis. But  well, this is part of the next chapter.

Zac Colbert writes on numerous architectural and design related subjects, from luxury private jet charter to the best environmentally friendly offices around the world.