Drone-based hospitality concept looks to make nomads of us all

Driftscape could take the resort industry to places no hotel has ventured before.

February 03, 2017 |

Rendering courtesy of HOK.

There are only so many times a family can vacation to Disneyland before it grows a bit tiresome. The problem is, as jaded as it may seem, many vacation destinations fail to impress because they all provide similar experiences. But what if your next vacation could take a step off the well-worn path carved by thousands of travelers before you and, instead, become something completely tailored?

That’s the idea behind HOK’s Driftscape, a concept that combines hospitality with the technology of autonomous vehicles and drones. Driftscape uses modular glass units powered by long-range batteries to travel to locales previously uninhabitable by more traditional hotels, such as secluded tropical islands, mountaintops, and national parks.

Driftscape incorporates two components: the Oasis, which features operational and community units with a food and beverage element, and the Driftcraft, the actual guestroom. 

Instead of the hotel room acting as the last stop on your journey, the Driftscape experience takes guests on what HOK designers call the “reverse journey.” The roaming guestroom collects the guests at a designated pick-up zone and then travels to their final destination, which will often be the Oasis and its myriad amenities set up in a remote, scenic location—all while leaving minimal impact on the environment, says HOK.

This all may sound a bit chimerical, but perhaps the most unbelievable aspect of Driftscape is its feasibility. “With the rapid advancements being made in the autonomous vehicle and drone industry by companies such as Tesla and Ehang, we estimate the possibility of this futuristic concept coming to fruition within five to seven years,” says Ian Rolston, LEED GA, Senior Project Interior Designer with HOK. 

Initially, the Driftscape concept would be considered a premium experience and have a pricetag to match. But with the rapidly evolving technology, costs will eventually be akin to those of a luxury cruise, says Rolston. 


Rendering courtesy of HOK.


Rendering courtesy of HOK.

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