Billionaire Yusaku Maezawa Will Be the First Moon Tourist

Japanese billionaire buys all tickets for SpaceX's moon trip

Yusaku Maezawa, a Japanese entrepreneur and billionaire, would be the first private person to take a trip to the space, and SpaceX would hold the record of making that happen. He will invite six to eight artists - from film, architecture, painting, sculpture and photography - to travel with him for free.

Yusaku Maezawa announced his plans to make history as the first tourist to ride around the moon on a space-x commercial flight.

The trip will take four or five days, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said at the event.

"I did not want to have such a fantastic experience by myself", said Maezawa, wearing a blue sports jacket over a white T-shirt printed with a work by the late painter Jean-Michel Basquiat. "I love art and I look forward to seeing what different artists working together [can] bring to life", Maezawa said during the announcement.

Maezawa didn't immediately say who will be on his guest list for the spaceflight, but in response to a question from a reporter he said he'd consider inviting Musk.

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It's insane to think that we've reached a point in our lives that we're finally exploring more space travel thanks to Musk, but here we are. He will be boarding SpaceX's Big Falcon Rocket or BFR which is still now under development. The reusable 387-foot rocket is expected to cost about $5 billion. The company released a promotional video in early 2018 showing a simulated BFR crew vehicle landing on the moon, but did not provide any technical information. The outpost would serve as a stepping-off point for the lunar surface, Mars and points beyond. He entered the retail industry by creating Japanese e-commerce startup Start Today, which sold various things-from his first passion, music (music albums) to clothing, Maezawa forged an empire en route to becoming a billionaire. In 2012, he started the Tokyo-based Contemporary Art Foundation to support young artists. The price for "Untitled" was reportedly the highest ever paid at auction for a work of art by an American artist, and the sixth-highest price for any piece of art.

As for government space programs, China has inspired a new space race to the moon with a robust lunar space program that plans to get humans on the Moon in the mid-to-late 2030s. Musk did not name the clients a year ago or say how much they would pay. He was one of those who congratulated SpaceX and its founder for the success of the Falcon Heavy rocket launch.

SpaceX has not announced how much Maezawa is paying for his trip.

SpaceX has its sights ultimately set on Mars. Last month he told the New York Times he was overwhelmed by job stress.

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