Questions about the structure
Q: How many years did it take to plan and build the Red Sea Star?
A: Planning the “Star”, forming the concept, attaining all required permits etc. took approximately 4 years and the actual building of the site took an additional four years.
Q: What is the thickness and weight of each window?
A: The thickness of the windows, without the additional glass layer that covers both sides of each window for protection, is between 8.5 cm and 13.5 cm, depending on its size. The bigger the window, the greater the pressure bearing on it and therefore the thicker it is. In addition, as mentioned, each window has a 6mm thick layer of special glass. The internal layer protects the acrylic panel from the visitors inside the Red Sea Star and the external layer protects the window from divers, fish etc. The total weight of all windows is over 12 tons.
Q: Is it in any way possible for the structure of the Red Sea Star to rust and therefore be weakened?
A: Such a possibility is prevented by adequate maintenance. In order to prolong the life span of the structure, a state of the art catodic protection system was installed, that releases ions to the water, thus preventing the oxidation of the steel structure.
Q: Is it in any way possible for the structure of the “Star” will cut-off from its place and slide into the sea?
A: No. Such a danger does not exist for two reasons: First, at the base of the structure there is a “load cell” with 4000 cubes of concrete that anchor the whole structure to the seabed. Second, the structure was additionally anchored to the seabed with 34 steel piles with a 20 inch diameter, which were driven through the structural base into the seabed to a depth of 15 meters, literally nailing the structure to the sea.
Questions about the design:
Q: What are the lampshades made of?
A: The lampshades are made of a metal construction covered by silk with a polioritenic layer for protection.
Q: Is there real sand under the glass of the floor?
A: The floor of the Red Sea Star is not made of glass although it sometimes may appear so. The floor is made of hardened real sand on which a layer of transparent thick epoxy glue was poured in order to simulate the extraordinary feeling of walking on wet sand.
Questions about the coral reef:
Q: Were corals hurt when the structure was sunk?
A: Absolutely not! When the structure of the Red Sea Star was lowered to its permanent location the seabed was as desolated as a desert. There was nothing except for sand and coral rocks, which were transferred from the area of the structure.
Q: How did the corals reach the stricken area?
A: The “Star”s expert divers established an underwater plant nursery at a depth of 20 meters below sea level, where they looked after the cultivation of the corals. With much love they set them at the proper angles with respect to the sun, cleaned them of predators, separated aggressive from passive coral species and created optimum conditions for their growth, so that their rate of growth was several-fold that of natural growth. Just before the opening of the project to the public, the corals were transferred from the nursery to the area around the underwater building level at the site. Then the “Star’s” divers brought rocks and colonies of damaged corals from other parts of the Red Sea, where the chance for survival of those corals was extremely poor, thus saving them from extinction. The corals were glued by the “Star” team using special medical glue imported from Florida.
Q: How is the coral reef seen at night?
A: The coral reef surrounding the “Star” is softly lit by special lighting, allowing to observe the underwater life at night, without disturbing its natural inhabitants. At first, underwater lighting illuminated the reef, but the results were not satisfactory. Therefore, the lighting was changed to an overhead lighting – above sea level. The special purple light succeeds in supplying sufficient light, without damaging the reef due to its specific color and length of waves. The result is amazing! It is important to remember that this is the only place in the world in which it is possible to observe fish and corals at night. Since the sight at night is different from the sight during daytime, as different sea creatures are active during different hours, it is recommended to visit the Red Sea Star during daytime as well as at night, in order to enjoy a greater number and variety of sea animals.
Q: Doesn’t the special light at night interrupt the fish to sleep?
A: No! at first we feared that if we light the coral reef during the night we will violate the day-night balance of the sea creatures. But, since the light does not penetrate the water, it is not felt by the fish and other creatures and therefore does not interrupt them at all, and the corals are continuing to develop amazingly. The light is in use only during part of the night and due to its specific color and length of waves does not interrupt life around the “Star”. The evidence to that is the fact that the fish and corals are constantly continuing to live, grow, multiply and develop.
Q: What are the pyramids seen through the windows of the site?
A: The pyramids around the “Star” are iron structures used as a comfortable bedding for the development of soft corals later planted on harder corals in the reef.
Q: Can sharks approach the surrounding of the Red Sea Star?
A: Up until now sharks were not seen around the “Star”. But, hundreds of fish and other sea creatures were seen including gray Morays, dolphins, water turtles and also rare fish such as the masked butterfly fish.
Q: Is it allowed to dive near the Red Sea Star?
A: It is impossible to dive around the structure of the Red Sea Star since it is a private area and the restored coral garden is very delicate, and divers who are not experts in raising and preserving corals may hurt and damage the development of the corals. The well trained expert team of divers of the Red Sea Star has years of experience in taking care of corals and sea creatures and take special precautions in order to avoid hurting the underwater life, for example by diving without flippers.
Q: Where is the kitchen of the “Star” located and how does the food get to the underwater floor?
A: The kitchen is located in the entrance level of the Red Sea Star, about 6.5 meter above sea level and about 12 meters above the floor of the restaurant. The prepared dishes descend to the underwater floor in a special service elevator and are served to the guests covered by metal bells shaped covers that help keep the food hot and fresh and prevent any contact of it with the external environment (keeping it sterile).
Q: Are the windows of the restaurant cleaned?
A: Certainly! Inside and outside. We believe that our restaurant is the only one in the world in which a team of trained divers clean its windows. The team of divers of the Red Sea Star, in addition to its preservation and cultivation tasks, is also responsible for the daily task of cleaning the external side of the windows while diving.
Q: Is it possible to plan an event at the Red Sea Star?
A: It is certainly possible to have unique and exclusive events at the Red Sea Star. Sitting events can be held with up to 100 guests in the restaurant or up to 200 guests in the “Metro Bar”. Cocktail events can be held with up to 200 guests in the restaurant or up to 300 guests in the “Metro Bar”. In addition special activities (such as karayoky) or guest artists can be incorporated if coordinated in advance.
Q: Is the “Metro Bar” active during the winter?
A: Certainly! Remembered that the Red Sea Star is located in Eilat, where people party all year long and where it rains only about three days a year. If it is a cold night gas heaters are used.