An underwater restaurant in Norway, which is a first for Europe, is nearing completion and on track for its public opening in September 2019, CNN reported this week.
The 110-foot long structure, designed by Norwegian outfit Snøhetta and named "Under," was submerged 5 meters below the North Sea surface in July, and work is now underway to complete the interiors.
Rune Grasdal, a senior architect at Snøhetta, told CNN that the process of submerging the structure was "a delicate operation."
The restaurant was built on a barge near the coast then towed by a heavy lift vessel to be submerged through the use of containers filled with water and placed inside.
Eighteen anchoring points now hold the restaurant to the sea floor as teams work to prepare the restaurant for its grand opening.
"It's a magic feeling to be down in a big room like this and see out into the sea through the huge window," Grasdal told CNN.
Under will accommodate 80 to 100 guests in its 500 square meter design, divided over three levels, CNN noted.
However, the restaurant will also allow research teams to study marine biology and fish behavior, according to Snøhetta's website.
A team of experts involved in the project are working to create conditions that attract a rich diversity of marine life to the site.
"It's incredibly exciting that we will be able to give the guests a unique insight into the underwater marine life surrounding the restaurant" biologist Trond Rafoss said in a statement. "We are working in harmony with Mother Nature, but the ocean is unpredictable. Fortunately, however, there are techniques we can use, which will help us showcase as many of the species found in the local area as possible."
Reservations are being accepted by the restaurant beginning in April 2019, however, CNN noted that availability is already limited into the summer.
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