Cruise ship for the dead!

Published: Nov 26, 2012, 08:46 IST | Agencies |

Yet another passenger ship could be about to anchor in Hong Kong's popular waters, but berths aboard this particular vessel will be more permanent.

New sketches from a company in the city on China’s southern coast have proposed the creation of a floating cemetery. Designed as a possible solution to Hong Kong’s shortage of building space — particularly for graveyards —Bread Studio has come up with ‘Floating Eternity’.

Watery grave: Designed as a possible solution to Hong Kong’s shortage of building space — particularly for graveyards — a company has come up with ‘Floating Eternity’. Pic/

The structure would hold a rotating wall of 3,70,000 niches which are compartments allotted for people to place their urn containing the remains of their loved ones. Designed like a cruise ship, the floating cemetery would anchor along Hong Kong’s coastline, docking at a designated pier for visitors who want to visit their deceased relatives.

“Architects are always made to think about life when designing buildings but not many think about death,” said Benny Lee, a designer at Bread Studio. “I was watching TV and saw a group of people encouraged by the government to scatter their loved ones’ ashes in the sea and noticed that the boat they were using to transport people out was really small. I thought why not make that boat bigger, better and more enjoyable for families.”

‘Floating Eternity’ would also offer amenities for its visitors. Complimenting Chinese rituals that involve bringing food during cemetery visits, the floating cemetery plans to have a grass deck for people to set up picnics or a restaurant onboard.

This would be particularly popular during the city’s Cheung Yeung and Ching Ming Festival, where many Hong Kong residents pay homage to their deceased ancestors by spending their day at cemeteries.

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