REVEALED: Google's Secret Floating Barges Are ... Giant Party Decks!

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google barge KPIX

KPIX / screengrab

A schematic of the inside of the Google Glass party barges.

Google's giant, secret floating barges moored in San Francisco Bay and Portland, Maine, are party boats where senior Google executives will court highly favored clients, mostly for marketing Google Glass, according to KPIX-CBS in San Francisco:

A source who has been onboard the vessel, which is moored off San Francisco’s Treasure Island under tight security, told KPIX 5 the first three floors are designed to serve as “dazzling showrooms” that can be outfitted with chrome features and floor lighting. There is an upper “party deck” meant to feature bars, lanais and other comforts so Google can fete its upscale customers.

There's just one problem: Authorities have declared that the barges, made of stacked shipping containers, are technically sea-going vessels and therefore subject to maritime safety regulations, KPIX says. Google is struggling to work within the U.S. Coast Guard's safety requirements and bring them into compliance.

The barges are Google's response to Apple's store concept, in which customers get "high-touch" attention from store employees (and end up spending a lot of money).

They will be moved up and down the coasts, from one city to the next, bringing Google Glass — and booze and music — and likely creating headlines wherever they land.

The barges are the personal dream of Google founder Sergey Brin, KPIX reported.

Here are some images.

This is the San Francisco barge, floating off Treasure Island in the Bay:

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

You can see the stacked containers in this closeup:

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

The barges remain under construction while they await to pass a U.S. Coast Guard inspection.

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

They have a modular construction.

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

Google wants to be able to move them to any city with a waterway in the world.

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

Here is the plan for the inside.

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

This one in San Francisco has been under construction for months.

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Google barge

KPIX / screengrab

Here's the one in Portland Maine.

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Google barge tugboat Portland

Portland Tugboat LLC / Facebook



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