Bespin is one of the most exotic and cosmopolitan planets in the Outer Rim – no small feat for a world with no surface that was originally colonized as a gas mine. It owes much of its current reputation to the charismatic Lando Calrissian, whose civic improvements and flamboyant reputation have made Bespin a top-notch destination for Outer Rim gamblers and sightseers.
Gas giants are rarely colonized due to the expanse involved, but Bespin’s clouds contain a fortune in valuable Tibanna gas. Such vaporous wealth has led to the creation of many floating communities in Bespin’s “Life Zone” – a breathable band of atmosphere 30 kilometers deep nestled within the 1,000 kilometers of gaseous strata that hug Bespin’s thick core of liquid-metal rethen. Hundreds of bizarre flying, floating and drifting creatures have evolved in the Life Zone bemusedly sharing their vertical environment with the relatively recent Human and alien colonists in their repulsorlift cities.
Lando Calrissian won ownership of Cloud City shortly after the Battle of Yavin and increased Tibanna-mining profits by over 35 percent, while simultaneously deflecting the attention of the Mining Guild and the Empire. His triumphs crumbled when Darth Vader set a trap for Luke Skywalker on Bespin and the Empire took over the Cloud City administration and thus Bespin fall to the domain of the Empire. A revolt was unleashed after hearing the death of Emperor Palpatine in Endor, but the revolt was quickly crack down by the Empire.Two small moons called H’gaard and Drudonna (also known as The Twins) orbit far overhead, but Bespin’s residents have closer wonders to spellbind their senses. From the billows of airborne, phosphorescent algae to the churning “cloudspout” storms that roil the lower atmosphere, Bespin is a world of rare natural splendor.
Cloud City is a self-contained megalopolis with a population of near 6 million situated in Life Zone, stretching sixteen kilometers from end to end and layered like a chunk of geological strata. The prickly spires on the top are casinos and high priced hotels (including Kerros Tower – an observation platform that is the highest point in Cloud City), while the lowest levels are Tibanna and carbonite facilities. In between is the ratty district known as Port Town, a hangout for outlaws of all stripes.
Floating Health Spas were located in the habitable Life Zone, and these floating Spas hung around the Cloud City, from where they can be accessed. These stations were shaped like hot-air balloons and floated gently in the Bespin sky, servicing visitors with several relaxing activities. One of these was breathing cloud vapor, where people would lie down on the decks, while the pilot flew through high rising wisps of chemical haze (said to have some sort of therapeutic value). The effectiveness of this treatment was never clinically proven, but many visitors to Bespin were lavish in their praise of the technique.