Their clients want to feel at home even when they are 40,000 feet in the air, so private-jet interior designers create cabins that reflect the owners’ tastes and address their desires in terms of accommodations and conveniences. The challenge for designers is to do so while working with limited space and using material and equipment that are lightweight (so that the aircraft remains as fuel efficient as possible), resistant to burning (the FAA has strict requirements), and durable (aircraft repairs are pricey).
The aircraft spotlighted here—an Airbus lined in rosewood, an Art Deco Dassault Falcon, a nautical-themed Boeing 757, and a sleek Global Express—illustrate the designers’ skills at addressing aeronautical necessities while also bringing some of the luxuries of home to the sky.
The Cream Rises | London-based Andrew Winch Designs kitted out the Airbus ACJ-318 shown here and on the previous pages in just over a year for an Eastern European client. “From the outset the client requested a fresh and sophisticated flying environment that would work seamlessly for both his personal and business use,” says the firm’s cofounder and director, Andrew Winch, who fulfilled this order last July with help from Lufthansa Technik.
Winch outfitted the cabin’s main seating area with a cream interior accented with high-gloss rosewood and almond-gold fittings and upholstered the space in rich leathers and fabrics. On the back of each of the two leather reclining seats is a navy-blue leather-and-buckle detail (above) that Winch says “lends a feel of luxury travel luggage.”
Illuminated soffit ceilings in the main area of the cabin and the master bedroom, notes Winch, “maximize height and spaciousness.” The designer also peppered the interior with touchscreens with which passengers can control the audiovisual, lighting, and climate-control systems and the window shades.
A subtle gradation of cream hues in the silk carpet reaches its lightest shade in the master bedroom, which is furnished with a fixed queen-size bed and two seats similar to those in the main area of the cabin.
Andrew Winch Designs, +44.208.392.8400, www.andrew-winch-designs.co.uk
Going Gray | An unlikely combination of inspirations—waterfowl and the Art Deco movement—informed the decor of this Dassault Falcon 900 prepared by Pegasus Design, which is based in London and Monaco. “The owner was fascinated by the gray goose,” says Pegasus founding partner and design director Peder Eidsgaard, explaining why he created a subtle symbol of the bird for the aircraft’s livery and for a mid-cabin mirror.
The owner wanted the aircraft to reflect his fondness for Art Deco, so Eidsgaard lined the interior with Macassar ebony and rounded the corners in the galley, which he notes “is designed for five-star meal service.” To create the perception of more space and enhance the Deco theme, Eidsgaard ran what he calls a “frieze” of reflective polished nickel across the outboard sides of the interior and the bulkheads.
In the cabin’s forward seating area, four reclining swivel chairs accented with Edelman and Townsend leathers flank a Macassar table edged in hollowed-out stainless steel. The edging reduces scratching of the table, whereas the hollowing minimizes its weight. When not in use, the table tucks away and is secured by a latch bearing the goose design.
Pegasus Design, +44.207.381.3171, pegasusdesign.mc
Tender Is the Flight | Edése Doret’s client acquired this Boeing 757-200 to serve as a flying tender: He uses it to ferry guests to his yacht, so naturally he requested that the New York–based designer create a nautical-themed interior during the jet’s recent nose-to-tail overhaul. “The design theme was based on the owner’s yacht,” explains Doret. In the forward area of the cabin, Doret added holly and teak flooring, wood veneer from Carl Boothe, soffit lighting, and a dramatic dropped ceiling. He also added a series of what he calls ribs along the sidewalls to evoke a ship’s hull. The electrically operated center table flips open to accommodate more diners, and it has a telescoping base that allows the top to be raised or lowered with the touch of a button.
A similar table anchors one of the two guest quarters (top right), where the divans, covered in a fabric by Leny Joyce, join and convert to a large sleeping berth (the plane sleeps as many as 21 passengers). In the bedroom, custom lighting from Emteq radiates from under the bed; the carpet is from Tai Ping. Using touchscreens located throughout the plane, passengers can control the cabin-management system from PGA Electronics and the Kaleidescape media library of music and movies.
Edése Doret, 212.928.5430, www.edesedoret.com
Flexible Flier | In describing the cabin of the Bombardier Global Express that his design firm personalized earlier this year for a prominent Middle Eastern family, Eric Roth, president of New York–based International Jet Interiors, uses the words uncomplicated, modern, comfortable, sophisticated—conditions that can sometimes be contradictory. “We focused on wood and color combinations to achieve this beautiful balance,” he says.
Above all else, perhaps, the interior is flexible. In the cabin’s main seating area, the forward club seats, the midcabin conference seats, and the three divans convert to sleeping berths. Near the main dining table are two smaller, two-person tables that can be employed as workstations, places for the children to play board games, or adjunct dining tables. The galley includes service for 12 and is used for both simple and formal in-flight meals. Apple-specific docking stations enable the family members to use and charge their iPhones, iPods, and iPads, all of which integrate with the cabin’s entertainment system.
“The Global Express is perfect for long-range flights,” says Roth. “It accommodates business travel and the family’s vacation schedule from continent to continent.”
International Jet Interiors, 631.737.5900, www.intljet.com