on December 14, 2017
For cabin innovations in the private-jet industry, it seems the sky is the limit. There was the concept for a private-jet cabin designed by Lufthansa Technik and Mercedes-Benz, which included a large fish tank. There was the ‘anti-gravitational’ reclining chair designed and produced by Yasava, a Swiss interiors company, which is said to be controlled effortlessly by gravity rather than mechanics.
But the gong for this year’s most spectacular cabin innovation must surely go to Airbus Corporate Jets and its tie-up with Italian hypercar Atelier Pagani Automobili, which designed a cabin with a ‘sky ceiling’.
The so-called Infinito cabin, available on the new eight-seater ACJ319neo jet, gives a live view of the sky above the aircraft, into the cabin, whatever the weather. It can also display images, photos and videos. As well as an incredible sense of freedom and space, it also opens up the cabin to feel larger, according to Airbus.
Curves inspired by nature form a pathway through the cabin, as well as featuring in the shell-shaped valances and walls between zones, including one between lounge and conference areas, which switches from opaque to transparent at the touch of a button.
Décor is reminiscent of that found in Pagani cars, with natural soft-leather carpets and a wooden floor contrasting with man-made carbon fibre in furniture and wall frames. Sculpted metal features in light fittings and other details, while LED lights enable different mood-lighting ambiances.
Horacio Pagani, founder and chief designer of Pagani Automobili, said that the cabin will also comprise state-of-the-art composite materials never used before in an aircraft, such as Carbotanium, with “the typical design language of Pagani Automobili”.
Airbus added that its business jet already has the widest and tallest cabin in its peer group, while being similar in size externally, and Infinito builds on this for even more of a passenger-pleasing experience. The price for the cabin is not published, but the price of an ACJ319 including a VIP cabin is around US$90 million.
The ACJ319 is offered with fully customised cabins, so a customer could choose Infinito, or something else. For a room with a view, it clearly doesn’t get much better.
Separately, Airbus Corporate Jets (ACJ) launched a stunning marketing campaign this year featuring the work of an artist who creates real clouds inside rooms.
ACJ Nimbus by artist Berndnaut Smilde, photographed by RJ Muna, is a series of images showing a couple dancing, a woman bathing and two children watching a film, each scene graced with a fluffy white cloud. “Creating ‘clouds in rooms’ is part of my passion for exploring the creativity of spaces, so it was intriguing when Airbus Corporate Jets proposed using it as a twist on the ‘putting rooms in clouds,’ which it does,” says Smilde.
Smilde creates the clouds by spraying a fine mist of water in the air, and then blowing smoke onto it. “Every cloud is different,” explains Smilde, “but with practice you can get roughly the shape you want, where you want it.”
The ACJ Nimbus artwork comprises three scenes—“Serenity”, “Freedom” and “Harmony”—which act as a visual metaphor for owning and travelling in an Airbus corporate jet. The scenes tell the story, so they are simply accompanied by the tagline “Your world above the clouds,” said ACJ in a note.