In a city where, according to an old slogan, you can find everything from a pin to an elephant, it should come as no surprise that at number 1 Grosvenor Place, you can make an appointment and then drop in and buy an executive jet. In 2012 Steve Varsano opened the world's first street-level concept showroom for business jets, developing his idea in order to meet the demands of the changing market. Today, high-net-worth people are typically ready to make their investment straight away, and all they need is the right information. This is what they get at The Jet Business, a totally immersive and interactive experience, with a giant TV screen on which a cabin can be shown full-size, and a life-size business jet cabin.
The Jet Business sales team with Steve Varsano
Steve Varsano says, “In the industry, we think that we're losing ten to twenty percent of the potential clients because they think that the process of buying a jet is long and complicated. My concept eliminates all this, and makes it possible to learn everything they need to know in an hour, instead of the two or three months it would take to go through all the manufacturers and brokers.” He knows that there will always be a demand for this sophisticated means of transport. “If someone is trying to run a multi-billion company, you don't want them to be stuck in a passenger airport waiting for a plane to bring them to the next meeting. That type of entrepreneur needs security, they need to visit five cities in one day.” And there are more and more of these people: Steve estimates that sales this year will be double last year’s. www.thejetbusiness.com
Photo courtesy of Simon & His Camera/flickr.com
Of course, you don’t have to buy a jet to be able to travel this way. Jet charter companies offer large fleets of executive aircraft, ensuring the right choice for whatever the size of group or destination. An example is London Executive Aviation (LEA), one of Europe’s largest private jet charter operators, operating from TAG Farnborough, London Biggin Hill, London Stansted and London City, along with others in the U.K. We asked Patrick Margetson-Rushmore, LEA's Chief Executive Officer, about their clients and their destinations.
The Jet Business
“Cities such as Paris, Frankfurt, Berlin, Geneva and Dublin are all popular with our business clients. Private aircraft enable our clients to save time, which is the most precious commodity for a business. People use business jets to make deals and get them completed effectively and efficiently in a safe and private environment. The UK’s sporting events are always popular. This year, we’ll be flying our customers to the Rugby World Cup in September/October, taking place at various destinations throughout the UK, from Twickenham, London to Cardiff, Wales. Next year, we’ll be booking for Royal Ascot in June, Wimbledon in July, the UK polo season and popular Premier League games, as well as further afield such as the Cannes Film Festival and the Monaco Grand Prix.”
Interior of the Embraer Legacy 600, photo courtesy of London Executive Aviation
If you’d just like to see London from a privileged viewpoint, you could leave the crowds behind and see the capital from a fresh perspective. A company such as The London Helicopter can offer flights typically lasting 30 minutes that enable you to view all the classic sights, such as the Royal Albert Hall, Battersea Power Station, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, the Shard, right down to the Thames Barrier. Flights can be shared, or you can book the helicopter for your own private use, upgrading with flights at dusk, chauffeur services, and bespoke flights for special occasions. But be careful: as Leonardo da Vinci said, “Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” www.flylea.com
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