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New Trends In Interiors

“In the last few years, the interior design, materials, and equipment on private jets have moved away from utilitarian to a visually comfortable and tasteful setting that will enhance the time spent while traveling to one’s point of destination,” says Eric H. Roth, president of Long Island, New York-based International Jet Interiors (IJI). He says his clients are very high-net-worth individuals as well as leading private and publicly held companies. The average IJI client has a net worth of between $100,000,000 and $500,000,000.

Nevertheless, Roth says, “Today’s private jets are recognized for their ability to enhance productivity by saving a very precious commodity – time. This coupled with failed airlines and ever-increasing concerns over security have helped to booster the demand for private travel. Additionally, with the advent of fractional programs and highly qualified air charter companies, the introduction and acceptance of private jets has reached a wider, more diverse market.” While IJI’s client base is generally in the U.S., the company has started to gain a global reach, serving clients in Russia, Switzerland, Spain, Germany, India, Morocco, Pakistan, and South Africa.

What do IJI’s clients want? “When we discuss with our clients their needs and desires, we tend to find some commonality, especially when comparing similar priced/range aircraft,” Roth says. “Since we specialize in the higher end of the private jet market, we see that our clients’ general needs are a fully equipped galley for in-flight meal service, one or two bathrooms, chairs and divans that can be converted into sleeping areas, and satellite communication for phones calls and data transfer.”

Roth says flight entertainment systems are usually very custom and complex, “especially behind the scenes, where various equipment must interface without any adverse effect to the aircraft’s electrical and avionic systems. As wealthy homeowners increasingly have become aware and appreciative of the advancements in entertainment technology and sophistication, it’s only natural for them to look for a similar level of quality and sophistication in their aircraft. The trend seems to be large LCD monitors throughout the cabin for passengers to easily view supported by two DVD players allowing two separate movies to be viewed at the same time – this is especially important for people traveling with children.”

ABOVE: The center cabin of this plane features two chenille upholstered divans. A 72-inch elm burl table deploys from under one of the divans to create an intimate dining area. After dessert is served and the passengers have finished dining, the flight attendant will clear the table and convert back to the normal cabin configuration for the remainder of the flight.
ABOVE: Recently, IJI had the opportunity to work with a new client from Mumbai, India, who has a keen eye for quality and detail. After about four weeks of telephone/e-mail conversations, he flew to IJI’s New York facility with his personal designer. After two weeks of selecting the finest materials available, Roth was asked to go to India to gain further insight into the client’s lifestyle – including his custom yacht and his many residences. IJI used exotic woods indigenous to the Ivory Coast, custom-dyed calf skin leather, and a hand-loomed carpet made from New Zealand wool and silk that IJI had manufactured in Thailand. The metal in the aircraft was plated in a combination of rose gold and spun rose gold funnel finish.
RIGHT: As IJI was just past the halfway point of completing the Indian client’s interior, he called them to say that there was one design element missing…but he was not sure where. In less than three days, IJI presented for his review exotic materials. He selected alligator and its main use was as an alligator seat to conceal the lavatory toilet. As a finishing detail, alligator trim also runs the length of the cabin and at the base of a table lamp.

Additionally, a multi-changer CD player provides music that is presented either through the cabin speaker system and/or individual passenger headphone panels. “For the last year or so, we have been installing one or two i-Pods that are integrated into the cabin audio system – we even have them engraved with the aircraft’s tail number,” Roth says.

A high-resolution moving map display is the final complement to a well-rounded system. This provides passengers with detailed information on the aircraft’s status, including time to destination, aircraft speed, altitude, and the aircraft itself over a three-dimensional topographical map. “The entertainment system is then integrated into custom cabin management switch panels that can control everything from individual lights to electric window shades and cabin temperature controls,” says Roth. “The systems we install are very sophisticated by all measures.”

Roth says his company charges clients between $100,000 to more than $1,000,000, subject to the scale and complexity of the work.

ABOVE: The same client’s galley was outfitted to comfortably serve 10 people. The exotic wood, rose gold plating, granite countertop, and illuminated crystal hutch enhance the plane’s beauty. The table service includes Versace china, Cristofle silverware, Lalique crystal, and Frete linens.
ABOVE: The main wood in this aircraft is Pommele accented with quartered Sapele inlays. The seating is Italian leather in a color that complements the hand-loomed custom wool carpet. The credenza houses the entertainment center as well as a custom-made cigar humidor in the same woods as the rest of the aircraft and was presented to the plane’s owner as a thank-you gift from IJI on completion.
ABOVE: The owner of this plane can retire from a supple leather chair at a conference table to a queen-sized bed. The flat-screen monitor on the bulkhead provides him with pinpoint accuracy of the aircraft’s exact location.
All the interiors pictured here were designed by International Jet Interiors.
Story by Jacqueline Shannon

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