Versace’s airline interior

WGSN, August 17 2006

As private jets become increasingly popular with the world’s wealthiest travellers, luxury brands are muscling in on aircraft design. WGSN checks out Versace’s jet interior.

Versace airline interior mock-up

In a truly couture experience, Versace has teamed up with jet management group TAG to create exclusive interiors for prestigious private jets such as the Bombardier Global Express and the Gulfstream – even offering customised paint schemes.

TAG clients will work with Versace designers on the personalisation of the interiors using high-altitude-friendly adaptations from the Versace Home lines.

There’s even the lure of plumped-up and padded customised seating. Expect the house’s dramatic black-and-white contrasts, mixed with the signature Greek fret motif and stylised prints, such as the huge rose inspired by the 1920s fashion designs of Paul Poiret.

Clean, decisive lines and luxurious materials and textures, notably leather and fur, will be key.

Versace already has a foothold in the travel sector with a hotel in Australia and a 2008 opening in Dubai, as well as an established interiors offer, so it’s a natural progression for the brand to venture into the airline industry.

“Versace is not just about fashion, but about luxury in every aspect of life,” says Giancarlo Di Risio, CEO of the Versace Group.

Anthony James of Aircraft Interiors International magazine believes that designers have always had a longstanding love affair with aircraft design.

“Known for their iconic, long-lasting branding, it’s a privilege for any designer to work with aircraft. Not only that, fashion houses are keen to have a place in this exclusive, luxury world of wealthy individuals.”

Versace airline interior mock-up

So will high design filter down to the commercial jet?

James is adamant that, although airlines such as American Airlines are investing large sums in retro-fitting, and Lufthansa and Alitalia establishing their own fleets of private jets, it will be the pre- and post-flight experience that matters – something that a behemoth plane like the Airbus A380 might not be able to provide when it onloads and offloads 500 passengers at main hubs around the world.

“When it comes to air travel, luxury will not be about the aircraft but about efficiency and time,” he adds.

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