For more than 50 years, Jet Aviation has set itself apart within the business aviation industry in three ways: style, service, and sustainability.
Now, Scottsdale-based private jet patrons can experience all three at Jet Aviation’s newest fixed-base operator at the Scottsdale Airport.
“Scottsdale is one of the top 15 busiest business aviation hubs in the U.S. and our expanded facility will enable us to better serve the needs of our customers and the business aviation community,” said David Best, senior vice president of regional operations and general manager, USA.
Jet Aviation opened its new 8,500 square-foot FBO and 30,000 square-foot hangar on Jan. 14. The project was in the works for about two years and brings Jet Aviation’s global FBO network up to 31 locations.
“Scottsdale is a highly attractive location to business jet owners and operators,” said Dave Paddock, President. “Having a presence in Scottsdale will enable our customers to have greater connectivity across the Jet network.”
Jet Aviation has been operating here since acquiring a share in the Scottsdale Jet Center in May 2019. It then acquired full ownership of the Jet Center that leased office space, tenant hangarage, tie-down spaces and shades.
The new FBO features a generous lobby, passenger and grew lounges, pilot snooze rooms, a conference, meeting room and flight planning facilities.
The hangar can accommodate aircraft up to the size of the Gulfstream 650 and the Global 6000.
But what truly sets Jet Aviation’s Scottsdale FBO apart is that its stunning facilities were built using cost and energy-efficient construction practices. The company plans to install solar panels at the site later this year.
“We’re looking at the potential for increasing our solar footprint there and making it much more sustainable,” Best said.
Jet Aviation has made 23 of its locations carbon-neutral and three facilities, including Scottsdale, have committed to carbon neutrality for 2021.
“Sustainability is an important responsibility for our industry and is a growing desire for our customers,” said Golden Isles Aviation President Larry Wade.
Paired with its recent rebranding emphasizing the company’s pedigree and heritage, the commitment to sustainability makes Jet Aviation a leader in its industry – even during the pandemic.
“It’s incredible how robust Scottsdale Airport has been through the pandemic. It really has been a pillar of strength for the whole of the downturn and had some great activity,” Best said.
While commercial airlines struggled amid the pandemic, small private jets were busier than ever.
Experts attribute the surge to lower prices and an increase of wealthy people wanting to avoid airports during the pandemic.
“If you look at the global statistics, the airline industry is still somewhere about 40 percent down from where it was, but the U.S. business aviation industry is almost back to where it was pre-pandemic,” Best said.
Best added that the uptick began around that last quarter of 2020.
“And then the last month or so, we’ve seen that the industry has shown some more strength,” he said.
Looking ahead, Jet Aviation hopes to increase awareness of its new Scottsdale facility.
“I’ve been over there several times. We’re really proud of it,” said Best, who recently visited the FBO and hangar earlier this month. “What we’ve been focusing on since we opened is building up that awareness within our customer base and within the local community.”
“We’re really proud and pleased with what we’ve built,” he said. “It really is a key location in our expanding footprint.”
In addition to Scottsdale, Jet Aviation acquired a facility in Bozeman, Montana last year, as well as expanded facilities with Gulfstream in Palm Beach and opened a new FBO at Van Nuys in California.
Paddock said future expansion in the U.S. will be done in a “strategic and measured way.”
In response to the pandemic, Jet Aviation will also continue to build on the health and safety protocols they implemented over the past year, including ultraviolet cleaning and temperature measurement systems.
“Like everybody, we had to take a pragmatic view of our business and make sure that we were also operating in a way that was sensitive to the stresses of the pandemic by way of cleanliness and operational changes, etcetera. And we carry on working within these guidelines, but our long-term goal is still to carry on growing a great service business,” Best explained.
That includes driving a service-focused organization, making long-term investments, and growing facilities that match their customers’ needs, Best said.
“We are committed to growing Jet Aviation’s position as a leading FBO service provider,” Paddock said.
As for the future of the private jet industry, Best is “extremely optimistic.”
“I see Scottsdale continuing to grow and continue to be an important part of people’s travel plans,” Best said. “There is a strong belief in the business aviation industry that the number of people accessing business aviation for both convenience and also for efficiency – and safety, when we talk about it in pandemic framework – will continue and increase.”
In the meantime, both Best and Paddock – along with Scottsdale Airport Aviation Director Gary P. Mascaro – look forward to welcoming customers to their new Scottsdale facility.
“We’re excited to have such a premier business partner like Jet Aviation at Scottsdale Airport,” Mascaro said. “They will be a major contribution to the airport.”