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Business jet manufacturer shows off planes with demo flight

Business jet manufacturer Embraer shows off its Phenom-enal line of planes with demo flight, reception at Naples Airport.

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  • | 6:00 a.m. February 22, 2019
Media members board Embraer's Phenom Legacy 500 at Naples airport for a demonstration of a private business flight. Andrew Warfield photo
Media members board Embraer's Phenom Legacy 500 at Naples airport for a demonstration of a private business flight. Andrew Warfield photo
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No TSA pat-downs, X-ray screenings or baggage raids. No lengthy boarding or deplaning. No droning pre-departure FAA-required safety tutorials, just the captain providing brief emergency procedures. No being told to turn off cellphones, and no wrestling for elbow room.

That’s the experience Brazilian private and business jet manufacturer Embraer Executive Jets provided to select media members at Elite Jets, Embraer’s customer at Naples Airport. The company builds its planes in Melbourne and largely sources its materials from across Florida and the U.S.

An hour-long jaunt up and down the Gulf Coast to Tampa and back, complete with white linen brunch service and a primer on modern private aircraft interior design at 25,000 feet, provided a glimpse into how the rich and famous — and the frequent C-suite business flier — travel. In addition to a description of the philosophy behind design and aesthetics, inflight host Frank Chavez, Embraer’s director of interior design and customer interaction, suggested some companies determine spending upwards of $20 million on a private jet can actually result in long-term travel savings.

The demo flight was a prelude to an evening reception displaying Embraer’s Phenom class of aircraft, highlighting its Phenom 300E business jet — designed with direct input from customers. 

Although the demo flight was on Embraer’s larger Phenom Legacy 500, the experience was similar — fast takeoff, quick climb to cruising altitude at a 35-degree angle; a smooth, quiet flight; ports allowing for any kind of onboard tech needs; and seats that slide, swivel and recline. But the 300E, say Embraer officials, goes a step further in offering a centerline upper tech panel that provides passengers with inflight information, entertainment and a lighting scheme that broadens the ambient mood options.

While taxiing back to the hangar, Chavez quipped, “Look, they brought our cars,” pointing to a variety of Porsche models that had arrived during the flight, providing a backdrop to the airplane display. Those who fly in style, it would appear, are encouraged to arrive in style as well.


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