Luxury Travel: Four Seasons Announces 2014 Private Jet Around The World Itineraries

around the world with four seasonsFour Seasons Hotels and Resorts, a name already synonymous with luxury, has kicked things up a notch with the unveiling this week of their 2014 “Around the World” programs. The private jet tour takes lucky (read: rich) jetsetters on a month-long journey to between seven and ten destinations across the globe on a private Boeing 757 outfitted for just 56 guests.

The destinations? Bucket-list worthy, and the hotels aren’t too shabby either. All properties on the tour are Four Seasons hotels or resorts, naturally.

This year the program has a few tweaks, as they are offering two itineraries: a “Rediscover the Americas” tour from February 24 to March 13, 2014, that touches down in Miami, Nevis, Buenos Aires, Carmelo, Costa Rica, Punta Mita and Beverly Hills and a 23-day around the world trip that starts March 14 and goes to Hawaii, Bora Bora, Bali, Sydney, Mumbai, Istanbul and London. The trip has gotten even more high touch as well – there are just 56 spots this year, down from 78 the year before.

Just what does one get when they travel around the world by private jet? Quite a bit, including a private chef, physician and a veteran Four Seasons concierge who’ll be onboard for the duration. On travel days, guests will enjoy expedited boarding, luggage handling and assistance with customs and immigration formalities, where possible. Once comfortably on board, travellers can stay connected with Global Wi-Fi or tune out with supplied Bose headphones – although there are no overnight flights, so guests won’t need to catch more than a nap here or there.

Guests enjoy between two and three days at each location, and can choose their own itineraries while on the ground.

How much will it cost you? A cool $63k per person, double occupancy for the Americas tour, and $88k, double occupancy, for the Around the World trip.

Not too shabby for an around-the-world trip by private jet, we’d say.

[Image Credit: Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts]

Google To Build Its Own Airport In California

If owning its own fleet of private jets wasn’t already enough, Google wants to go one better and build its own airport.

The Internet giant is just a step away from starting construction on an $82 million dollar facility in San Jose, which would include an executive terminal, facilities for aircraft maintenance and ramp space big enough for large business jets like the Boeing 737 and 767 (see artist rendition of the airport above).

Google is still waiting for city officials to sign off on the deal, which proposes building the airport on an old parking lot next to the existing Mineta San Jose International Airport.

Right now, Google keeps its fleet of planes at Moffett Federal Airfield, which is a military airport. San Jose Airport officials believe a new commercial airport would be better suited to house the company’s aircraft. It’s likely other private and corporate jets would be allowed to use the new facility as well.

Once Google gets the green light to start construction, it’ll probably be another two years before the 29-acre airport is up and running.

And, even if the rest of us won’t get to use the slick new facilities, they’ll still be a huge boon for the local economy, bringing in $2.6 million dollars in rent as well as creating hundreds of new jobs.

[Photo Credit: Mineta San Jose International Airport]

Fly ‘Guinness Class’ From The UK To Dublin

guinneas airGuinness has unveiled plans to craft its own jet service, naturally dubbed Guinness Class. The private planes will fly from the UK to Dublin every Friday and Saturday evening.

The cabin crew will all be “expertly trained in the art of pouring the perfect pint at altitude,” a release promises. On board, patrons will enjoy “great Guinness and exquisite stout themed food.”

Think this sounds like you? (Let’s face it, it sounds pretty good for most beer lovers.) Every Friday and Saturday evening during the nine-week “test period,” Guinness drinkers in pubs across the UK get the chance to win a trip on the jets to Dublin before being chauffeured back to their own beds before sunrise.

We’d love to test this out for ourselves. If you end up lucky enough to win a flight, let us know about your experience!


Delayed Passenger Treated To VIP Service On Private Flight

When Brad Hartley checked his messages on Monday morning he wasn’t expecting a private flight to New York City. The airline called to tell Mr. Hartley that his flight, originally scheduled to depart from Nashville at 7 that morning, had been delayed and that he could expect to leave around 10:30. But when he got to the airport, still an hour before departure, he noticed that something was awry.

“I finally went to the gate at 10:30 and nobody was there,” he told Gadling last night. After waiting a few minutes he checked with the gate agent who told him that all of the other passengers on his flight had departed on different scheduled aircraft. He was the only passenger remaining, and after being personally escorted to the aircraft by the gate agent, he found a regional jet (pictured at right) all to himself.

Realizing the situation, the crew decided to give Mr. Hartley the VIP treatment, taking requests to play music over intercom before departure and referring to him as “Mr. President” occasionally during the trip.

Though he arrived several hours after his scheduled time, he didn’t mind the delay. “Those guys were completely awesome today,” he beamed on the phone. And though he admits he was excited when he posted an update to his friends and family on Facebook, he asserts that the crew were both professional and by-the-book.

An excited recount of his journey went viral on Reddit last night, where numerous users expressed amazement and elation at Mr. Hartley’s good luck. Joked one user: “I’m sure the First Officer filled out the most exact Weight and Balance form of his career. Passenger: 1″

Here’s why it’s time to buy a private jet

private jetGetting your own private jet has never been easier. If you’ve had sticker shock in the past, it’s time to start shopping again. Prices have dropped severely, which means you now have a chance to travel without the rabble.

The latest from FT.com is that “[p]rices of some of the world’s best known business jets have plunged to remarkable lows as the stumbling global economic recovery puts a brake on spending by even the wealthy.” The implication, of course, is that you can make someone else’s loss your gain.

So, what do you want? A Learjet? You can score one that’s a year old for a mere $8 million – as opposed to the $13 million price tag hanging on a new one. How about a Cessna Citation XLS? You’re looking at a cost savings of around $4 million.

If you were on the fence about shelling out for a private jet, it’s pretty clear that the market is sending you a message right now.