Charlie, founder of Charlie Horner Design and friend of Volare sits with our marketing team to discuss the concept and inspiration behind creating the chic interiors for our BBJ.
1. Tell us about your company.
Charlie Horner Design specialise in full interior architecture and furnishing design. Our main focus is residential, however, we’ve also had the pleasure of extending our portfolio to include business aviation interiors. Each of our projects is individually tailored to reflect our vision incorporating individual clients’ needs and aspirations. Our ethos is to create spaces that are not only beautiful but also comfortable and functional, with a sense of exclusivity and luxury.
2. How long have you worked with Volare and what do you do for them?
We’ve worked with Volare for the past five years on a range of interior projects from 109s to a Sikorsky S76C++ helicopter, Hawker and Challenger jets and of course the latest project, the BBJ. We’ve loved creating innovative, unique, detail-rich designs for each of these aircraft.
3. What was the brief for the BBJ project?
I was given a completely free hand to create something exceptional, elegant and luxurious given the incredible space that the BBJ offers. Honestly, briefs don’t come much better.
4. Can you explain your approach/concept?
We wanted to create a feeling of extreme luxury, a home in the clouds. With this in mind, we used warm, soft neutral tones mixed with smooth piano black wood. We then layered this with leather, suede and cashmere textiles to give an added sense of timeless elegance and richness. The neutral backdrop allows other design details to shine such as the bespoke, extending dining table. Each design detail was carefully considered from the hard finishes to the placement of decorative accessories. We focused on creating an overall effect of refinement, and elegance with a strong sense of indulgence.
5. What are the challenges of designing space on an aircraft and how do you overcome them?
Usually, one of the biggest challenges in aircraft interior design is working with limited space. We need to find ways to make the most of every millimetre, with the constant thought that the cabin must be comfortable and functional. This wasn’t the case with the BBJ, the challenge here was to ensure that the generous interior was well-utilised whilst maintaining and emphasising the sheer space available. Weight restrictions are another challenge, however, there’s been a huge development in lightweight materials over the past few years with much more choice now available. Safety is also of paramount importance, we work closely with the expert team at Volare to ensure all materials are compliant with safety regulations and standards.
6. Are there any particular trends or design rules to adhere to in jet interior design?
One of the key rules to remember is the client will experience the space, for the majority of the time, above the clouds in bright light. It’s important to factor this into the design and keep it in mind when viewing the aircraft on the ground – usually in a hanger. With this in mind, I often take material samples with me when I fly, to see how they look at 30,000ft. I also lean towards a more minimalist style when designing jet interiors, with a focus on clean lines and simple shapes. This helps to create a feeling of spaciousness and modernity within the confines of a jet cabin. Overall, jet interior design is about creating a luxurious, comfortable space that reflects the personal style and needs of the owner. While there are some design rules and trends to be followed, each interior is unique and tailored to the specific requirements and desires of the owner.
7. What are your favourite features within the BBJ concept?
The general sense of space, it really is incredible. I particularly love the bedroom area, it’s the ultimate luxury having a king-size bed in the sky. It’s a relaxing space with a feeling of calm and sophistication. The feature suede headboard wall enhances the overall sense of grandeur within the space. What better way to fall asleep and wake up in paradise?!
8. What are you working on next?
We have a lot of exciting projects in the pipeline, from a listed commercial property in Oxfordshire to high-end residential projects in the heart of London. We also can’t wait to see which aircraft arrives next at the Volare hanger.