Three Ultra-Luxurious Cabin Concepts That Blur the Lines Between Jets and Superyachts

It’s not news that corporate and private jets boast some incredible, ultra-sophisticated interiors, but these three cabin concepts took things to a whole different level.
Lufthansa unveiled its mind-blowing Explorer concept at the Dubai Air Show in 2021 17 photos
Photo: Lufthansa
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None of these concepts have actually proven their worth in real life, but it’s never too late – conventional aircraft interior design has nothing in common with these thought-provoking ideas that could transform luxury private aviation.

“Sky Residence” by Winch Design

Andrew Winch, the founder of the British award-winning brand Winch Design, studied under the legendary yacht designer Jon Bannenberg, before becoming an acclaimed designer himself. As a brand that’s mostly known for its opulent yacht interiors, it’s not surprising that some of those elements made their way to the brand’s aircraft interior designs as well.

Unlike most of the designs in the company’s portfolio, the “Sky Residence” concept never became reality, although it was initially conceived for a customer asking for a “clean, calm, modern” look for a wide-body such as a Boeing 787 or Dreamliner. According to Robb Report, the team at Winch Design enjoyed the idea so much that they decided to keep it anyway, so it’s still available for potential buyers.

The main idea behind this concept was to replace that feeling of being on a plane with a residential atmosphere. Due to it being meant for a larger airplane, this cabin includes a master suite, a children’s room, and two generous lobby areas. That offered plenty of room for an open space layout.

Sky Residence
Photo: Winch Design via Robb Report
Instead of conventional dividers and bulkheads, the team envisioned sliding doors and transparent screens. Thanks to this, from certain areas inside, passengers can enjoy a stunning 100-foot (20.4 meters) view down the cabin, Grieg Jolly, a Winch associate, told Robb Report.

The wide rectangular panels used as window treatments diffuse the light and create a horizontal line, which also contributes to a feeling of spaciousness. Last but not least, the neutral tones with calming blue accents recreate the harmonious elegance of luxury yachts, instead of the formal look typically associated with business jets.

“Strato Cruiser” Airship by Tino Schaedler and Michael J Brown

This futuristic airship inspired by blimps is a unique “lifestyle zeppelin” that’s supposed to provide the luxuries of a cruise ship while flying its busy millionaire passengers from one place to another. Although it’s not just a cabin, but an aircraft concept, the most impressive thing about it is the interior. As its name suggests, the Strato Cruiser is designed to make passengers feel as though they are enjoying a luxurious cruise.

This includes a lap pool, located on a terraced deck, premium spa and beauty services, access to yoga and fitness classes, plus even a library and several private mini-offices. The airship’s atrium would also boast a sky lounge, with a gourmet restaurant and bar beneath it, and a climbing wall for adventure enthusiasts in-between.

Strato Cruiser Airship
Photo: Dezeen
In the evening, after all that spa pampering and body toning, the passengers would also get to party at the onboard club, before ending the day in their private suites.

According to Dezeen, who presented this unusual concept back in 2007, this aircraft was inspired both by ocean cruising and space travel. It was supposed to be built with helium chambers, a retractable polycarbonate roof, a photovoltaic cell network, and a propulsion system that would make it much faster than regular blimps.

As you can guess, the Strato Cruiser never came to life either, but it offered an interesting vision of what luxury cruising could look like up in the sky.

“Explorer” by Lufthansa Technik

This is the most recent concept out of the three, and the one with the most chances of coming to life someday. It was introduced by the German aircraft overhaul and maintenance specialist Lufthansa Technik, at both the Monaco Yacht Show and the Dubai Airshow in 2021. Designed for the Airbus Corporate Jet ACJ330, this two-level cabin concept was directly derived from explorers – the yachts that are meant to travel to the most isolated locations on the planet.

Explorer Cabin Concept for the Airbus ACJ330
Photo: Lufthansa
Able to accommodate up to 16 passengers, the Explorer stands out right away due to a projection system that can cover the interior walls and ceilings with any type of setting, including underwater scenes, transforming the interior into a fantasy world. According to Lufthansa, this large-scale projection system for a VIP cabin is a premiere in the industry.

The most unusual feature is the spacious veranda offering an incredible view from 13 feet (four meters) above the apron. This is possible due to the design of the floor in the forward fuselage area, which can extend outwards, turning into a veranda.

In addition to bedrooms, offices, a dining area, and even a gym, what makes this cabin concept an “explorer” is that it also offers room for several luxury vehicles onboard. The unique Mobility Lounge that would carry these vehicles was designed together with Brabus. Passengers would even get a great view of the cars inside, thanks to the main deck’s glass floor, right above the Mobility Lounge on the lower deck.

If you’re wondering how much the Explorer concept costs, Aviation Week reports that configuring the ACJ330 with this design, for 12 passengers, would add up to $100 million – not counting the aircraft’s initial price. If billionaires have paid outrageous sums for blowing bubbles in space, someone is also likely to pay this much for turning a wide-body jet into a flying world explorer.
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About the author: Otilia Drăgan
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Otilia believes that if it’s eco, green, or groundbreaking, people should know about it (especially if it's got wheels or wings). Working in online media for over five years, she's gained a deeper perspective on how people everywhere can inspire each other.
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