Private aviation inflight catering specialist On Air Dining has moved to a new home at London’s Stansted Airport in London, UK, as part of a drive to grow its business.
Located in the Diamond Hangar of the airport, the facility was set up with following a significant round of investment led by its new Chairman Robin Southwell.
Southwell joined On Air after nearly a decade leading Airbus Group UK, formerly EADS, and 20-plus years in senior management at British Aerospace, in order to pursue new interests away from the defence arena.
As a prolific aerospace and business professional, and with fine food and aviation close to his heart, he will be a strong business mentor and investment partner to the company’s CEO Daniel Hulme, a young entrepreneur, still in his thirties.
Occupying an area of 4,000 sq ft, the new facility features a state-of-the-art kitchen and designer tasting room. Recognising the importance of enhancing the passenger experience, On Air Dining will also be showcasing a range of luxury products to complement its inflight dining service.
It boasts direct airside access straight to parked or hangared business jets and positions the company right in the heart of the business aviation community.
On Air Dining caters for private business aviation clients. Its portfolio includes a number of Europe's leading operators including ExecuJet, GainJet and Tyrolean Jet Services.
Its new base gives the company improved access to wide-bodied executive jets that regularly operate in and out of London Stansted Airport and from where On Air Dining has set its sights for future expansion.
Formerly known as Alison Price On Air, the company rebranded with a name that aligns itself closer to the sector; and the move to an airport location further reinforces its commitment to expanding its culinary aviation offering.
With its new base, On Air Dining says it will also be better positioned to target the wide-body market, which it is targeting as part of its expansion strategy.
“Wide-bodies are regular visitors to Stansted Airport and we want to be able to provide these VVIP clients with the best inflight dining experiences possible. We are even investing in a high-loader* which will enable us to control our own delivery and catering provision, this is key when handling the large and high value orders this part of the business aviation sector requires,” said Hulme.
The On Air Dining kitchen has specifically redesigned to accommodate the needs of the culinary requirements for the aviation sector. It features state-of-the-art cooking equipment, and a dedicated pastry area in addition to an extensive storage area. Maximising the benefits of the new kitchen the On Air Dining brigade has developed a new menu for its expanding clientele, which covers a range of dishes from perennial favourites such as the signature dish Tuna Nicoise to modern contemporary plates such as Sous Vide Cod in Miso Sauce.
The tasting room has been designed to offer a relaxed, comfortable space to provide personalised tastings for prospective customers. It is large enough for corporate entertaining, and will also provide operators a venue for showcasing their inflight services.
In addition it will incorporate a presentation area for luxury cabin accessories including china, flatware, and crystal and recognising the importance of enhancing the passenger experience On Air Dining will also be displaying luxury products that complement its services.
“We spoke to our clients, flight attendants and bizjet owners all over the world in determining where we should establish our first dedicated new kitchen,” says Hulme. “Here at London Stansted with our dedicated team of chefs and operations personnel we will be able to conveniently cater for the whole range of aircraft up to Heads of State’ visiting B747s. For the first time our vehicles and team will be able to load freshly prepared food directly from the kitchen on to the aircraft. Importantly too, we will be able to train visiting flight attendants – from Europe, the Middle East and the US, on how to prepare our cuisine and invite them to our regular culinary training days.”
On Air Dining is internationally renowned for its expertise in training and food handling expertise and Daniel Hulme has served as Vice Chairman of the European Corporate Aviation Flight Attendants Committee, endorsed by NBAA/EBAA, for two years.