Virgin America has unveiled its new home at San Francisco International Airport’s Terminal 2 with a series of inaugural flights.
In a one-off flypast, a Virgin America jet was joined by Virgin Galactic operated WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo as they made their inaugural landing at an international airport.
On board the spaceships were Virgin founder Richard Branson and space pioneer Buzz Aldrin.
With over a half century of history, the 640,000-square foot T2 has been completely reinvented for the modern traveller by architecture and interior firm Gensler.
“As a new airline we have been able to use the latest in technology, design and sustainable practices to enhance the traveller experience, and we hope elevate the journey beyond just getting from Point A to Point B,” said Virgin America president David Cut.
“We are proud to unveil a new home that similarly reinvents the travel experience for the modern flyer – and that also reflects the innovative, forward-looking spirit of our San Francisco home.”
Virgin America is the only California-based airline and its decision to headquarter in the Bay Area has helped make Francisco International Airport one of the nation’s few growing airports.
As of April 14th, 2011, Virgin America will occupy seven gates at the new T2; American Airlines will occupy six; and there will be one common-use gate.
My Other Ride is a Spaceship
In a one of celebration to celebrate the move, guests onboard Virgin America’s Airbus A320 My Other Ride is a Spaceship made aviation history today as both the first arriving T2 travellers and the first to fly and land alongside Virgin Galactic’s WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo as they make their inaugural landing at an international airport.
“Virgin America has the most advanced and carbon-efficient commercial fleet in the U.S. and when it touches down today at its new home it will share the runway with the future of commercial aerospace – SpaceShipTwo and WhiteKnightTwo,” said George Whitesides, president of Virgin Galactic.
“We are proud that two Virgin-branded companies can link the cutting-edge present to the future of commercial aviation.
“It is also fitting that today’s flights are helping to inspire the next generation of scientists, engineers and aviators.”