Albinati Aeronautics embodies the Swiss reputation for quality across a range of business and VIP aviation services, including aircraft management, charter and CAMO
Founded by CEO Stefano Albinati and now in its 21st year of operation, Albinati Aeronautics operates a managed fleet of more than 20 business aircraft, many of them available for charter, boasts a team of 140 personnel and remains fully independent. Headquartered in Geneva with a sister company in Malta, Albinati Aeronautics has become a specialist in Bombardier aircraft, but also proudly operates the Pilatus PC-12 and PC-24, along with Dassault and Cessna jets.
Marketing Coordinator Adrien Fostoff says some of the fleet are exclusively under continuing airworthiness management organisation (CAMO) jurisdiction, or management but the available charter fleet ranges from PC-12 to Global 7500, a diversity of aircraft which, he explains, “…allows us to be independent and therefore able to react immediately to our charter customers’ requests without compromising service excellence or safety. And if an aircraft from our fleet is not available, or a specific aircraft type is requested, we source it through our network of carefully selected partners.” Importantly, he notes there are operators with which Albinati chooses not to work – only those delivering service to its own standards are considered.
Beyond CAMO, charter and management, Albinati also offers maintenance, complete crewing and full operator services, and aircraft sales and acquisition, a combination that could lead to compromise. “We avoid the risk of doing lots to a good standard but failing to excel at anything by remaining a family office,” Fostoff declares. “Implemented by Stefano Albinati 20 years ago, it’s a philosophy that has helped make Albinati Aeronautics a success. We have chosen to limit the fleet to fewer than 30 aircraft. A larger fleet would require more structure and while we’re confident we could still deliver excellent service, we might lose the family ethos our customers value.
“In addition, fleet maintenance supervision and organisation are delivered in-house by a CAMO team of highly experienced engineers. We are also free from constraining partnerships with manufacturers or maintenance centres, while our aircraft management services are provided from Geneva or Malta; nothing is outsourced, everything remains 100% under our supervision. We opened offices in Turin, for example, to better respond to customers whose aircraft are based in Italy.”
This in-house, family ethos even extends to crewing, Albinati employing all its cockpit and cabin crew full time. Considering the variety of aircraft in its fleet, it means making a considerable commitment, but one considered essential. Fostoff explains: “Our goal is to provide high-quality service and absolute safety. We believe this is only possible if our flight personnel are permanent, full-time employees, subject to a continuing education requirement that enables them to meet company standards and deliver the highest levels of safety. It also guarantees our customers a personalised welcome from crews who know and understand all their expectations and requirements.”
Bombardier’s Global series dominates Albinati Aeronautics’ fleet, albeit though natural evolution rather than design. “We managed the very first Global 5000 in Switzerland,” Fostoff reports. “After that, one thing led to another. We took many Globals under management and became the first Global operator in the country. Our large Bombardier fleet allows us a privileged relationship with the manufacturer, but although we could be considered a Bombardier specialist, we apply exactly the same levels of service to every aircraft in our care. Our engineers are trained to the same level on every aircraft under their supervision, including certifications, qualifications, courses on new aircraft, training in the manufacturers’ maintenance centres and more.”
It seems only correct that much of the remainder of Albinati’s fleet comprises aircraft from Pilatus. “As a Switzerland-based business aviation company we are proud of having become a reference operator for Pilatus,” Fostoff says, “and we share with them the values embodied in the term ‘made in Switzerland’.” Albinati received only the second ever ad hoc license issued by the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation to a Swiss company for commercial PC-12 operations and Fostoff describes it as the perfect aircraft for traveling around Europe, especially to more challenging airports, including Saanen, La Môle and Lugano.
Well received by customers, the PC‑12 made an important contribution to Albinati’s continuing success through the worst of the Covid pandemic. Albinati, of course, was not immune from the challenges of the past two years, but neither has it been slow to take advantage of opportunities.
“In 2021 we recorded our highest number of movements in 20 years. We saw 40% of our business coming from customers who previously did not travel privately but have now become regulars,” Fostoff notes. “We plan to continue growing without sacrificing the family ethos or losing any of our passion for aviation and excellence.”