Skyservice Passion, Safety and Service
Skyservice Business Aviation adds to its FBO excellence in Toronto – By Phil Lightstone
Skyservice Business Aviation has won WINGS’s prestigious 2020 award as Top FBO in Ontario with Skyservice Toronto (YYZ) in first place. Honourable mentions were earned by Skyservice Ottawa (YOW), which tied for third best in Ontario, and Skyservice Montreal (YUL), which placed second best in Quebec. These awards are a testament to Skyservice’s focus on service excellence and quality assurance.
For Skyservice, the company’s greatest asset is its employees, who are passionate about what they do and the quality services they provide. Highly experienced, with immense skill and knowledge, their attention to detail and customer focus delivers a compelling value proposition, winning them these well-deserved accolades. Skyservice ranks in the Top 10 for North American FBOs and managed aircraft providers.
Too late to be included in this year’s Best FBO Survey, Skyservice’s newest facility at Toronto’s Lester B. Pearson International Airport (CYYZ) boasts more than 90,000 square feet of modern, energy-efficient hanger space; and an amenity-packed 20,000-square-foot terminal facility. Their new facility will further expand Skyservice’s dominant position in Toronto, Canada’s busiest aviation market.
Plans for the new facility began more than five years ago, with president and CEO Emlyn David’s quest to create a unique Canadian aviation experience, focusing on the needs of business and private aviation. “Building upon the success of the company’s four existing FBOs, people and process, we designed the new Toronto facility around the distinctive needs of our international business and private travelers,” stated David. Although the COVID-19 pandemic created some delays in the construction timelines, the new hanger is fully operational and is roughly 50 per cent occupied.
A showpiece for Skyservice, the new business aviation complex evolves the company’s value proposition in Canada and the world. The new facility meets increased demand and provides additional hangar space and the same unmatched level of service quality, safety and discretion customers expect from Skyservice. Conveniently located south of runway 24L at Whiskey taxiway, pilots can minimize the taxi time and operating costs associated with navigating Pearson’s massive asphalt footprint.
The new hanger, purpose-built for energy efficiency, features a special single-span design and is equipped with 30-foot doors that can accommodate the tallest of business aircraft tails. The single-span design provides a larger footprint of useable space while allowing for in-hangar aircraft movement. For climate control, the hangar uses an energy efficient design of in-floor heating combined with Big Ass Fans® to create a very comfortable work environment for line staff and maintenance teams during the winter months. The in-floor hangar heating also extends 10 feet beyond the hangar doors which in conjunction with heating located at the front of the hangar, provides a more efficient deicing/anti-icing operation. Overall, the building’s design affords Skyservice energy savings of up to 30 per cent.
Safety and service are ingrained in Skyservice’s DNA. Skyservice’s new terminal facility is equipped with layered security measures to ensure that people and aircraft are protected 24/7 including the latest in video surveillance along with secured access points, internet security technology, motion sensors and electronically controlled visitor access lists, to name just a few. The hanger also boasts a world class foam fire suppression system designed to extinguish a fire within 60 seconds from sensing smoke in the hanger. Skyservice’s attention to safety and security are unmatched, which has earned the company another consecutive year as a Platinum award winner from Aviation Research Group/US (ARG/US), North America’s most stringent rating for operational safety.
“Skyservice is proud to once again receive the ARGUS Platinum Rating,” says David. “Receiving this exceptional recognition is a testament to our dedicated team at Skyservice and best practices approach to safety and service excellence.”
Skyservice’s Business Aviation centre, adjacent to the hangar is nearing completion. The architecture of the new FBO terminal and business center provides an efficient mixed-use environment, catering to the diverse needs of business executives, aircrews, staff and aviation ecosystem partners. With attention to even the smallest of details, the facility is focused on functionality, housing interior design elements that are clean, crisp, and fresh. The fully accessible building welcomes visitors with a canopied entrance built from stone quarried from Northern Ontario. Upon entering, guests are invited into a modern atrium featuring 40-foot ceilings with spectacular views of the apron and Pearson Airport, creating an inviting, bright and airy environment. The lounge, when complete, will offer a complimentary beverage bar with light snacks.
For those needing to catch up on emails or download a movie prior to departure, Skyservice provides free, secure Wi-Fi service throughout its facility. For the most discreet traveler, the FBO facility houses VIP waiting rooms that provide a quieter area complete with cafe amenities – the ideal setting for individuals wishing to have more privacy.
Focusing on the corporate business aviation market, the new facility delivers all the comforts that private aviation can provide.
Luxury car rental, limo, shuttle, travel, hotel and restaurant bookings are quickly arranged by Skyservice’s friendly concierges. Their eco and energy-efficient design is even extended further past their buildings and into their parking facility. Skyservice offers numerous electric-car charging stations for its guests and a parking facility with secured, gated overnight parking complete with video surveillance coverage.
Pilots can plan their next flight and feel rejuvenated inside the pilots-only private lounge, fully equipped with complimentary beverages, secure Wi-Fi and a flight planning centre. During downtimes, pilots can rest in one of the many pilot relaxation rooms. A spa-like shower environment and snooze rooms rival similar amenities in most hotels. Dedicated office space enables crews to catch up on paperwork and use modern technology to communicate with family, friends and the office.
Designed for both drop-in or permanent work solutions for use when travelling, the business centre offers 24/7 customer reception, lounge, private offices, and conference room space, all equipped with high-speed internet access, printing, copying and the latest in conference room technology. The centre boasts over 10,000 square feet of office space for lease, ranging from individual offices to larger office environments.
Skyservice’s 500-plus employees deliver a consistent customer experience. Earlier in the year, they were awarded the NBAA Safety 1st Clean Standard Award, the highest level of certification on general guidance on facility cleaning, disinfecting and facility operations in response to a pandemic. Their decisive, action-orientated approach to safety allowed Skyservice to move quickly to protect customers, aircrew and employees through enacting a multi-front/multi-tier approach at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. They initiated on-board safety kits for all travelers that included face masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, and a disposable bag for safe disposal. They quickly assessed the potential health impact of the virus and implemented protocols pivoting operations to protect the people within their environment.
Skyservice also has one of the best inflight air purification and decontamination solutions in market today – proven to eliminate harmful pathogens like COVID-19. Partnered with Aviation Clean Air (ACA), Skyservice received STC approval from Transport Canada for the installation of ACA’s ion distribution system into Bombardier Challenger 300/350 and Global 5000/5500/6000/6500 aircraft. Skyservice has seen an increase in demand for air purification and sanitization solutions as business jets owners return to normal travel routines.
Focused on the client and pilot experience, Skyservice truly provides a five-star level of service for flight crews, owners, passengers and guests. Skyservice has set the bar high for Canadian FBOs with the delivery and operation of its newest YYZ facility.