The FINANCIAL — Air Seychelles, the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles, on September 1 celebrated a momentous occasion when it officially welcomed a new Airbus A320 aircraft into its international fleet.
The aircraft is named “Silhouette” after the third-largest granitic island in the archipelago, located 20 kilometres northwest of the main island of Mahé. The new aircraft has been registered under the Seychelles civil aircraft register, as S7-SIL.
“Silhouette” was welcomed by a ceremonial water-cannon salute after it touched down at Seychelles International Airport, arriving from Abu Dhabi.
Its much-anticipated arrival was witnessed by Danny Faure, Vice President of Seychelles, Joël Morgan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Transport and Chairman of Air Seychelles, Roy Kinnear, Chief Executive Officer of Air Seychelles, high-level government officials, and representatives of the travel trade and media, according to Air Seychelles.
Minister Morgan said: “We were all filled with pride as we watched the A320 make its final approach for landing on Mahé with our freshly-painted beautiful livery. The arrival of ‘Silhouette’ marks yet another chapter in the development of our national airline, which continues to go from strength-to-strength and is making a significant contribution to the Seychelles economy every day.
“It is particularly noteworthy that ‘Silhouette’ is the second Airbus aircraft that Air Seychelles has registered in Seychelles this year. This undertaking requires considerable resources and reflects how far the airline has come in growing its operational capacity in the span of three years, with the training and support of its partner Etihad Airways.”
The Airbus A320 is a single-aisle aircraft with 16 seats in business and 120 seats in economy class reflecting the Air Seychelles brand and high product quality standards. The aircraft shares a similar cockpit design and other commonalities with its wide-bodied variant, the Airbus A330 which allows Air Seychelles to utilize the same cabin crew and pilots on both aircraft types.
“Silhouette” is the second A320 in the airline’s fleet after “Amirantes”, which entered the fleet in November 2014 and was transferred to the Seychelles civil aircraft register in June 2015, with registration number S7-AMI.
Mr Kinnear said: “We are excited to welcome a new Airbus A320 into our fleet, which brings with it new opportunities to strengthen the business, and enables Air Seychelles to continue delivering for the country and people of Seychelles.
“As a short-to-medium haul aircraft, ‘Silhouette’ will be operated on regional services to Abu Dhabi, Antananarivo, Dar es Salaam, Mauritius and Mumbai, which are strong and growing sources of inbound tourism.
“The A320 is a modern aircraft and offers a comfortable travelling experience, with wide seats and personal inflight entertainment systems. Combined with our award-winning service and a cabin crew renowned for their Creole warmth and friendliness, this makes for a powerful travelling proposition.”
Respecting the religious traditions of Seychelles, “Silhouette” was blessed by Father Danny Elizabeth and Father David Alcindor, representing the interfaith community of Seychelles.