Best of Everything 2012
Flying high

Private air travel just doesn't get any better than the Falcon 900EX

Private air travel just doesn't get any better than the Falcon 900EX

Falcon 900 EX, jet, private plane
A new Falcon 900EX will set you back some $30 million and the luxury is said to be worth every penny. Courtesy Photo
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, cabin
Depending on configuration, the Falcon 900EX can seat 12 to 14 passengers.  Courtesy Photo
Janine Iannarelli, June 2012
Aircraft broker Janine Iannarelli, pictured here at fixed-base operator Jet Aviation, specializes in private and business jets. Photo by Karen Burd
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, cabin
Comfy sofas make for great trans-Atlantic sleeping. Courtesy Photo
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, cabin
Courtesy Photo
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, bar
The galley can be outfitted with everything from a mini-fridge to custom cabinets for crystal and china. Courtesy Photo
Falcon 900 EX, jet, private plane
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, cabin
Janine Iannarelli, June 2012
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, cabin
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, cabin
Falcon 900EX, jet, private plane, bar

If money were no object and the quest was for the best private jet in the skies, aircraft broker Janine Iannarelli would cash out on a Falcon 900EX, a sleek French bird that can soar 4,500 nautical miles without a refill.

Her choice might be a 1997 or '98 vintage Falcon that in the current depressed market can be had, she says, for a mere $15 to $16 million. Buy a 2010 model and the price tag soars to $30 million. Of course, if the sky is the limit . . . why not?

 Europe is one quick refueling stop away. Who wouldn't appreciate that ease of travel? But wait, there's more.  

Iannarelli favors the Falcon over other private aircraft for its range that easily gets the Houston jetsetter to a favorite ski resort in just a few hours or to New York, perhaps for dinner at Petrossian, in three and a half hours. Europe is one quick refueling stop away. Who wouldn't appreciate that ease of travel? But wait, there's more. 

"I love the cabin," Iannarelli says. "It's fabulous." 

Depending on the owner's preferences, the plane can sit four in the front compartment, four in the mid-cabin where a dining table is at play and four to six more in the back cabin, which closes off to offer complete privacy. Two facing divans at the rear of the aircraft can be converted into comfortable sleepers as can the seats in the other cabins. That means you can sleep your way, at full recline, to London or Paris on your Porthault linens with your own down-filled pillows beneath your head.

Lavatories in both the front and back of the aircraft are another plus, particularly considering that the jet can carry 12 to 14 passengers, though Iannarelli says eight is the more likely load.

Innarelli says that the typical Falcon 900EX is outfitted with a swank galley, often done in rich burl, that includes a microwave, a warming oven, perhaps a mini-fridge, the all-important Nespresso machine and custom-designed storage for crystal, china and silverware. And, of course, flying in a French-manufactured jet, one would want only the best in French accoutrements such as Saint-Louis Crystal.

If you really want yours to be the most fabulous jet in the sky, redecorating would probably be in order. Your baby goes to a "completion center" for new upholstery, carpeting, wall and window treatments, refinishing of fixtures and cabinetry.

On the low end, the redo would cost between $400,000 and $800,000 depending on your wants. If you plan to take it to the limit of refurbishing including updating the cabin entertainment system (wifi and boardband at 35,000 feet), the cost could reach as much as $1 million.