Yasava’s Stylish Cabin Solutions
IN THE 1990S, AEROSPACE ENGINEER CHRISTOPHER MBANEFO SPENT HUNDREDS OF HOURS GIVING CORPORATE AIRCRAFT DEMONSTRATIONS TO POTENTIAL CLIENTS. These trips revealed to Mbanefo a surprising reality — flying privately does not always guarantee comfort or the lack of a stiff neck, especially when cabin interiors aren’t tailored to the aircraft owner’s specific lifestyle.
Over the years, Mbanefo’s company, Yasava Solutions, learned more about passenger peeves. Bulkheads or adjacent furniture prevented seats from fully reclining, conference areas provided little legroom for grown men, and meals could only be reheated instead of prepared on the spot. One private jet owner even confessed to sleeping on the floor to avoid lying on an awkwardly reclining seat or narrow sofa. “Most corporate jets have essentially identical layouts that nobody asked for. Yet the buyer is made to believe that by choosing colours, materials and textures, he can customise the interior,” says Mbanefo.
THE SEAT CORRECTS THE DRAWBACKS OF LIE- FLAT DESIGNS BY ALLOWING FOR CHANGES IN BODY POSITIONS
He decided to provide a solution, transforming Yasava into a cabin design and engineering company. The Switzerland-based team created the Astral Design Series, a cabin interior theme that can be customised for different long-range aircraft. The Astral divides an aircraft cabin into three zones, including a day lounge that can transform into a private suite, complete with a double bed, private lavatory and optional shower. Four passengers can share a large conference table without leaving their seats, and an on-board chef can use a fully equipped galley. After all, you don’t buy a private jet only to eat warmed-up scrambled eggs, says Mbanefo.
What may be the Astral’s most striking feature, though, is the Aïana Wave seat, which easily converts into a bed. It uses aeronautic and automotive technology, incorporating highstrength alloys, carbon fibre and liquid metal applications. For optimal sleep quality, the seat’s shape mimics the ‘neutral body posture’ (NBP), the position that human bodies naturally adopt when sleeping in microgravity. The NBP, observed on astronauts in space, reduces exertion on one’s cardiovascular system when sleeping in standard gravity on Earth.
Using patent-pending ‘smart mechanics’, the Aïana Wave seat corrects the drawbacks of typical lie-flat designs by allowing for changes in body positions. It also features a thick mattress and embedded lighting. Clients can customise the seat design, and some have asked Yasava to tailor it for use in yachts, offices and private residences.
For Yasava, that is true customisation — considering the client’s lifestyle requirements before anything else. “If the design and layout of the space do not enhance and support the client’s lifestyle, the design simply is not going to work,” says Mbanefo. Only then do the Yasava team ask about preferences on colours, materials, and other elements; aesthetics, after all, contribute to a pleasant flight. The result is a tailor-made solution where function leads to luxury. And that is the essence of the Astral Design Series — form and function combining to provide optimum comfort and style, just like a bespoke Italian suit.
“IF THE DESIGN AND LAYOUT DO NOT SUPPORT THE CLIENT’S LIFESTYLE, THE DESIGN IS NOT GOING TO WORK”
Yasava incorporates the aircraft owner’s lifestyle into the cabin design
The Astral layout is based on passengers’ actual usage of the spaces in a cabin
The Aïana Wave seat is a key feature of the Astral Design Series
The Aïana Wave seat design is based on scientific studies, including NASA data
The Aïana Wave seat may be customised to suit different jet interior themes, as well as yachts and homes