July 2018

Philippine Airlines launches A350 with cabin design and customized mood lighting by LIFT Strategic Design

Manila-based Philippine Airlines has taken delivery of the first of six new A350-900s. The aircraft will serve long haul markets such as NYC and London to Manila nonstop. The cabin of PAL's new long-haul fleet has been designed by Tokyo-based LIFT Strategic Design. LIFT has been working with PAL on cabin design projects since the airline's first B777 fleet in 2007.

Daniel Baron, LIFT’s CEO, said "I am truly grateful for the trust PAL has placed in LIFT over the years. We know each other very well, and enjoy a warm relationship of mutual trust and friendship"

LIFT was invited to join PAL executives and members of the media on the A350 delivery flight from Toulouse to Manila on 14 July 2018. "What an amazing trip," said Baron. "It was a unique, fantastic opportunity to explain the designs to members of the media in person, on the aircraft. That shows just how serious PAL is about rising even higher, with products that can compete with the very best."

Unmistakably Filipino, unmistakably Philippine Airlines
Every detail of the CMF (color, material and finish) on the A350 has been designed to communicate PAL's positioning as the premium network carrier of the Philippines, dedicated to delivering a high quality customer experience in all classes. The designs are a delicious blend of heritage and future, with emphasis on crystal clear differentiation through color, pattern and texture. Baron said: "It's all about instantly communicating country and culture to both visitors to the country and to Filipinos returning home, in a way that is forward-looking, with a premium feeling at every touchpoint in every cabin."

First-in-the-world mood lighting scenes
Working with Airbus lighting system specialists, LIFT developed for PAL original, unique lighting scenes that truly set the airline apart. "Our aim was to communicate the unique characteristics of Filipino culture and the legendary warmth of Filipino hospitality, using the extremely robust customizable lighting system that Airbus has developed for A350," said Baron.

The lighting scenes include:

Boarding/deplaning: we recreated the vast sky above a land of 7,100 islands. A soft gradient from light amber to light blue travels slowly from rear to front, in a loop. It instantly says "mabuhay" ("welcome").

Sunrise: prior to the final meal service, a slow transition from midnight blue culminates with the "sun" in orange rising slowly above overhead bins toward the ceiling. As it fades out, the cabin sidewalls become bathed in warm amber.

Flag colors: on national day of the Philippines or other relevant occasions, the red, yellow and blue of the flag appear on the ceiling, over bins and on sidewals, respectively.

Christmas: The festive season can be celebrated on board, with a gradient from red to white to green that moves across the entire cabin ceiling.

Fiesta: over 100 festivals are held in towns and cities throughout the Philippines every year, and are an explosion of color. We give PAL the ability to create a festival atmosphere on board, during which cabin crew can announce a particular festival or fiesta being held.

Celebration: a dynamic light show, inspired by fireworks, that enables PAL customers to celebrate a special ocassion such as a birthday, anniversary, promotion or even marriage proposal.





April 2018

Bamboo Airways launches brand designed by LIFT Strategic Design

On Friday 20 April, Hanoi-based FLC Group launched the brand design of upstart carrier Bamboo Airways. Aviation design studio LIFT Strategic Design won a global competition to develop the airline’s brand, including logo, livery and cabin interior.

Daniel Baron, LIFT’s CEO, said: “we are thrilled to be working with FLC Group and Bamboo Airways on this unique program in the rapidly developing Vietnam market. I greatly appreciate the trust they have placed in us to deliver a strong, long-lasting brand.”

Clear vision at the top of the company
The vision at the top of the FLC Group, the owner of the airline, is crystal clear: to create opportunities in Vietnam for more people to enjoy their hard-earned leisure time. In particular, the company aims to provide all-inclusive air-land vacation packages using the many resorts and condotels it owns throughout the country.

Positioned as a hybrid boutique carrier
The Vietnam domestic market is dominated by two large airlines: a traditional flag carrier, and an LCC focused on low price. Bamboo Airways is positioned as a boutique “lifestyle” airline. This speaks to the aspirations of many young Vietnamese, who are keen for air travel to be part of their lifestyle. They have disposable income, associate with global brands and embrace new experiences. Not too long ago, the advertisements in the inflight magazine of the flag carrier targeted foreign visitors. Now, every other ad is pitching beachfront second homes for Vietnamese. The country of 96 million people is ready for Bamboo Airways.

Meaning in all the elements: distinctive features of the logo and livery

The mark
Designing around the target positioning, we created a fresh bamboo “forest” in a vibrant, youthful green, and linked it to bamboo leaves in two shades of blue, all neatly shaped as an aircraft tail. The rising bamboo is a symbol of strength, versatility, beauty and poise, the same qualities as the people of Vietnam. It’s a celebration of the natural beauty of the country, with a modern, urban feel. And it instantly communicates “airline”, aiding brand identification and recall.

The logotype
In Vietnam, bamboo is a symbol of strength and protection, and every person in the country knows the legend of a saint who used it to ward off invaders. The bold logotype features the letter M shaped as a protective roof over an abstract bamboo leaf. Collectively the logotype communicates stability and reliability, qualities shared by the large parent company, FLC Group, which is already well known throughout Vietnam.

The green forward door
The Vietnamese are a people of extraordinary hospitality and charm. We wanted to communicate these qualities to the world, and what a better way than the forward entry door. The door in green is a simple, powerful way to say “welcome to our home”.

Possibly the world’s largest bamboo leaf
Gentle arcs in medium blue on the belly of the aircraft speak to mobility and new discoveries when viewed from the side. When seen from below, they form the shape of a bamboo leaf with a large “BAMBOO” in the center.

Cabin interior design
LIFT is also designing the cabin interior to be installed on Bamboo’s first aircraft. Details to be released at a later date.




March 2018

LIFT Strategic Design selected to design Vietnam’s newest airline: Bamboo Airways

Tokyo-based LIFT Strategic Design has been selected to design the brand, livery and cabin for Bamboo Airways of Vietnam. The Hanoi-based carrier is being launched by the FLC Group, one of Vietnam’s largest real estate development companies.

Daniel Baron, LIFT’s CEO said: “We are very excited to be working with FLC, and are grateful for their confidence in LIFT. They have a clear long-term vision for their new airline. We look forward to working with the Bamboo Airways team to develop a strong brand that serves them well for many years.”

Dang Tat Thang, Bamboo Airways CEO, said “LIFT brings tremendous airline brand experience and passion as a strong partner for our company. My team and I look forward to creating Vietnam’s new airline with them.”





June 2017

Philippine Airlines unveiled the first of its newly reconfigured A330-300s, with cabin design by LIFT Strategic Design

LIFT also designed the cabin for PAL’s recently delivered 777-300ERs, and is working on the airline’s next-generation A350 and A321 fleets, to be launched in 2018. LIFT worked with PAL on cabin design for its first batch of 777-300ERs in 2007 as well.

“Over the past ten years, we have worked with PAL on twelve seat programs across seven fleets. The PAL team is truly like family, and I am deeply grateful for their trust and friendship.”

“Above all, the design reflects PAL’s aspiration to be a top-rated airline to, from and within the Philippines, one of Asia’s most dynamic economies. Many PAL employees have been at the carrier for decades. They are passionate to see their airline deliver on the company’s tagline ‘the heart of the Filipino’.

“In terms of hard product and styling, PAL’s recently added 777-300ERs represented an evolution. The reconfigured A330, however, is about revolution, with a new design on forward and rear walls, enhanced seat comfort and privacy in business class, and a new service class (premium economy).”

Inspiration for a new generation: the elegant Barong Filipino

“On any aircraft, the forward and rear walls of each seating zone define the ambience of the entire cabin. What goes on those walls also drives visual differentiation between classes, and between airline brands.”

“Over the past ten years, our original wall design for PAL, “Coastlines”, has served PAL well, welcoming customers with its soft shades of blue that represent the view of an island coast from above in a land of 7100 islands. But it was time for something new and completely different, something that further underscores PAL’s positioning as the full-service airline of the Philippines.”

“One aspect of the country’s rich cultural heritage stood out more than anything: the incredible beauty and diversity of its textiles. We wanted to celebrate this and create a modern interpretation suitable for an aircraft cabin. We chose a geometric element from a Barong Filipino, the traditional shirt worn by women and men throughout the country. Just like a piece of clothing woven with skill and love, the forward and rear wall coverings gently ‘wrap’ the cabin environment in warmth and elegance.”

In premium classes, the barong element appears in vertical sections of light gold and silver on a beige background. In Economy Class, the same pattern is used on a white background. “It communicates professionalism and filipino hospitality to foreign visitors, and immediately says ‘welcome home’ to Filipinos the moment they step aboard.”

Business Class

“Our styling of the Thompson Aero Seating Vantage XL business class seat began with a simple proposition: the seat as embodiment of PAL’s true potential as a full-service network carrier. It’s about leveraging the visual and tactile qualities of a product to instantly communicate ‘premium experience in a calm, stylish environment.”

“The external surface of the seat shell is a delicious shade of champagne with a soft metallic finish that instantly communicates ‘premium’. A dark blue fabric for the shell lining creates a sense of cocooned coziness, while absorbing sound for an even more peaceful rest.”

“The seat fabric is a basket weave pattern of in two soft shades of blue, with detailing in cream.”

“The same barong pattern used for forward and rear walls of each zone appears on the lining of the pocket in shades of pewter and light gold, for a touch of classic glamour. “

“The retainer for the personal item shelf features a texture inspired by filipino mother of pearl known locally as capiz,”

“Table inlays have a pressed bamboo pattern, a reference to the abundance of beautiful natural materials used throughout the country in furniture and home decoration.”

“The business class seat covers also feature contour lines that reference PAL’s sunburst logo while enhancing perception of comfort. A small touch that underscores PAL’s commitment to quality throughout the customer journey.”

New and true premium economy seat

“PAL’s new Premium Economy Class provides an upgraded experience in a dedicated zone just after Business Class. The seat fabric features an elegant basket weave pattern in medium blue mixed with mandarin. The result is a highly textured, premium look and feel. Complementing the fabric are meal and cocktail tables in a light wood grain. Together with the super comfortable seat packed with creature features, the ambience of the cabin communicates to customers a differentiated, enhanced experience.”

Dedicated carpet for premium classes

“Business class and premium economy have a dedicated carpet design. Inspired by banig, handwoven floor coverings, it has the appearance of colors very subtly overlapping in a geometric pattern.”

Economy class seat

“Economy class is no less important, in the sense that ever element needs to communicate comfort, a modern Filipino aesthetic and the incredibly warm hospitality for which PAL is well known.”

“The main seat fabric features a flip-flop color-change effect, meaning that the color appears different depending on the angle of view. With a single fabric, the seatbacks appear turquoise, while the seat bottom cushions take on a sunshine orange hue. The look is both dynamic and premium. The sides of the seats are covered in a different fabric with a diamond pattern that has roots in traditional filipino weaving. With headrests in blue or turquoise leather, the overall appearance of the seat is modern and clean, and unmistakably Filipino.”

Economy class carpet

The carpet in economy class features a background of deep-sea blue with tiny dots in turquoise, in a vertical pattern of alternating waves. It represents the sea linking a nation of 7,100 islands.





January 2017

LIFT designs special livery for HK Express, celebrating Japan’s Kagawa Prefecture…with possibly the world’s largest udon noodle and chopsticks

On 13 January in Takamatsu, Japan, HK Express and Kagawa Prefecture unveiled a special livery designed by LIFT Strategic Design.

The entire left side of the aircraft celebrates Sanuki udon, Kagawa Prefecture’s signature dish, with a gigantic pair of lacquer chopsticks holding an udon noodle. Sanuki udon is widely known and enthusiastically slurped throughout Japan.

The right side of the aircraft is dedicated to Ritsurin Garden in the city of Takamatsu, and features Engetsukyo (“crescent moon”) bridge, the largest bridge in the grounds, framed by traditional matsu (pine) trees.

The paint used for the dots on the chopsticks and bridge contains mica particles to create a sparkling effect in sunshine. The paint for the special livery was developed with Akzo Nobel Aerospace Coatings.

Playful details adorn both sides of the special livery. “OSHII!”, the Japanese word for “delicious”, appears to be emerging from the flight deck windows on the side with Sanuki udon noodles, while “KIREI”, the Japanese for “beautiful”, sits above a passenger window as if the passenger is viewing the bridge.

The engine cowlings left and right have logos of Kagawa Prefecture and the City of Takamatsu, respectively.

Coincidentally, the Japanese word for both chopsticks and bridge is “hashi” (written with different kanji), so regardless of the side, describing it as “the side with hashi” is delightfully accurate.

Regarding the designs, Daniel Baron, CEO of LIFT, said: “Most people around the world know Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, but Japan’s lessor known regions also have much to offer. Kagawa Prefecture is keen to build awareness throughout Asia about its rich food culture and beautiful tourist attractions. We wanted to help them stand out in a very big way both on the tarmac and in the air, so focused on two cultural icons of their region that are unmistakably Kagawa and Takamatsu. We also wanted to infuse the design with a touch of humor, which reflects the warm and down-to-earth hospitality that visitors to the prefecture enjoy.”

“The livery is a bold showcase for Kagawa, and promises to increase awareness of the prefecture as HK Express deploys the aircraft throughout its growing network” said Baron. “This was a tremendously fun and rewarding project. We are grateful to both the airline and the prefecture for the chance to be a part of this exciting collaboration”




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