Virgin America today launches its service to Orange County. The airline starts service with five conveniently-timed daily roundtrips between San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and John Wayne Airport (SNA) in Santa Ana, California. SNA is the ninth destination in the carrier’s growing network.
“As the only California-based airline, Orange County is an important travel market for us, and we couldn’t be more pleased to partner with John Wayne Airport to bring our award-winning service to the region,” said Virgin America CEO and president David Cush. “We’re injecting some healthy competition into the market with low fares, industry-leading service and upscale amenities. We think our unique service will be a breath of fresh air for Orange County’s selective travelers.”
“We’re pleased to welcome Virgin America to Orange County,” said SNA Airport director Alan Murphy. “Competition brings more options for travelers, and we think Virgin America’s low fares and fun innovative in-flight amenities will be a popular choice for our visitors and residents.”
The SFO-SNA inaugural flight will be celebrated with a surf band playing at the SFO departure gate, live interviews via WiFi stream at 35,000 feet, and a beach-meets-runway red carpet welcome at SNA. Upon touchdown at SNA, the first commercial guests, along with Cush and Virgin Group founder and president Sir Richard Branson, will be greeted by local leaders and an unofficial Orange County welcoming committee, including the cast of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Orange County” and Red Bull athletes. Arriving guests will be feted at an exclusive tarmac soiree, with a menu prepared by Joie de Vivre’s Shorebreak Hotel chef Vincent Muraco and cocktails from KARMA California Brut, Red Bull, SkinnyGirl and VeeV, the world’s first Acai Spirit. Bare Escentuals makeovers and Sunset Tan spray tans will be offered to flight guests on arrival.
As part of the launch of its new service, Virgin America is also giving a dozen fliers the “OC treatment for free,” with a seat on the first flight, a stay at Pacific Edge Hotel on Laguna Beach, and a South Coast Plaza shopping spree. The value of the winners’ seats will be donated to Virgin Unite’s partner, StandUp for Kids – a nonprofit outreach group making a difference in the lives of at-risk youth in Orange County.