Seychelles vacuum of non-direct flights from the European destination has been partly filled with the landing of the Blue Panorama Airlines nonstop flight from Milan-Malpensa and Rome-Fiumicino airports.
The Italian airline’s Boeing 77-300ER carrier flight, which departed from Italy on February14 – the day of the Valentine – on a special promotional fare, was greeted in the Seychelles islands with the ceremonial water canon salute. The Chief Executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board, Mr. Alain St Ange, said that the touching down of this Italian carrier “bears the fruit of two months’ intense negotiations between the Seychelles Tourism Board, the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority, Air Seychelles, and the Blue Panorama company.” He said that “this illustrates the true partnership that exists between the local stakeholders to work together to bring new flights to the Seychelles with the cessation of direct nonstop services by the national airline.”
When questioned on the financial situation facing the Mauritius National Airline, Air Mauritius, the Chief Executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board outlined that he is proud to acknowledge that the “Air Seychelles has taken the sound decision to sign a strategic partnership agreement with the Etihad Group. This will help reshape our national airline company, and it will give it more visibility on both regional and international routes.” The Chairman of the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority, Captain David Savy, spoke on the “vast distribution network,” which he said the Blue Panorama possessed and which was not the case with the Air Seychelles flights to Italy.
The Blue Panorama Airlines, which landed in the Seychelles with 131 passengers including the crew members, has also connecting flights in Nice, France, and other neighboring countries. It was said that these nonstop direct flights originating from one of the Seychelles main market will eventually stabilize this market, which is today suffering from the pull-out of Air Seychelles.
The Italian Airline’s ground post holder, Mr. Filippo Giorni, who was on board the Blue Panorama inaugural flight said: “Seychelles is a profitable market for the Italy carrier, and the decision for the Blue Panorama Airline to fly to the Seychelles is to give the possibility for more Italians to visit the Seychelles Islands.” He added that with the upcoming two weekly flights from July linking Milan and Rome with the Seychelles Islands “this is set to generate even more passengers for the Seychelles than the inaugural flight.”
The Blue Panorama inaugural flight to the Seychelles was welcomed at the international airport by the Chief Executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board, Mr. Alain St.Ange; the Deputy Chief Executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board, Mrs. Elsia Grandcourt; the Italian Consulate, Mr. Claudio Izzi; the Chairman of the Seychelles Aviation Authority, David Savy; the Chief Executive Officer of the Civil Aviation Authority, Mr. Gilbert Faure; and the Executive Director of the Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association, Mr. Raymond St.Ange.
Upon disembarking the aircraft, the passengers received a special Valentine welcoming party, and all ladies were given red roses. The Seychellois delegation, together with the Italian consulate, were invited onboard the Blue Panorama Airlines to meet with the crew members. The Blue Panorama Airlines, which left the Seychelles on Wednesday, February 15 at 2155 hours for Italy, will return back to the Seychelles on February 22.