09/11/2015

Another (almost) big white aircraft in Geneva

Yesterday, 10 September 2015, a beautiful almost white Boeing 777-200LR came to Geneva, apparently from Paris.


The aircraft, registered as VP-CAL (a Cayman Islands registration), was a regular visitor to Geneva last March, possibly for skiing? Its arrival was immediately noted and photographed by Corentin Altherr, one of the intrepid spotters around the airport.

The range of Boeing 777-200LR are described in Wikipedia as being a long-range extension of the standard B777-200, designed specifically for the ability to connect almost any two airports in the world. One of these aircraft, operated by United Airlines, once flew for 177 minutes over the Pacific Ocean under one engine.

This aircraft is registered as being owned by a company called Montkaj Ltd, registered in the Caymans. A look-up on this name quickly shows that it is believed to be controlled by the Saudi Prince Mohammad bin Fahd bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, who is said to be active in charity and youth welfare.

Montkaj is also said to be the name of a luxurious yacht which normally spends our summer on the Cote d’Azur in France. This yacht,  designed by Terence Disdale and  delivered in 1995, has been described as one of the most beautiful and impressive yachts, and also one of the most secretive. At one time, there was a controversy, reported by the Guardian newspaper, concerning the origins of the financing for the construction of the yacht.

A check of the previous movements of this Boeing, which is in noise class II (very noisy, but less than the Boeing 747 aircraft in Class I), suggests that when it takes off again, it will not be unduly noisy, perhaps because there may not be too many passengers on it and perhaps because, even if it goes back to Saudi Arabia, that is not really a long trip for such an aircraft.

 

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