An Offer He Couldn't Refuse: Why New COO Joined International Jet Interiors

A stellar resume in aviation helps, and a name—Remy St-Martin—that evokes a rarefied world doesn’t hurt, either.

There was a time, not even that long ago, that Remy St-Martin thought he would never walk away from his history at Dassault Falcon Jet. He had served as senior director of customer experience before being promoted to chief operating officer of the aviation company’s service center network in the Americas. He spent almost nine years at Dassault Falcon Jet, which represented the longest tenure of his career.

But Eric H. Roth, president of International Jet Interiors—which is headquartered at Long Island’s MacArthur Airport in Ronkonkoma, New York—must have said something very persuasive, because St-Martin is the completion center’s newly installed chief operating officer. “He is a well-respected leader in our industry,” Roth said, “and we are thrilled to work with him as we continue to meet our growth objectives and market presence.”

BJT asked St-Martin about his recent move and what nourishes his passion for aviation in general, and, now, interiors in particular.

What’s the most memorable private flight you ever took?

I have been fortunate to have experienced many memorable private flights. If I have to choose one, though, it would be a roundtrip from Teterboro in New Jersey to Lake Tahoe on a Falcon 7X. The whole trip was just perfect, from the performance takeoffs performed by the Dassault Falcon Jet demonstration pilots and the excellent onboard flight attendant service to the camaraderie with colleagues and the breathtaking views from the skies.

Why the career segue from Falcon to IJI?

Dassault treated me extremely well and I thought I would work there until my retirement. That said, Eric Roth at International Jet Interiors presented me with an exciting opportunity to grow his company together with the rest of the team. I have known Eric for many years and his values are near and dear to my heart. That familiarity, combined with the exceptional reputation IJI has in the industry for its superior craftsmanship, made for a natural transition to this new role. 

What makes the interior of a bizjet luxurious in unexpected ways?

Let me try to capture the essence of my thinking on this by comparing a bizjet interior to a mansion or an estate. Many of the same luxurious materials used in beautiful homes are also found in the much smaller confined area of a bizjet cabin. Private jet interiors are equally spectacular in terms of design and aesthetics while providing very comfortable living spaces crafted under more stringent regulations and operating in much more severe conditions.

What was your introduction to the completion side like?

On my third day at IJI, I familiarized myself with our current projects by spending time in the shops and in the hangar, onboard the multiple aircraft we are refurbishing. What struck me, even after decades in the industry, was not just the precision and attention to detail being poured into crafting the interior of each project, but the unexpected level of intuitive and anticipatory thinking that was being applied to ensure an extraordinary, luxurious experience. 

There’s something so tactile about the upholstery.

Yes, as I was walking through the upholstery shop, I appreciated feeling the supple leather hides being hand-cut and French-stitched. Upon a deeper dive into the process, I realized that the location of the stitch reflected how the client’s hand would drape over the armrest, and what would be felt under the passenger’s fingertips. All this plays a role in the design process.  

What were your other “wow” moments, in terms of the craftsmanship?

Another moment that made me stop, pause, and say, “Wow,” happened when I was in the cabinetry shop. Learning that a custom credenza being handcrafted was incorporating a hi-low mechanical lift for a 42-inch in-flight video conferencing monitor was very cool. Aside from the craftsmanship, another “wow” moment was realizing the intuitiveness that was being incorporated. All scenarios were anticipated to ensure ease of use, a precise line of vision, and optimal sound.

Is there any greater luxury than having your aircraft environment completely customized and personalized to you?

Frankly, no. Individual details of a thoughtfully designed and nuanced environment do not necessarily hit you over the head the moment you step onboard. Yet, it’s these intuitive, anticipatory, and well-thought-out touchpoints that deliver such a bespoke and visceral experience.