San Francisco re-opened its glammed-up, retro modern International Terminal 2 to the public on Wednesday, April 13, complete with high-end architectural delights, red leather, a luxe lounge, a spa, gourmet market, twelve restaurants, dynamic public art and more. On hand for a trial run was super-star of the airways, Sir Richard Branson, who spearheaded the LEED certified building for his own Virgin Airways.
Branson had this to say “I had a fantastic time with the other first-ever passengers to fly into Virgin America’s new home at San Francisco International Airport Terminal 2. We were escorted by Virgin Galactic’s WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo. Watching the two space vehicles fly over the Golden Gate Bridge and be within such close view of our Virgin America plane (called “My Other Ride is a Spaceship”) – and the dawn of commercial space travel – was simply breathtaking.”
Also on hand for the pre-grand opening festivities with Sir Richard were astronaut Buzz Aldrin, Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom, former mayor of SF who led the initiative for T2, and Ed Lee, the new mayor. Touring the facility, people remarked on how the terminal feels like a five-star hotel lobby, not an airport terminal. This exciting new space includes upscale options for travelers such as locally sourced foods in Emporio Rulli, a Bradley Ogden inspired Lark Creek Grill, a Food Networks’ celebrity chef Tyler Florence outlet and other chi-chi shops and refreshments for the world-weary or just travel-weary visitor.
A stunning new art collection graces the public areas of the terminal, giving travelers a taste of our local arts community. The new terminal is capable of handling the largest jumbo jets. Just this week, a Lufthansa A380, the world’s largest 4 engine passenger plane, made its first landing at the International Terminal. The Boeing 747-400, the world’s second-largest jetliner, carries 400 passengers, and will be a frequent visitor as well.
EPA regional administrator, Jared Blumenfeld was quoted as predicting, “This is the future of airports.” Reborn from the old 1950’s era terminal that had been massively refurbished with 21st century accoutrements, the new SF ‘T2’ will be a top choice travel destination for years to come. Details and more on this exciting new terminal are available from the SF Museum Examiner.
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