Shopping Centers Today International

FEB 2016

Shopping Centers Today is the news magazine of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)

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Page 23 of 59

IFly provides this experience to people as young as 3 and as old as physi- cal health will allow. "Since there is very little age limit on this experience, everybody is a potential customer for us," said Chris Miller, IFly's director of U.S. marketing. "There is tremen- dous growth potential for this concept around the world." Unlike traditional skydiving, there is no jump, free fall or parachuting; the participant enters the flight tunnel at ground level, leans in and floats on a turbine-generated wind cushion. An initial session covers safety measures and techniques, after which the customer is equipped with a flight suit and goggles. The cost is about $70 for a first-time flyer, including the instruction and gear. Fly TreATS CUSToMerS The only way an indoor skydiving school could be expected to: It sets them atop a cushion of air and then floats and propels them upward — 3 feet, 6 feet, even 40 feet high, to the very top of the wind tunnel, if they can handle it. Austin-based IFly Indoor Skydiving does this at 45 sites across the U.S. and in europe and Asia, and the company has 18 more set to open over the next 12 months or so. each flight lasts for one minute, and the introductory flight package offers two flights. A first-timer will fly with only the instructor alongside, though later, with experience and acquired skill, he or she may fly with other people. In fact, experi- enced flyers may practice formation flying with several others in the tunnel at once. The sites contain a single flight chamber or wind tunnel per facility, though IFly is looking into operating multiple tunnels. IFly was founded in 1998 as Sky- Venture, and its first skydiving facil- ity opened the following year in or- lando, Fla. The facility's wind tunnel was the work of William Kitchen, who is founder and Ceo of US Thrill rides and the inventor of various amusement-park rides, including the Skycoaster, which combines bungee jumping and skydiving. The company I Blast of fun IFly Indoor skydIvIng oFFers more BrIck-and-mortar entertaInment By Beth Mattson-Teig r e t a I l I n g t o d a y 24 S C t / F e B r u a r y 2 0 1 6

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