Brussels Airlines Unveils Aerosmurf Livery
Among the best special airline liveries out there is the whole Belgian Icons series by Brussels Airlines.
After the Tintin (#SNRackham), Magritte, Trident (dedicated to the Belgian national football team, the Red Devils) and Amare (dedicated to music festival Tomorrowland), Brussels Airlines decided to crowdsource the next Belgian Icon.
Design contests have become a rather popular way for airlines to come up with new, original, liveries and get some great PR along the way, the likes of ANA and Aeroflot have resorted to this method recently.
The winner, chosen out of 1,415 submitted ideas, was the Aerosmurf livery, designed by Marta Mascellani, of Italy (who also happens to be the sister of a Brussels Airlines pilot).
I must confess that I had no idea the Smurfs, that are currently celebrating their 60th anniversary, were actually Belgian (now I know!), but it turns out their creator, Peyo, was from Brussels. Actually, Peyo's daughter took part in the presentation ceremony, as you can see in the photo below, with the designer of the livery.
This design, that took 14 people 14 days to airspray on the fuselage of an Airbus A320, has 19 smurfs in it, depicted in either crew or passenger roles.
The Aerosmurf livery has also some additional details of interest that connect also with this sense of "Belgianness" that the Belgian Icons series aims to highlight.
For example, one of the smurfs is depicted playing the Belgian national anthem in a saxophone (that it turns out is also a Belgian invention - so many new things being learned while writing this post!), another one is playing the harmonica, a reference to Belgian jazz musician Toots Thielemans. A scale model of Brussels' Atomium is shown in the trolley pushed by one of the crew surfs, while one of this "colleagues" is seen serving waffles and fries to a passenger.
Gargamel and Azrael, the smurfs "enemies", are also in the livery, but, with a hitch: they are escaping through a hatch on the belly of the Airbus and only visible for planespotters on the ground!
In fact, the whole plane is guaranteed to be a treat for planespotters wherever it goes.
But for passengers too, as its cabin is also "thematized": smurf footsteps are found on the aisle, other smurfs decorates the walls and there is also video and welcome music to add to the smurf experience.
The Aerosmurf A320 is ready to enter operational service, after a presentation event (that you can see in the pictures below) and the plan is to have it flying until 2023.