San Diego’s Newest FBO, Arguably the Best “One-Stop Shop” in SoCal
SAN DIEGO – Perfectly situated only 20 minutes from downtown San Diego, La Jolla and Rancho Santa Fe, Gillespie Field Airport (KSEE) is the most convenient airport in the area — a hidden gem in the world of corporate and private air travel. However, until recently the airport lacked a full-service FBO that could cater to the general aviation market. Enter: Circle Air Group.
When the old Jet Air property came available for sale in 2016, Dee Conger – a former fighter pilot, A&P mechanic, inventor and entrepreneur – quickly seized the opportunity to turn the business into a “profile FBO” to offer commercial FBO operations and compete with those at McClellan–Palomar Airport (KCRQ) in Carlsbad and San Diego International Airport (KSAN).
Now, only a few years later, Conger has turned Circle Air Group into San Diego’s finest all-inclusive FBO. The operation is the only full-service FBO on the field and one of the very few in the San Diego area that offers full maintenance services.
With new ownership, a newly remodeled facility, a new fuel provider and new expansions on the horizon, Circle Air Group aims to become San Diego’s FBO of choice.
A New Look for Circle Air Group
The FBO recently completed an over $2 million renovation, which modernized the private passenger terminal building and added 3,000 sq. feet of lobby space. The newly designed lobby includes a nod to military aviation, something that’s a big part of San Diego’s history as well as Conger’s. Along the walls, customers will see photos of military aircraft and pilots – including people that Conger flew with himself.
The terminal offers world-class concierge services and amenities. It includes luxuries like executive conference rooms, 24-hour security, a catering kitchen and Ritz Carlton-trained staff.
The airport and FBO grounds are larger than many realize. Gillespie Field contains three runways, compared to only one at Palomar Airport. Additionally, Circle Air offers 70,000 sq. feet of hangar and office leasing space and 400,000 sq. feet of concrete ramp space, enough to service large aircraft such as the Gulfstream G650 and larger.
And growth is in the future. The second phase of renovation will include an expansion of an additional 50,000 sq. feet of hangar space. Conger says that’ll be another 2 to 3 years.
One-Stop Shop for Reliable Maintenance and Fuel
Circle Air is committed to having a passionate team that anticipates customers’ needs, pays great attention to detail, safety and security, and strives for excellence in everything they do.
In fact, Circle Air is one of Southern California’s largest FAA Class III Part 145 Repair Stations, specializing in Citation, King Air, Gulfstream, Challenger, Falcon and other larger aircraft. Even though Circle Air has existed for only a few years, the on-site mechanics have more than 30 years of experience and are factory trained by Dassault, Cessna, Bombardier and others.
Also, the FBO recently joined Phillips 66® Aviation’s network of branded FBOs.
“We wanted to have a relationship with a direct refiner to hopefully provide more advantageous pricing and services,” said Conger. “We want to stay competitive by offering a new, beautiful, modern facility coupled with the best jet fuel pricing in Southern California, and Jet A pricing even more attractive than group purchasing programs such as CAA.”
All line service technicians are NATA Safety 1st trained, but the FBO looks forward to potentially enhancing it’s already excellent training programs alongside those offered by Phillips 66.
With its central location, maintenance capabilities and high-quality amenities, Circle Air Group is proof that high quality and convenience don’t have to come with a premium price.
To learn more about Circle Air Group, visit circleag.com.
To learn more about Phillips 66 branded FBO programs, visit phillips66aviation.com.