Photography By: Damon Duran
By Shannon Brutsche
What says adventure better than being whisked away on a private helicopter to a five-star meal in a premiere location? This, my friends, is called Heli-Dining. OC Helicopters offers this ultimate experience, commencing virtually next door to your favorite five-star resort, The Resort at Pelican Hill.
Heli-Dining brings five-star dining to its ultimate potential as guests soar effortlessly above the traffic and general hustle that is left behind on the ground. Being the closest helicopter operator to the Orange County Coastline, OC Helicopters specializes in coastal tours and charters.
Heli-Dining can be for any occasion; from a romantic date for two to an upscale business event or even a fun, casual adventure for the whole family. Imagine being chauffeured to dinner in a sleek, air-conditioned turbine helicopter with full coastal views of our beautiful Pacific Ocean.
About OC Helicopters - OC Helicopters is Veteran owned and operated. Its founder, Ric Webb, brings over 25 years of Military service experience to the business, which allows for exceptional knowledge and smooth operations. OC Helicopters operates under FAA issued Authorizations, Certificates, and Federal Aviation Regulations, so there’s no doubt that guests will enjoy their Heli-Dining experience with relief and total comfort knowing that they’re in safe hands. OC Helicopters operates out the Atlantic Executive Terminal at John Wayne Airport (SNA), and they have been serving Orange County since 1985, specializing in coastal tours since 2008. With its own private offices and hangars in the Atlantic Executive Terminal, located in the southeast corner of the airport, OC Helicopters is actually the closest helicopter operator to our beloved Orange County Coastline. You’re sure to get incomparable service to match this incredible experience.
After traveling the uber-short journey from The Resort at Pelican Hill to John Wayne Airport, guests will make their way to the OC Helicopters headquarters. The offices include an Executive Lobby, where guests can enjoy large, comfy couches and a clear window view into the hangar. In a successful effort to remind guests of the incredible ocean-view adventure that they will soon experience, the lobby offers subtle touches of the beach including a video feed of the Orange County coastline. Guests can relax here in total comfort as they eagerly await embarkation.
When it is time to take off, guests are ushered to the flight deck. Be prepared to be blown away by the grandeur of the helicopters in this fleet. The featured aircrafts are two stunning turbine helicopters: Airbus H-120 and Airbus H-125. Known as the Colibri or Hummingbird, Airbus H-120 seats up to four passengers and one pilot. This sleek turbine helicopter boasts air-conditioned cabin areas and 180-degree views of the beautiful coastline, ocean and surrounding areas while in flight. You’re sure to not miss a single magnificent sight while safe in the cool and comfortable cabin of the Colibri. The second helicopter in the fleet is the Airbus H-125. This helicopter is known as the AStar or Ecureuil (Squirrel) and matches the splendor and comfort of its previously mentioned sister-copter. The AStar also boasts 180-degree views in its unobstructed cabin areas while in flight. It also offers a bit more room than the Airbus H-120, as it seats five passengers and one pilot. The added room makes this helicopter perfect for guests who want to share the Heli-Dining experience with the whole family.
Where to Fly - OC Helicopters offers Heli-Dining excursions to a variety of locations in Southern California. First on the list is the Orange County experience. This adventure is great for guests of Pelican Hill who want to see and experience Orange County in all its glory or even for OC locals who want to soar over their own stomping grounds in style. You’ll glide above coves, waves, beaches and the Resort with 180-degree views of it all! After this coastal adventure flight, a sunset dinner awaits at one of Orange County’s dining destinations. And if it was even possible to make this excursion any more amazing, OC Helicopters is happy to make this a dine and shop adventure with shopping centers like Fashion Island right around the corner. As the night comes to a close, you have your private villa at the Resort to look forward to, enjoying the perfect end to your evening.
OC Helicopters also offers Heli-Dining adventures to Los Angeles, Temecula, Santa Monica, San Diego and Palm Springs but is not limited to these locations, only by your imagination, legalities and budget. Excursions to LA Live bring you right to top destination for live entertainment in Downtown Los Angeles, including restaurants, night clubs and music venues. Excursions to Temecula offer helicopter tours over 3000 acres of wine country and vineyard dining experiences. With patio dining overlooking the Santa Monica beachfront and all of the excitement of the pier, the Santa Monica Heli-Dining experience is one you’ll definitely want to check off the list. For guests that are looking for something a bit more adventurous, try a Heli-Dining excursion to Palm Springs or San Diego! A not-so-distant neighbor to Newport Beach, San Diego is home to some of the best restaurants and entertainment in Southern California and is the perfect choice for an unforgettable experience that combines convenient, effortless travel and upscale destination dining.
Meet the Crew - Ric Webb is the founder of OC Helicopters and holds over 25 years of military experience combined in the Air Force, Navy, Army and Coast Guard. Aside from Ric’s dedicated and earnest demeanor, you’ll notice evidence of his esteemed training and experience throughout the OC Helicopters emprise, such as in the likeness of the OC Helicopters wings badge to the US Air Force Operations Badge.
Patti oversees all aspects of OC Helicopters from business development to human resources, she also organizes and manages the daily operations. Patti is your go-to girl when you’re ready to make your Heli-Dining reservations or if you have any pre-reservation questions. She’s also an Orange County native, so she’ll have no problem setting up the ultimate Orange County experience for you with OC Helicopters.
Some of the crew includes Chuck Street and Rob Dimel. Chuck Street is the Chief Pilot and Director of Operations. His smooth talking and easy navigating lends extra character to the OC Helicopters team – which is not to say that they need it! Locals might remember his familiar voice from his time relaying traffic information on the KIIS-FM morning show. While Chuck lends familiarity to the company, Rob Dimel has the safety end covered. Rob is a Check Airman for OC Helicopters. For those who don’t know, a check airman is approved by the FAA to have the knowledge, training, experience, and demonstrated the ability to evaluate and certify other pilots. And with Rob’s military and law enforcement background, there’s no doubting the safety and efficiency of OC Helicopters. It’s sure nice to know that you’re in the best hands possible while you’re gliding over the sparkling blue ocean waters to your much anticipated five-star meal.
Last but not least especially in the eyes of all of the animal lovers out there is Max, Chief Pup in Charge. The Pup in Charge role is a play on the Pilot in Command acronym (PIC). So cute! While Max may not be able to pilot, he has spent a significant amount of time up in the sky. If he’s not on a helicopter excursion, Max may be there to greet guests in the office.