‘Perfect’ place for indoor skydiving venture

Gary and Emma Beyer were in Queenstown to check progress on their new iFLY business. Photo: Paul Taylor

Gary and Emma Beyer were in Queenstown to check progress on their new iFLY business. Photo: Paul Taylor

The excitement on Emma and Gary Beyer’s faces is clear as they stare up at the mammoth wind tunnel.

The pair visited Queenstown this week to check progress on their $15million indoor sky diving business, iFLY.

Construction is well under way on the Brecon St site and the doors are set to open mid-winter.

They were champing at the bit to be the first to test out the simulated skydiving experience, which has been six years in the making.

Opening an indoor skydiving business in New Zealand’s outdoor adventure capital might seem counterintuitive, but Mrs Beyer said Queenstown was the perfect spot.

It was ”just as much fun as actual skydiving”, she said, but could be done year-round and served as a great training ground for skydivers in a safe environment.

”The demographic profile in Queenstown is perfect,” she said.

”It makes perfect sense to have it in the heart of the adventure capital.”

The pair have a long history in skydiving. London-born Mrs Beyer made her first tandem skydive in 2001 and was hooked.

In 2002, she went to Florida to train at what was then the only civilian wind tunnel in the world. It was there she met South African-born Gary, who was a coach.

Mr Beyer started skydiving in 1983 and was initially told by the chief instructor he was so bad he should give up.

Since then, both Beyers have claimed a haul of national and international skydiving medals.

They moved to New Zealand in 2012, hoping to bring indoor skydiving to the country.

The Queenstown site was secured in 2016, and construction started last year.

The pair live in Auckland, but Mr Beyer said they planned to be in Queenstown ”all the time”.

As well as the main feature, iFLY will include a 360-degree viewing platform and a bar and cafe.

-By Daisy Hudson

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