The Las Vegas, Nevada-based aviation duo speak with pride about their students’ latest accomplishments, they complete the other’s sentences, and they enjoy spending time together flying helicopters.
But it wasn’t always that way.
“I was working at a CPA firm, and he was a client of ours and our computer guy,” said Bianca. Each was exiting a previous marriage, and they made small talk about it. Then Brian scribbled his phone number on a piece of paper and left it on her desk. After their divorce dust settled, Bianca “saw the paper somewhere, so I called him,” and they began a friendship that blossomed into an aviation business partnership. “Four kids and a couple of decades later, here we are,” said Bianca.
Brian founded 702 Helicopters at North Las Vegas Airport (VGT) in 2010 with two training helicopters and little else. Bianca came aboard shortly after as the business manager and helped the fledgling flight training and tour company grow. The business takes its name from the recognizable Las Vegas area code.
What began with two Robinson R22 two-place models now operates with five helicopters—three R22s and a pair of four-place R44s. “They’re workhorses,” said Brian. “They just keep going. I like to think of them as the Volkswagens of the sky.” 702 Helicopters is a Part 141 and Part 61 flight school, Part 145 repair station, Part 135 commercial flight operator, and a Part 91.147 tour operator as well. “We do all kinds of stuff,” said Brian, including adding fixed-wing training to the mix.
Bianca is a high school aviation STEM teacher who earned a helicopter pilot certificate so she could be taken more seriously while talking aviation in a room full of guys. “When I first got my pilot certificate, I think it was just more of a ‘let me show you what I can do’ thing, and then I realized, ‘Wow, I really love this...It’s something I could do forever,’ and it kind of grew from there.”
Their Nevada tours include overflights of the Las Vegas Strip, Red Rock Canyon, and the nearby Vegas Valley. Clients are particularly fond of viewing the Strip’s dazzling nighttime lights from the air. “That’s our most popular tour after sunset,” said Brian.