A few months ago, Etihad Airways introduced the Airbus A350-1000 to their active fleet, which came equipped with a brand-new business class cabin. These aircraft have been flying a select few long-haul routes, including to New York JFK.
It was on that route that my wife — ahem I mean the newest AirlineReporter guest contributor Meghan Koushik — grabbed some quick pictures. And it’s a really gorgeous cabin. Take a look for yourself.
This business class cabin has the same understated style as Etihad’s previous business class seat still flying on their Dreamliners, but with more consistency from seat to seat. There’s also an improved privacy factor, thanks to sliding doors that turn your seat into a miniature suite. Notably, Etihad doesn’t offer a first class cabin on their A350s, so this business class is as fancy as you’re going to get.
We’ll be back later with some thoughts, photos, and videos from a separate flight on their B787 business class. For now, let us know in the comments section below what you think about the cabin, or if any of you have firsthand experience flying it.
Etihad has strength in branding; this lounge could be anywhere. This entrance is the new LAX lounge, though. – Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter
It’s no secret that Etihad knows how to build a lounge. They have been very busy. Late last year, they opened their fabulous New YorkÂ lounge. This year it was followed by a new lounge in Melbourne and their new First Class lounge in Abu Dhabi’s terminal 3. Before their efforts go to maximum on finishing the gorgeous new midfield terminal back home, they had one more lounge up their sleeve; Los Angeles. In the two years they’ve been serving LAX, they have transported more than a quarter million guests. The premium guests were using the lovely Star Alliance lounge next door until this facility opened earlier this week. The Star Alliance lounge, however, did not say Etihad.
James Hogan, in presence of the CEO of LAWA and other Etihad executives opening the LAX lounge – Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter
While this lounge does not have a Residence nook, yet, it does have a VIP area that could easily serve the purpose should the A380 ever grace the west coast. The public premium area, however, is fantastic.
Follow the signs to the Hugo Junkers Lounge in DUS.
Recently on a oneworld itinerary connecting throughÂ DÃ¼sseldorf Airport (DUS), I was able to visit the Hugo Junkers Lounge, which is contracted by several airlines to serve their premium passengers. As I said in my review of the Hamburg Airport Lounge, I’m always iffy when it comes to third-party lounges, so I headed up the elevator with cautious optimism.
The Hugo Junkers Lounge also contracts with several other airlines departing out of in the Schengen zone (read: mainly any airline not named Lufthansa), as well as a few membership programs. One could also pay â‚¬21 for access (credit cards only).
Iâ€™ve been through many lounges, and aÂ big â€œred flagâ€ for me is whether Iâ€™m about to step foot into a contracted lounge instead of one run by an airline itself. Being a oneworld alliance guy at a non-hub outstation like Hamburg, it could have been like being stranded in a desert, parched and wanting of nourishment. On top of that, I was flying Air Berlin, which isnâ€™t usually among the first three or four airlines one thinks of in terms of quality oneworld lounging. Was I going to have to kill some time [like a savage – too much snark?] or [perusing duty-free items] in the main terminal area, or would I be pleasantly surprised…
The Etihad A380 operates a daily service to Sydney; sadly the return flight is at night – Photo: Jacob Pfleger | AirlineReporter
Having recently experienced Etihad’s outstanding first class apartment on the Airbus A380, I had high expectations of their business studio product. While I already had a chance to view the entire Etihad A380 during last year’s Dubai airshow, I was still excited to try out the product on a nice long flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi; the only downside of course being that the entire flight would be during the night.
The Etihad business studio really is flying reimagined and it is a product that exceeds some carriers’ first class products – Photo: Jacob Pfleger | AirlineReporter
Check-in and all other departure formalities were completed with ease. It was nice to see that Etihad hadÂ recently opened a dedicated lounge in Sydney. While it might not be as grand and glamorous as Etihad’s New York JFK lounge, it is certainly a step above the Air New Zealand lounge which was previously used. AlthoughÂ slightly on the small side (particularly when the flight is full), the lounge does offer a few unique and welcome additions not often seen in business class lounges. Â This included the option of a la carte dining, with a rather extensive menu, as well as a well stocked bar and plentiful waitstaff to assist.