The FINANCIAL — Etihad Airways has received three highly coveted awards for the World’s Best First Class Airline, World’s Best First Class Onboard Catering, and World’s Best First Class Airline Seat for its First Apartments and Suites, at the annual Skytrax World Airline Awards announced today at the Farnborough Airshow in the United Kingdom.
The prestigious World Airline Awards are widely considered to be a global benchmark of airline excellence. Winners are chosen based on the votes and findings of a 10-month survey of over 18 million air travellers from more than 100 countries, according to Etihad Airways.
Calum Laming, Vice President of Guest Experience at Etihad Airways, said: “In 2014 we redefined the First Class travel experience with the introduction of a new onboard experience on all flights and the revolutionary cabins on our new fleet of Airbus A380 and Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. This demonstrates our continuing commitment to First Class flying and to providing innovative and aspirational travel experiences.
“The airline is tremendously proud that, based on the results of a huge global customer satisfaction survey, we have yet again been presented with these prestigious awards for the world’s finest First Class experience. We have enhanced the experience even further this year through investment in our products, services and cabins and this is a welcome reward for those efforts.”
In recent years, the airline has won numerous awards for its First Class and Business Class products. This also marks the second time the airline has won all three First Class award categories at the World Airline Awards.
The A380 First Class cabin boasts nine First Apartments, unique living spaces which at 39 square feet in area, are 74 per cent larger than the airline’s current award-winning First Class suites, and feature a Poltrona Frau leather armchair and a separate ottoman which converts into a full-length 80.5 inch long bed. A dedicated shower room is available for exclusive use by First Class guests.
While the Boeing 787s are equipped with eight private First Suites in a unique curved aisle setting, an airline industry first, with a 10 per cent increase in personal space. The forward and aft facing suites feature a large Poltrona Frau leather armchair which converts into an 80.5 inch fully-flat bed. The suites feature 24 inch TV monitors, large dining tables for dual dining, personal wardrobes and privacy doors.
Etihad Airways’ remaining three-class configured longhaul fleet of Boeing 777s and Airbus A330/A340 family aircraft is configured with a private First Class suite product, also featuring Poltrona Frau leather seating.
Inspired by the world’s best hotels, restaurants and private members’ clubs, Etihad Airways’ First Class features elegant fine dining throughout with a delicate component that encourages the multi-course experience. The onboard Chefs, many of who hail from fine dining establishments around the world, provide an onboard pantry of fresh ingredients including proteins and vegetables. These talented crew members can discuss made to order requests with the guest and can prepare a bespoke dining experience tailored to their preference. A Chef is available in First Class on every Etihad Airways flight.
Guests can choose from an extensive haute cuisine à la carte menu, or can select fine steaks and sides from the Lounge and Grill menu, complemented by a choice of side dishes and sauces, and can also choose delicious meals and snacks throughout the flight from the All Day Dine menu.
This Summer, the airline also opened its flagship First Class Lounge & Spa at Abu Dhabi International Airport. The lounge includes an à la carte restaurant, showcase bar, fitness room, cigar lounge, Six Senses Spa, Style & Shave barbers, nail bar, TV room, secluded relaxation room, prayer room and children’s play room which ensure that all guests receive a personalised experience.