Etihad business class review 2017
Etihad Airlines Business Class Review April 2017
Travelling from Heathrow to Sydney via Abu Dhabi
LHR Etihad lounge
We started our journey at Heathrow, specifically the Etihad business lounge in Terminal 4. It’s a small lounge; simple and stylish, but most importantly – not overcrowded.
The lounge has everything you would expect; free Wifi and comfortable seating etc. However, the real plus is the food, which is a much higher standard than most lounges. The buffet is a smorgasbord of unusual, delicious bites and when you order from the à la carte menu via table service you could easily believe you’re in a top London restaurant.
You don’t have to keep an eye on the departure screens while you’re in the lounge, as the Etihad staff come and let you know when your flights begins to board.
First and business class passengers board through a separate tunnel – straight into the upper deck – as opposed to BA where you all board together and then go up the stairs.
There is a real ‘wow’ factor when you first board the aircraft. Walking through the bar area to your seat you can see they’ve gone to town making everything as luxurious as possible and the lighting gives the aircraft the feeling of a 5-star hotel.
The new ‘business studio’ seats are more like the first-class seats of other airlines. Attention to detail, such as the welcoming Billecart Salmon champagne served ice cold and the LUXE amenity kits in one of the many storage bins, are an exceptionally nice touch
My son’s happy because the TV screen is huge and you get much more privacy than the older standard business seats, so it felt like you have your own little den.
The movie and TV selection are excellent as you’d expect, however, my one complaint would be the headphone quality. You get big noise cancelling headphones but some the connectivity is below par and the audio is crackly on both journeys, even after I swap headphones. They really need to sort this out as it’s particularly annoying when you’re in the middle of watching something just moving slightly causes the sound to go off. It shouldn’t be an issue at this level of travel and I’m not the only passenger experiencing this problem.
The on-board food is excellent overall, however I find the steak to be very tough. I often experience this when I order red meat on a flight so my advice is to have the beef in the lounge before (which is amazing), and something lighter while you’re in the air – as everything else on the menu is delicious.
Etihad has got its wine choices spot on. I opted for a rich velvety Bordeaux, and there’s a lovely crisp New Zealand Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc if you prefer white.
When it’s time to sleep you’re provided with some rather unflattering pyjamas (one size fits all J), and the flight attendant places a mattress on your seat if you want one. It isn’t very thick so It doesn’t make much of a difference. The blanket however is lovely, soft and warm, and my son wants to take it home with us.
The bed is fully flat making it was easy to get straight to sleep. My husband is well over six-foot tall and found there to be more than enough room, and so, although these studios aren’t quite as large as the ones Singapore Airlines offer, they are perfectly adequate for a good nights’ sleep and the whole family feels well-rested, even after four separate flights. It makes such a difference to your trip and we feel much better equipped to recover from jet lag after a decent sleep.
Abu Dhabi Business Class Lounge
A long connection on our return journey allows us to make full use of this lounge. The food is regularly replenished and there is so much choice we’re glad we get the opportunity to try both breakfast and lunch here.
There’s a huge, long bar to sit at in the middle of the lounge, serving pretty much anything you want to drink, but most people opt for one of the sofas or armchairs as there are so many and they’re comfy enough to have a snooze in.
I head to the Six Senses spa for a manicure, which is reasonably priced at about GBP £20-25 and they have most of the usual Six Senses treatments too, which are wonderful if you have the time.
There’s free WiFi and power points dotted everywhere. My husband and son always seem to be charging something so make good use of them. Private business booths with computers are really handy, especially if you haven’t brought your own device. They also have the Den if you want some privacy to just relax and watch TV.
I make full use of the shower and it’s a rare treat to get on a connecting flight feeling fresh as a daisy. If I was to compare it with other leading airlines, lounges I’d say it is one of the best.
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