3 continents in 3 week - F adventure

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mmchow

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It all started with the soon-to-expire 20K Skywards miles. Wanting to put these 20K to good use, a few crazy ideas came to mind and the planning of this trip was born.
In a nutshell, this is the flight path and will be flying EY Apartment, EK Suite, CX F and a combination of SQ R and F.
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20K miles wouldn't take me far but with a good balance of Skyward miles, Dubai came to mind. At the same time, Etihad announced AUH - MEL on the whale jet (my obsession with the A380s) and AA is devaluating their awards chart (oh cough). A return trip will allow me to sample 2 different A380 flights and booking EY F before AA devaluation (triple win). But wait.. with AA devaluating, it will cost more to fly CX F too. CX don't fly F to MEL so a combination F/J from Dubai? EK vs EY or CX! Big dilemma.
Knowing CX have multiple flights out of NYC, I could do all three by flying EY to AUH, EK to JFK and CX to HKG. I could also visit my mate living in NYC (win x4).
Finding my way back to MEL from HKG is fairly straight forward but Citibank Rewards made it a little interesting. Citibank announced the devaluation on airline transfer so i transferred all my points over to KrisFlyer account. Found out SQ operates one of their A380 to SIN from HKG and they charge the same amount of miles to MEL from SIN or HKG so it was an easy decision.
 

Major

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I like the way you think...20K points expiring so I better book a round the World trip in premium cabins :cool:
 

mmchow

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I was waiting for the chauffeur to contact me with regards to my pick up time. Read on AFF that they generally call a few days before hand. The night before the flight, contacted Etihad and enquire about the pick up and was told they will contact you within the 24 hours period. Tick tick tick tock T-10hrs and no call so had to call them back. Confirmed instantly for 7pm pick up. Came 6:50pm, a Mercedes is at the front of the door. The journey begin :)
 

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mmchow

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Had a decent run to the airport at this time of the day. Had a good chat with Mr A (forgotten his name) and he was a laugh. Talk about moving, gardening, houses and kids lol. The F queue was short.
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And moments later, golden ticket issued and off we go.
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Melbourne airport is undergoing a major renovations
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and we arrived at the entrance to the Etihad Lounge
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The lovely ladies welcomed us and gave us a quick tour of the lounge. Simple yet elegant. I'll let some of the pictures do the talking.
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I'm starving at this point. Food and drinks first.
 
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mmchow

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The food and drinks. Where to do begin. Let's start with Stephan and Rhys. They were fantastic and their service was impeccable. The food and drinks they recommended were top notch. We started with Espresso Martini and a Long Island. Needed the coffee kick to keep me going after a long day at work.
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This was followed by the food. I find the portion size is good whereby you can order a few dishes and share. That's what we did.
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And another round of coughtails - this time, one that suits the theme; Melbourne and New York
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And to finish off, a desert wine followed by an Arabic coffee. By this time, we were stuffed. The lounge has a good view of the tarmac with two A380 insight. The other two were at the boarding gate
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ellen10

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Signing on. Love a trip report, sounds like a great start.
 

mmchow

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Time for boarding and we were greeted by Aida and were taken to our seat, 3A and 4A.
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Champagne (Bollinger La Grande Annee 2005) was served with a cold towel, dates and a welcome note. Chef on board and CSM came and introduced themselves and provided us with the menu. Arabic coffee was also served. Was given a quick tour of the apartment and the details of the seat. Christian Lacroix amenity kit was located in the vanity cupboard. Aida mentioned about the shower, and she giggled saying you need to try to shower at 40,000ft. Shower time was then booked for 2.5hrs prior landing.
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After the seat belt sign was turned off, we resided to the lounge and had a drink while we chatted away. Had a tour on the J and Y cabin and they were fairly empty for this flight.
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It's time for bed and this is what waiting when we returned. Bedding was a little firm but it didn't bother me.
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Slept for a few hours and was woken up by turbulence. I decided to have some food and ordered the Arabic Mezza appertizer and a glass of Duval Leroy Rose. It came with a palate cleanser of beetroot and goats cheese. I cleaned the plates out.
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mmchow

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11 hours later, we decided to eat. Ordered appetizer of fresh fruit platter and a cauliflower soup followed by main of the authentic gulf lamb briyani and a salad. Desert, it has to be the vanilla and chocolate millefeuille for me.
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Shower time and you are given 5 minutes of water supply and the water turns off ~4 mins into it, as a reminder to rinse off the remaining shampoo/wash. The size of the bathroom/ shower is small in comparison to Emirates and I'll do a comparison on my next flight.
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Not long after, the 14 hour journey has come to an end and this view came on sight.
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Abu Dhabi awaits.
 

mmchow

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Arrival lounge - went and had a shave of course. And our car is awaiting outside.
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Staying at Hyatt Capital Gate Hotel - the architecture of the building is interesting. Lobby at level 18 and our room at level 29 with a view of Al Hudayriat Island and beyond. Use one of my DSU for a confirmed Capital Suite.
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