Singapore (SQ) new first and business class, plus a medley of 12 F & C SQ flights

Discussion in 'Trip Reports and Trip Photos' started by Kiwi Flyer, Jan 12, 2007.

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  1. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Report coming soon.

    My usual year end round the world travel plans in disarray due to events unfolding after I had made some bookings, I hastily attempted to salvage some decent travel. I think I managed to succeed - with 12 flights on Singapore Airlines, all in business and first class, on several aircraft types and even managing to route such as to experience the new (well a couple of weeks old by the time I flew) first and business class on their new 77W (777-300ER) aircraft.

     

  2. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    INTRODUCTION

    Due to some unexpected events and changes to my schedule I found myself cancelling a booked round the world and searching for ideas for alternative travel. Given the relatively short notice and being at a very busy time of year for airlines, I was relieved to be able to cobble something together that certainly wasn’t the most efficient set of flights but fitted my constraints. I would get to try the new business class on Singapore Airlines’ new 77W aircraft just a couple of weeks after the inaugural flights.

    I’d been trying for an upgrade for a few weeks watching the nil availability even in full fare on the flights thinking an upgrade was impossible. Yet I managed to clear an upgrade at the last minute (day before departure) to get to try first class on the 77W as well. Yay.

    So lots of SQ flights. Both business class and first class. Several different aircraft types. The newest first and business class products to look forward to. Yes I was anticipating this trip with glee. The observant amongst the readers of this little report will have noted I am referring to business class and not Raffles class. Yes it’s true that after using the Raffles name to denote business class for a long time, SQ has decided to conform to industry standard and call it business class – the end of an era. Still I can’t be too depressed as it is still one of the best business class products around, and with the latest improvements I am sure to enjoy the flights.
     
  3. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    AUCKLAND to SINGAPORE in Business Class on SQ 747

    After a hectic morning with last minute meetings and seeing to all the miscellany of stuff that had to be dealt with before I went, I was glad to settle back on the way to the airport and start relaxing. Traffic was crazy and instead of the usual 30-40 minutes the trip took about 80 minutes. Fortunately I’d anticipated this and left earlier than normal. Besides I wanted to chill out in the lounge pre-flight and a late check in wouldn’t give me this option.

    Arriving at the airport I head straight for the F class check in line, which I’m entitled to use thanks to my status. This is the only line in the whole check in area, for all airlines, without a big queue (or indeed any queue at all), on this very busy travel day. I’m processed for check in quickly despite the agent being new. It wasn’t until later that I noticed that she’d ignored the proferred FFP # and the boarding pass showed my Kris Flyer status only rather than PPS status plus the status of the FFP I am crediting miles too. Regular SQ flyers know this spells trouble. I guess I was distracted chatting to the SQ rep. :rolleyes:

    As usual I pay the departure tax to bypass the big queues at the bank (and avoid the machines using ATM cards to pay for departure tax). The check in agent asks if I know where to go for pre-cleared immigration and to the lounge, then pauses to think and comments “Oh I guess you already know that!”. I answer “yes, thank you” and smile.

    Amazingly there is no queue at the immigration desk for premium passengers on SQ, CX, EK etc. So I am soon threading my way through the mass of people downstairs and then up to the pre-cleared immigration line. Here there is a moderate wait, but not as bad as the wait in the main queues. Then on the familiar trek through the labyrinth to the lounge, right, ahead, right again, left, right, up the escalator, and hard left. I’m welcomed back to the lounge by the bouncer.

    As the lounge is fairly full I head for a shower to freshen up while there still are showers free. Then it is time for a snack – mmmm Christmas goodies as well as the usual fine lounge fare, and a drink or three.

    The time to boarding passes quickly and I then notice the incorrect FFP on my boarding pass. So I head out to the gate a couple of minutes early (for NZ are unable to adjust it in the lounge) and get the FFP # changed at the gate. Either it didn’t stick or SQ had already processed the mileage credits for the flight as miles did end up on Kris Flyer. Grrrr. This annoyed me even more than it used to as the upcoming February massive devaluation makes them worth even less than the larger number of miles I would have earned on another FFP.

    But I digress. Boarding has now commenced so I head on up to my favourite SQ business seat – the upper deck exit row window. I am the first one to board upstairs, which is most unusual for me as I would normally wait in the lounge until boarding is almost complete. I grab a Straits Times and a couple of magazines and settle in with pre-departure drink while boarding progresses.

    We push back on time, have a short taxi and take off over the city, turn and head across the Tasman Sea. Flight time is announced as being longer than normal due to strong head winds, and indeed our flight path is more northerly than average. So no views of Sydney or Uluru (Ayers Rock).

    The flight passes quickly in a blur of eating, drinking, and watching the landscape of northern Australia and Indonesia pass by – at first under clear skies but from near Darwin onwards the view is glimpsed in between towering thunderstorms. We land to a wet Singapore somewhat late.

    Only one runway is in operation and so we have a long taxi more than half way around the terminal complex to get to our gate – yup F60, the farthest gate from the lounge.
     
  4. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Auckland to Singapore SQ286 Business Class Menu December 2006


    LIGHT MEAL menu

    A Savoury Note

    Marinated prawns with seasonal salad and orange segments, dill yoghurt dressing

    The Main Event

    Grilled lamp chops with madeira sauce, seasonal vegetables and roasted fondante potatoes

    Grilled salmon with saffron tomato sauce, sautéed vegetables and capellini pasta with mushrooms

    Stir fried chicken with pine nuts, seasonal vegetables and fried rice

    A Sweet Note

    Ice cream

    A Connoisseur’s Choice

    Gourmet coffee
    Selection of tea


    SNACK menu

    Fancy a snack? Take your pick from our range of delectable snacks and make your selection known to our cabin crew.

    Noodles

    Fish ball broth with kway teow or bee hoon noodles

    Vegetarian and non-vegetarian instant noodles

    Sandwiches

    Focaccia sandwich with smoked chicken

    Focaccia sandwich with guamole and roasted vegetables

    Snacks

    Roasted mixed nuts

    Kjeldsens cookies

    Fruit bar

    Rivermill manuka honey and kiwifruit biscuits

    Cadbury chocolate bar

    Potato chips

    Bananas


    DINNER menu

    To Nibble On

    Satay
    With onion, cucumber and spicy peanut sauce

    A Savoury Note

    Mesclun with spicy scallop and mango salad
    Coriander vinaigrette
    Honey mustard dressing


    The Main Event

    Panfried beef fillet with shredded oxtail sauce, herb-garlic butter, asparagus and fondant potatoes

    Ikan sambal
    Fish fillet in sambal sauce with vegetables and steamed rice

    Stir fried pork with sweet bean paste, Oriental vegetables and fried noodles

    Grilled chicken breast and roasted chicken thigh with mushroom served with black peppercorn sauce, roasted vegetables with balsamic

    A Sweet Note

    Kiwifruit cheesecake

    The Cheese Board

    Gourmet cheese with garnishes

    Fruit

    A selection of fresh fruit

    A Connoisseur’s Choice

    Gourmet coffee
    Selection of tea
    and pralines


    BEVERAGES menu

    special cocktail

    Orange Cooler

    cocktails

    Singapore Sling
    Silver Kris Sling
    Gin Fizz
    Cloud Nine
    Screwdriver
    Bloody Mary
    Daiquiri
    Red or White Wine Cooler

    aperitifs

    Campari
    Dry Vermouth

    non-alcoholic cocktails

    Citrus Royale
    Tropical Sparkle
    Golden Spice
    Fruit Spritzer
    Sunrise Surprise

    spirits

    Cognac XO Otard
    Chivas Regal Scotch Whisky
    Johnnie Walker Black Label
    Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey
    Gordon’s Dry Gin
    Smirnoff Red Label Vodka
    Bacardi Carta Blanca

    liqueurs

    Cointreau
    Tia Maria
    Baileys Original Irish Cream

    beer

    International Selection

    stout

    Guinness Stout

    champagne

    Piper Heidsieck 1999

    white wines

    2005 Mount Nelson Sauvignon Blanc
    2004 Hattenheimer Schutzenhaus Riesling Kabinett Balthasar Ress.

    red wines

    Chateau Cissac 1998 Cru Bourgeois Haut Medoc
    Chateau Beau-site 2000 Saint-Estephe
    Churton Marlborough 2003 Pinot Noir

    port

    Dow 2001 Late Bottled Vintage Port

    tea selection

    Pure Ceylon Tea
    Earl Grey
    Darjeeling
    Camomile
    Decaffeinated Tea
    Japanese Green Tea
    Chinese Jasmine Tea
    Chinese Oolong Tea

    gourmet coffees

    Brazil Santos Bourbon
    Colombian Supremo
    Kenyan AA Kilimanjaro

    specialty coffees

    Brewed Coffee
    Café Royal
    Espresso
    Cappuccino
    Decaffeinated Coffee
    Mocha

    other beverages

    Chocolate
    Milo

    mineral water

    Sparkling mineral water
    Non-sparkling mineral water

    fruit juices

    Apple, Orange, Pineapple and Tomato

    soft drinks

    Bitter Lemon, Coke, Coke Light, Ginger Ale and Seven-Up

    iced drinks

    Iced Tea
    Iced Coffee
    Iced Mocha
    Iced Chocolate
    Iced Milo

    milk

    Full Cream or Low Fat
     
  5. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    SINGAPORE

    I head to the first class lounge for some Dom Perignon, and spend several hours catching up on emails and doing some work. FT was down much of the time so I got a reasonable amount done By the time I realised the time it was 4am and not worth going to sleep for a short while so I kept going, figuring that I would have plenty of time to catch up on sleep later. There were quite a few others staying up all night in the lounge, as well as the usual dozen or two sleeping in the slumberette rooms and sprawled across the comfy chairs.

    When the lounge check in desk opened the next morning I headed over to get some more boarding passes. It took a lot longer, and more tension on my part, than normal to get these. First the multiple attempts to upgrade weren’t properly linked to my booking (upgrades get a separate record locator) so it took a while for the agent to confirm that I actually had a confirmed upgrade. Oh oh. Would I not get to try the new first class after all? What about the miles that had been deducted – could I get them back?

    There seems to be a shortcoming in process – I had received no email or confirmation number for the upgrade, and I couldn’t even show him the deduction of miles from my account without the agent abandoning his post for I couldn’t use his computer to look up my account and the public computers do not have printer access (since earlier in 2006). Eventually I got that sorted only to find the next problem.

    Whoever had processed the upgrade had confirmed it for a different flight to the one I’d booked – on the same route but different but similar flight number (SQ631 instead of SQ63). A simple typo but highlights why the recent renumbering of SQ flight numbers supposedly to reduce errors is far from perfect. In some circumstances being on a different flight wouldn’t have mattered but I had other flights to make. Could I get changed back on what is a very busy travel day? Will I have to reschedule my other flights to goodness knows when I will next have the opportunity to take them?

    Fortunately there was still space in first on my original flight so I got switched back. Further I had the choice of a seat by itself, meaning there had been an aircraft substitution from 777-300 with regional product to 747-400 with longhaul product – ie Skysuites. Yay.
     
  6. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    SINGAPORE to BANGKOK in Business Class on SQ 747

    Boarding passes sorted out I had just enough time for a shower before heading out to the gate, which as is often the case in my experience, was one of the furthest from the lounge.

    By the time I got to the gate boarding had already commenced – nicely timed having just missed gate close off. Having been through Changi airport so much in the past few years I feel I have the time to gates down pat and can just about walk there in my sleep. Just as well as I am feeling rather sleepy this morning.

    The flight was full, so no wonder there had been an aircraft substitution to the larger 747. I was pretty tired but couldn’t sleep so watched a movie in the short 2 ½ hour flight. We arrived at the relatively new Suvarnabhumi airport slightly late and then had a slow taxi due to aircraft congestion. We got the same gate D2 as I had on previous SQ flights at Suvarnabhumi.
     
  7. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Singapore to Bangkok SQ60 Business Class Menu December 2006


    BRUNCH menu

    To Start With

    A choice of apple, tomato, freshly squeezed orange juice or soya bean milk

    Fresh fruit

    The Main Event

    Ba mee rad nar
    Thai style braised egg noodles with scallops, prawns, fish and leafy greens

    Selection of dim sum
    Chinese glutinous rice with pork, fried radish cake and Shanghainese vegetable dumplings

    Capsicum omelette served with chicken sausage, roasted tomato, sautéed mushroom and hash brown potato

    A Sweet Note

    Chocolate truffle cake

    From the Bakery

    Choice of bread rolls
    Butter – Fruit preserve

    A Connoisseur’s Choice

    Gourmet coffee
    Selection of tea


    BEVERAGES menu

    special cocktail

    Orange Cooler

    cocktails

    Singapore Sling
    Silver Kris Sling
    Gin Fizz
    Cloud Nine
    Screwdriver
    Bloody Mary
    Daiquiri
    Red or White Wine Cooler

    aperitifs

    Campari
    Dry Vermouth

    non-alcoholic cocktails

    Citrus Royale
    Tropical Sparkle
    Golden Spice
    Fruit Spritzer
    Sunrise Surprise

    spirits

    Cognac XO Otard
    Chivas Regal Scotch Whisky
    Johnnie Walker Black Label
    Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey
    Gordon’s Dry Gin
    Smirnoff Red Label Vodka
    Bacardi Carta Blanca

    liqueurs

    Cointreau
    Tia Maria
    Baileys Original Irish Cream

    beer

    International Selection

    stout

    Guinness Stout

    champagne

    Piper Heidsieck 1999

    white wines

    2004 Hattenheimer Schutzenhaus Riesling Kabinett Balthasar Ress.
    Montagny 1er Cru 2004

    red wines

    Chateau Cissac 1998 Cru Bourgeois Haut Medoc
    Chateau Beau-site 2000 Saint-Estephe
    Serrata Belgvardo 2003 Igt Maremma Toscana

    port

    Dow 2001 Late Bottled Vintage Port

    tea selection

    Pure Ceylon Tea
    Earl Grey
    Darjeeling
    Camomile
    Decaffeinated Tea
    Japanese Green Tea
    Chinese Jasmine Tea
    Chinese Oolong Tea

    gourmet coffees

    Brazil Santos Bourbon
    Colombian Supremo
    Kenyan AA Kilimanjaro

    specialty coffees

    Brewed Coffee
    Café Royal
    Espresso
    Cappuccino
    Decaffeinated Coffee
    Mocha

    other beverages

    Chocolate
    Milo

    mineral water

    Sparkling mineral water
    Non-sparkling mineral water

    fruit juices

    Apple, Orange, Pineapple and Tomato

    soft drinks

    Bitter Lemon, Coke, Coke Light, Ginger Ale and Seven-Up

    iced drinks

    Iced Tea
    Iced Coffee
    Iced Mocha
    Iced Chocolate
    Iced Milo

    milk

    Full Cream or Low Fat
     
  8. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    BANGKOK to SINGAPORE in First Class on SQ 747

    Having already gotten my return boarding pass I knew I didn’t need to race to the transfer desk in the short turnaround. Still, with the late arrival and large distances in this airport terminal, I didn’t have a lot of time to dally and so walked fast past the transfer desk and up to departures level.

    Unlike previous visits this time I get to try out the Thai first class lounge, the entrance of which is immediately to the right of the business class lounge. The lounge is similar to the business class lounge but almost deserted (just me plus one other passenger) at this time of day in contrast to the busy business class lounge. I only have a few minutes to spare so a very quick look around before heading to the gate. There doesn’t seem to be any computers (unless I overlooked a corner) and certainly no shower – thus offering less amenities than the Thai first class lounge at old Don Muang airport. However there is a reasonable selection of nibbles and drink, as well as several newspapers and magazines and plenty of comfortable chairs. Being more spacious there is less of a fishtank feel than the similar styled business lounge.

    Time to go. There is no queue at security in between the lounge and gate. At the gate they ask about departure tax and when I say I’m in transit look up the computer to confirm (wonder what they’d do if the inbound flight was not on SQ and on a separate ticket?). Boarding is then called for first class, business class, PPS Solitaire, PPS, Kris Flyer Gold Elite, *Gold and as one every passenger (a nearly full 747 load) at the gate goes to the airbridge door :rolleyes: They can’t all be premium passengers. Fortunately the agent does a great job keeping an clear gap for the real premium passengers to board while holding everyone else back.

    On boarding I get the usual greeting and shown to my seat. At first I’m told I’m the only one in first today (lucky me!) but then someone else is shown to another first seat (an op up?). I have a couple of drinks while boarding proceeds. During this time one toddler boarding with his parents through door 1L made a beeline for the nearest skysuite – clearly has his priorities right :D and a possible future FTer? I was offered yet more Krug pre-departure but I turned it down for I have lots of flying ahead of me and plenty of time for drinking.

    When the lunch orders are taken I am told with much apologies that there was a mix up in catering and only one first main was loaded. I guess the other passenger either had paid for first class or had a higher status (where passengers have the same PPS or PPS Solitaire or Lifetime PPS Solitaire status, SQ ranks according to the number of years qualified). After considering my options I decided to have the starter (which they had enough of) and skip the rest of the meal (except for drink). For my troubles I was offered a voucher for Kris Shop duty free. They didn’t have any service failure vouchers onboard so they called ahead to Singapore.

    We push back late and I am glad I hadn’t chosen for my next segment the flight with a 45 minute connection (right on the minimum for SQ at Singapore) and instead booked a later one. I while away the flight drinking, flicking idly through the Kris Shop magazine wondering what to buy (for I also have PPS requalification vouchers to spend) and looking out the window. On this route I often spend a lot of time looking out the window at the seascape (and landscape when we are near or over land) as well as scanning the skies for there are often other aircraft on a similar flight track to be seen. Today I only see a few aircraft and none close enough to clearly identify. However I have had flights from Bangkok to Singapore where I can see several other aircraft at once flying almost in formation for long periods.

    It seems Singapore is still using only one runway so we circle around a bit over Malaysia and again in the strait to the south of Singapore before finally getting our turn. Once more it is a long taxi, this time around 3/4 of the terminal complex to a gate at the end of E pier. By now we are quite late and I would have struggled to make the earlier onward flight before the gate closes 10 minutes prior to departure, which as luck would have it was leaving from F60 gate a long walk away. Instead I head to the lounge to freshen up and relax before my flight.
     
  9. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Bangkok to Singapore SQ63 First Class Menu December 2006


    LUNCH menu

    Appetisers

    Hot smoked salmon and gravalax with salad
    Dill dressing

    Main Courses

    Sauteed chicken in red wine sauce with confit of lemon slices, fricassee of peas – mushrooms and potatoes

    Thai style fresh water prawns “chu chee” curry served with seasonal vegetables and steamed rice

    Grilled beef fillet in port wine sauce with vegetables and roasted potatoes

    Fresh Fruit

    A selection of fresh fruit

    From the Bakery

    Oven fresh rolls
    with a choice of extra virgin olive oil or butter
    Garlic bread

    Hot Beverages

    Freshly brewed coffee
    Espresso or cappuccino
    Selection of tea


    BEVERAGES menu

    special cocktail

    Orange Cooler

    cocktails

    Singapore Sling
    Silver Kris Sling
    Gin Fizz
    Cloud Nine
    Screwdriver
    Bloody Mary
    Daiquiri
    Red or White Wine Cooler

    aperitifs

    Campari
    Dry Vermouth

    non-alcoholic cocktails

    Citrus Royale
    Tropical Sparkle
    Golden Spice
    Fruit Spritzer
    Sunrise Surprise

    spirits

    Bombay Sapphire Gin
    Cognac XO - Hennessy
    Chivas Royal Salute Scotch Whisky
    Johnnie Walker Black Label
    Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey
    Macallan 12 years old Single Malt Whisky
    Smirnoff Red Label Vodka
    Bacardi Carta Blanca

    liqueurs

    Cointreau
    Tia Maria
    Baileys Original Irish Cream

    beer

    International Selection

    champagne

    Dom Perignon 1999

    white wines

    Chablis Premier Cru Les Beauroys 2000 Domaine Laroche
    Chablis Premier Cru Fourchaumes “Old Vines” 2003 Domaine Laroche
    Dr Loosen 2004 Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Spatlese

    red wines

    Chateau Cos D’Estournel 1999 Saint-Estephe
    Chateau Leoville-Poyferre 1999 Saint-Julien
    Morey-Saint-Denis 1999 Joseph Drouhin
    Beaune Les Avaux Premier Cru 2002

    port

    Dow’s 20 year old Tawny Port
    Grahams 20 year old Tawny Port

    tea selection

    Pure Ceylon Tea
    Earl Grey
    Darjeeling
    Camomile
    Decaffeinated Tea
    Fruit Tea
    Japanese Green Tea
    Chinese Jasmine Tea
    Chinese Oolong Tea
    Mint Tea

    gourmet coffees

    Brazil Santos Bourbon
    Colombian Supremo
    Jamaican Blue Mountain
    Kenyan AA Kilimanjaro

    specialty coffees

    Brewed Coffee
    Café Royal
    Espresso
    Cappuccino
    Café Latte
    Café au Lait
    Decaffeinated Coffee
    Mocha

    other beverages

    Chocolate
    Ovaltine
    Milo

    mineral water

    Sparkling mineral water
    Non-sparkling mineral water

    fruit juices

    Apple, Orange, Pineapple and Tomato

    soft drinks

    Bitter Lemon, Coke, Coke Light, Ginger Ale and Seven-Up

    iced drinks

    Iced Fruit Tea
    Iced Tea
    Iced Mint Tea
    Iced Coffee
    Iced Mocha
    Iced Chocolate
    Iced Ovaltine
    Iced Milo

    milk

    Full Cream or Low Fat
     
  10. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    SINGAPORE to JAKARTA in Business Class on SQ A345

    On entering the first class lounge I first get some more boarding passes for following flights.

    While I wait I freshen up, unsure of how much time I will have later. This is something I am in habit to do when travelling long itineraries – take a shower (almost) whenever I get the chance. For even if I think there will be plenty of opportunity later I have learnt from experience that the best laid plans can go awry due to weather or mechanical issues, missed connections, strikes, etc. Plus it just feels better travelling fresh, especially if tired as I was.

    I had enough time left over to check emails and FT, while drinking some more Dom Perignon :) I must have been more tired than I thought as I realised with a start that it was only 20 minutes until departure – I better go now. On the way out I check the monitor for the departure gate. Dang F54, quite some distance away. Still at least it isn’t F60 this time. So I power walk to the gate, making it just before it closes. Boarding is almost complete by this time so straight down the airbridge, onboard and to my seat.

    Online I’d earlier picked the bulkhead row in the forward of the 2 business class cabins for that is the smaller one. It seems I made a lucky choice as there were some noisy babies in the second cabin – the front cabin was much quieter. The flight was reasonably full but I was lucky enough to have an empty seat beside me so plenty of room to stretch out.

    For those unfamiliar with SQ’s A345, these are used on the ultralonghaul non-stop flights between Singapore and Los Angeles and Singapore and Newark (see for example my trip report on the double inaugural SIN-EWR-SIN). Due to issues with weight and performance, SQ fitted them out with reduced seating meaning an extra several inches of pitch, in both business and economy classes. The Wisemen 3000 avod IFE is also loaded with additional movies from the non-A345 version. In between the ultralonghaul flights the A345s do some flights between Singapore and Jakarta. As long as you aren’t wanting to fly in first class (for SQ’s A345 has no first class) these flights are a good choice on this route IMHO.

    But I digress. Shortly after I had taken my seat the doors were shut and we pushed back. During my transit the active runway had switched sides of the airport (but still in the same direction) which meant a short taxi.

    I catch up on some sleep during the short flight, awaking near Jakarta as we encounter some turbulence. We turn past the city to land and descend past the edge of the runway, until ...

    ... with a roar of the engines on full power we suddenly climb sharply. An aborted landing in the final stages. This is an experience which lately I have had every year (at least once). I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised given the high number of flights I take it is bound to happen from time to time. However it is still enough out of the ordinary to jolt me awake and wonder what went wrong. Most passengers and crew are talking amongst themselves about it too. A couple of minutes later the captain comes on the PA to advise a sudden wind shear occurred (well, he didn’t use that wording but instead referred to a sudden strong tailwind). While there were thunderstorms in the general area the nearest looked to be about 50 kilometres away and so I couldn’t help think that there may have been another reason. We circled a big loop before coming back in to land on the same runway in the same direction some 20 minutes later.

    We taxi in the long way around, past the rotting aircraft, to our position at the gate closest to the main part of the terminal.
     
  11. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Singapore to Jakarta SQ162 Business Class Menu December 2006

    Main Courses

    Nasi Lemak
    Malay style coconut rice with spicy prawn sambal, grilled fish cake and egg omelette

    Stir fried chicken with dried chilli and spring onion served with vegetable omelette and fried rice

    Pan roasted tournedos of beef in meaux mustard sauce with roasted vegetables and potatoes

    Dessert

    Lemongrass infused panna cotta with berries and berry jus

    Hot Beverages

    Coffee – Tea
     
  12. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    JAKARTA to SINGAPORE in Business Class on SQ A345

    On arrival at Jakarta I skip the visa on arrival, which is unnecessary for a turnaround, and take the well practiced route up the escalator to the departures level. Sometimes the security station by the escalator is manned, but not today. Then a few steps to the lounge where I’m welcomed back :)

    With our late arrival the lounge is full with passengers for 2 full flights to Singapore. So I decide to leave the lounge almost immediately and just wander around for a while, a good chance to stretch my legs and also look for souvenirs and compare duty free prices. I gradually make my way to the gate and join the queue for security. Once through my passport is checked and I head to the gate desk to pay the 100,000 rupiah departure tax (payable in cash in Indonesian, Singapore or other major currency albeit at a poor exchange rate if not paid in Indonesian currency and no change given).

    By the time I’ve done this boarding is well underway and I make my way to my seat, again in the front cabin. This time the flight is full so no empty seat. The turnaround lost a bit more time and so we left late in the brilliant colours of the brief tropical sunset.

    Still tired and wanting to be awake to enjoy the upcoming 77W flight in first class, I decided to sleep as much of the flight as possible. In fact I slept the whole flight only waking up on landing at night in Singapore.

    I am grateful that for the second time today I had a reasonable length connection for the next flight. This is unusual (for me) in that normally I’d have short 45-60 minute connections, which today would have been troublesome due to the two late arriving flights.
     
  13. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Jakarta to Singapore SQ163 Business Class Menu December 2006

    Main Courses

    Braised salmon in hot bean sauce with seasonal vegetables and egg noodles

    Beef rending
    Indonesian style braised beef with vegetables in coconut gravy and steamed rice

    Spaghetti pasta with stewed prawns, olives and capsicum in tomato sauce

    Dessert

    Gratin of fruits

    Hot Beverages

    Coffee – Tea
     
  14. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    SINGAPORE to PARIS in First Class on SQ 77W

    Once again it is back to the lounge, get another boarding pass (for some reason they were unable to issue the boarding pass for the next flight), have a shower (yes again) and yes some more glasses of Dom Perignon. While here I met up briefly with chrisksc.

    To be continued ... :p
     
  15. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    SINGAPORE AIRLINES NEW FIRST CLASS 77W

    The time until departure seemed to drag by and eventually I decided to head out to the gate earlier than normal. Boarding commenced when I got through security so straight up the airbridge and I was shown to my seat.

    Despite the zeroed availability for several previous weeks first class was not full. With only 8 seats anyway and high walls on each suite the cabin had a very quiet and exclusive feel.

    There are no overhead bins in first, so have to decide between putting bags in a closet or leaving them on the floor inside the suite under the front shelf, which limits leg space if you’re average height or taller. Thanks to the one carry-on rule I only had one bag so still had a small amount of space for my feet however if I had two bags there would be no space. I should point out that in bed mode your feet go on the front shelf – it is in seat mode that footroom is constrained by any carry-ons not stored in the closet. Hmmm not a good first impression.

    While boarding proceeds I am given the usual SQ first class amenities – pajamas, amenity kit, slippers (same as normally given out only on the Japan flights except in the new SQ brown colour rather than the old blue), eyeshades, menu, newspapers, magazines. The menu has changed slightly and incorporates the beverage list in the same menu instead of being separate, and in a different folder from the usual first leather menu folder. The amenity kit is a new one for me with Bulgari replaced by Salvatore Ferragamo contents. The kit itself is a slim rectangular one with a small carry strap which folds into a pocket.

    I check out the seat – there are more small cubby holes than the skysuite. The table is larger and has a nice height adjustment which means you can still use the table in bed mode. The drawer with pen and paper is no more. The side lights are similar to the ones on the side of Air New Zealand’s suite, but have less directional control. Given the width of the seat and the darkness of the cabin (for a night flight), if you want to read by side light (as opposed to the overhead lights) you do need to be sitting right under it – the light isn’t strong enough to reach the middle of the seat and be able to read by it.

    But the most important bits are the seat/bed and monitor/IFE. The width of the seat is huge and can very comfortably seat 2. Indeed there are headphone sockets and lights on both sides of the suite. While the seat is comfortable enough and soft, I found the covering to be too slippery. I ended up using 3 large pillows to try to wedge myself into one corner of the seat to stop myself from slipping. To me the sense of proportion feels odd – the suite is very roomy but is not overly long.

    The monitor is huge and in wide screen format. However as of yet the movies and shows have normal aspect ratios meaning they look funny :td: I hope SQ gets proper wide screen format shows, or at least reformats with the vertical bars of normal aspect ratio on wide screen monitor. The colour is crisp on the flat screen and I don’t notice much in the way of reflections.

    My seat’s IFE crashed a few times (the other seats in first seemed to be okay), including just after the safety video was shown, and the onboard IFE engineer had to reset the IFE for my seat a few times before it got going properly. However it wasn’t a complete success for I lost access to at least the flight path.

    The handset is a neat design with a mini screen showing menu instructions and also the remaining flight time (or was it elapsed flight time? Sorry I forget). The avod was reasonably responsive – a bit slower than Wisement 3000 but much quicker than some other systems are (eg Air New Zealand’s). An improvement from other SQ aircraft is that pressing fast forward twice gets 3x speed. However I prefer the system on Air New Zealand and Cathay Pacific whereby 2nd press goes to 4 times, 3rd to 8 times – for those are much easier to jump forward a long way through the film/show. A retrograde step, in my view, is the removal of the elapsed program time when pause, fast forward or rewind is used. With the Wisemen 3000 avod and even the Wisemen 2000 non-avod you could easily tell how long is remaining in the show (from published time minus elapsed), or how far to skip through to where you were from the last flight or before a system reboot. With this new system you can only go by what is showing on the screen and guesswork. The program menu system has been reorganised but is intuitive and easy to follow.

    The bathrooms are huge and with 2 bathrooms for the small cabin there is almost never any waiting. To give some idea of the size, the throne faces forward and still has plenty of room in front of the deep basin. As usual SQ keeps toothbrushes and combs in the lavatory, plus aftershave and hand cream. A minor design flaw has the tissues below the cloth towels in compartments built into the wall between basin and door – this means water drips onto the tissue that sticks out and wastes tissues. It would be simple to fix, just swap them around so that tissues are on top then the cloth towels.

    SQ has also changed the crockery, cutlery and glasses. The glasses for example have modern styling, but I’m not convinced I like it – for example with non-traditional shapes the champagne and wine tasted different.

    With the eating, drinking (unlike CGK’s flights we didn’t run out of Krug!), checking out the IFE, seat and cabin I found the time passing quite quickly and before I knew it we were having breakfast just before descent into Paris Charles De Gaulle. It was still dark, well before dawn, but there were no lights below due to the blanket of fog. The same fog that so disrupted flights in UK in particular.

    Metres above the ground we broke clear of the cloud and touched down in the murk. We had a long disorienting taxi – eerie lights shining vaguely all around and lots of corners to turn on the way into the gate.
     
  16. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Singapore to Paris SQ334 First Class Menu December 2006


    SUPPER menu

    Appetisers

    Chilled malossol caviar
    With melba toast and condiments

    Assorted Asian appetiser
    Tuna roll wrapped with cucumber and roasted garlic, baby bamboo shoot with preserved vegetables and marinated prawns, drunken chicken gelo with wolfberries

    Soups

    Double boiled fish head with “Tien Ma” herb and green apple

    Cream of asparagus garnished with parmesan crisp

    Entrées

    Wok-fried beef in black pepper sauce with garlic, French beans with dried shrimps in XO sauce, fish noodles with bean sprouts

    Pan-fried Chilean bass served with white wine sauce, stewed vegetables and buttered gourmet potatoes

    Char siew mee
    Egg noodles in rich pork broth with sliced honey glazed pork, chye sim and mushrooms
    (Also available for breakfast)


    Chicken comfit served with sautéed shimeji mushrooms, papardella pasta and French black truffles

    Cheese

    Selection of red cheddar, fruit cream cheese, Saint Albray and Le Vieux Pane cheeses served with garnishes

    Fruits

    Fresh fruits in season


    LIGHT BITES menu

    Should you fancy a little snack or something more substantial, simply make your selection known to our crew, during the flight.

    Noodles

    Fish ball noodle soup
    Noodles in broth served with fish balls and fish cake

    Prawn noodle soup
    Noodles in broth served with prawns and fish cake

    Sandwiches

    Smoked tuna and wasabi mayonnaise sandwich

    Oriental-style vegetable sandwich

    Snacks

    Cashew, almond or macadamia nuts

    Mesquite barbecue flavoured potato chips

    Snickers chocolate bar

    Ritz bits

    Assorted walkers biscuit

    Fresh fruit

    Assorted cheeses with garnishes


    BREAKFAST menu

    Juices

    A choice of apple, tomato or freshly squeezed orange

    Fruit

    Fresh fruit plate

    Light Starters

    Choice of cereals or yoghurt
    Cornflakes with milk or Birchermuesli
    Plain or fruit yoghurt


    Wholesome Beginnings

    Char siew mee
    Egg noodles in rich pork broth with sliced honey glazed pork, chye sim and mushrooms

    Baked vegetable quiche with eggs and grated cheese, broiled sausages and sliced ham and tomato Polonaise

    Fresh eggs prepared on-board (baked, soft boiled or scrambled)
    With your choice of bacon, chicken sausage, vine-ripened tomato and mushrooms


    Continental breakfast
    Assorted bread with preserves

    From the Bakery

    Breakfast pastries and bakery with preserves – honey
    Croissant, Danish, muffin and white or multigrain toast


    BEVERAGES menu

    Champagnes

    Dom Perignon 1999
    Krug Grande Cuvee

    White Wines

    Dr Loosen 2004 Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Spatlese
    Chablis Premier Cru Fourchaumes “Old Vines” 2003 Domaine Laroche

    Red Wines

    Chateau Cos D’Estournel 1999 Saint-Estephe
    Chateau Pichon-Longueville Comtess De Lalande 1998 Pauillac
    Beaune Les Avaux Premier Cru 2002

    Port

    Grahams 20 year old Tawny Port

    Mix of the Month

    Orange Cooler

    Cocktails

    Singapore Sling
    Silver Kris Sling
    Gin Fizz
    Cloud Nine
    Screwdriver
    Bloody Mary
    Daiquiri
    Red or White Wine Cooler

    Aperitifs

    Campari
    Dry Vermouth

    Non-alcoholic Cocktails

    Citrus Royale
    Tropical Sparkle
    Golden Spice
    Fruit Spritzer
    Sunrise Surprise

    Spirits

    Macallan 12 years old Single Malt Whisky
    Cognac XO - Hennessy
    Chivas Royal Salute Scotch Whisky
    Johnnie Walker Black Label
    Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey
    Bombay Sapphire Gin
    Smirnoff Red Label Vodka
    Bacardi Carta Blanca

    Liqueurs

    Cointreau
    Tia Maria
    Baileys Original Irish Cream

    Beer

    Tiger
    Heineken

    Gourmet Coffees

    Brazil Santos Bourbon
    Colombian Supremo
    Jamaican Blue Mountain
    Kenyan AA Kilimanjaro

    Tea Selection

    Pure Ceylon Tea
    Earl Grey
    Darjeeling
    Camomile
    Decaffeinated Tea
    Fruit Tea
    Japanese Green Tea
    Chinese Jasmine Tea
    Chinese Oolong Tea
    Mint Tea

    Specialty Coffees

    Brewed Coffee
    Café Royal
    Espresso
    Cappuccino
    Café Latte
    Café au Lait
    Decaffeinated Coffee
    Mocha

    Other Beverages

    Chocolate
    Ovaltine
    Milo

    Mineral Water

    Sparkling
    Still

    Fruit Juices

    Apple
    Orange
    Pineapple
    Tomato

    Soft Drinks

    Bitter Lemon
    Coke
    Coke Light
    Ginger Ale
    Seven-Up

    Milk

    Full Cream
    Low Fat
     
  17. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    PARIS

    I hadn’t organised anything for my 5 hour transit, leaving it to a decision on arrival whether I would stay at the airport or head into the city. As I was tired and the weather fairly horrid – cold, damp and gloomy – I decided to stay at the airport and not have a rushed visit outside.

    Instead of proceeding through immigration I turned and explored the corridors airside in the terminal. After making my way through a labyrinth of corridors over multiple levels I found myself in front of the opening United Red Carpet Club. I headed in and convinced the bouncer I didn’t need to have a boarding pass to have access. Since I was the only one here at this hour (other than lounge staff) I made the most of the privacy by freshening up in the bathroom. I had already checked there were no shower facilities within the terminal. I always carry a towel and some smaller cloths, and there was soap in the bathroom so I made do without making too much of a mess.

    That done and feeling a bit better I settled in a corner watching the airport come alive and relaxing over a book that I’d been trying to read for months without success. The lounge is okay for a Red Carpet Club :p but not that flash. There is some fresh fruit and coffee, several different types of snack/junk food and a modest selection of alcoholic drink (self serve). There is no tv, no computers, no shower, just one newspaper and magazine. The view out the window is fairly limited despite being on a high floor of the terminal. After a while I left the lounge to get some exercise, explore some more and make my way to the BMI lounge which is actually the designated lounge for SQ.

    The BMI lounge entrance is easy enough to find (well sign-posted) but then have to take the lift down to the lounge itself. The lounge agent advised he could not issue boarding passes but would let me know when SQ’s desk opens up before the flight. The lounge is a typical BMI lounge – red and blue chairs, a couple of tvs, no computers, no shower, rubbish food and limited drink options. There is plenty of space, especially today – the one BD flight had no passengers use the lounge and only a small proportion of SQ’s first and business class passengers made their way into the lounge. After a while some bakery items were brought out onto a table with a card reading for Singapore Airlines passengers only. I don’t know why they bothered as the food was rubbish.

    I managed to avoid falling into a deep sleep. I don’t know how.
     
  18. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    PARIS to SINGAPORE in Business Class on SQ 77W

    The lounge agent informs me the SQ desk is now open, so I head up to the departure level, and through security (after a short wait in the queues) to the desk. The gate area is packed despite being an hour until boarding, about 90 minutes until departure.

    At the desk there is a small queue of transit passengers trying to get boarding passes. Of the several agents only 1 is attempting any visible work, and she is unsuccessful in printing boarding passes on any of the computers or printers. So she takes each person’s details and radios to the main check in to print them there. I weigh up whether or not to return to the lounge or wait for the boarding passes here and decide to wait. And we wait, and wait. From the limited radio exchanges I overhear it is apparent that the main check in is not wanting to print out our boarding passes :td:

    I figure I should hang around to make sure they are done and that I don’t lose my seat. So I wait some more. After an hour boarding commences and still no sign of any boarding passes for the transit passengers. Then the agent decides to ask her colleague who has been sitting idly to move seats and tries again on the different computer. Success – boarding passes spit out. Now why the other agents had to sit around doing nothing I don’t know, nor why she didn’t try that computer earlier. By the time she has printed them all out every other passenger is on board and we are holding up the flight. I notice she has removed my FFP # so that again it will credit to SQ. Not wanting to hold up the flight any further I resolve to try to deal with it in Singapore. Unfortunately SQ is one of the quickest airlines to process mileage and by the time we land I have already been credited for the flight. Argggh a headache to reverse out.
     
  19. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    SINGAPORE AIRLINES NEW BUSINESS CLASS 77W

    As I board and take my seat the doors close behind me. The business class cabin is full today. I had selected a bulkhead window seat in the forward, smaller, of the 2 business class cabins and now that I see it properly I am glad I have done so. The bulkhead seats are far less enclosing than the others. I think I would be slightly claustrophobic in the other seats. Also the large monitor (smaller than in first class but still larger than almost any other aircraft monitor) is further away and thus easier on the eyes, and with no seat in front there is no /\ to put legs into. (The pitch of these new seats is relatively short and the long bed width arises from a combination of the diagonal on the wide seat plus an insert shaped like /\ into the seat in front.)

    The width is huge, but not as overwhelmingly wide as in first class. I find I do have to put my legs on a slight angle to stretch out fully, but there is plenty of room even for those quite tall. Here there are overhead bins so the carry on does not intrude on legroom. The seat is again slippery. This time I have 2 large pillows so I use the same wedge technique to good effect. The seat doesn’t have many pockets or cubby holes so I end up with a lot of papers and stuff on the seat beside me and on the floor.

    As in first class, the crockery, cutlery and glassware have changed. The satay is now served on a tray with several square bowls. So no more choice of having the sauce served on top or on the side – it is served in its own bowl for the passenger to either pour over or dunk with. The salt and pepper shakers are cute – a little snowman!

    Now that I don’t have to deal any more this trip with restrictions on liquids I use the service failure voucher and some of my PPS requalification vouchers.

    I get a good deep sleep for several hours – it is comfortable for sleeping. Or maybe I am just so tired. This small cabin is very quiet.

    We land in the tropical dawn.
     
  20. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    Paris to Singapore SQ333 Business Class Menu December 2006


    LUNCH menu

    To Nibble On

    Satay
    With onion, cucumber and spicy peanut sauce

    A Savoury Note

    Mesclun with marinated Greek seafood salad
    Thousand Island dressing
    Balsamic and virgin olive oil dressing


    The Main Event

    Fillet of sole in shellfish-tarragon sauce, carrots, asparagus and boiled potato

    Chicken blanquette style served with seasonal vegetables and fettuchine

    Wok fried beef in hot bean sauce with seasonal vegetables and fried rice

    Pan seared lamb loin served with natural jus, eggplant pureed and sautéed assorted capsicums

    A Sweet Note

    Chocolate pudding with raspberry

    The Cheese Board

    Gourmet cheese with garnishes

    Fruit

    A selection of fresh fruit

    A Connoisseur’s Choice

    Gourmet coffee
    Selection of tea
    and pralines


    SNACK menu

    Fancy a snack? Take your pick from our range of delectable snacks and make your selection known to our cabin crew.

    Noodles

    Fish ball broth with kway teow or bee hoon noodles

    Vegetarian and non-vegetarian instant noodles

    Sandwiches

    Oriental vegetarian ciabatta

    Smoked ham in focaccia bun

    Smoked tuna in onion ciabatta

    Snacks

    Roasted mixed nuts

    Snickers chocolate bar

    Ritz Bits biscuits

    Kettle Classic potato chips ‘Mesquite Barbecue’

    Kjeldsens cookies

    Bananas


    BREAKFAST menu

    A Fresh Start

    A choice of apple, tomato or freshly squeezed orange juice

    Fresh fruit

    A Healthy Note

    Choice of cereals or yoghurt
    Cornflakes with milk or Birchermuesli
    Plain or fruit yoghurt


    The Main Event

    Selection of dim sum
    Prawn har kow, fried radish cake and pork siew mai

    Fried noodles with roast chicken, cabbage and mushroom

    Chive omelette with veal sausage, grilled tomato and sautéed potatoes

    From the Bakery

    Assorted breakfast rolls
    Butter – Fruit preserve

    A Connoisseur’s Choice
    Gourmet coffee
    Selection of tea

    Your Breakfast Choice

    This convenient breakfast option lets you enjoy all the sleep you want, uninterrupted. Please inform our crew of your choice before lights out – if they do not receive your selection, you will be awakened in time for The Complete Breakfast.

    The Complete Breakfast*

    Take your pick of the Main Event from our scrumptious selections.
    Served earliest 2.5 hours prior to arrival

    Continental Breakfast*

    Delight in this simple yet wholesome meal.
    Served earliest 1.5 hours prior to arrival

    * Kindly refer to the breakfast menu found above



    BEVERAGES menu

    Mix of the Month

    Orange Cooler

    Cocktails

    Singapore Sling
    Silver Kris Sling
    Gin Fizz
    Cloud Nine
    Screwdriver
    Bloody Mary
    Daiquiri
    Red or White Wine Cooler

    Aperitifs

    Campari
    Dry Vermouth

    Non-alcoholic Cocktails

    Citrus Royale
    Tropical Sparkle
    Golden Spice
    Fruit Spritzer
    Sunrise Surprise

    Spirits

    Cognac XO Otard
    Chivas Regal Scotch Whisky
    Johnnie Walker Black Label
    Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey
    Gordon’s Dry Gin
    Smirnoff Red Label Vodka
    Bacardi Carta Blanca

    Liqueurs

    Cointreau
    Tia Maria
    Baileys Original Irish Cream

    Beer

    International Selection

    Stout

    Guinness Stout

    Champagne

    Piper Heidsieck 1999

    White Wines

    2004 Hattenheimer Schutzenhaus Riesling Kabinett Balthasar Ress.
    Montagny 1er Cru 2004

    Red Wines

    Chateau Cissac 1998 Cru Bourgeois Haut Medoc
    Chateau Beau-site 2000 Saint-Estephe
    Serrata Belguardo 2003 Igt Maremma Toscana

    Port

    Dow 2001 Late Bottled Vintage Port

    Gourmet Coffees

    Brazil Santos Bourbon
    Colombian Supremo
    Kenyan AA Kilimanjaro

    Tea Selection

    Pure Ceylon Tea
    Earl Grey
    Darjeeling
    Camomile
    Decaffeinated Tea
    Japanese Green Tea
    Chinese Jasmine Tea
    Chinese Oolong Tea

    Specialty Coffees

    Brewed Coffee
    Café Royal
    Espresso
    Cappuccino
    Decaffeinated Coffee
    Mocha

    Other Beverages

    Chocolate
    Milo

    Mineral Water

    Sparkling
    Still

    Fruit Juices

    Apple
    Orange
    Pineapple
    Tomato

    Soft Drinks

    Bitter Lemon
    Coke
    Coke Light
    Ginger Ale
    Seven-Up

    Milk

    Full Cream
    Low Fat
     
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