Our First Class experience doesn’t start at the airport. It starts at our hotel.
It’s 4:30pm. *The hotel phone rings*
“Excuse me Mr. Chai, this is the concierge downstairs. Your 5 o’clock Etihad chauffeur for the airport has arrived”
Abu Dhabi International Airport is over an hour (120km) away from Dubai. Hopefully, traffic will be minimal. We want to enjoy the Etihad First Class Lounge & Spa as much as possible!
As we exit the lobby, the hotel & airline valet both graciously help with our luggage. At the front, I couldn’t believe my eyes.
There’s not one… but TWO black Audi A6 sedan for the pickup.
Etihad First allows each bag to be up to 32kg (>70lbs). With this astronomical allowance, there’s a chance that we shopped way too much in Dubai. Thus, there’s an extra Audi A6 whose sole purpose is for extra luggage.
Eenie meenie miney mo. There is no wrong choice. Alright, it’s decided, the car in front will be for luggage. The car in the back will be for us. Is this what royalty feels like? Can we have this everyday? Please? Pretty Please?
It’s so nice to have so much space to ourselves. I notice Miki face-timing and Chai Bear chilling. I slowly look out the window. Sigh, c’est le vie. Just over an hour later, we have arrived. Without lifting a finger, an Etihad bellhop in a nice suit kindly takes our luggage to follow us in the private terminal.
No lines, no crowd, no hassle. Are we at an airport? Or are we back at our St. Regis hotel? This exclusive terminal makes an airport feel like an awesome experience. Plus, we’re still buzzing from the amazing Etihad chauffeur service!
Of course, no First Class is complete without experiencing the First Class Lounge! If you haven’t read it already, be sure to check out the experience!
This is a flight update for EY 460 service to Melbourne. Please board at Gate 61.
It’s like a perfect first date again. The magical butterflies feels, the excitement, and all the emotional jitters comes rushing back as we begin to board the Etihad First Apartment Class.
“Welcome aboard. This is your apartment”
No matter how much you read about it, no blogs can accurately prepare you for the moment you enter your Apartment. You have to be there to fully experience and understand just how truly glorious this plane is.
Each apartment has a sofa AND an oversized seat AND a walkaway AND a makeup vanity area for each passenger. The apartment is so big that there isn’t even an overhead compartment to store your bags. Instead, they go underneath your sofa.
If that isn’t enough, there is a dedicated chef AND manager AND flight attendant for the passengers.
On Etihad, you have the choice in dining anytime you like. In fact, you can have breakfast for dinner, or the other way around. Hungry again, we decided to have dinner first!
Each apartment have the options to have passengers dine with them.
“Would you like to dine in Apartment 3A or 4A?”
Eenie meenie miney mo. Again, there is no wrong choice. Apartment 3A it is! Here is a glimpse of our zillion-course meal.
“Would you guys like to shower while we prepare your bed for the night?”
I’ve been waiting for this moment. Never in my life, I imagine showering 38,000 ft in the air. In the air!!! The very first time the water touches you, you can’t help but giggle & laugh. As I lather, rinse, and repeat, I notice myself also singing and dancing. Water, water, water. Got to love water.
It’s an unnecessary luxury to have, but it’s an awesome AWESOME touch to Etihad’s Apartment Class. As matter of fact, we liked it so much that in total, we took four showers throughout the flight!
Barbara, our favorite flight attendant from Hungary, instantly bonded with Chai Bear.
Good night world!
3 hours later…
Miki is still sound asleep. Mentally, I’m too excited to sleep that long. In my Etihad pajamas, I slowly stroll in the lounge to watch some T.V. and have a Manhattan midnight cocktail.
Another 3 hours later…
Miki is still sound asleep. So Chai Bear and I decided to have an early morning breakfast.
“Mr. Chai. The chef is still asleep too. But I can prepare your breakfast for you. How do you like your eggs cooked? Over easy, over hard?”
“Barbara, I didn’t know you cook too.”
“Why of course, it’s extra good too since I make mines with love”
“Haha, I’ll have an egg omelette with everything on it.”
Finally Miki wakes up.
As the plane prepares its final descent, we decided to take one more morning shower. And of course… one more picture.
Is it over? It’s not over! As an icing on the cake, Etihad also provides Arrival Service for all the passengers in the Apartments. As we exit Melbourne International Airport, another two luxury sedans await us to start our journey in Australia.
Overall, we’re extremely grateful for this incredible 24-hour experience. Like Chai Bear always says, “Loyalty is Rewarding”. You don’t need to make some crazy seven figures to have these ultra-luxe experiences. Just like Singapore Suite Class, anyone can fly the Etihad First Apartments.
We live in the Golden Age of Travel. Seize the opportunities. Enjoy it. And when you can, elevate your travels with style.