Over the past years I have heard a lot about Cathay Pacific but never had a chance to fly them. The Hong Kong based carrier is no stranger to awards and accolades – be it for service, seats, food and even amenity kits Cathay has won them all. Needless to say I was rather excited when I finally had the chance to experience the award winning airline on a flight from Chennai to Tokyo.
As soon as I boarded, my first glance of the A330-300 Business Class gave me a clear indication of the comfort I was going to feel in the next 5.5 hours. Cathay’s luxurious business class has style, elegance and character. The seats are arranged in a reverse herringbone manner, allowing aisle access to every person in this premium section.
Cathay Pacific is the first airline to introduce an ‘evolved’ herringbone seat, only one after US Airways who first unveiled the reverse herringbone seat. Also, that was not a hindrance to the space available in each seat. Not only is it angled for comfort, it also provides ample leg space. That works well in particular for passengers like me who are prosperous in height.
On boarding the flight, I was welcomed by pleasant smiles from the crew members, and one in particular named Kim led me to my window seat. I was also pleasantly surprised when she addressed me by my name. This is part of the airlines’ characteristics, to make passengers feel at home. Kim let me relax and settle down while she brought me some refreshment. Just before the flight, I was served a glass of Billecart Salmon Brut champagne. Although from its collection of wines – my pick was the Fox Mclaren Shiraz 2012.
The seat can recline completely, accommodating all of my 6″2 frame with a few cms to spare. Also, there is a storage slot to secure away your shoes for the duration of the flight. My favourite feature onboard the business class is the brilliant utility hub it has to offer. Every seat comes equipped with a charging port, USB Port, and multi-port connector. Along with a quilt and a pillow passengers get an amenity kit. Designed by Seventy Eight percent it included a rosewater balancing mist, herbal recovery advanced serum and lip-balm.
A long flight need not be boring and to my aid was CX Studio which is Cathay’s in-flight entertainment. There is no shortage of options here – the latest from Bollywood to Hollywood, TV shows, TED talks and a lot more, there is hours and hours of quality entertainment.
The service, the ambience, the bubbly, a Christopher Nolan masterpiece on the CX Studio and the Cathay Pacific A330-300 business class cabin makes you feel like you are on cloud nine. This feedback is unanimously voiced by frequent travelers as well and so it seemed only natural to boast a drink in that name during the flight time.
Cloud Nine is a signature cocktail, comprising vodka, lemon, Cointreau and Sprite. – just what I needed to disconnect from the stress of the day.
As a vegetarian I am usually disappointed by in-flight food. But this was not the case with Cathay. It offers a rich in-air gourmet experience, the highlight for me was batawada – nothing like relishing the favorite street food of my hometown at 35,000 feet in the air. For dessert I was given the option to either choose a cheese platter or Belgian chocolate from Haagen Dazs. I chose the ice cream, of course. Well-fed and entertained, I soon fell into a deep slumber and woke up just a while before landing.
Waking up I chose an Illy coffee and it was one of the best latte’s I have ever had.
This was my maiden trip on board Cathay Pacific and feel that it is truly one of the most comfortable ways to fly into Hong Kong. After relaxing at their humongous lounge at Hong Kong International, I continued my journey of comfort and relaxation to Tokyo.
Cathay Pacific flies daily from Chennai to Tokyo with business class fares starting at Rs 130,000. To book visit Cathaypacific.com.
Note – The writer was invited by Cathay pacific but all the views expressed are his own.