Flight Review Emirates Flight EK413 Sydney to Dubai Business Class 21 January 2010


Delectable desserts follow tasty main courses in the Emirates lounge at SYD
Emirates’ sophisticated ICE entertainment system, with USB port and power outlet easily accessible
Friendly faces greet guests in the Emirates Business Class lounge at Sydney Airport
from one A380 to another at DXB

The Pride Of Dubai Maintains Its Excellence On The Ground And In The Air

Mention Emirates to the general public and the reaction is usually the kind that used to be reserved for leading airlines of the golden age of travel.  Pan Am is no longer with us, but Emirates does a fine job of making air travel a glamorous experience for today’s travellers.

Check-in at Sydney Airport was smooth and very friendly—on both counts, a harbinger of good things to come.  There was no queue and the overall atmosphere at in the check-in area was simultaneously relaxed and professional, an ideal combination to set the tone of the long trip ahead.

The Emirates Business Class lounge in Sydney is exclusively for use of Emirates passengers, which means there is a quiet atmosphere without the constant comings and goings so common in shared lounges.  The space is huge and has many different areas for computer work, reading, watching television, or eating.  The food stands out as among the best found in airport lounges, with an array of hot dishes such as coconut shrimp and chicken tajine with apricots, both prepared to perfection, preceding delicious desserts like sticky date pudding and perfect French profiteroles to rival those of any Parisian café.

The flight was called; the lounge emptied.  Boarding the Emirates A380-800 proceeded normally; again, there was no queue for Business Class even though the Business cabin was full.  For those unfamiliar with Emirates A380 Business Class, the latest-generation features are noticeable immediately upon boarding.  Seats along the side of the aircraft are staggered so that the window seats have aisle access and the aisle seats have windows; paired seats are located in the centre of the aircraft.  Private minibars with soft drinks are already stocked next to the seat.  The size of the viewing screen is impressive, as are the entertainment selections.  No flight in the world is long enough to enjoy all the movies, TV shows, documentaries, full catalogues of music, and other entertainment options in the Emirates advanced ICE system, which means that a fourteen-hour flight can go by very quickly when engrossed in the latest theatrical releases as well as a great selection of recent and longtime classics.  ICE stands for Information, Communications, and Entertainment, the three activities available through this most sophisticated of systems.  If somehow none of the offerings is to your liking, you can plug in your own USB device and entertain yourself using your own music, photos, or video through the ICE system.  Those who prefer reading to audiovisual stimulation will be glad to know that the overhead light is properly positioned to illuminate reading material; it’s surprising how many aircraft overhead lights do not do this.  An additional reading light further brightens the scene.  The overhead light, as are the seat with its the multiple massage features and the entertainment centre, is controlled by a formidable wireless remote control that can be operated held in the hands or positioned in its recharge console. 

As in the lounge, inflight dining was outstanding.  On this flight, there was a dinner service and a breakfast service, but tasty dishes were available throughout the flight, as were wines and cocktails served at your seat or in the upper-deck Onboard Lounge where the convivial atmosphere encourages relaxation and socialising standing at the bar or seated on the leather banquette.  Emirates A380 cabin crew are specially trained for the aircraft and only work on A380 routes, meaning they are highly polished and thoroughly familiar with the plane.

Despite the vast amount of screenwatching planned, the new lie-flat bed was so comfortable that slumber was irresistible.  The good sleep ensured a crucially important refreshed feeling upon arrival at Dubai International Airport.

The Emirates Business Class experience begins even before arrival at the airport.  Aside from the chauffeured airport transfer for all Business and First Class travellers flying from Sydney, a visit to the Business Class page on the Emirates website tells all you need to know about the flight on which you will travel, even including the films to be shown.  The user-friendly Emirates website is the type that travellers peruse in their daydreams imagining travel to any of the six continents served by an airline that brings more than a touch of glamour to air travel.
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: R.L.B
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