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Emirates Reinvents Longhaul Travel

Published: Mon 1 Dec 2003 10:15 AM
Emirates Reinvents Longhaul Travel With The Ultimate In Luxury, Service And Entertainment
New First Class suites costing no less than US$125,000 each are being installed on Emirates' latest jets flying into New Zealand ? making them as comfortable as the most luxurious executive aircraft and just one of many features planned to persuade people to 'keep on discovering' the quality of its services.
The award-winning international airline is investing US$1.8 billion in reinventing longhaul travel with a series of innovations to tempt every traveller to try its new fleet of Airbus A340-500s. The aircraft will operate Emirates' daily Auckland-Sydney-Dubai services from Wednesday (December 3).
The biggest initiative in the airline's 18-year history to win and keep the vital custom of regular flyers will see the arrival of the world's first private First Class suites, featuring privacy screens which they can open or close at will for maximum exclusivity.
The suites will house massage-enabled leather seats which convert to flat beds, with comfort covers, cosy fabric sleeping suits and slippers, down pillows and cotton-lined blankets to give travellers a really good night's sleep.
To match the superbly comfortable seats, suites include a dining table, built-in vanity table with mirror and overnight amenity kit, and a host of other little touches of luxury.
Multi-course meals created by top international chefs can be ordered from an extensive menu at any time with a phone call to crew, and served in the comfort of the suite. Stylish sundries include hot toast and cappucino coffee.
No fewer than three crew will look after the 42 Business Class travellers, who will relax in new 2-2-2 sleeperette massage seats, 55 inches apart, and which recline almost flat. Extra luxuries include down-filled pillows, woollen blankets, hot towels and roomy wardrobes.
In Economy, where most Emirates customers travel, new contoured seats with adjustable footrests and winged headrests will incorporate wider backrest cushions and extra thigh support, making them more comfortable on even the longest flights.
Seat pitch will be at least 33 inches, reclining by 6.5 inches. Specially designed pillows and warm blankets will help passengers get a good night's sleep, and large overhead lockers will mean generous storage space for cabin bags and personal items.
The new A340-500s will be the first in the world to enter commercial service, and the initiatives to care for every customer on some of the world's longest flights will give the Dubai-based carrier a key edge on flights to the US, the world's most competitive market.
But everyone on board is set to benefit from its astonishing new i.c.e inflight system (information, c ommunication, entertainment), a world first featuring more than 500 channels of films, TV, music and games and three times as many as on rival airlines.
Every seat in every cabin will be equipped with a phone on which every traveller can call anywhere in the world for just US$5 a minute via the world's most widely-used inflight phone system, or send and receive email and SMS for just US$1 a time ? another world first.
And every traveller will appreciate the ultimate touch to make them more comfortable -- mood lighting, which adjusts subtly to the time of day, easing jetlag and helping them to arrive relaxed, refreshed and ready to make the best of their trip.
The new aircraft carry 12 First Class, 42 Business and 204 Economy passengers, and 14 tonnes of cargo. They will first fly on the Dubai-Sydney-Auckland route and are scheduled to fly on North American services next year.
Emirates' Chairman, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, said today: "Every traveller in every seat in every cabin will discover new levels of comfort on our longest flights. We are making our biggest investment yet in customer service to make them feel as comfortable in the air as they do at home.
"Along with our award-winning crew, and the red carpet treatment we give customers on the ground as well as in the air, we are reinventing the entire longhaul travel experience as we make final preparations to start daily services to America for the first time."

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