Seat(s): Having not yet experienced today’s more grandiose first class offerings like Suites aboard a Singapore Airlines A380 or Etihad Airlines Apartment, we were plenty impressed with the space provided our Cathay Pacific First seat. A small extension to the side of the adjustable seat gives you extra elbow room while the premium square footage of the suite allows for good leg extension while seated upright.
For nap time your seat expands into a reasonably roomy flat-bed. The extra space on the side gives you more room for tossing, turning or simply adjusting mid-sleep. It surely beats business class if you’re a stomach sleeper whose slumber position resembles the chalk outline of a made for TV muder drama.
My only complaint was that the attached head pillow had a stale smell to it. It’s not one I’m unfamiliar with being a frequent rider of NYC public transportation but I’m holding Cathay to a slightly higher standard here. Luckily, I don’t need a manual to detatch a velcro pillow.
Tech/Connectivity/Entertainment: Cathay’s CX Studio in-flight entertainment has always been a favorite of ours. The system here is a little older now but still has much of what’s being offered in updated versions. A good number of movies, multiple episodes of modern and classic TV programs, games and moving map.
Using the wired remote is easier since even pulled forward, your large touch screen monitor is a bit of a reach.
A single power outlet is embedded in the console and requires just a slight lean forward to access.
Food: This was a single meal flight but on a normal day this would be 3 meals for me. The stylish presentation of each course didn’t outshine taste, a rare top to to bottom air food success story.
Our assorted seafood plate starter wasn’t pulled directly into the galley from the sea but still had a fresh taste to it and was followed promptly by a well balanced minestrone. The main course we chose was cod with ginger in mushroom ginger sauce with jasmine rice and pak choy. The 747 convection oven is chugging along nicely as everything was pefectly warm and tasty.
We skipped cheese and fruit and went straight for the green tea ice cream in vanilla sauce. Not the healiest choice but also not a mistake.
A seasonal Japanese meal was offered as an alternative for this flight from Tokyo. For this and alternate dishes in the main lunch menu, download the full menu from our flight (.pdf): Food Menu |Drink Menu
Service: You’re at the top of the list for boarding and the process was as smooth as we could have expected. Individualized greetings at the boarding door and an escort to your suite is just the start of Cathay’s First Class pampering. Assuming your thank you card has your name on it after “Dear…” this should be an enjoyable and highly personalized flight experience.
Rating: 4 hops (of 5). My only knocks here are the seat’s age and unfortunate odor from the attached pillow.
Route Flown for this review: Tokyo Haneda (HND) – Hong Kong (HKG)
How we got em’: This was a large sliver of a OneWorld award itinerary using US Airways Dividend Miles. The gang at PointsPros found a great all-first class trip using a handful of miles to North Asia (via Europe).