As I outlined in this post a couple of weeks ago, I always redeem miles for first class when possible, since it’s usually only marginally more expensive than business class. While some business class seats have gotten mighty impressive, it’s mainly the food, service, and improved bedding that makes first class worth the premium.
As a result I often end up not trying new business class products, even when they look mighty fine. Cathay Pacific’s new business class is an example, though I finally had the opportunity to experience it today on an Airbus 330 from Bangkok to Hong Kong. While a majority of the flights on the route are operated by aircraft with “regional” configurations, they do run a couple of longhaul configured aircraft on the route, and I was sure to book one of them.
I don’t even know what to say about the product, other than WOW. The seats were amazing. I hate to say this because I’m a big proponent of first class, but the seat itself is more comfortable than a majority of the first class products I’ve tried. The amount of personal space and privacy is amazing. And the bed was longer than those found in most first class cabins, as even my 6″4′ travel companion could lay in the flat bed with inches to spare.
This is by far the most comfortable business class product I’ve experienced, and that includes Singapore’s new business class, which I flew from Los Angeles to Singapore last year.
Here are a few pictures (I’ll post more with the trip report in a few days):
I’ll continue to try and redeem my miles for first class, for the reasons stated above. While Cathay Pacific’s hard product is great in business class, the service, food, and bedding in first class are still much better. But this is a seat that really eliminates the fundamental hard product difference previously found between business and first class. This product is a “suite,” something that was previously only found in first class.
More than anything else I’m excited about the fact that this is what American chose for their new business class, so we’ll see a product similar to this once their 777-300ERs go into service.