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Dancing In The Dark: An Emirates A380 Inaugural…  
User currently offlineronerone From Jordan, joined Aug 2004, 1675 posts, RR: 53
Posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:




I N T R O D U C T I O N
Marking the 61st anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, a series of activities and events were planned in Hong Kong that were sure to celebrate.

The festivities in the ultra-bustling Special Administrative Region commenced with a flag-raising ceremony amongst several thousand people at the Golden Bauhinia on October 1st 2010 at 8am. Around the same time several jet-lag zones behind at Gate 232 of Dubai International Airport, a pre-boarding announcement was made for an Emirates A380 tasked to operate its inaugural flight to Hong Kong.

Pre-departure checks complete, doors closed, and the flight crew requested pushback at Dubai, while the Police band and a school mixed voice choir played and sang the national anthem at the ceremony in Hong Kong. The festivities in Dubai commenced as the Emirates A380 made its first departure towards Chek Lap Kok, while the morning ceremony in Hong Kong was concluded with a sea parade and a fly-past by several of the SAR’s disciplined forces. In the evening, a spectacular 23-minute fireworks display at Victoria Harbour ended the official 61st Chinese National Day Celebrations, only a few hours after the Emirates A380 made its first landing in Hong Kong.

The Emirates A380 was only a nonstop terminator flight to Bangkok, however today it is a stop away from non-stop, one-stop to Hong Kong. Dancing in the dark, all the way to the very end, two of us were on board inaugurating the festivities of this special event.

Join Sam Chui and myself as we take you on a trip of spectacular madness …



CONTINUED BELOW



A Stop Away From One-Stop, Is Non-Stop : Airbus A340-500
88 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineronerone From Jordan, joined Aug 2004, 1675 posts, RR: 53
Reply 1, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:





WELCOME TO MY 28th TRIP REPORT
This TR will cover the events of our inaugural Emirates A380 flight from Dubai to Hong Kong.

Note: This is a joint Trip Report between Sam Chui and myself. All pictures belong to me unless otherwise stated that they belong to Mr. Chui.



B A C K G R O U N D
On one fine weekend afternoon, I received a tweet on my phone by my favorite travel guide –The Airline Route Blog- that Emirates would inaugurate A380 services to Hong Kong on October 1st 2010.

Now we all know that the words ‘Hong’ and ‘Kong’ are music to my ears, and combined with the words ‘Emirates A380’ and ‘Inaugural Flight’ meant double or even triple the pleasure. I knew it wasn’t going to be such a big thing as the JFK inaugural however, I still felt like I wanted to be a part of this one too. Nevertheless, and with all the excitement, my printer spat out a Business Class itinerary that would take me from Dubai to Hong Kong via Bangkok on the Emirates A380 inaugural flight on October 1st.

Apparently –and I had never really paid any attention before- Emirates has been milking away its BKK-HKG 5th Freedom Route for many years now. Combined with the introduction of the A380 on a segment that can be flown by a larger catchment size of traffic, there definitely was a lot of interest by the public masses, including several A.netters as well.

However, coincidence really had its way when Sam Chui had sent me an email to inform me that business shall bring him to Abu Dhabi during the last few days in September, with a departure out of the UAE scheduled on 1st October 2010. He managed to get a ticket on Emirates however his flight back to Hong Kong was on EK380 –a 77W operating with the old Business Class recliner seats- which was then changed to EK384 while he was in Abu Dhabi.



D E P A R T U R E
We had requested for an Emirates Chauffer service to be at my apartment at 10pm on September 30. Naturally, our Emirates-branded Volvo was at my building by 9:45pm and our driver called me at exactly 10pm.



On our way to DXB (picture by Sam Chui)





A mere 20 minutes later, we were dropped off at the curbside of terminal 3’s premium check-in area at Dubai international Airport. An Emirates agent had approached the car to welcome us to the airport and escort us to the Business Class check-in desks. We decided to sort out our check-in first before giving Sam the grand tour of the empty ‘KUL-like’ landside area of Terminal 3.



Emirates Business Class check-in counters at DXB











At the counter at 10:25am, we handed our documents to the check-in agent and informed her about our requests for an upgrade to First Class. Sam’s reservation had a request in the system for an upgrade subject to load and we did not want to travel in different classes, so we had requested the agent if it was possible I could purchase an upgrade using my Emirates / Skywards miles only if Sam’s upgrade was approved; otherwise we were both happy to remain in Business Class.

The agent made a quick phone call –I believe to the Operations Control Center- and logged the request with the manager on duty. We were advised to check on the status of this request at the gate, when things would have been clearer by then. After this, our boarding passes were printed, Sam’s suitcase was tagged to Hong Kong, and our documents handed back to us.



Our Business Class boarding passes to Hong Kong





By 10:40pm, we were cleared to proceed, but before heading airside, I gave Sam the grand tour of the landside area, as surprisingly it was his first time at T3!

The terminal at this time of night was even less crowded than the last time I was at the facility when I traveled to Jo’Burg. However, this is normal as per a recent Emirates hub-report on A.net, which revealed that the late-night movement bank is not as busy as the crazy sunrise Emirates rave parade. Naturally, EK’s miniscule Dubai O&D traffic flows would even be thinner at this time of night hence, the deafening silence at the check-in area tonight.



Outside T3, I always find myself attracted to this



First & Business Class curbside at T3 (picture by Sam Chui)



Who wants to liberate an Emirates-branded stroller?



Several Self-Service check-in Kiosks available after entering the terminal



A quick moment of obsession at the Emirates FIDS





Terminal view





Self-Service Check-in counters with baggage drop facilities



First Class check-in counters (picture by Sam Chui)





Using the facilities of the UAE-Gate, immigration was a total non-issue for me, and so was the subsequent security check, which followed right after. At 11:45pm, both Sam and myself were airside.



Last time it was FIFA, tonight it’s all about the A380 Spa





Similarly at the airside terminal building, it was also quieter in comparison. There was a transit flow but it was far less overwhelming than the morning stampede. You could actually enjoy the terminal, but not for too long as the midnight arrival dumps were gradually peaking into the building.



A quiet time of night at the mega hub



A few transits scattered here and there



However more began to gradually arrive





Escaping the progressing crowds, we decided to seek shelter inside the Emirates Business Class lounge for some peace and quiet.



Arriving at the Business Class lounge at 11:35pm





At the reception of the Business Class lounge, we thought to enquire with the agent about the status of our upgrade. We informed the friendly Indonesian agent about our scenario and upon checking with the OCC, we were advised that two seats were reserved for us at this stage, but we would have to check at the gate. I randomly requested if there was any possibility to use the First Class Lounge given that we have the possibility of this upgrade looming in the background.

“Gentlemen, it would be my pleasure to offer you the facilities of our First Class lounge, please present your boarding pass to my colleague Reem inside the lounge and she will be more than happy to assist”

Again, this reaffirms my conclusion that Emirates has some of the best ground staff out there!



At the First Class Lounge





At the lounge reception, Reem took a look at our initialed boarding passes and gladly welcomed us inside.



Glad to be back!







We were both hungry, but before hitting the buffet, Sam decided to book an appointment for a massage at the Timeless Spa reception.



Timeless Spa (picture by Sam Chui)



Sam at the spa





At the main dining area, a waiter immediately approached our table to hand out a la carte menus and take our drink orders. A breadbasket, in addition some olives and a small late of hummus were also placed on the table. We all know my opinion on this lounge, but tonight, it was Sam’s turn to be impressed!



Our table





Just a sample of the extensive a la carte option





Sam at the table





After settling into our dining spot, we both opted for the buffet and proceeded to explore the offering.



Nice décor accent



Several nice areas in the lounge for a sit-down meal







And now the buffet







Picture by Sam Chui





Picture by Sam Chui











Back at the table with our food







Both Sam and myself enjoyed the great food offering at the lounge, as everything was fresh and perfect. After dinner, we moved to a comfortable couch area adjacent to the dining room where I simply relaxed while Sam proceeded for his massage appointment.

When Sam had returned at 2am, he was beginning to feel rather sick. Not sure whether it was exhaustion or food poisoning, but his condition began to worsen a little, his face was rather pale, and his stomach pain was not going away. We informed a passing lounge agent, who immediately took action and called the paramedics.

A few minutes later the paramedics arrived with oodles of medical equipment, a foldable hospital bed on wheels, and a wheelchair; they began to interact with Sam in order to assess his situation and while doing so, the usual blood pressure and temperature testing was going on.

We were now one hour before our scheduled departure time, and I had enquired whether Sam was fit to fly or not. Apparently it was up to the doctor to decide this, but it was also Sam’s choice whether he felt like seeing the doctor or not. We all decided that a visit to the doctor was necessary and as such, Sam was placed on the wheelchair and we all proceeded out of the lounge towards the Dubai Airport Medical Clinic, located behind the Duty Free area.

Naturally, I was rather concerned and the last thing on my mind was to continue taking pictures. However, on our way to the medical clinic Sam cracked a smile and said “hey Roni, take my picture on the wheelchair!!!” All the paramedics broke into laughter when they saw me taking pictures of Sam on a wheelchair.



BIZARRE!!!!





Along with the paramedics, we were escorted by a wonderful Emirates ground agent from Iraq, who was in constant communication with the Gate staff as we were 15 minutes away from boarding time. After dropping us off at what seemed to be the doctor’s office, she excused herself for several moments to attend to something else.

A female doctor from the Indian Subcontinent was quick to receive Sam and begin running tests to assess his condition. While this was going on, the Iraqi agent returned back to us with a big smile.

“The flight will soon begin boarding, but I think we have enough time. I’ve informed the gate and we will hold the flight for you”
“Thank you for that”
“Oh by the way, these are your new boarding passes, you’ve both been upgraded to First Class”



Our First Class boarding passes



Sam at the Medical Clinic - “Upgrade? I’m not sick anymore!”





After the latest series of tests were complete, we were then wheeled into another office, where the doctor was sitting behind a desk. It was then evident that the lady that attended to us at first was his nurse. No specific reason was given for Sam’s condition however Sam believes he was just exhausted after a rather stressful period of business meetings in Abu Dhabi. I believed his words more than the doctor’s as we found him to be rather dry, and probably inexperienced.

He handed Sam a prescription and without bidding farewell, he let us proceed to Gate 232. What was more interesting was that we had to purchase the medicine ourselves from the Duty Free pharmacy; I think it would have been more appropriate if we were given a small sample of medicine for free that would last us only until we reached our destination.

At 2:45am, we had arrived at Gate 232, where the flight had already commenced boarding. There was a lot of activity going on at the gate, and for some reason the variety of different congregations felt like I was at the entrance of an all-night dance rave that was hosting thousands of club-goers. Is this a modern boarding experience of an A380 flight or am I just obsessing? Who cares, I’m about to fly First Class!



Gate 232 (picture by Sam Chui)





At the podium, our boarding passes were scanned and ripped





Proceeding towards the holding area, premium passengers have to go one level above the gate area by elevators to reach the upper deck aerobridge. It may sound a little complicated but the elevators are large enough to fit enough passengers in each load, and I believe that Dubai International Airport had correctly planned out this elevator mass-transport concept.



Proceeding through the upper-deck aerobridge





Looking outside, we were absolutely taken away by the fact that our aircraft for tonight’s flight was A6-EDM. As Emirates’ ultra-latest bird at the time, it was a very exciting discovery and for once our ‘I am only into classic planes’ type theories suddenly did not matter anymore. There is no feeling like riding a fresh plane, whether it’s far too commercial for our liking or not.



Boarding A6-EDM?? I am definitely not sick Roni!





At Door 1L of the upper deck, we thanked the very helpful wheelchair attendee that escorted us to the aircraft, handed him a tip, and proceeded to board. Senior Flight Stewardess (SFS), Nathalie, took a look at our boarding passes as she welcomed us on board with great spirits.

“Mr. … Chui and Mr… .. Hawi? … is that right?”
“Yes it is”
“Excellent, welcome on board gentlemen, great to have you back”
“Thanks. We are here for the inaugural flight”
“Oh that’s wonderful! I trust you will enjoy the flight with us in First Class”
“My colleague will be escorting you to your seats”
“Thanks!”



By 3am we were on board.



CONTINUED BELOW



A Stop Away From One-Stop, Is Non-Stop : Airbus A340-500
User currently offlineronerone From Jordan, joined Aug 2004, 1675 posts, RR: 53
Reply 2, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

F L I G H T
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Emirates Flight Information:

SCR
/EK/01OCT
S10
01OCT
DXB
KEK384 01OCT02NOV 1234567 489388 DXBBKK0315 1740HKGHKG J
GI BRGDS

Actual Departure Time: 03:40 (Pushback)
Actual Arrival Time: 18:00 (Touchdown)

Registration: A6-EDM
Condition: 2 days old, delivered to Emirates on September 28th 2010.

Remarks: This flight stops in Bangkok
STA/ATA ex. BKK- 12:05/12:40
STD/ATD ex. BKK- 13:45/14:50

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Welcome to First Class on the Emirates A380 (picture by Sam Chui)





I did not really require an escort 'service' to my seat however, the crew flocked towards Sam like butterflies to ensure he was assisted all the way through the cabin to his seat. Ms. Weili -a cabin crew from China on her first A380 flight tonight- was especially pleased to be working on Sam's side of the aisle, and she very much added that 'Mandarin' personal touch to Sam's onboard experience.

The First Class cabin onboard this A380 -opulent, futuristic, private, and with a touch of class- was up to capacity tonight as each and every one of those 14 suites was occupied. Peeping behind me through the aisle, masses were marching towards the opposite end of the fuselage which only tells me that this flight was packing to the gills.



The cabin













At my suite at 2F, a freshly laundered pillow, mattress, and blanket were placed in their usual locations, along with the other amenities such as the fully stocked mini-bar and snack basket, vanity and writing kits. All lights in the suite were fully lit and the ambience could not be more inviting as I quickly made myself comfortable on the plush leather seat; who's to say I'm not going to enjoy the next ten or so hours of this flight?



The seat & suite (picture by Sam Chui)









Leg space



IFE screen




On board this flight, was a set of 23 cabin crew which included the purser -Sharon Wong from the Philippines-, three SFS' scattered throughout the aircraft, and one Cabin Service Attendant (CSA), whose task was primarily the up-keeping of the onboard Spa. At First Class, we were blessed with the presence of two lovely crew that worked quite hard to ensure our safety and comfort throughout the flight.

A little Mesmerized by all the goings-on, I was suddenly brought back to reality by a lovely Sirirat from Thailand, who had arrived at my seat with an offering of slippers, eyeshades, pyjamas, and amenity kits (thankfully these did not get the chop on night flights!).

"Welcome on board sir, how are you doing tonight?"
"Very well thank you"
"I'd like to offer you your amenities for the flight"
"Thank you"
"And this bag is for you to place everything inside"



Slippers



Eyeshades



Pyjamas



Amenity kit



A very nice bag that was perfect for liberating the entire A380



YaY! I'm on a plane! (picture by Sam Chui)



YaY! Me too! (picture using Sam Chui's camera)





Meanwhile, as Sirirat made her way to offer amenities to the next passenger, it was Weili's turn to appear by seat with an offering of welcome drinks.



Welcome drinks





"Welcome on board sir, may I offer you something to drink?"
"I have orange juice, apple juice, and champagne. Or anything else perhaps?"
"I'll have a glass of orange juice please"



My glass of OJ





Dates and Arabic coffee were then offered -in which I declined- and then Sirirat reappeared with a very special offering that was to be the highlight of my experience on this flight.

"Mr. Hawi, would you like to book an appointment at the onboard shower and spa?"
"Definitely"
"When would you care to use it?"
"Perhaps after takeoff please?"
"Certainly, we will let you know once it is ready after takeoff"
"Thank you"



At 3:30am our Captain, Eric Trotter, made an announcement to welcome us on board and to inform us that our slight delay in pushing back was due to the baggage offloading of some missing passengers (seriously now, where do these passengers go?). However, as this was almost done, we were soon to be on our way to Bangkok and Hong Kong. He also informed us of our routing to Bangkok and that our flight time for this sector was to be 5 hours and 45 minutes.



Pushback occurred at 3:40am





The taxi to the runway was quiet and flawless, and as many have pointed out, this advantage of the A380 can also be a slight disadvantage as it gives way to hearing many unnecessary sounds. Tonight, such sounds as grunts, gasps, yawns, and phlegm-clears were quite easily heard as A6-EDM's engines uttered a quiet roar that seemed too far away to belong to this aircraft.

Arriving at the runway, we held short to give way to a blue-striped A330 that was preparing for takeoff. "OMG GARUDA!!!!" both me and Sam yelled -another unnecessary sound that was heard across the cabin- and for just a small moment as we looked at each other with surprise, we were wishing to be on board that Amsterdam-bound flight.



Holding short for Garuda Indonesia





However, all such thoughts were re-called and forgotten at around 3:35am when our Shamu-Jet took off into the night and began the journey towards Bangkok.



Take-off!





CONTINUED BELOW



A Stop Away From One-Stop, Is Non-Stop : Airbus A340-500
User currently offlineronerone From Jordan, joined Aug 2004, 1675 posts, RR: 53
Reply 3, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

After reaching cruising altitude, the seatbelt sign was switched off and the crew were released. There is no typical order of events in Emirates First Class and as such, everyone zoned into several different activities; some drifted off to sleep, others powered on their IFE's, some settled for a cup of coffee, while I anxiously waited for my appointment of retreat at the Spa.



Cabin shots after takeoff















Meanwhile, Weili had turned Sam's seat down into its fully flat position as he was exhausted and needed to sleep during the beginning of this journey.



Nighty night! (picture using Sam Chui's camera)





"Mr. Hawi, the shower has been prepared for you"
"Thank you"
"Most welcome. I would also like to offer you the menu for the flight. We will be serving you a breakfast at anytime that you like"
"Great. Can you please wake me up for breakfast 2 hours before landing?"
"Certainly"



Menu





Bar service



DXB-BKK offering



BKK-HKG offering



Arabic sample





Two shower spas are located in the front side of the cabin, near the First Class social area. CSA Geraldine, from the Philippines, welcomed me to the starboard-side spa and gave me a thorough briefing on the features of this confinement.

You really have not seen it all until you've paid a visit to this unique space onboard an aircraft. The amenities and the settings are exactly like those found in a large bathroom of a five-star hotel. Lotion, shampoo, body wash, conditioner, and loofah's are aplenty and available at your disposal. Emirates-branded shave kits and toothbrush sets also available for use along with a hairdryer, an electric razor power port, and the usual barf-bags and feminine pads. The rest is just a space of heaven that only the following pictures can describe.



Introducing the Emirates onboard shower & spa

























The shower



Inside the shower



Time to shower! (picture by Sam Chui)





There has been a lot of debate on the 5-minute time-limit on the Emirates shower. The mechanism behind this, is that you are allowed a total of 30 minutes to spend inside the spa doing whatever you wish (and mind you, a maximum of two people per session is the rule!). Within those 30 minutes, you are allocated 5 minutes total time for running water, and you are free to switch the shower off at anytime in order to buy more time. So in reality, you could have a 30 minute shower using up to a total of 5-minutes worth of water.

Thinking you may feel cold being naked on a plane and switching off the water to have more shower time? Think again because the Emirates onboard spa features heated flooring that is guaranteed to keep you warm and snuggly. It was my first time being completely nude on an aircraft, and it felt so liberating!

I showered for 15 minutes, and used up my 5-minutes water's worth. After drying up, dressing up, and some final moments of pampering, I was out of the shower within 25 minutes feeling so relaxed and quite ready to sleep.



First Class social area near the showers









Back at my seat, turndown service has been complete, however a quick visit to the Business Class bar was necessary first before hitting the sack.



My bed





Passing through the dark aisles of First and Business Class, there was not an empty seat in sight, and most passengers were fast asleep. At the light at the end of the tunnel, I arrived at the mildly busy Business Class bar. Several passengers were socializing over drinks, some at the bar while others on the couch. Sharon and Nathalie were entertaining two young men who were showing off their business itinerary to Hong Kong and beyond, while the bar had a more down-to-earth atmosphere and was supervised by Mary, whom I was pleasantly surprised to discover was a Christian Arab from Egypt (we are quite rare you know!).



The Business Class bar









Picture by Sam Chui taken at a later time during the flight



Picture by Sam Chui taken at a later time during the flight





Sharon broke away from the 'I fly only Business Class each time I travel' conversations by the couch to check on things by the bar.

"Hi Mr. Hawi, nice to see you here in the lounge. How is everything so far?"
"Everything is great thank you"
"Are you a reporter for a magazine?"
"No, I am just an aviation freak!"
"Oh that's interesting, is this your first time on the A380?"
"No it's not, but my friend and I are here for the inaugural flight to Hong Kong"
"Wow! that's great. Well I hope you enjoy the flight with us today"
"Thank you! May I take a picture of you and your lovely colleague please?"



Sharon & Mary





I ordered my customary Bloody Mary, and joined the casual chit-chat that was happening between two friendly Scottish fellow passengers, Mary, and the occasional third random crew. One thing is for sure -and the anti-EK's may think otherwise- is that the conversations one can have with your typically good Emirates crew are always quite real and very every-day. I think they can be quite a fun and down-to-earth bunch when on a good flight (and my experiences seem to see much more of the good than the bad of late).



Passing by a dark J cabin on my way back



Arriving back at the First Class cabin



And dozing off for the next several hours (picture by Sam Chui)





I woke up two hours prior to arrival in Bangkok, and found Sam awake and feeling much better, and was holding two certificates.

"Hey Roni look! Sharon handed out our inaugural flight certificates while you were sleeping. Yours has your name on it! Mine doesn't because it was a last minute flight booking!"



Sam & my certificates





While Weili had already set Sam's table up for breakfast, Sirirat was at my seat for my wakeup call.

"Good morning Mr. Hawi. Can I offer you some breakfast?"
"Yes please. I'd like to have the detox drink, bread basket, yoghurt, and the egg noodles"

Similarly, Sam had ordered the same but without the detox drink.



Signature Sam Chui out-of-seat meal setup picture (picture by Sam Chui)



Picture by Sam Chui



My meal setup









Ronerone Trip Reporting! (picture by Sam Chui)



Cheers! Let's eat! (Picture taken using Sam Chui's camera)





The fruit and the yoghurt were very cold, and very refreshing; just the way they are meant to be. Once we were both through with our starters, our main courses were promptly delivered.



Sam's main course (picture by Sam Chui)



My main course







The main course consisted of egg noodles served with a glutinous rice dumpling wrapped in a lotus leaf and a steamed shrimp dumpling. We both found the meal to be of excellent quality, and I was especially impressed with the rather flavorful rice dumpling. It was excellent!



Our tables were cleared at the end of the meal service



Business Class cabin after the breakfast service







At the bar one more time



Adinuch & Daniel



First Class cabin shortly before descent







At 12:10pm local time in Thailand, our captain made an announcement to inform us that we had begun our initial descent towards Suvarnabhumi International Airport and that we were expected to touchdown within 30 minutes. The seatbelt sign was then switched on, and the cabin crew continued their preparations for landing.

A hot towel service was conducted while Sharon passed around the First Class cabin to personally bid farewell to each passenger.

"Good morning gentlemen. How was everything?"
"Everything was absolutely great, thank you very much!"
"I am glad to hear that. There will be a crew change in Bangkok so I will bid farewell to you here."
"I would like to thank you for flying with us today, and we hope to see you on board again soon!"



Approach into Bangkok





Picture by Sam Chui





At 12:40pm, A6-EDM simply 'dropped' onto the runway -something I have noticed to be common of an A380 touchdown- and gradually decelerated into a typical taxi speed before exiting towards a taxiway. For a moment I thought that the flight had come to a complete end, only to be reminded that there still was a transit stop, and a continued journey to Hong Kong ahead. In reality, it was now when this flight was to transform from a regular operation to an inaugural flight.

I had high hopes for some time spent inside Suwanapoom, but unfortunately we were requested to remain on board during the transit stop. With such hopes, my nicotine withdrawals suddenly surfaced -very heavily too- and I had to focus on holding the reigns a little until we reached Hong Kong. It all worked out well in the end.



Byebye Sharon! (picture taken using Sam Chui's camera)





CONTINUED BELOW



A Stop Away From One-Stop, Is Non-Stop : Airbus A340-500
User currently offlineronerone From Jordan, joined Aug 2004, 1675 posts, RR: 53
Reply 4, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

TRANSIT STOP




As soon as most Bangkok-bound passengers had deplaned, the aircraft cleaning staff had trickled into the aircraft and were quick to begin their duty. With just over an hour's worth of turnaround time, I was curious to see how the Bangkok ground staff would manage this A380. Without any surprise -as BKK seldom disappoints- the aircraft was cleaned, blankets, headsets, and such replenished, all mini-bars re-stocked, and every other little detail that was behind the naked eye seemed to be superbly managed. Perhaps, if anything, the only nuisance would have been Sam and myself making our ways through their work for nothing but the intention to explore.



Cleaning staff in the First Class cabin



I love taking this shot during transit stops



Cleaning staff in the Business Class cabin



Two A.netters invading the transit stop



Business Class seat (picture by Sam Chui)



Picture by Sam Chui



Picture by Sam Chui





Business Class cabin during the transit stop





Back in First Class, the photo-shoot continues



Picture by Sam Chui



Picture by Sam Chui





Picture by Sam Chui



More of the First Class Suite & Seat



Picture by Sam Chui



Picture by Sam Chui





Fully re-stocked in Bangkok





A new set of crew began to make their ways inside the aircraft, and each assumed their respective working positions after a brief handover from the crew that operated the flight from Dubai.

Ms. Zoleka, our motherly-lovin', ultra-charming, and extra-cheerful purser from South Africa, had made her inaugural appearance in the First Class cabin, and her very first task -even before stowing her carry-on rollaway that was trailing behind her in the aisle- was to greet her First Class customers with nothing but momma's love n care!


"Assalamu alaikom!"
"Wa alaikom al salam! I see you know enough Arabic!"
"Come on now, I live in Dubai"
"My name is Zoleka, and I will be with you for the next two hours"
"Nice to meet you! So you must be Sharon's substitute for this flight"
"Indeed, and I was asked to specifically take very good care of you two!"



CONTINUED BELOW



A Stop Away From One-Stop, Is Non-Stop : Airbus A340-500
User currently offlineronerone From Jordan, joined Aug 2004, 1675 posts, RR: 53
Reply 5, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

CONTINUED SERVICE TO HONG KONG




As the crew settled in, pre-departure services began as the Hong Kong-bound premium 5th Freedom traffic made their appearances in the upper deck.



First Class passengers began boarding at 1:55pm





Apart from Sam, myself, and a honeymooning couple that joined from Dubai, the newcomers in the cabin were mostly of Thai origins that seemed to be making their ways to Hong Kong for holidays. Perhaps they even were on this flight for its inaugural-esque intentions; who knows, but at least they seemed to be enjoying their respective First Class suites.

Meanwhile, Noelle from the Philippines -striking, beautiful, humble, and very attractive- made her appearance in the aisle to welcome us on board and introduce herself.

"Good afternoon Mr. Hawi, welcome on board. My name is Noelle and I will be serving you on this sector"
"Can I offer you something to drink before takeoff?"
"May I have a glass of champagne please?"
"Certainly"



My glass of champagne





Perry -from African descent- was equally cheerful and professional, and also introduced herself to us as she offered a selection of newspapers.

"Gentlemen, my name is Perry, and I would like to welcome you on board"
"Along with my colleagues, I will be looking after you this afternoon. Would you care for a newspaper?"
"No. Thank you!"
"My pleasure, may I get offer you another glass of champagne?"
"Yes please"



Vincenzo from Italy was summoned to second my glass of champagne





At 2:10pm, Captain Ian Chetcuti made an announcement to welcome us onboard and inform us that we were soon to be departing for Hong Kong with a flight time of 2 hours and 11 minutes. Following that, an English announcement was made by Zoleka, followed by Arabic, and then Thai.

"Would all ground staff kindly leave the aircraft, this flight is bound for Hong Kong"



Cabin after the boarding bustle





While the crew were readying the cabin for departure, Zoleka was in the cabin introducing herself to each new joiner and addressing each passenger by name. To my eyes, I am seeing this flight to be very Cathay! And we all know that this, to me, is a damn good thing!

"Gentlemen, once again I would like to welcome you on board, but please don't tell me you're gonna sleep again on this flight? It's just two hours!"
"Not to worry, we are not going to miss a thing on this flight"
"It is wonderful to see you two shining and cheerful, after the long flight from Dubai"
"It is also likewise, and your colleagues really took care of us!"
"So sorry about the delay earlier, but this flight is just two hours, so we will try our best to make it up to you"



Vincenzo & Perry conducted a service of Arabic coffee & dates





The doors were eventually closed, and we commenced pushback at 2:30pm. Quietly spooling -and you won't hear it, you'll just expect it- we began our 20 or so minute taxi to the active runway.



At 2:50pm, A6-EDM continued her journey to Hong Kong



Sam fell asleep during takeoff





At cruising altitude when the seatbelt sign was switched off, the crew was released to prepare for the quick service. Perry commenced the service by taking lunch orders.

"Mr. Hawi, can I offer some lunch ?"
"Yes please, I'd like to have the chicken salad to start, chicken tikka for the main course, and let's see later for dessert"
"Very well then. But today we are serving a white chocolate mille-feuille for dessert, and it's delicious!"
"Okay then, I will take you up on that!"
"Would you like anything to drink with your meal?"
"I'll have a Bloody Mary please"

As for Sam, he ordered the salmon for starters, the grilled beef tenderloin for the main course and the assortment of side dishes, in addition to the mille-feuille for dessert.



An excellent Bloody Mary was served with nuts and condiments







After my first glass of Bloody Mary was cleared, my table was set with linen, silverware, a water glass and a breadbasket. A tray was then placed in front of me which contained the side-salad, the starter, dressing, salt & pepper shakers, a bread plate, and a second glass of Bloody Mary. As it was a very short flight, I think it only made perfect sense to have a classy tray service for the meal.



My meal tray



Chicken Salad starter



Condiments



Side salad



Bread



Sam's starter (picture by Sam Chui)





Both our starters were excellent. Sam enjoyed his salmon, while I found my chicken salad flavorful and spicy. I especially enjoyed the bread -as always- which was soft and oven hot.



My chicken tikka arrived as soon as I was finished with my starter





Sam's beef tenderloin (picture by Sam Chui)



Picture by Sam Chui





Again, another pair of excellent meals!

"Mr. Hawi, how was everything?"
"Excellent, thank you"
"You're most welcome. May I clear your table?"
"Yes please"
"Would you like any tea of coffee with dessert?"
"I'll have a cup or coffee please"
"Certainly"

My dessert was served with a small box of Godiva chocolates, and my cup of coffee came with the entire pot which I thought was a great touch!



My dessert & coffee



Heavenly mille feuille



Sam's dessert (picture by Sam Chui)





Our tables were cleared as soon as we were through with the meal service, and we each roamed around the cabin one more time before we were soon due to land in Hong Kong.



Late afternoon cruise (picture by Sam Chui)



Cabin after the meal service





First Class staircase



Me & Zoleka



Sam & Zoleka (picture taken using Sam's camera)





At 5:30pm local time in Hong Kong, our captain made an announcement to inform us that we had reached top of descent. As we were due to land within 30 minutes, the seatbelt sign was switched on and the crew made their final preparations for landing.

As saddening a feeling as it was that this flight was ending, I was equally excited -and admittedly for the worst of all reasons- to get the hell out of this aircraft and smoke a cigarette (I know! addiction is evil!).

During the final stages of the flight, Zoleka handed out inaugural flight certificates to all passengers that had joined in Bangkok, before catching up with us for one final time.

"So. Mr. Chui & Mr. Hawi, the stars of this flight! I really do hope you have enjoyed the flight with us today. See? I told you it wouldn’t take too long!"
"Thank you very much Zoleka, you were all great! Really!"
"It is my pleasure! I trust that you had both received your certificates on the earlier flight?"
"Yes we did"
"Thank you for flying with us, and I must see you again on board one of my flights!"

At exactly 6pm, A6-EDM touched down at Chek Lap Kok, inaugurating Emirates' A380 services to Hong Kong.

As we taxied closer to the gate, two fire trucks were in position on each side of the entryway to the Apron. However still from a significant distance, the fire trucks had already begun releasing water well before the aircraft had arrived at their position.

From my personal experience in such inaugural flight activities, activating the water at such an early stage during the sequence of events can yield the most embarrassing outcome. However, why was I to doubt the abilities and experience of my counterparts at HKIA? Everything was perfect, and the water canon salute we received was a gazillion times better than that during the A380's inaugural at JFK.



Water canon salute at HKIA









Finally docked at the gate





We requested for a visit to the cockpit, and Zuleka instantly approved, but she asked that we wait for a while until most passengers had disembarked.



Cabin after all passengers disembarked



Sam & Noelle (picture taken using Sam Chui's camera)



Me & Noelle (picture by Sam Chui)



This TR was in these bags!



Passengers disembarking



Picture by Sam Chui





We were finally let inside the cockpit, and Zuleka had introduced us to Captain Ian Chetcuti from Italy, and First Officer Mohamed Rahmani from the UAE. It felt like we were in their batchelor's pad as we were instantly invited to 'chill'. Furthermore, without any hesitation, Captain Ian was more than happy to take pictures of us sitting on his seat.

In the midst of our aviation-talk (The FO even knew the company I worked for!!), Mohamed had rolled open the window by his side to take a peek outside at some 50 or so HK ground personnel that seemed like they were waiting for that moment. He waved his inaugural A380 flight to HKG greeting, and he was met with pictures upon pictures by the Hong Kong ground staff. They were just so excited!



Sam in the cockpit (picture taken using Sam Chui's camera)



My turn! (picture by Sam Chui)



Picture by Sam Chui





A R R I V A L
Thanking the flight and cabin crew for their outstanding efforts, we proceeded to exit the aircraft and arrived at HKIA's terminal.

After my much needed cigarette, we proceeded towards immigration where Sam and I had split as I had to queue in line with the rest of the foreigners. One other thing I do not like about this airport -apart from its Terminal 2 concept- is the extremely slow immigration process. The counters never seem to be adequately staffed and there is always a very long queue.

Nevertheless, approximately an hour after we had arrived, I was through with immigration and at the arrivals hall where Sam was waiting, along with the ultra-intelligent and well-spoken Mr. Globetraveller who was anxiously waiting for a full briefing on the flight! He had spent the entire day within the premises of the airport for an all-day session of spotting (and we know exactly why he specifically chose today for this!).



Exterior view of the inaugural flight (picture by Globetraveller)



Picture by Globetraveller



Picture by Globetraveller



Picture by Globetraveller



And finally, our Emirates Chauffer Service! (picture by Sam Chui)





I had spent just under 24 hours in Hong Kong, where the majority of the time was spent with both Sam and Globetraveller. We 'plane-talked' the living daylights out of Hong Kong, and practically planned out Emirates' 20 year business plan, forecasted the airline's fleet configurations, announced the 90 A380 network, and discussed the many different ways one can take advantage of the Skywards program to its full potential.

The next day, the three of us parted ways, and I was onboard a Cathay Pacific A330 flight back to Dubai.



C O N C L U S I O N
This was another one of my favorite experiences of all time. It was not an 'all-out' inaugural flight per se, but it was Sam and me that made it happen. Without any judgment, no finicky critiques, no inconsistency pinpointing, and no whining! In the end, we had the BEST time!

On top of all this, the excellent crew, the professional manner in which they treated their customers, and the truly superb in-flight service was simply an added bonus that made things even better!

I have flown Emirates quite a number of times this year, and from my own experience I can say that they have come quite a long way in comparison with 2005/2006. Long are the days when I consistently had bad flights with Emirates, and I hope that this will remain to be the case!

Finally, I would like to thank Sam Chui and Globetraveller for making this happen! The entire experience on and off the ground wouldn't have been this great without them!


This concludes my Trip Report. I hope that you have enjoyed it; your comments are always welcome!

Regards,
Roni
(This TR will soon be made available on www.samchuiphotos.com)



One final picture taken using Sam Chui's camera



And some goodies from the flight









E Q U I P M E N T
- Camera:
- Canon 50D
- Nikon D300
- Canon IXUS 110

- Lenses:
- Sigma 10-20mm Wide Angle
- Sigma 10mm Fisheye
- Nikkor 10.5mm Fisheye
- Canon 17-85mm



PREVIOUS WORK
This Suite Has Sliding Doors: Emirates F DXB-JNB (by ronerone Sep 5 2010 in Trip Reports)
Transito!: A Connection On TAAG-Angola (B743/B772) (by ronerone Jul 31 2010 in Trip Reports)
Keeping Up With The JETs: 9W Première HKG-DEL-DXB (by ronerone Jul 18 2010 in Trip Reports)
Petra Express!: On Royal Jordanian's A330-200 (by ronerone Jun 11 2010 in Trip Reports)
Suite Redemptions: Cathay Pacific BKK-HKG In F (by ronerone May 14 2010 in Trip Reports)
Uniquely Boutique: Oman Air Business Class To BKK (by ronerone Apr 3 2010 in Trip Reports)
In A Blink Of An Eye: AirAsia X’s A340 At AUH (by ronerone Feb 20 2010 in Trip Reports)
SriLankan Airlines: The Treasure Of Serendib! (by Ronerone Jan 9 2010 in Trip Reports)
Beijing Swire!: Cathay Pacific & Dragonair DXB-PEK (by Ronerone Dec 11 2009 in Trip Reports)
OpenSkies From British Airways: A New Era's End? (by Ronerone Oct 14 2009 in Trip Reports)
Revealing An Underdog: Royal Brunei Business Class (by Ronerone Sep 3 2009 in Trip Reports)
The Singapore Airlines Cliché (by Ronerone Jul 27 2009 in Trip Reports)
A380: Qantas Proper To SIN City (by Ronerone Jul 6 2009 in Trip Reports)
Welcome To Terminal 3: Etihad Airways AUH-SYD (by Ronerone Jul 6 2009 in Trip Reports)
5th Freedom Of The Air: Kenya Airways HKG-BKK-HKG (by Ronerone Mar 31 2009 in Trip Reports)
Cathay Pacific: First Class On The Legacy Milk-Run (by Ronerone Jan 26 2009 in Trip Reports)
Inspirations On A Narrowbody: Etihad To Amman (by Ronerone Nov 28 2008 in Trip Reports)
Malaysia Boleh!: On The Malaysian Airline System (by Ronerone Oct 28 2008 in Trip Reports)
Pearls & Diamonds: Inspired By Etihad Airways (by Ronerone Sep 12 2008 in Trip Reports)
The Future Has Arrived: EK A380 Inaugural Flights (by Ronerone Aug 4 2008 in Trip Reports)
Syrian Special Performance, Featuring Sam Chui (by Ronerone May 23 2008 in Trip Reports)
This Is Royal Jordanian! (by Ronerone Apr 12 2008 in Trip Reports)
Ultra-Competitive, Ultra-Long Haul: EY Vs EK (by Ronerone Mar 21 2008 in Trip Reports)
Suvarnabhumi, The Etihad Way! (by Ronerone Jan 18 2008 in Trip Reports)
Cathay Delight: A Trip To Asia's World City (by Ronerone Oct 5 2007 in Trip Reports)
Etihad: Pearl 2 AMM, Coral Right Back Pt 2 PixVidz (by Ronerone Jul 5 2007 in Trip Reports)
Etihad: Pearl 2 AMM, Coral Right Back Pt 1 PixVids (by Ronerone Jul 4 2007 in Trip Reports)
CX: JFK-HKG-DXB In Y A346/772 (Lots Of Pics/Vids) (by Ronerone Aug 28 2006 in Trip Reports)



F L I C K R
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jy-rwh79/sets/72157625175980444/

F A C E B O O K
R. Wadei Hawi
Please mention who you are when (and if) you want to add me as a friend


YOU TUBE
Username: ronerone
I have a range of taxi, takeoff, landing, announcement, and safety videos posted. Feel free to view them!



THE END



A Stop Away From One-Stop, Is Non-Stop : Airbus A340-500
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6938 posts, RR: 77
Reply 6, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi Roni,

I'm stunned, this is probably the best report you have ever posted. Simply fantastic pictures and very well-written - what else can one ask for?

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
%u201COh by the way, these are your new boarding passes, you%u2019ve both been upgraded to First Class%u201D

Great. If I need to get sick in order to be upgraded to First, I wouldn't hesitate to do so...  

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
Looking outside, we were absolutely taken away by the fact that our aircraft for tonight%u2019s flight was A6-EDM.

Always such a pleasure to board a brand new aircraft, isn't it?

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Condition: 2 days old, delivered to Emirates on September 28th 2010.

Hm, almost. It flew for the first time in April.  

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Tonight, such sounds as grunts, gasps, yawns, and phlegm-clears were quite easily heard as A6-EDM's engines uttered a quiet roar that seemed too far away to belong to this aircraft.

Terrible, isn't it?

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
and for just a small moment as we looked at each other with surprise, we were wishing to be on board that Amsterdam-bound flight.

So EK's A380 First Class wasn't good enough for you guys? Of course I know what you mean.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineSloAir From Slovenia, joined Jul 2010, 339 posts, RR: 5
Reply 7, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

When I was reading your last trip report I was thinking to myself that you can not do a better job writting a report... but you have done it again   Amazing pictures!

I am glad to hear that Mr. Chui was OK, I am sure that a flight on an Emirates Airbus 380 in first class was the best medicine for him 

Thank you for this amazing trip report!



Visit Ljubljana
User currently offlineatalanta89 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2009, 54 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Oh my god, what a lovely TR. Congratulations for your fantastic photos. I think i will feel sick during my next flight to Dubai to obtain an upgrade to first class  

Congratulations!


User currently offline767747 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1965 posts, RR: 24
Reply 9, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Wow, what a report! How lucky that you received an upgrade on your flight. Every bit of the trip was documented wonderfully; I felt like I was there with you!

I am always so amazed by the vast amount of food that is available in the lounge. Everything looks so good, I don't know how you don't get full before getting on the plane!  

Thanks for sharing

Matthew


User currently offlineglobetraveller From Germany, joined Apr 2008, 379 posts, RR: 20
Reply 10, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hey Roni,

I had been waiting for this little gem for some time now and I am glad you took the time to make this TR so special. The excitement felt by both you and Sam is evident throughout the report - just as it was evident when you arrived in Hong Kong.

It really is impressive how great the EK crew was on your flight - you clearly landed very high up on the consistency curve!

It was also good to read about the finer details of your flight - I think both you and Sam conveyed the headlines pretty well when we met in Hong Kong!  

Thank you for all your efforts and hopefully see you again soon!

Globetraveller


User currently offlineinitious From Singapore, joined Dec 2008, 1066 posts, RR: 6
Reply 11, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hey Roni,

It seems like EK has yet again made a F Class passenger leaving the plane satisfied. I'll be flying EK next March on the BKK-HKG leg and was pondering if I should do F Class BKK-HKG (since it's a day flight) and J Class HKG-BKK instead of going J class both legs. After reading your report, I know I should just go ahead and book F Class! Wonder if they provide amenity kits for F passengers for the BKK-HKG flight?

Daniel



One way I will fly around the world!
User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1341 posts, RR: 5
Reply 12, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
I received a tweet on my phone by my favorite travel guide –The Airline Route Blog-

Is this the one www.airlineroute.net?

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
Now we all know that the words ‘Hong’ and ‘Kong’ are music to my ears

Thankfully not "King" and "Kong" lol

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
The terminal at this time of night was even less crowded
Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
There was a transit flow but it was far less overwhelming than the morning stampede. You could actually enjoy the terminal, but not for too long as the midnight arrival dumps were gradually peaking into the building.

It's quiet outside the terminal, but the masses are waiting in the transit and departure gate areas!

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
Escaping the progressing crowds, we decided to seek shelter inside the Emirates Business Class lounge for some peace and quiet.

First Class snobs lol. I guess the perks of flying First

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
When Sam had returned at 2am, he was beginning to feel rather sick. Not sure whether it was exhaustion or food poisoning, but his condition began to worsen a little, his face was rather pale, and his stomach pain was not going away.

Probably was not a good idea to get a full massage after a full meal!

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
“The flight will soon begin boarding, but I think we have enough time. I’ve informed the gate and we will hold the flight for you”

I wonder if they would have held the flight if it had been someone in the other classes. I guess one of the perks of flying First.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
here was a lot of activity going on at the gate, and for some reason the variety of different congregations felt like I was at the entrance of an all-night dance rave that was hosting thousands of club-goers.

Well as far as club-goers go, it was going to Bangkok afterall.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Peeping behind me through the aisle, masses were marching towards the opposite end of the fuselage

First Class snobs again lol

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
seriously now, where do these passengers go?

Still shopping at Dubai Duty Free, and not responding to ground agents yelling their names (to join the flight)!!

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Tonight, such sounds as grunts, gasps, yawns, and phlegm-clears were quite easily heard

I guess a baby crying would sound like it was being played on surround sound. But then again are babies allowed to fly first class? lol

Quoting ronerone (Reply 3):
anxiously waited for my appointment of retreat at the Spa.
Quoting ronerone (Reply 3):
"Mr. Hawi, the shower has been prepared for you"
Quoting ronerone (Reply 3):
It was my first time being completely nude on an aircraft, and it felt so liberating!

This made me laugh, but thank you for your honesty with this, which probably others have been a bit more reserved to disclose!

Quoting ronerone (Reply 3):
One thing is for sure -and the anti-EK's may think otherwise- is that the conversations one can have with your typically good Emirates crew are always quite real and very every-day. I think they can be quite a fun and down-to-earth bunch when on a good flight (and my experiences seem to see much more of the good than the bad of late).

This is especially true of the EK crews, they always love a good chat, and do take the time to talk to you. It's nice you got a fairly good lot but unfortunately the reports on www.airlinequality.com seem to be showing consistent reports of decline in the premium cabins. But then the A380 crews are known to be a lot better than the mainline fleet. I too can only wish EK continues to be on the upward trend, as they do have so much to offer in terms of other aspects of the flight.


User currently offlinevivekman2006 From India, joined May 2006, 542 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Brilliant Brilliant TR Roni & Sam! Excellent photos to cover every aspect of the journey.

What a fantastic crew and service you guys experienced. Looks like EK pulled out all the stops for this inaugural flight!  

Great job guys. Thank you for sharing this report.

- Vivek


User currently offlineojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2988 posts, RR: 25
Reply 14, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Ahlan ya Habibi,

A superb TR and once again please accept my apologies that I had to cancel my trip at the last moment.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 1):
A quick moment of obsession at the Emirates FIDS

I can stare at the FIDS for hours.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Welcome to First Class on the Emirates A380 (picture by Sam Chui)

Hey since when have EK hired you as their brand ambassador? BTW that's a pretty professional pose .

Quoting ronerone (Reply 3):
The rest is just a space of heaven that only the following pictures can describe.

Totally agreed, the premium experience of the A380 looks outstanding from so far all the TR's I read.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 4):
I love taking this shot during transit stops

Yes, I infact enjoyed those awful Gulf AIr routing in the 90s when you just had to stop in one more GCC point before heading to BOM. DOH - AUH/MCT/BAH/ - BOM either one of the 3 would be transit stops. It used to be fun running around the aircraft as a kid.


Once again a well drafted TR, and thanks for sharing.



A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
User currently offlineUAL747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

That first pic is AMAAZING!

User currently offlineEK773 From Malta, joined Jul 2004, 237 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Excellant reading to be had on the 25th anniversary of Emirates. Shukran Roni for the insight into your travels.

User currently offlineEkA380 From Egypt, joined Aug 2008, 120 posts, RR: 6
Reply 17, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Roni , the name said it all , it took me so much time to read your TR ( I hate you unnecessary distractions :S ) and I have to say that this is by far the best trip report I have ever read! and you know that I am as picky as anything. There is so much to talk about , Firstly its really nice to see you guys working together - you , Sam and Globaltraveller , the result is phenomenal .

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
Join Sam Chui and myself as we take you on a trip of spectacular madness

You sure took us 
Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
At the counter at 10:25am, we handed our documents to the check-in agent and informed her about our requests for an upgrade to First Class

I just wanted to point out the 10:25 am thingy thats knew   you can check in more than 12 hours before your flight - I know you can  
Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
. You could actually enjoy the terminal, but not for too long as the midnight arrival dumps were gradually peaking into the building.

True , I almost got run over hahahaha they just keep flowing all night long , but I have to agree the F&B check in area is quite sleepy from like 6 to 11pm   In fact outflow of traffic is very slow at that time


Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
However, on our way to the medical clinic Sam cracked a smile and said “hey Roni, take my picture on the wheelchair!!!” All the paramedics broke into laughter when they saw me taking pictures of Sam on a wheelchair.

Comical ! :P

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
On board this flight, was a set of 23 cabin crew which included the purser -Sharon Wong from the Philippines-, three SFS' scattered throughout the aircraft, and one Cabin Service Attendant (CSA), whose task was primarily the up-keeping of the onboard Spa.

Wow you sure were well taken care of 3 SFS's hahaha , oh btw , I had a question other than the two spa rooms or whatever they are called there are 2 or 3 lav's?

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
As Emirates’ ultra-latest bird at the time, it was a very exciting discovery and for once our ‘I am only into classic planes’ type theories suddenly did not matter anymore

At last u admitted :P , classic planes are cool but nothing beats a brand new A380 or 77W 
Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
As it was a very short flight, I think it only made perfect sense to have a classy tray service for the mea

I agree- a classy tray service is more then sufficient , but it should stay classy , I also liked the way Sam removed all the condiments from his tray and placed the bread basket instead  
Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
Water canon salute at HKIA

Thats really cool - a water salute from a new perspective , well I guess it makes up for not having a window - that was a very brave decision taken by you both - well worth it though , I love all the photos that were taken from the partition between the seats!

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
We 'plane-talked' the living daylights out of Hong Kong, and practically planned out Emirates' 20 year business plan, forecasted the airline's fleet configurations, announced the 90 A380 network, and discussed the many different ways one can take advantage of the Skywards program to its full potential.

Hahahaha , what better way to spend a day than to gossip about EK   it rhymes !

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
I have flown Emirates quite a number of times this year, and from my own experience I can say that they have come quite a long way in comparison with 2005/2006. Long are the days when I consistently had bad flights with Emirates, and I hope that this will remain to be the case!

Well I am glad that there are so many positive Trip Reports about EK stating that as well , I haven't flown on them as much as you did , but I could still feel it .

I am quite confident that my limited vocab will not do you any justice - I loved all the pictures and the editing is superb. You keep exceeding my expectations with every new TR and one lesson I have learn't is not to set a limit on your creativity and passion . Awesome work - That was definitely a distinction  
Cheers
Islam Darwish
( A big fan of EK & I am not being sarcastic)



Always go the extra mile , its worth it ;)
User currently offline777ORD From United States of America, joined May 2010, 546 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

absolutely perfect TR. Almost makes me want to go fly them right now! Forget work, just go! lol

User currently offlineEconojetter From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 430 posts, RR: 5
Reply 19, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

First of all, thank you for such a magnificently bubbly report. The spirit is infectious; I felt rejuvenated reading this after a tiring day. Great photos from all three contributors too.

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
to the medical clinic Sam cracked a smile and said “hey Roni, take my picture on the wheelchair!!!” All the paramedics broke into laughter when they saw me taking pictures of Sam on a wheelchair.

Sam manages to look this enthusiastic while feeling unwell... I am impressed. No need to visit the pharmacy after the consultation. Somehow the Iraqi ground agent had already prescribed the best medication.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Registration: A6-EDM
Condition: 2 days old, delivered to Emirates on September 28th 2010.

What a factory fresh plane to be on!

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
Introducing the Emirates onboard shower & spa

Ah I am most curious about this unique offering.

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
There has been a lot of debate on the 5-minute time-limit on the Emirates shower. The mechanism behind this, is that you are allowed a total of 30 minutes to spend inside the spa doing whatever you wish (and mind you, a maximum of two people per session is the rule!)

5 minutes, while not luxurious, is good enough to get clean refreshed. For one person. Two people per session... hmmm

Quoting ronerone (Reply 2):
It was my first time being completely nude on an aircraft, and it felt so liberating!

Just like that, having witnessed so much at such a tender age, A6-EDM was never the same again...  
Quoting ronerone (Reply 4):
and her very first task -even before stowing her carry-on rollaway that was trailing behind her in the aisle- was to greet her First Class customers with nothing but momma's love n care!

That says a lot about her passion for service. EK has been scoring lately in this respect. I hope they keep it up.


User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1341 posts, RR: 5
Reply 20, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Looks like you sent this report out, just one day too early....Would have been classic had you to send it out instead on Oct 25th, the 25th Anniversary of Emirates!!

http://airlineroute.net/2010/10/25/ek-w85/

What an honour that the Inaugural flight was DXB-KHI. I can still picture the full page advertisment in the newspapers about their new service! And how far they have now reached. Well done, Emirates!!!


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1946 posts, RR: 8
Reply 21, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Amazing trip report!

I still have mixed feelings about Emirates, but the service you received is just impeccable. Amazing flight!

Thanks again for sharing the report! Also thanks for showing amenities.

Carfield


User currently offlineRamblinMan From United States of America, joined Oct 2010, 1138 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

An outstanding read, sir, well done! Seems you had a very enjoyable time, too.

User currently offlineBA319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8588 posts, RR: 54
Reply 23, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hi Roni,

Looks like you and Sam had a blast & this could well be your finest post to date!

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
I randomly requested if there was any possibility to use the First Class Lounge given that we have the possibility of this upgrade looming in the background.

“Gentlemen, it would be my pleasure to offer you the facilities of our First Class lounge, please present your boarding pass to my colleague Reem inside the lounge and she will be more than happy to assist”

- Now that's not a bad start, certainly shows excellent customer service.

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
There is no feeling like riding a fresh plane, whether it’s far too commercial for our liking or not.

- So true, not quite the feeling as flying on something for the first time, but special regardless.

Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
It was my first time being completely nude on an aircraft, and it felt so liberating!

- I know the feeling, had a similar experience first time I took a shower in an airport lounge  
Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
One other thing I do not like about this airport -apart from its Terminal 2 concept- is the extremely slow immigration process. The counters never seem to be adequately staffed and there is always a very long queue.

- Yep, not keen on T2 and yes, the immigration process has been pretty slow every time I've entered.

Your whole EK experience in First looked great, service, food, presentation, staff interaction, just as a great airline should be, just a shame not all EK flights live up to this standard.

It was good to read Sam was ok, that must have been a bit of a nervous time!

Best Wishes

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 27308 posts, RR: 60
Reply 24, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hey Roni ,
10/10 to you and Sam. . This has to be I think my favourite report by you . Crisp photos and such an amusing read. Loved it from start to finish. Your quality on the TR forum as I have said before is second to none. Its certainly a case of quality over quantity  
Quoting ronerone (Thread starter):
Sam at the Medical Clinic - “Upgrade? I’m not sick anymore!”

LOL... just the medicine he needed ..

Again Roni well done and keep up the fantastic work.

Philip


25 globalflyer : Hi Roni, that was awesome. Funny thing is I left HKG for ATL on Oct 1st and there were signs and chit chat all over about the new arrival! I left at 1
26 caleb1 : Roni, Quite simply, this TR is your Magnum Opus! Truly amazing from beginning to end. Most of the time, my mouth was agape reading this masterpiece. M
27 EC001 : Hi there Roni, Fantastic TR! Again!! the photos are fabulous, as well as your full insight into Emirates premium product! I loved the fact that you to
28 Post contains images 9V-SPJ : Nice report! One of these days, I will buy an F ticket on Emirates from JFK on the A380 9V-SPJ
29 netdhaka : Excellent report. Pictures are excellent too. Thanks for mentioning the equipments as I was wondering that!
30 Post contains images N178UA : What an unforgettable Inaugural Trip !! What an unforgettable Trip Report !! It was a truely double delight able to fly the inaugural EK A380 flight t
31 Quokka : Hi Roni, What an excellent trip report and photo selection. I am glad that Sam's mystery illness did not prevent the two of you being able to continue
32 Post contains images Tigerguy : Ahoy-hoy, roni! I've got to say, that was one heck of a report! I only have one regret after reading it: I now know exactly what I'm missing... Even s
33 Post contains images Cysafan : Hey Roni , It 's Chan here! Thanks for an excellent trip report !! I guess , you and Sam put quite a lot of pounds on the flight alone. It was a mirac
34 triple7man : Excellent TR. Although I am a 777 fan, this TR makes me want to try the A380. I would have to do it in economy class as I am an AA retiree travelling
35 Post contains images henkybaby : One of the best illustrated reports I have ever read on here. Each and every picture is well framed, properly exposed and excellent in colour and cont
36 The777Man : Hi Roni! Absolutely fantastic trip report wtih amazing pictures! Great to see a report with you flying with someone else and that person being Sam Chu
37 Post contains images CamiloA380 : Hi Roni! This is one of the best TRs i've read! Very special too, with fantastic pics from you and Sam Chui ! Awesome! I absolutely love the new-plane
38 Post contains images ronerone : Dear All, Many thanks for your great comments, which are very much appreciated! Hi PH!! Good to hear from you, and many thanks for your comments! I am
39 Post contains images ronerone : Heya Camilo! Thanks for dropping by! Haha .. happens quite a lot with EK too! Cheers, Roni
40 Post contains images Luftfahrer : Excellent report as usual, Roni. It definitely transpires that you and Sam had a good time on EK. I just love the bar onboard, it must be a nice place
41 Post contains images akhmad : Hi Roni, All I can say is just WOW! I can echo other fellows that this is the best report ever of yours. Thanks for inspiring me how to do better in m
42 Post contains images ELAL772 : what an amazing trip!!! I would not book it simply due to the depression I would sink in to post flight. I mean common, I could live in there happily
43 Post contains images flightsimboy : That would be two people per session, in EACH shower spa The CSA will probably be keeping a keen eye out that both don't land up in the same one
44 AI151 : Hey Roni, First and foremost congrats to you for writing one of the.....if not the BEST TR I've read on A.net. The pictures Sam and yourself took are
45 Post contains images N178UA : Your comment is spot on ! After the inaugural, the next evening I flown a Air China A321 from Shenzhen to Beijing in seat 28L. There were only a smal
46 tbloemink : Excellent trip report! I have really enjoyed reading it! Lucky you, upgrade to first, and A6-EDM, well done EK :P TB
47 Post contains images ronerone : Hi Luftfahrer, Many thanks for your comments! We definitely had a blast! It is the perfect place to stretch out on a long flight! My ankles normally
48 gabrielchew : Great report! I hadn't realised that the A380 was now flying between HKG and BKK. Well, I missed my first ever flight this week because I was stuck at
49 Post contains images SR 103 : Roni, No words can do this trip report justice, you really are the king of trip reports! Congratulations you have outdone yourself. Your going to have
50 burj : Roni - I was down in Atlanta visiting Delta HQ and saw this trip report but waited to read it until after I got back and could REALLY read it! A lot o
51 flightsimboy : You kidding me, right....A Middle Eastern airline allowing that....You may want to check that agin, Roni! A drink that detoxifies LOL
52 Post contains images ronerone : Hi gabrielchew, The EK A380 sure is flying that route Not good! Were you rebooked on a later flight? Thanks Anosh! Very kind words! Come on now! YOU
53 ronerone : I was told that some couples -old Caucasian men with young Thai girls- were using the same spa together! hahah Cheers, Roni
54 flightsimboy : Well then they have a Las Vegas philosophy...what happens in the spa, stays in the spa LOL (but it appears, it didn't stay in the spa too long!!)....
55 Post contains images ronerone : What happens in the spa, spreads all over a.net
56 cpd : That's a superb photo. Love it. What an awesome trip report. Well done to you and Sam! And look at the meals on board that plane - amazing. Even the
57 ronerone : Thanks for dropping by Chris. glad you enjoyed the report. My thoughts exactly! Cheers, Roni
58 Post contains links flightsimboy : So when do we get to see a trip report on Qatar Airways??? Hopefully the number of green check marks in the Qatar Airways reviews will encourage you t
59 akhmad : Well, it has been three years ago since my partner and I were visiting my brother-in-law Down Under...
60 Post contains links and images N178UA : Hi guys A music theme version of the original trip report can now be enjoyed from http://www.samchuiphotos.com/EK384/ Cheers Sam
61 MSS658 : Wonderfull report, It seems like you had a good time. Excellent pics as well.
62 Post contains images ryanair!!! : Salam... Knowing me, I would pig out at the lounge before doing it all over again in the plane. This is so TG, isn't it? There's something just so opu
63 jamesnz : Hey Roni Thank you so much for sharing your trip! Your trip reports are my favourite to read, and always leave me inspired to buckle down and work har
64 concordechild : Great report Roni the product does look very good... although jus got back rom the SQ suites on the A380 and think they are probably still the best F
65 Post contains images ronerone : Thanks MSS658! We had a fantastic time indeed! Salam back at ya I am sure TG was an influence somewhere along the way. LoL .. this 'food-conscious' R
66 timb777 : Excellent report! I really like the photography, its of a very high quality. I think the fisheye lense is great for many shots such as those of the ba
67 lhr380 : WOW WOW WOW What more can I say. That was a fantastic Trip Report. Stunning pictures, brilliant detail, what more can you say.. Thank you for a very g
68 Post contains images ronerone : Hi timb777, I will try to work something out for the return journey! Many thanks for your kind words Dan! Cheers, Roni
69 aalh004 : Hi Roni, I spent more than an hour just looking through the pictures over and over agian. Just love it! I noticed from your business class pictures th
70 Post contains images LH4116 : Hello Roni! A superb and excellent report as always! Pics looked great, and especially the ones taken with Sam's camera (no offense ) It took me ages
71 Post contains images lh526 : So, judging from the BPs Sams first name acutally is Kaising ?
72 noelg : Absolutely amazing. I'm speechless, that is without a doubt one of the best trip reports I have ever read. Thank you so much for sharing!
73 Post contains images NZ107 : Hey Roni, I'm absolutely blown away by this masterpiece! Definitely the best from you in my opinion. Thanks so much for covering it with such detail a
74 Post contains images ronerone : Hi Ahmed, I think the new aircraft (or those that have been newly retrofitted) have the wood design on the wireless controllers. I think i may have n
75 Elevate : Great report, Roni! Thanks for taking the time and putting so much effort in for our benefit! Having experienced the magic of EK upper-class service i
76 777way : Roni does it again, lovely pics and report, Oh and for some unknown reason I thought you were East Asian uptil now, LOLOL! where exactly are you from?
77 Post contains images nethkt : TOGETHER WE CAN DANCE IN THE DARK - 'lady GAGA' 10 10 10, First class all the way DXB-BKK-HKG! Super awesome. Look at those food! and the 'sex and cit
78 Post contains links and images N178UA : Hi Nethkt Yes, you got the theme 100% right I believe so. It is written on the drink menu, but try your luck at the onboard lounge, flirt with the FA
79 Post contains images nethkt : WOW, now I've got a respond from legendary, Sam Chui! I am very happy now! I am a huge fan of you! Just like lady gaga to me. I was actually at her co
80 NewYorkCityBoi : I have a question: Does the Emirates Chauffer Service offer to first class only or Business class as well?? since your tickets are upgraded from the J
81 Post contains images ronerone : Thanks Sam! Glad you enjoyed it, and hope you enjoy your EK flights! Hi 777way! Does the Jordanian flag next to my name not tip it off for you? Hi Ne
82 Post contains images KHI747 : Three words to describe this TR Epic Epic Epic Congratulations on making us feel that we were on this inaugural flight as well honestly.So in 10 years
83 NewYorkCityBoi : Sorry Roni, just one more question: They do not serve caviar on First? I do not see any from the trip reports... Tum
84 ixemctdca : After years of lurking I finally paid for a membership to post a comment on one of your awesome trip reports a few years ago. This one has beaten that
85 Post contains images ronerone : Thanks for your kind words KHI747! Hope your wife enjoyed the TR too Thank you for understanding haha. There is nothing like that buzz of a cigarette
86 lukeyboy95 : Hi Roni. That was a cracking read and it seems as though you and Sam really tag-teamed that flight. Having two Anet photographers, and a 3rd on the gr
87 a1ring23 : WOW Roni, that is all. I don't know what else to say. This is your best report, ever. Thanks for sharing, Pete
88 airbuseric : Hi Roni, this is truly one of the best tripreports I've ever read and the picture quality is fantastic once again. I don't go in details on the servic
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