LX 182 BKK-SIN Lv1510 Ar1830 Airbus A340-300 SA)">HB-JMC
Despite Thai Airways being ground agents for many of these airlines, no check-in could take place until that specific TG ground agent for that specific airline arrived. I guess TG only trained certain amount of people for specific airlines, but anyway, as Swiss is a Star Alliance member, TG should be familiar with their systems. Anyway, one can’t expect too much out of TG! Swiss still uses Cathay Pacific lounge, and I decided to stick with it, as I was familiar with it, and I am just not fond of TG, even though the new lounge was nice according to various pictures.
The aircraft arrived a bit late from Zurich today, and therefore our departure time was moved back ten minutes. Knowing how efficient these European airlines are, I arrived at the gate around 2:30pm, and at 2:48pm, boarding began with the folks from Zurich first, and then the usual F/J/Star Alliance Gold, and then row number.
It was not my first trip with Swiss First, but it was a while. My last trip was with Swiss Asia from Bangkok to Taipei, and that flight was great. With the new Swiss, I did not expect much, but the F/As proved to be some of nicest people. They were always there to take good care of you, and chatted you up about their home country. Once on board, the F/A immediately offered me a glass of champagne and opened a new bottle just for me, and let me did a wine test too. Unfortunately, not much amenities, such as array of Piarie Products as well as amenity kits are offered anymore, but headsets were passed out, as well as a nice menu featuring Tocino in the cover – the Italian-speaking part, if I am not mistaken. The seat is incredible and you can see from the pictures, and I guess the only problem is the lack of privacy of the seat. Other than that, it is smartly designed and very comfortable.
Door was closed at 3:18pm, and we pushed back a minute later. We took off from R/W21R at 3:29pm. Flying time was two hours and two minutes. As expected, only a light meal was served, but the first two courses were great. I had the house salad as a starter, which features fresh Mesclun greens, as well as shredded carrots, and I picked French Vinaigrette dressing. Choice of breads included croissants, brioche, loaf slices, and various crackers and brown bread. For the main course, I had the red snapper, which was tasty, and both courses had unbelievable presentations. The only disappointment was the dessert plate, which featured a regular fruit tart, a cake of sort, and a walnut cake slice. Personal TV was the interactive kind and various comedies and short subjects are featured on this short flight. Descent soon began at 6:01pm Singapore time (an hour ahead of BKK), and hot towels were once again passed out. After wishing me a good trip, we landed at R/W2L at 6:31pm and parked at gate C25 a few minutes later.
Here is the wine list and menu transcript:
Bangkok to Singapore
Fresh seasonal salad
Thinly Sliced beef fillet
Oyster sauce, sautéed vegetables and steamed rice
White wine sauce, mixed vegetable julienne, tomatoes, asparagus, and potatoes
Espresso and a selection of coffees and teas
Prestige Cuvee Allegra 1999, Jaquardt, France
Bianco del Ticino DOC Donnay 2003, G.Brivio SA, Mendrisio, Ticino, Switzerland
Chablis AC 1er Cru Les Lys 2004, Domaine William Fevre, France
Sauvignon Blanc DOC Collection Otto Graf Huyn 2005, Kellerei Gries, Bolzano, South Tyrol, Italy
Rosso del Ticino DOC Vigna D’Antan 2003, G.Brivio SA, Mendrisco, Ticino, Switzerland
Gevrey-Chambertin AC, Clos des Varoilles, 1er Cru 2002, Domaine de Varoilles, France
Pomino Rosso DOC Castello di Pomino 2000, Marchesi de’ Frescobaldi, Tuscany, Italy
Sauternes AC Les Sables d’Or 2003, France, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Muscadelle
After this wonderful trip, I know my UA miles will definitely go for a Swiss First Class trip.
SQ 468 SIN-CMB Lv2245 Arr0020+1 Boeing 777-200ER 9V-SQN
Finally come to the final segment of the day, I headed straight to the Silver Kris Lounge and received my onward boarding pass to Colombo, as well as having them tracing the bags. The agents were pleasant as usual, and then I headed to the lounge. Yes, SQ F lounge is definitely not as great as CX and TG’s respective flagship lounges, but real food is offered and I like the unlimited supplies of Evian water bottles. For tonight, there were miso soup and vegetable soup. Regarding miso soup, the spring onions, seaweed, and tofu should be placed on the side for us to add. There are some kinds of goulash, and the usual hot savories, as well as fruit, cheese, dessert, and Asian/Singaporean dishes.
Boarding began at 10:13pm at gate E27, despite the screen showing the flight is closing. Changi airport really needs to work on conveying accurate information. I know airlines like to make sure things run on time and the system may design with that in mind, but soon, people will realize that the screen is incorrect at best and ignores the sign. That will defeat the purpose. Well there were three F passengers, and the crews were excellent as usual. They were smiling and warm, and made great small talks with me. I really don’t know why folks think that they are robotic and I have more indifferent crew on other US major airlines than SQ. The load was light in all cabins due to some holidays at Sri Lanka. We pushed back late due to some “no show” passengers, but we landed early due to a nice tail wind. We took off from Runway 2C at 11:10pm. Flying time was three hours and eleven minutes. Unfortunately the air show was not working today and could not get the attitude information.
The other two passengers declined the meal service and F/As passed out the first beverage order, as well as mini Evian water bottles immediately, as well as the signature hot towel. Then they brought my special Book the Cook service. I ordered the Kyo-Kaiseki meal today. I actually high recommended pre-ordering the meals because the selection is usually pretty light and unimpressive due to the late night nature of the flight. Well the Kyo-Kaiseki meal was actually not as good as CX, but is decent enough. I am sure the Kaiseki meals on normal Japanese bound flights are different. It was served in three courses.
First, it has the appetizer course (so-called). It features a dish with shrimp, deep fried Taro, bean curd roll, fish cake, and some marinated budrocks, and then there is a dish of somen (cold noodles), as well as a dumpling in a sesame sauce, and sashimi (tuna and white fish). Then the second course is the main entrée featuring a grilled sea bass with chopped ginger and vegetable sauce, a bowl of rice topped with chopped cooked fish, a pickle dish, a bowl of dark miso soup, boiled/stewed pork belly with daikon, and vegetable, and a cold dish featuring squid. The final course is a nice panna cotta dessert topped with strawberry and kiwi sauce.
The F/As were very friendly and served me green tea continuously, as well as Dom. They were both very nice and kept on promoting the nonstop Newark flight after finding out I am from the city. I also found out that they had three days at Newark and they got to stay in a nice hotel at Manhattan. We talked about shopping at Soho.
I took a nap afterward, and soon we began our landing preparation. We landed on R/W32 at 11:51pm local (CMB is an hour and half behind from SIN). It was my real “arrival” experience at Colombo. The immigration line was not busy at all but could imagine a longer line at busier times. The baggage claim area was relatively small and the bags came out in about twenty minutes. The airport was under lots of construction, but thankfully I ordered a car service from the hotel (which is recommendable due to problems with Colombo taxies and recommended by various tourist guides). Yes it costs $40+ USD, but well worth it for safety purposes, especially the Sri Lankan police will stop cars for security checks. The hotel itself is fine and like a different community. Food is charged at regular hotel price. The Japanese restaurant is a bit pricey but the buffet is not too bad. Of course there is no fancy spread, but the price is okay for a NYC person like myself.