ContinentalGuy
Topic Author
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Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 4:14 am

Wouldn't it be great if a 747-400 could have seats on the lower deck and a restaurant on he upper level? Why hasn't an airline tried that yet? There would still be inflight meals but for those in First/Business there would be a gourmet restaurant.
 
B742
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 4:19 am

Sounds great, but airlines want to make money!

Seats = Money

Personaly I would like the idea, but I don't think it would ever happen!

Rob!  wave 
 
AeroWesty
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 4:24 am

Quoting ContinentalGuy (Thread starter):
a 747-400 could have seats on the lower deck and a restaurant on he upper level? Why hasn't an airline tried that yet?

They did. Pan Am had the upper deck of their 747's as the dining room for First Class, and as a lounge outside of mealtimes.
International Homo of Mystery
 
dtwclipper
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 4:26 am

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 2):
They did. Pan Am had the upper deck of their 747's as the dining room for First Class, and as a lounge outside of mealtimes.

And it was wonderful! It was very short lived, but I did catch one flight with this service!
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PA110
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 4:53 am

PA, as well as many early operators of the 747 classic had special use configurations for the upper deck. PA, LH, SN, AT, AA, NW, CI, SQ, IR all had lounges of one type or another. Almost all were converted to regular passenger seating within a few years. SN kept their lounge on the 747-100 because regular passenger seating would have required strengthening the floor.

I've not seen any non-conventional seating on 744's, although SV's 743's had a very large lounge on the upper deck for a short while.
It's been swell, but the swelling has gone down.
 
pavlin
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:13 am

It would be a nice place to eat, but the food would still suck.
 
pgtravel
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:17 am

As has already been well-noted, many airlines have tried this in the past, when the 747 first came out. When it comes right down to it, the airlines are able to make more money by putting extra seats to sell up there than they can by just having a dining room. If First and Business class passengers were willing to pay so much more than they do now just to have a dining room that it would make up for the loss of seats, they would do it. Unfortunately, that just isn't the reality.
 
deltadc9
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:28 am

I remember the bar on the United 747's in the early 70's. I was a kid, but it was something to me because in Indiana, minors are not allowed in bars even escorted.

I also remember those flights were not nearly full, once they were, I imagine them looking for places for more seats with no sentimental feelings at all.
Dont take life too seriously because you will never get out of it alive - Bugs Bunny
 
ContinentalGuy
Topic Author
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:28 am

What if a special ticket with dining room access was sold at a higher price.
 
dutchjet
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:30 am

Quoting ContinentalGuy (Reply 8):
What if a special ticket with dining room access was sold at a higher price.

How much extra would you pay?
 
LatinPlane
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:58 am

In fact, the reason why the cockpit of the 747 is on the second floor and the basic generation of 747s only had three windows in the hump is because Pan Am specifically wanted a plane that had a restaurant like place where first class passengers could go and have a luxurious dinner. Secondly, it was believed that the 747s would be superseded by the Super Sonic airplanes like the concorde and when the 747s became out of style they would most likely be converted into freighters so the planes would be able to carry the maximum amount of cargo all the way up to its nose.

There is a website which is dedicated to Pan Am's service that has pictures of the upper deck cabin while the F/As were serving food. Can someone post the link, because I can't find it right now.

 Smile LatinPlane
Pan Am - The World's Most Experienced Airline.
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 6:14 am

In todays world of economics...it'll never happen.

Our (CO) DC-10-10s had pubs (an area at the 2L boarding door with 4 seats in a row facing the pub area, 4 seats at a bar and a booth with 4 seats - 2 across from each other. That lasted till we needed the seats for revenue. It was awesome and flight attendants and customers loved it.

I believe that there was a thread here about the A380 and SQ with regards to a seat map. No gym, duty free store, etc.

Economics drive the bottom line
You can't cure stupid
 
nudelhirsch
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 6:28 am

Well, VS still has a bar, so that must be uique today...
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airtrainer
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 6:40 am

Maybe not a gourmet restaurant but (corret me if I'm wrong) I think Backpackers Express wanted to do a thing like this, but unfortunately they failed to launch...
Life is short : eat dessert first !
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 6:45 am

Quoting Nudelhirsch (Reply 13):
Well, VS still has a bar, so that must be uique today...

So right, unique indeed.

Side note...VS's bar is for Upper Class passengers, whereas the CO Pub Flights were for all customers.
You can't cure stupid
 
PanHAM
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 6:59 am

well, you can never have a gourmet restaurant in an airliner simply because the food does not taste the same as it does on the ground. Worse, wines loose their taste as well, which is bad on the really expensive ones.

The solution is simple, have it on ther ground. Lufthansa's First Class terninal in Frankfurt is the best right now and they do serve gourmet food. BA is doing well n their F lounges and other airlines as well.

Even better, they do not waste expensive space in the planes-
powered by Eierlikör
 
utapao
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 7:38 am

In mid-80's, LAX-FRA on PA's 747, the food served on tables/linen/crystal in the upstairs lounge was actually very, very good.

Off-topic from "eating", but on-track for lounges onboard.

Anyone remember the AA 707's First Class "lounge" as you entered the aircraft. It was right up front, across from the galley, where the closet or lav might be now on newer aircraft, and seems like it was a booth, semi-circle with a small table. Separated by first rows of FC seats by a plexiglass-type wall, if not mistaken.

And weren't some of the first movies shown onboarad via some sort of film/tape that caused each overhead screen to be a few second ahead/behind the ones in front/back of it?

Also seems like this was the first aircraft I remember with "TV's" in FC...they were actual small TV's on the arm rest console facing the row of seats behind it...used for the onboard movie.

Also, didn't UA's 8's have the "overhead" air vent on the seat back in front, and the reading light on the seatback next to your head??

Been a long time, and I was young, but those things always stuck in my mind. Did they exist, or have I fantasized it all over the years??
 confused 
Sawasdee khrab!
 
RICARIZA
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 7:48 am

Here it is:


I miss ACES, I am proud of AVIANCA & I am loyal to AMERICAN
 
AeroWesty
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 8:27 am

Quoting Utapao (Reply 17):
Also, didn't UA's 8's have the "overhead" air vent on the seat back in front, and the reading light on the seatback next to your head??

There's an old Dick Van Dyke Show where that setup is clearly part of the seat.
International Homo of Mystery
 
2H4
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 8:39 am



Here's another lounge, but I think it's a mockup:






2H4


Intentionally Left Blank
 
dtwclipper
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 9:02 am

Quoting Latinplane (Reply 10):
In fact, the reason why the cockpit of the 747 is on the second floor and the basic generation of 747s only had three windows in the hump is because Pan Am specifically wanted a plane that had a restaurant like place where first class passengers could go and have a luxurious dinner. Secondly, it was believed that the 747s would be superseded by the Super Sonic airplanes like the concorde and when the 747s became out of style they would most likely be converted into freighters so the planes would be able to carry the maximum amount of cargo all the way up to its nose.

Wrong...the only reason is your #2. Cargo loading for the 747. In the original specs the upper deck had the flightdeck and lots of duct work. Trippe wanted a lounge, but as an afterthought.
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dtwclipper
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 9:12 am

By the way, here are some of the original architectural drawings of the Pan Am dining room (part of my collection).





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USADreamliner
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 12:06 pm

Quoting 2H4 (Reply 20):
Here's another lounge, but I think it's a mockup:

That is a mockup. Boeing proposed the "Tiger Lounge", not for the upper deck, but for the lower deck, like PSA Tristar used to have.


USADreamliner  Big grin
 
2H4
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 12:09 pm




Quoting USADreamliner (Reply 23):
That is a mockup.

Boy, how cool would it be to get hold of that mockup for the basement? It would be even better than Kramer getting hold of the Merv Griffin set....

 biggrin 



2H4


Intentionally Left Blank
 
aaden
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 1:08 pm

great idea, but i don't think any airline could pull this off without raiseing fares quite a bit
 
kiwiinoz
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 1:13 pm

The concept of a casino lounge has been proposed by SQ for their, "Non Mammalian Specific" Jet, (A380). That is an interesting possibility as there is a potential to make a lot of money over a couple of gaming tables. They would have to restrict it to first class only so that they can set very high minimum bets.
 
WhiteBirdFlyer
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 1:26 pm

Alas, alack the economics of today's deregulated & "struggling" airlines wouldn't have room for such a swank upper room anymore, the space devoted to non-revenue areas shrunk to the minimum 31" pitch.

I was one of the lucky folks to experience the upperdeck lounge on flights from JFK to LHR and CDG on British Airways and Air France, along with Pan Am and TWA. (Virgin's current Upper Class really doesn't compare as well in my experience.)

It was just a different time then, different economics and, to be as accurate as possible, an age when jet travel was still sort of exotic. First Class was the only way for any folks of social stature to cross the Atlantic, and some ordinary but lucky slob like me might just sit next to all sorts of famous and/or influential people. Nowadays, NetJets and others have taken the top out of First so it's not as big a deal anymore as the most fussy and influential people are ensconced in private jets and rarely sit across from 2B from the "masses" anymore.  Smile

Cordially,
WhiteBirdFlyer

PS
Yes, that's a mockup photo up there, from the Boeing prototype designs/mocks. However, some of the real interiors in the 70's were even more startling!
WhiteBirdFlyer, currently near SFO
 
QXatFAT
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 2:05 pm

I would like this. Kind of like the Amtrak style. Every once and awhile I like to take a nice travel from California to Seattle on the train. Paying $600 for a sleeper cabin. Then you go to the dining car to have your nice meal with other $600 payers. I would do this on a plane as well. Pay an extra $300 to have a nice seat and go upstairs on a NW upper deck and have a nice meal with other pax. I am sure you would have people filling up these tickets and making good money off of it on the Europe and Asia flights.
Don't Tread On Me!
 
american762
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 2:14 pm

Another example of this I found on the net while searching on Google, is suprisingly, my mother. Taken in 1968, when she was the personal secretary to the VP of Pan Am, located in Manhattan. Her position alloted her plenty of free travel. This one happens to be the second commercial flight of a Pan Am 747 from JFK-LHR. My mom was actually with 3 other people that were taking advantage of the lounge, but was asked by Boeing representatives if they could take her picture for an advertisement.



From stories I've heard from my mom and her friends, as I was not privelaged enough to have been alive to fly in the golden age of jet transport, was that at a certain set time, a stewardess (not yet a politically correct "flight attendant") would come down and announce that dinner in the lounge was being served, and anyone who would like to partake in it could proceed to the lounge, and groups of First passengers would make their way up the spiral staircase to enjoy dinner at a proper table. Pan Am would set up tables, and from what I've been told, my mother met some very influential people from these gatherings, and of course, my father. So if it weren't for the Boeing 747, I wouldn't exist...maybe thats why I'm so impartial towards Boeing.

-American762

[Edited 2006-05-20 07:22:53]
Pan Am has a place of its' own. You call it the world, we call it home.
 
flyabunch
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 2:53 pm

I once had the opportunity to fly on one of AA's 747's with a upper lounge from LAX-JFK. The company I worked for allowed employees to fly first class on transcons and my boss and I traveled to home office in NYC. We went upstairs twice for drinks and the view.

It was 1977 and the bar was self service, at least on our flight. We thought it was great fun anyway. At one point, he and I were the only ones up there. It did seem like quite a waste of good seating space.

Mike
 
Skydrol
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 3:11 pm

Quoting American762 (Reply 29):
Another example of this I found on the net while searching on Google, is suprisingly, my mother. Taken in 1968, when she was the personal secretary to the VP of Pan Am, located in Manhattan.

From stories I've heard from my mom and her friends, as I was not privelaged enough to have been alive to fly in the golden age of jet transport, was that at a certain set time, a stewardess (not yet a politically correct "flight attendant") would come down and announce that dinner in the lounge was being served, and anyone who would like to partake in it could proceed to the lounge, and groups of First passengers would make their way up the spiral staircase to enjoy dinner at a proper table.

Great story! Also truly amazing to consider how much class there once was in air travel. It used to be considered a really amazing thing to do. I can still remember passengers being dressed in business attire for flights, even in Y.



LD4
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lredlefsen
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 3:21 pm

Quoting ContinentalGuy (Thread starter):
There would still be inflight meals but for those in First/Business there would be a gourmet restaurant.

I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned that modern international First seats (eg BA and even VS Upper Class) are effectively "2-seat dining booths" when in "dining with a guest mode": you sit in your seat, your guest sits on the footstool, and the table is big enough to accomodate two diners. When you're done with dinner, you change into your pajamas while the FA turns your seat into a lie-flat bed complete with a down duvet. Who needs a restaurant?

It's a pretty nice way to fly, short of taking a GV.
 
Seatofyerpants
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 4:42 pm

If you have experienced true airline first class service, classic railroad dining car service or even trans-oceanic steamship service, you might be a historian. However, those travel adventures could just be the best available for that time period. I think, and I hope that a renaissance will eventually resurface in the travel industry. The bottom line of this thread is that economics prevail at present. I roughly calculated that at today's price of jet fuel and the seating capacity of a 747 each passenger would have to pay $300 just to fuel the airplane. I could be wrong on this figure but I'm sure I'm not to far off. I miss real food service in the air. Even Amtrak is forced to reduce their dining car service which today could not compare to the service provided in the past but is restricted to its full potential due to the lack of a profit. Right now, you can't beat the food service on a cruise ship. By far the best Lobster tail I have ever had was on the Carnival Pride. I had one of the best Porterhouse steaks ever to cross my palate at their reservation only restaurant and the service from the crew members closely rivaled Picasso in the Bellagio LAS. A cruise line not associated with ultra first class but I've eaten a lot of lobster and steak and I know the difference between good and bad. It far surpassed the lobster served on the Queen Mary(the floating stationary hotel, not the Queen in her heyday, I've never experienced that) Cruise ships today are basically a vacation not a point to point travel option. I remember flying American Airlines first class as a teenager and I ordered the filet. When I was informed that the filet had sold out I was offered pheasant. That's right Pheasant!!! This was the first time I ever had pheasant. I had only heard of it under glass until then. Take a chicken breast and multiply it by 10. It was good. Lobster Thermidor, not an easy dish, I've eaten it in the air. Dessert! Hot fudge sundaes, fresh baked chocolate chip cookies and cold milk.... Now days in coach you're lucky to get something to eat. Even in domestic first class you're lucky to get something descent to eat. This is wrong! I used to book my flights based on the fact that Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner or combination was served.
Basically I pine for the availability of an enjoyable eating adventure when I'm going to travel. I don't expect Thomas Keller to be cooking in the galley but remember when it comes to travel, IT'S THE JOURNEY NOT THE DESTINATION.

[Edited 2006-05-20 10:15:58]
 
rootsair
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:38 pm

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 2):

They did. Pan Am had the upper deck of their 747's as the dining room for First Class, and as a lounge outside of mealtimes.

nut then again, upper decks on the 747-100 were much smaller than on a 744
A man without the knowledge of his past history,culture and origins is like a tree without roots
 
jumbo747
Posts: 57
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 5:41 pm

Quoting Dtwclipper (Reply 3):

What route and what airline please.
 
FlyHI777
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 9:49 pm

Don't be so quick fellas, Virgin Atlantic already announced sleepers in his A380's and perhaps a casino! I wouldn't put it past this man to put a restaurant up there as well. He knows style when he sees it.
 
dtwclipper
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sat May 20, 2006 9:53 pm

Quoting Jumbo747 (Reply 35):
What route and what airline please.

On Pan Am, from JFK to LHR. I don't remember what year it was, I was 10 or so.
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american762
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 2:18 am

Another example of airline deregulation. Before 1978, airlines basically existed in a cooperative peace with little to no fare competition, as airlines maintained basically the same prices determined by the CAB on the cost-plus basis. Because of this, service was the only field that could be competed on, and they figured the best place to start off was the First cabins. So they would offer 5 course meals, and carve the meat in front of you. When Pan Am created the first Business Class in the world, Clipper Class, they had once again set the service standard across the industry.
Pan Am has a place of its' own. You call it the world, we call it home.
 
AeroWesty
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 2:29 am

Quoting American762 (Reply 37):
When Pan Am created the first Business Class in the world, Clipper Class, they had once again set the service standard across the industry.

I believe that crown goes to Qantas.  Smile
International Homo of Mystery
 
dtwclipper
Posts: 6668
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 3:17 am

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 38):
I believe that crown goes to Qantas.

PA created what would become "Business Class" with its Clipper product.

They wanted to raise fares, and the only way to do so accross the Atlantic was to create a new class of service.
Compare New York Air, the Airline that works for your Business
 
AeroWesty
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 3:23 am

Quoting Dtwclipper (Reply 39):
PA created what would become "Business Class" with its Clipper product.

We've been over this many times on this site, and I know you and I are both old enough to remember when it all happened.

Qantas created business class, an 8-across section on their 747's flying the Pacific, that was quickly adopted and improved upon by other airlines, even Qantas itself in short order.

But this thread is about food.  Wink
International Homo of Mystery
 
mtair59
Posts: 3
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 3:28 am

I don't often contribute but enjoy reading the forum each day.

In 1979 my parents and I were upgraded to Clipper Class on a Pan Am flight form JFK to LHR. A little more space, champagne (and the funny story, my honest British mother when offered a glass, said, "Oh no thank you dear we were upgraded!") the problem - no film. Business Class passenges don't watch films!. Interestingly the flight was going on to Tehran. How things have changed!
 
dtwclipper
Posts: 6668
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 3:38 am

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 40):
Quoting Dtwclipper (Reply 39):
PA created what would become "Business Class" with its Clipper product.

We've been over this many times on this site, and I know you and I are both old enough to remember when it all happened.

Qantas created business class, an 8-across section on their 747's flying the Pacific, that was quickly adopted and improved upon by other airlines, even Qantas itself in short order.

But this thread is about food.

We have a problem:

1978 First airline to introduce a new, separate class of service for business and full-fare economy passengers, Clipper Class


http://www.panam.org/default.asp

What are the dates for QF? Is this information about PA wrong?
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AeroWesty
Posts: 19551
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 7:37 am

RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 3:50 am

Quoting Dtwclipper (Reply 42):
What are the dates for QF? Is this information about PA wrong?

1978 is a claim I don't recall hearing before. We might need to do a new thread on when the first business class was!
International Homo of Mystery
 
dtwclipper
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Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2003 3:17 am

RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 3:57 am

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 43):
We might need to do a new thread on when the first business class was!

I'll let you do the honours!
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lredlefsen
Posts: 150
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 7:35 am

Quoting Seatofyerpants (Reply 32):
Basically I pine for the availability of an enjoyable eating adventure when I'm going to travel.

I could take it or leave it, at least inflight.

If I had to choose between doing SFO-LHR with a sit-down dinner followed by 9 hours sitting in a 1980's style First Class seat, or a modern lie-flat bed with down comforter, etc., I'd take the bed any day.

In fact, I'd prefer having a *really* nice dinner before taking off, and then maybe just some snacks and drinks inflight before dozing off to a good night's sleep.

Maybe I'm just lacking imagination and/or am the victim of severely lowered expectations, but I doubt that you'll ever get a freshly prepared gourmet meal on a plane. The best you'll be able to do is something that was prepared on the ground and (re)heated after takeoff, or maybe something that was freshly prepared *just* before takeoff and kept warm for the hour or so between when it was made and when it is served... Either way, white linens, Sterling silver cutlery, and outstanding service can't really turn that into a dining experience.

I guess it comes down to the laws of physics -- could an airline install a gas (or even electric) range/stove on an airliner and expect to be allowed to operate it to cook meals inflight? I doubt it. So if you buy that, how nice a meal could you prepare in a kitched equipped with nothing but a microwave?

That's different on a ship or train, I think, and so is the time the staff has on-board to prepare the meals (measured in hours on a plane, and probably in days on a cruise ship).

I hear you, though, and given these "realities" (maybe just my misguided assumptions), I think the modern First Class products are pretty dang good.
 
american762
Posts: 152
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 9:32 am

As stated above, I was going by the www.panam.org firsts section. Sorry for starting everything. But this topic is about food. Lets get back to it. Yum.
Pan Am has a place of its' own. You call it the world, we call it home.
 
AeroWesty
Posts: 19551
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 9:39 am

Quoting Lredlefsen (Reply 45):
I guess it comes down to the laws of physics -- could an airline install a gas (or even electric) range/stove on an airliner and expect to be allowed to operate it to cook meals inflight? I doubt it. So if you buy that, how nice a meal could you prepare in a kitched equipped with nothing but a microwave?

I don't believe microwave ovens are allowed in airplane galleys. But there are some airlines who cook eggs to order, so there must be some type of range allowed, I just have no idea what kind, since I've never watched how they fry the eggs.
International Homo of Mystery
 
SingaporeBoy
Posts: 110
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 5:31 pm

SQ has a microwave oven in the 1st class galley of their 747-400s and their Business Class Galleys on the long haul 777 equipped with spacebed.
I remember in the early 70s when SQ got their 747-200s they had a lounge upstairs called Raffles Lounge for 1st class passengers.I dont think passengers could eat upstairs but during the night flights the couches were converted to beds called Slumberettes and the individual seats were called Snoozzers.It was on a 1st come 1st serve basis and passengers had to book these beds when they made their reservations for the flight.
1 of the ground duties of the female FA working in 1st class on these night flights were to dress these beds with pillows,bedsheets and blankets.Cant exactly remember how many of these beds there were..i think 6 slumberettes and 4 Snoozers if i am not wrong.
 
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RE: Eating In The Air

Sun May 21, 2006 10:37 pm

Quoting American762 (Reply 28):
So if it weren't for the Boeing 747, I wouldn't exist...maybe thats why I'm so impartial towards Boeing.

Yet your username is American762? Why not Panam747 or PanAm741 or something..  Silly
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