I don't know whether it's just me, but the design of the Suites on EK is just frankly horrific. Thankfully we all have a choice of airlines and mine remains firmly those in Star (SQ, NH, OZ) but I do wonder every time I look at picture of the Suites.
Where to start...
1. Gold everywhere - it's probably very much a Middle Eastern thing, but personally I can't handle all that gold everywhere. Maybe I'm too young to "appreciate" yellow gold, but I think it just looks horrible. Not just because it is such an ostentatious display of "wealth", but also because aesthetically it is jarring.
2. Minibar - now, if there were minibars in Y then that would be great - no need to bother the flight attendants. They don't come round often enough anyway.
But in F, I would be expecting (and have received) the sort of service where flight attendants know exactly when to come round and ask whether you want something. For example, they would often gaze around the cabin, and if you stop what you're doing and it appears that you are thinking about asking for something, they come around to see whether you want something.
I certainly do not expect to have to "make do" with the minibar and would have much preferred extra storage in that space instead. To me it's just a pure gimmick.
3. Not so much a design issue as such, but that bowl of chocolate bars on the shelf. Similar reasoning to why I don't like the minibar. It's as though they're saying "Look, here's your snacks, only trouble the flight attendants if you're piggish enough to want more". It might not be their intention, but that's how it feels to me.
Might have been a little better if they were a classy box of Neuhaus chocolates rather than bars of Twix etc :confused:
4. Gold everywhere - just had to mention it again to emphasise the point. And also, the combination of the gold, wood and the grey leather is just a very bad combination of colours. SQ managed very well with the beige leather and darker wood in their 747 SkySuites, and their 77W/A380 all have decent colour schemes. I just can't seem to get on with the EK combination at all.
5. This is more of a general complaint about enclosed suite design in general (so SQ, 9W etc included as well).
Unless I'm watching inappropriate material on my laptop :p or taking advantage of the double bed on SQ :p:p I really do not feel the need for such absolute privacy that I want doors to close me off completely from the rest of the cabin. Once the doors are closed, the feeling of spaciousness is completely gone; it would feel like you're trapped in a small space. Your own space, yes, but so much smaller than the spacious feel of the overall cabin. Also, when you are only aware of your own existence in the entire cabin and can't see anyone else around, it could get very eerie and possibly a bit lonely. I don't mind my own company when in my own house, but it just feels strange not to see anyone around you on a method of public transport.
Also, I have read reports that sometimes FAs "expect" you to close the doors and press the attendant call button when you need something, so that they no longer have to do the regular patrols around the cabin and watch it carefully so that they can anticipate the needs of passengers and proactively offer help. Now it seems to have turned into very much a model of "make an appearance only when demanded" rather than making more effort throughout. This would be a definite downgrade in quality of service.
6. Funnily enough, I thought the showers on the A380 were also a complete gimmick but as time goes, I can see why I might want a quick shower before landing if I need to be off straight away. I still think it's a bit of an overkill to uplift 1t of water per flight just to give people showers with 5-minute max of water and it would probably have been more efficient to build decent arrivals lounges at each airport, but it doesn't seem as much of a hideous waste as it did before.
For people that have flown the EK Suites, how do you feel about each of these points? Did you enjoy the experience overall, and were you happy with the design of the suites?