Cathay Pacific Business Class – JFK to Hong Kong

14 April 2015 / By travel4foodfun@gmail.com
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We treated ourselves to Business Class seats on Cathay Pacific. Outbound, we flew from JFK to Hong Kong, a 16-hour flight. We requested a 24-hour layover in Hong Kong (to allow Lora time to have dinner with her dad who also happened to be in Hong Kong at the time) before continuing to Singapore.

The last time I flew Business Class internationally was in 2000. Tom has never experienced flight experiences outside of coach. I will share with you our experience from New York’s JFK to Hong Kong.

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When we entered JFK’s terminal 7, we followed the signs to Cathay Pacific’s Business Class check-in counter. This is one aisle down from coach class check-in. The check-in area was well staffed with no lines. We were immediately taken care of and led to the priority security line.

Cathay Pacific uses the British Airways lounge at JFK. The first thing Tom and I noticed was the space. We frequently relax in airline lounges, but most are packed with people with inadequate seating, limited snacks, and drinks. Not this lounge. It was spacious. Since our flight departs at 10 AM, the food options were breakfast based (think continental breakfast). An announcement is made in the lounge that our plane was boarding. We left the bar in eager anticipation for our flight.

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My first thought when I saw my seat was there is so much space! My window seat spans three windows! There are numerous compartments to store items for use during the flight. I had adequate storage for my iPhone, iPad, notebook, DSLR camera, laptop, shoes, and toiletries. The overhead bins are supersized for carryon luggage.

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Looking more closely at my seat, I noticed each seat has noise canceling headphones. The entertainment center boasts a massive array of movies and television series all displayed on a large screen. My laptop has a 17-inch screen, and the business class seat has an even larger monitor! There are outlets and USB ports to charge electronics. The seats are WIDE! And you can recline the seat “lay z boy” style or all the way flat to sleep. The pillows are plush, and the blanket is thick and warm. The amenity bag is fantastic. We got Jurlique lip balm, hand cream, face lotion, cozy socks, eye mask, and toothbrush and toothpaste. Everything we need to stay fresh through the 16-hour flight!

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Upon boarding, we were greeted with a nice warm towel to freshen up as well as a selection of drink. Naturally, I had a glass of champagne. After takeoff, we were served drinks. I had Cathay Pacific’s signature cocktail: Pacific Sunrise, a refreshing combination of champagne and Drambuie with a zest of orange and lemon. This was served with a ramekin of warm mixed nuts.

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About an hour into the flight, we were served lunch. To start, I had Jumbo prawns with beetroot cream, white cabbage, and crispy bacon salad. This was so tasty. The prawns were not overcooked and it was accented perfectly with the beetroot cream. For the main course, I selected the Chilean sea bass with saffron fennel mash, gazpacho sauce, and sautéed baby kale. The bass was spectacular. Moist and flaky. Not overcooked. My one complaint was the baby kale. It was way too salty. A cheese platter was offered, but I was way too full to sample. However, I did have room for a taste of the red berry mascarpone cake. It was light and fresh. Yum.

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After the meal, I finished watching a movie I decided to rest. I like to sleep with a pillow under my knees, and a flight attendant was quick to find me another pillow. I found the seat in the full lie down position to be too flat. With a push of a button, I slightly elevated my head and enjoyed in a peaceful 3-hour nap.

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Upon awakening, the second meal was served. In addition to the usual selection of champagne, two reds, and two whites, Cathay Pacific highlights a wine region. On this flight, the Loire Valley was the focus. I tried Chateau de Fesles Chenin Sec 2013. It paired well with my dinner of Prawns in Lychee sauce, mixed vegetables, and jasmine rice. For dessert, I had Pistachio chocolate pie with vanilla sauce. It was all delicious.

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One thing most people don’t discuss, but I find it to be a very important thing to learn about in a review: the bathroom. The lavatory is spacious compared to coach. In fact, I think it’s double the size! I feel like I can dance in there!

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Throughout the entire flight, we wanted nothing. The attendants were constantly attending to our needs and giving us things we didn’t even know we wanted. Water was always refreshed. Snacks were passed around. My favorite was a box of chocolates! At the same time, the service is subtle. The attendants are always around, but not invasive. It’s almost as if they know what you want when you want it. Once again, it’s the exquisite service that Cathay Pacific is known for.

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