What a treat to end my 24 hours adventure time in Rio de Janeiro with a luxurious flight in the Upper Deck of the real Queen of the Skies, the Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental of German national carrier Lufthansa.
Configured with altogether 80 lie-flat seats, the Business Class layout aboard the B747-8i is split into a 48 seats section on the main deck and additional 32 seats on the upper deck. While the main deck is configured in a spacious 2-2-2 layout and two aisles, the upper deck convinces with a secluded single aisle refuge literally “on top of the world” with a 2-2 configuration.
This is my favourite place to sit! We have flown the upper deck last year already and in my opinion it is the quietest and most intimate spot (apart from the ultra-luxurious First Class section in the nose of the plane) on Lufthansa´s flagship.
I can particularly recommend rows 85 and 86. Being close to the rear galley, service is swift and the rear lavatory is in close reach while not being bothered by waiting passengers in front of it. Noise from the galley is also out of reach.
All windows seats on the upper deck also feature additional stowage compartments on the side which are not offered on the main deck and the view outside the windows seems endless as there are no wings to obstruct the panorama.
The B747-8i´s feature the first generation of Lufthansa´s latest Business Class product. The seats extend fully to a lie-flat bed and are configured in a V-shape. When reclined, the fixed shell provides a good amount of privacy and the outer armrests can be lowered to increase space around the shoulders. Each seat is equipped with a personal reading light, a fixed legrest, a large movable video screen, power outlet and stowage space.
The updated seat version on the airline´s Airbus fleet (A330, A340 & A380) comes with a few extra features like USB-ports for charging tablets and phones, a holding device for glasses and the possibility to adjust the firmness of the seat to one´s preference.
Service on both fleets remain on the same high level. Lufthansa introduced a new Restaurant style service concept last year that banned trolleys almost completely out of the cabin and aims to deliver a highly personalized experience to the passengers. That means that each flight attendant has a dedicated number of guests that she/he cares for personally.
Upon embarkation, Susanne (name changed), my flight attendant, introduced herself to me and took care of my jacket. Shortly after, she returned with the menu and offered a welcome drink. This normally consists of high quality German sparkling wine (made in Méthode traditionelle), orange juice or water to choose from. Exclusively on flights from Brasil to Germany, Caipirinha is part of the Welcome Drink offer.
As I love to stick to Champagne during the flight, I settled down with a glass of the refreshing and well temperatured Menger Krug bubbly.
After take-off, our flight attendant took the order for the aperitif. What could sound better than a glass of Jacquart´s Mosaique Brut champagne served with a glass of water and a selection of nuts from the galley?
After my glass had been refilled (yes, I am a thirsty man 🙂 ) I was asked for my dinner preferences. The menu on this flight featured classic European as well as South American inspired dishes. I opted as appetizer for the Prosciutto with Brie. Shortly after, my table was set and the first course was served along with a selection of breads and rolls.
For the main course I had decided on the Grilled Sea bass with Mustard-Walnutcrust along with Vegetable Ragout and completed with Mustard-Chives sauce. The fish was an excellent choice! It was perfectly tasty and seasoned and the right choice for a light dinner on this long night flight. Even if some people recommend not to eat salad before going to bed, I appreciated the small portion with delicate dressing accompanying the sea bass.
The Opera Cake with Caramel Sauce as dessert along with a freshly brewed Espresso sounded tempting, yet I concluded with the selection of Cheeses with crackers. Just one more glass of champagne and I was ready to finish my movie and then hit the sack.
Susanne cleared off my table, served a selection of chocolates for the night and asked me, if she should wake me up for breakfast. Shortly after, I prepared my seat for the night and snoozed off to dreamland.
To be on the safe side, I always sleep with an eye mask and ear plugs on international flights. The Samsonite Amenity kit held over and above that a pair of socks, a toothbrush with toothpaste, hygienic covers for the noise cancellation headphones as well as KORRES toiletries consisting of lip balm and face/hand cream.
When I woke up around 7 hours later, I felt revitalized and ready for the day. Susanne had prepared a cup of freshly brewed coffee for me and after I had quickly freshened up, I was ready for a hearty breakfast. The Omelette with herbs was just the right choice. Served along with a selection of cold cuts and fresh fruits, I concluded with a croissant and honey to finalize this decent start into the day.
I could have gone on forever like this, but unfortunately every flight comes to an end sometimes. While our 747 began the approach into Frankfurt, Susanne fare-welled every passenger individually and after exchanging a few laughs it was time for her to buckle up for landing. It is such a different feeling to step off a transatlantic flight and having been able to sleep just like at home. Together with the excellent service that I had experienced by the crew, this was not only the start into a new day but the start into a great new day! Looking forward to the next Lufthansa flight 🙂