Qantas has finally revealed prototypes of the First and Business class cabins that will be flying A350 passengers non-stop from Australia to New York and London from 2025. Many have wondered how Qantas will ensure passenger comfort on these 20-hour flights. Safe to say, our questions have been answered: highlights include luxe First Class suites with fixed flat beds and separate lounge recliners, Next Generation Business suites and free WiFi across the A350 fleet. Read on for a full-spec breakdown and newly released imagery.
Precision-engineered for ultra-long haul travel, the flagship cabins have been designed by a multidisciplinary team of industrial design specialists and pioneering sleep scientists. Foremost in the design team’s mind – as it always is for passengers alike – is space. Limiting capacity to 238 seats, compared to the 300+ seats offered by other carriers seems like a smart place to start.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce had this to say: “Qantas has been the leader in opening up new long-haul flights for most of our history, and we’re bringing everything we’ve learned, both technically and in terms of passenger comfort”, adding that the new cabins combine “cutting edge technology with sleep research to shape the look and feel for what is effectively a new era of travel.”
Qantas has styled the first-class suites after a “mini boutique hotel room”, complete with an extra-wide fixed bed, separate recliner chair, personal wardrobe, dining table for two and a 32” ultra-high definition TV.
Every Business suite will have direct aisle access for ease of moving around the cabin, and Qantas is incorporating sliding doors into the suite for added privacy. Other Business features include a two-metre flat bed, generous storage (including a large mirror), cushioned leather ottoman, an 18” ultra-high definition touch screen TV, a large dining table and feature lighting.
Beyond the fixtures and fittings, Qantas has gone above and beyond to offer state-of-the-art connectivity options for the duration of these journeys. Fast and free high-speed Wi-Fi will be available following key satellite launches and aircraft will also feature Bluetooth connectivity allowing all customers to connect their own Bluetooth-enabled headset to the in-flight entertainment system.
Finally, Qantas has invested special attention in the wellbeing of their passengers, with designer David Caon seizing on every opportunity to create “a tailored lighting program that will influence mood and sleep patterns” as well as “help minimise the old nemesis of jetlag”.
The planes will even have dedicated Wellbeing Zones, which are set to be unveiled alongside Premium Economy and Economy cabins in the coming months.
Whether you’re headed to London, New York, or homeward bound, it’s a long old way to fly… But Qantas seems to have proven you can do it in a comfortable, convenient, and stylish way, befitting the premium traveller. The real test will be when passengers actually get on board.
We await further updates on Project Sunrise eagerly. Until then, you’ll find us in the First Class lounge…