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Etihad Airways’ first three-cabin Boeing 777-300ER aircraft has departed on its maiden EY11 flight, from Abu Dhabi to London Heathrow.
The new aircraft is configured with eight Diamond First Class Suites, 40 Pearl Business lie-flat beds, and 282 seats in Coral Economy.
The aircraft will be deployed on Etihad Airways’ ‘blue-ribbon’ Abu Dhabi-London route, predominantly the EY11 and EY12 flights, boosting capacity by 13 per cent. The additional business class capacity will cater for the high demand of business travellers taking the early morning flight from Abu Dhabi to London.
Etihad Airways will continue to operate its four other flights to and from London – EY17, EY18, EY19 and EY20 – with the airline’s already established three-class Airbus A340-600s.
Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer, James Hogan, said: “Our guests on the Abu Dhabi-London route and elsewhere on our network of 87 destinations expect the very best product experience when flying with Etihad Airways, the world’s leading airline.
“The existing two-class Boeing 777-300ERs first introduced in 2006 have proven themselves to be a favourite with our guests, and as the airline has gradually expanded, it has always been our intention to go three-class with this magnificent machine.
“During the next 18 months, we will take delivery of seven more Boeing 777-300ERs, taking our total number of passenger 777s to 18. Six of these will be three-class, and we look forward to unveiling more routes on which they will be deployed.”
For the last two years, Etihad Airways’ Diamond First Class Suite, now available on the Boeing 777-300ER for the first time, has been awarded ‘World’s Best First Class’ in the annual Skytrax awards.
The Suite features a luxurious Poltrona Frau leather seat that converts to an 80-inch fully flat bed, a large wood-finished dining table, Arabic-styled sliding doors offering complete privacy, a 23-inch screen with Etihad Airways’ E-box on-demand entertainment, a personal wardrobe with mirror, personal minibar, four individual lighting options with dimmers, in-seat power points and USB connections. The Diamond First Class cabin also includes a spacious and comfortable changing room with a leather fold down seat and full length illuminated mirror.
Key culinary features of the Diamond First Class experience include the new Mezoon Grille and Taste of Arabia menus, prepared and served by the airline’s fully-qualified and classically-trained First Class Chefs.
Mr Hogan, concluded: “Using the 777 on our busy EY11 and EY12 services will not only be great for premium travellers in our Diamond First Class cabin, it will also mean a 25 per cent increase in the number of Pearl Business Class seats we are able to offer our guests.”
Etihad Airways, the National Airline of the United Arab Emirates offer flights to Abu Dhabi and from there to over 80 destinations around the world. Flights to India, flights to Delhi and flights to Mumbai are increasingly popular for travellers who want to savour the distinct hospitality and world-class infrastructure that this captivating country offers.