This was the point of the trip that I was eagerly waiting for. Anything we experienced before this was nothing but a distant memory pushed back to the far reaches on my brain. Its on every FT-ers bucket list and now I was able to cross it off mine. While Cathay Pacific First Class may have set the tone for what a First/Business Class flight and service should be, Singapore Airlines just blew them out of the water … with a bazooka. Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating about the bazooka part but even Mrs.I agreed that Singapore Airlines came out on top in every way.
We checked out of Shangri La before noon and made our way to the Circular Quay station to catch the Airport Express. We came up to the departure level at Aisle A and had to make our way to J.
Walking, Walking, Walking, Walking, hop, hop, hop, running, running, running ….
There was a couple being checked in ahead of us, so we have a 2 minute wait. Since we had a 12 hour layover before connecting to Bali, I booked a hotel for the night. I requested one of our bags be checked all the way to Bali so that we didnt have to lug both of them to the hotel and back. The lady helping us was efficient and friendly enough but lacked that little extra something – I noticed the name tag indicate they were Dnata agents, so maybe thats why? I dont know, I’m picking at straws. We received our invite to the SilverKris Lounge located at gate 60 something which was close to where our plane was docked. Made our way through customs using the Express lane and security was easy enough.
Ok, is this Duty Free or are we in a mall?
Up the escalator to get to the lounge.
Ok, so some of you who may have been here or read up on this may know that there are seperate entrances for First and Business class. You see that wood panel behind the lounge dragons? Just to the right of it, is the entrance into the First Class lounge section and I did not notice it when I was taking the picture.
When we walked up, the lounge dragon scanned our boarding passes and then hit a button (at least I think she did or I was imagining it) which caused a portion of the panel to slide open and reveal the entrance. My reaction was “WHAT SORCERY IS THIS?!”. I looked over at Mrs.I and even her mouth dropped open.
Images of Illidan from World of Warcraft flashed through my head:
Before ushering us in, she gave us the invite to the Private Room. This day just keeps getting better and better.
Excellent place to park ourselves for the next hour and a half.
Gluttony yet again. Tasted some of the rice, beef curry and veg. The beef was exceptionally good.
The concierge helped another gentleman for a food order but never came up to us. While serving myself from the buffet, I asked the passing chef if there was another menu. He sent a different concierge out to help us – I was given a menu.
I ordered the laksa while Mrs.I ordered the barramundi. Yet again, the fish was the hands down winner.
View from where we were sitting.
With 30 minutes left before our departure time, we decided to head towards the gate. Here’s a shot of the secret entrance door.
The line ups were in full swing and was orderly.
Lining up ourselves. A gate agent came around checking everyone’s passports and boarding passes.
Boarding became on time and soon we were on the tube. The excitement was mounting.
So can you make out the gentleman who is standing right inside the door?
When he saw us coming down the bridge, he stepped off the plane, took a good 5 steps forward and as we approached, he warmly greeted us – “Welcome Mr and Mrs. I!” … he did not even look at our boarding passes to see who we were – How did he know who we were? Did the gate agent radio ahead?
Mrs.I and I looked at each other and our eyes said “WOW!” – Definitely a good sign of how amazing this flight was going to be. Spoiler alert – it was amazing.
There were 3 flight attendants serving in First today. Since we were sitting in C and D, the male attendant (I think he was the senior purser) who met us at the door escorted me to my seat while Mrs.I was escorted to her seat by the female attendant. She joked to Mrs.I that she was happy there was another female other than her in the First class cabin and they laughed. It was then that I understood how they knew who we were – we were the only couple in First today while the other 3 passengers were single males. The female attendant asked Mrs.I if she would like champage and this is how the conversation went:
Crew – “Mrs.I, would you like some champage?”
Mrs.I – “Sure!”
Crew – “Which one would you like – Dom or Krug?”
Mrs.I – “Oh, anything will do”
Crew – “And Mr.I, which one would you like?”
Me – “Definitely the Dom please!”
I looked at Mrs.I and tsk tsk-ed her. 🙂
Getting all the obligatory pics out of the way.
The special bubbles has arrived. I have to admit that I am not a champagne connoisseur – after tasting Dom and comparing it to Krug, I could not tell the difference. Please dont beat me – like I mentioned before, I am a neanderthal. 🙂
The purser handed us the menus to decide what we wanted for dinner. Dinner service would after take off.
The captain came on the PA and welcomed us aboard. He indicated a flight time of 7 hours and were almost ready to go. There was a no show passenger and had to find the luggage to offboard. No problem!
Since we had time, we both went to change in our PJs. When we came out, the crew helped us to hang our clothes on the hangars and store them away. Fifteen minutes later, the captain came on the PA again and informed us that the bags were offloaded but now they were not getting permission for push back. It had just started raining and local labour laws prohibited ground crew working in the rain. Uh – please come to Canada to see our ground crew working in the snow. 🙂
Another 10 minutes later, we began push back. As it was a full-on rain storm, traffic control were releasing planes for take off at a slower rate than normal. Better safe than sorry no?
Take off was smooth depsite the rain and 2 lightening strikes on either side of the aircraft as we were climbing. After the seat belt was turned off, I walked around the get some cabin pics.
Time flies by when you are having fun and before we knew it, dinner was being served.
Mrs.I went with the salmon starter.
While I went with the caviar. Mmmmmm.
Mrs.I’s soup choice. I tasted it and it was meh.
We both BTC-ed the Boston Lobster Thermidor. While the choices from the menu were good, we could not miss the opportunity to BTC. In fact, we BTC-ed on all Singapore flights where available.
So here’s my rant – I dont know what the catering company did with this dish but they screwed it up royally. The rice had no flavour and the lobster itself was bitter to the taste buds – it was like I was eating dried herbs. Mrs.I had the same problem. Folks – please enlighten me – is the Boston Lobster supposed to taste like this? I was expecting savoury, buttery, melty goodness. In retrospect, we should have alerted the crew but it just didnt occur to us at the time. The stubborn side of my brain probably kicked in and said “We wanted BTC and we will be damned if some bitterness is going to dampen our mood.”
For dessert, we both had the flourless cake. It was meh but the ice cream was good.
We were stuffed after this and asked for our beds to be made. The purser asked us what time we would like to be woken up for the snack service and we had turned it down.
Glorious double bed in the sky.
We were joined by these cuddly critters.
4 hours of sleep and we began our descent into Singapore. We wanted to change out of the PJs and freshen up – the purser proactively helped us to remove the clothes from the storage area and put it in the washroom for us. Toilettries were available in the washroom as our disposal.
As we disembarked, the crew thanked us for flying with Singapore Airlines and we both thanked them for looking after us during the flight. Immigration was easy and bags were out in no time. Grabbed a cab to the Holiday Inn Express Katong for a quick 6 hour snooze. I chose this hotel as it was 15 minutes for the airport plus it was 10k IHG points a night.
Our First Class flight with Singapore Airlines definitely raised the bar for the rest of the trip. The flight crew were absolutely amazing and were highly engaging. How would Business class compare? How would our ANA F flight compare to this? Stay tuned for more!
Next up – The Private Room + Singapore Airlines Business Class to Bali