Updated on January 23, 2016
Flight Review: Cathay Pacific First Class Hong Kong (HKG) – Los Angeles (LAX)
After a brief but incredible time in The Wing, it was time for a flight I had been eagerly anticipating on Cathay Pacific First Class!
As we approached the gate we again had a similar experience to the start of our last flight with tons of people getting in line really early and not where there should be. For example, there were about 20 people in the first class and top-tier line which I found interesting since there are only 6 seats! Eventually the gate agent explained that they were in the wrong line and all was well and time to to board!
We entered the plane through the most forward door near seat 1A and turned right, directly into the first class cabin.
Airline: Cathay Pacific
Route: CX898 HKG-LAX
Seats: 1D and 1K
Flight time: 12 hours
Immediately after entering the cabin we were shown to our seats and asked if we would like some champagne! We were given some champagne and then our pajamas, slippers and amenity kits (male and female versions). I have to say that I thought these were BY FAR the most comfortable slippers I have ever worn on a plane.
We were then given our Bose headseats for the flight as well as a warm towel to wipe our hands with. Following this we decided to have our amuse bouche together in my seat! It was a scallop, which Katie doesn’t care for, so I got 2 😉 .
The Cathay Pacific First Class cabin contains 6 seat which are set up in two rows of a 1-1-1 pattern with each seat being an open suite slightly angled away from the next seat. In terms of privacy this works very well because you can not see any other people unless you both are leaning forward in your seats and trying to see each other. Not as great when you are traveling with someone, as it makes it hard to have a conversation unless you go over to their seat.
The cabin is also divided, in a way, into 2 mini cabins as there is a wall along the side of the 2 middle “D” seats which separates the 2 “A” seats from the other 4.
With this separation the two most private seats would be 1A and 2A against the window.
As I was saying before, unlike Etihad, this suite does not have door and is open. However, due to the width and angle of the seat you really can’t see in or out of it very well. It’s huge, at 36 inches (yes, that is THREE FEET) it is the widest seat I have ever been in, just narrowly edging out Singapore.
Here is an example of the size, granted, Katie is not very big but still:
OK, so I think we have established that this is an absurdly wide seat. Now to move on to the other aspects. In this description the sides would be flipped if you are in K.
When sitting in the seat you will find a magazine holder, a reading light and simple seat controls to your right.
To your left is a compartment to store things, a side table, more complex seat controls with massage and light function, your TV controller and your power outlets. This side also includes the wall between my seat and row “A”.
The side table also housed your fold out tray table which is pretty large but can even have an extension placed on it if you and a guest are dining together.
Going further around your suite you will find a footrest that can be used when you are reclined a bit and will become the foot of you bed when the seat is fully flat. This can also double as a guest seat and has it’s own seat belt.
You also have a large front compartment which has your TV. I say compartment because there is a door on the aisle side which opens to reveal a pretty big closet. More than enough room to store my clothes after changing. Underneath your TV is another small storage area.
Finally, the best aspect of this and most of the first class seats is the fact that this turns into a full lie-flat bed! During the turndown service they recline your seat into a bed and put fitted, cushioned sheets on it and then give your a really comfy blanket.
I am not a tall guy at 5’10” but I had plenty of room to stretch out and I would imagine someone several inches taller than me would still have no problem with the length of the bed. Katie obviously had plenty of length to work with. I thought the bedding was very comfortable and if not for the turbulence I would have slept like a baby. Even with the plane shaking I still got about 6 hours of sleep.
As I talked about before, our flight started with an amuse bouche which was a scallop and the rest of the main meal occurred shortly after take off. Before departure we were given our menus to look through with a special menu for a wine selection they were offering. Here are the menus:
As you can see there are several wine options on this flight, but we pretty much stuck to the Krug ;).
For our meal we decided to eat together at Katie’s seat because it was by the window. I sat in the guest seat and Katie sat on her giant throne of a seat. I am twice as big as her, how did I get stuck in the guest seat?! As they say, happy wife…
For the meal they added the extension to the tray table and started us off with some bread and of course some more Krug. There was also a nice little note they gave us, which thanked us for sharing our honeymoon trip with them.
For our first course we both chose the caviar, but in the end I had 1 1/2 caviars because someone was not a huge fan. That’s OK though, more for me! The caviar is served with a mother of pearl spoon as well as small pancakes or blinis, which I do like better than the crackers that are served on other airlines. I also prefer their presentation in the container to a pile laid out on a plate.
Following our caviar we had a salad and then our main course. I chose the steak and Katie had the Cappelletti Romagnoli pasta. We both thought that are meals were good but not out of this world. In terms of the steak, I was actually a bit disappointed, as it was tough and just not as flavorful as I would have liked. (I know, I am eating steak on a plane, stop complaining, but I have just had better on other planes). Now, with all of this being said, I was so tired by the end of our meal I literally couldn’t keep my eyes open, so maybe my experience isn’t what it would have been had I been fully awake. Guess I will just have to try it again some day!
After dinner/lunch it was time to get some sleep which was much needed since we had only got about 2 hours between our boat ride, puddle jumper flight, tour of Male, CX business class flight and stop at The Wing. I passed out immediately for about 6 hours.
When I awoke it was time for some breakfast. Since I always like trying new things I went with the Congee, orange juice, a strawberry and passion fruit smoothie and a bread basket. Sorry the pictures are so bad, it was pretty dark. The meal was certainly different and I really liked it. I would certainly order it again. The smoothie was just OK.
Katie actually had the Ramen Noodles for breakfast and really liked it. Best she has had.
Overall the drink selection is top notch and the food, outside of the steak, was also very good.
The entertainment system on this flight was the same as on our Business Class flight to Hong Kong but with different selections.
As I said in that post, it is very easy to use the system with the controller provided. The controller has a video game console on one side and the remote for the entertainment and other function on the other side. You can choose from Movies, TV Shows, Music, Map, Games, cameras to outside, info for different areas and Kids shows.
I settled on Big Eyes for my movie followed by a few TV shows and then just playing around with the maps and cameras.
Overall I thought the service on this flight was good but it just seemed like something was lacking. It might be that I had built this flight up in my mind so much that it couldn’t really live up to my expectations but I’m not sure that’s the case. I spoke with a gentleman who was riding in 2K about that flight towards the end and he also was not impressed with the service. He told me that he flies that particular flight for business every month or 2 and that it is usually much better than on our particular flight. So for whatever reason they were not as good as usually – not sure why.
With that being said the crew did go out of their way several times to make sure we were having a good flight and a great honeymoon, even giving us a bottle of champagne as we left!! They said they would have given us a bottle of Krug but Katie and I along with our friend in 2K had already drank it all…
And on that note, as usual, it is time for everyone’s absolute favorite part of every review, pictures of the bathrooms!
Overall this was a really good flight. I don’t think it was my best first class flight or even the best first class flight of this trip but it was still very good. I also think there were a few factors that went into this not being as good an experience as I would have expected from an airline that is well know for it’s consistently excellent experiences. First, we were exhausted from travel for the last 20 hours before even getting on the flight. Second, there was A LOT of turbulence which made it hard to sleep at times and resolve that sleepiness. Lastly, from everything I have read and from speaking to our new friend who was a veteran of this route it sounds like CX was just a little off their game on this flight.
In the end I would still certainly recommend this as an excellent way to get across the Pacific and an awesome use of 67.5K American Airline miles!!
Next Up, our final stop: Andaz West Hollywood