April 6, 2014

Review: Singapore Airlines 777-300ER First Class Singapore to San Francisco - Part One

Exploring Singapore
Conrad Centennial Singapore
Singapore Airlines 777-300ER First Class Singapore to San Francisco - Part One
Singapore Airlines 777-300ER First Class Singapore to San Francisco - Part Two

After four great days in Singapore, we woke up early and grabbed a cab to the airport.  We were both super excited as this would be our first international first class flight together.

Singapore Airlines has a dedicated first class check-in facility at Changi airport.  Not as swanky as the Lufthansa First Class Terminal but nice nonetheless.  I totally forgot to tell the cab driver but Emily reminded me just as we arrived at the airport.  He dropped us off at the first class check-in and three airline staff members quickly descended on our cab.  We were the only ones checking in and everything was processed in a matter of minutes.  We were quickly escorted through the premium immigration line (Singapore does security at the gate) and shown to the Singapore Airlines Private Room.

The Private Room invitation

The Private Room is a pretty interesting experience.  You get a handwritten invitation and when shown at the entrance to the lounge you are escorted through the business class section, through the first class section, and into the sanctuary that is The Private Room.  The lounge is reserved for Singapore Airlines First Class passengers only.  Meaning you can't get in if you are flying first on a Star Alliance partner or are a top tier elite.  Thus the lounge is very quiet and the staff to passenger ratio seemed to be 3:1.

Entrance to The Private Room
Lounge seating
The Private Room Restaurant

We grabbed a seat and ordered what would be one of the best cappuccinos of my life.  After relaxing in the very elegant lounge, we decided to have breakfast.  There is a self-serve buffet and a sit down restaurant.  We sat in the restaurant and had a wonderful breakfast and some champagne (I believe they serve Vueve in the lounge).

Very solid Eggs Benedict

After breakfast, we left the lounge and explored Changi.  The airport is phenomenal.  We spent some time at the Koi pond and in the butterfly garden before heading over to our gate.  Security at the gate was hyper efficient and within five minutes we were boarding the plane.

Changi indoor butterfly garden
Singapore Airlines has two first class configurations.  One the A380, they offer closed door suites while on the 777, there are more standard first class seats without doors.  We were escorted through the first door on the 777 to our seats in row 2 of the cabin.  There are 8 total seats across 4 rows.  Each seat has direct aisle access and is WIDE.  Like sofa wide.  So wide that the airline provides an extra cushion of sorts to act as an armrest.  At our seats were amenity kits (pretty high end Sothy's products) and Bose noise canceling headphones.

Might be better than Christmas

The in-flight service manager personally introduced himself to both of us and informed us of the flight time to Seoul.  We were also offered Givenchy pajamas and slippers in our preferred sizes.  Prior to the flight, I read that the pajamas were pretty think and warm and that proved to be the case.  So neither of us used them on the flight.  But they have quickly become our favorite pair at home - especially during the winter.

Settling in to our seats

Prior to departure, we were offered a beverage.  What else to drink at 9AM prior to 26 hours of travel?  Champagne was the easy choice.  Singapore Airlines offers Dom Perignon and Krug.  I went with Krug and Emily had Dom and we did a bit of a taste test.  I actually preferred Krug and Emily preferred Dom (which was surprising because Krug is more expensive) both before takeoff and throughout the flights.

Dom or Krug?

The door was shut and we taxied out to the runway and were soon airborne.  More on the flight to Seoul, our time in Seoul's Incheon airport, and the flight to San Francisco in part two.

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