And now for the return flight home on SQ Business Class. This flight was booked using redemption miles, at 29750miles for a saver award. Out of the 4 flights daily from PEK-SIN, I had chosen SQ807, which is the evening departure from PEK, as (i) the flight is operated by SQ's B773ER with long-haul Business Class seats which I had not tried before, (ii) full dinner service offered and (iii) saver awards were surprisingly widely available!! The return trip would mainly be picture based as I guess SQ Business Class had been reviewed countless times in various forums.
Trip from my hotel to Beijing Capital Airport Terminal 3 (which is really massive), took about 45min due to heavy traffic. Arrived at the airport 2hrs prior to departure.
In Terminal 3. The layout reminded me of HKIA Terminal 1.
Business Class check-in counter. There were nobody in the queue.
Got my first (and only) SQ blue boarding pass for the year.
Lounge invitation to BGS Premier Lounge was given. Details were hand-written, not too classy….
Proceed to the inter-terminal train to T3E.
Departing from gate E10 today.
Immigration and security, which were very crowded, were cleared at T3E. Both took a total of almost 30min! Rather tiring…
Duty free shops after immigration. Not too much of a selection. Guess not much time to shop too after the immigration and security checks.
Proceeded to the BGS Premier Lounge after buying some liquor (Absolut Wild-Tea, not available in Singapore!!). There were First and Business Class sections. The Business Class section was rather packed. However still with ample seating, even though the lounge is not too big.
Emptier section towards the rear of the lounge.
Buffet selection with not too many choices. There was also a Zha Jiang noodle and udon station. However there was plenty to choose from for beverages.
Coconut rice with curry chicken.
More food from the lounge. Rather tasty minced-chicken Zha Jiang noodles.
Dim sum and onigiri. The dim sum is nice but onigiri is tasteless.
Something sweet. Coffee mousse cake and danish pastry.
At about 1615hrs, a lounge attendant walked through the lounge, announcing the boarding of SQ807 to Singapore. Most of the pax in the lounge, who apparently were on the flight, started to get up and proceeded to the gate.
25 September 2012 Singapore Airlines SQ 807 Beijing (PEK) - Singapore (SIN) B777-300ER 9V-SWI Business Class
Gate E10 was not too far from the lounge. Boarding had already started, thus no wait for boarding.
As mentioned in the first post, the Albino Star-livery 9V-SWI would be operating my flight back to SIN.
Down the gangway and looking at the nose. It had started to rain at this time.
Emirates A380 parked beside. I am so gonna fly this big bird someday.
Boarded the aircraft at Door 1, greeted by name by the IFS and directed to the correct aisle. Passed by the under-whelming First Class cabin (and saw Asian/Hollywood celebrity Jet Li sitting on 1K! He was the only pax in F today!) and reached my seat just behind First, 11K, which is the first row of the Business Class cabin, and also within the private 2-rows section. Through review, the Business seats on this row on the 773ER are supposedly the best! Mini cabin. away from galley, no bassinet points and lots of legroom! Almost equivalent to a First Class seat! Not sure why would anyone want to pay for First on the B773ER, of course unless you are a VVIP, haha.
My seat at 11K. Already on the seat were a pillow, blanket, headphones and menu. The seat is really wide!!
Seat controls, IFE handset and armrest cushion which was introduced after everyone complained about the absurd width of the seat.
Fantastic legroom on Row 11!
Staring into First.
At the gate. It was a rainy afternoon.
Welcome drink. I had an orange juice.
All the mags and menu.
Menu for this evening's flight.
Total load in Business Class was about 30+ out of 42, with 6 pax in my forward mini-cabin. All passengers were boarded on schedule. However, the pilot came on and announced that pushback would be delayed for about 20min (which extended to 30min) due to congestion in Beijing Capital. Compounded with the bad weather, I had sort of expected this. However the good news was that flight time would only be 5h25m, almost an hour shorter than scheduled. Due to the delayed pushback, I just relaxed on my seat with the flightmap on. No IFE on the ground. Unfortunately, there were also no additional offering of drinks (although I am sure the crew will offer if you ask, but I would expect them to be more proactive, especially in Business Class) even with the delayed departure.
Finally we were pushed back after about half hour's delay.
And then we were allocated the furthest runway at Rwy36L, all the way at the other end of the gigantic airport. This resulted in another half hour hike across the airport! The taxi to the takeoff runway almost took as long as the cab ride to town!!
Finally reached the runway. Next to depart after the CZ A321.
KA A333 behind us.
And finally took off at around 1750hrs, more than an hour behind schedule! None of SQ's fault though. (Sorry for the inverted video)
Curtains to another heaven closed shortly after takeoff.
Advantage of Row 11 or 14, you would have an ottoman to rest your feet and do not need to sit at an angle to fit your feet in the small cut-out hole at the seat in front. Again, this ensures that you would also be able to lie straight instead on at an angle while in bed-mode.
Amenity kit of socks and eyeshades given out.
My post-takeoff drink of Silver-Kris Sling. Dinner orders were also taken.
First up, the famous satay! These were again, great!
Very cloudy weather out there, with some slight turbulences.
Made a trip to the well-stocked lavatory.
Moisturizer, mouthwash and colognes.
Back from the lav, I settled into a movie on the Krisworld system. Coincidentally, most of the new releases on SQ were exactly the same as on Jetstar's ipad IFE. I settled for a romantic comedy. Sun is also setting by this time.
Finally dinner is served, about 1hr after takeoff. Tables were laid and the starter was served. No trays were used on the B773ER aircraft (as well as A380/A345) with long-haul Business Class cabin (with the exception of SIN-HKG route) while trays were still used on the rest of the fleet with regional Business Class cabins.
Nicoise Salad. Just a cold average starter.
Garlic bread and breadstick from the bread basket.
Midway through the meal, the IFE system on the entire plane crashed. Crew made an announcement to apologize and rebooted the system. However the rebooting process took almost half an hour , with a black screen with words Please Wait shown on the monitor. Well, at least I can enjoy my meal without distractions.
Across the aisle.
My main course: Stirfried sliced beef fillet with fried rice. This was created by a celebrity chef, Zhu Jun, of Jade Garden restaurant in Shanghai. Well, the creation is certainly not too imaginative, but the dish was definitely delicious!
Another choice of Panfried cod with millet. According to my friend, it tasted just like how it looked (sadly).
After mains were cleared, dessert was served. This is the Raspberry sorbet.
The other choice, Chocolate ice cream, which I preferred more.
As for drinks with the meal, I tried the champagne, and as most of you in the forums who expressed disgust with it, I felt the same too… Can't even force myself to finish a glass. No post-dinner liquor offered too, unless one requests for it. Unlike on Jetstar Business, or even KLM economy, where post-dinner liquor was proactively offered by the crew.
After dessert is the cheese and fruits service. The cheese plate looked pathetic when compared to Jetstar's offering. I did not have the cheddar though.
Assortment of fruits, including apples, bananas, melons, longans and strawberries available. I had a melon slice and strawberries.
Some Pu-er (well, it is a China flight) tea to end the meal.
My seat was then converted into a bed, which was actually pretty easy to perform. There was an extra big pillow and duvet hidden behind the seat.
Movie in bed. Bliss….
A bottle of water was also offered.
Lights were then gradually dimmed to allow us to rest. I spent the rest of the flight watching movies. Crew did checked on pax rather frequently and asked if drinks were needed to anyone awake. Midflight, I had a tea, which was served together with a pack of apple chips.
There were instances of turbulence during the flight, but nothing too major. Seatbelt signs came on quite regularly (trigger-happy pilots again), but no announcements were made, Cabin crew just came round and discreetly checked on passengers. 5.5hrs literally flew past and we soon started our descend into Changi.
Landing on Rwy20R about 15min behind schedule.
Parked at Terminal 3.
My messed up seat before disembarkation.
Independent BGS Premier Lounge
Beijing - PEK
Singapore - SIN
Overall service on SQ on this flight was fine. Slightly robotic but not bad either. Meal was average to good, depending on the choices made. However the food/service still lacked my previous TPE-SIN flight last year. However the famed long-haul J seat is really awesome! I have no qualms flying more than 12hrs on it. Probably my comfort was enhanced by me seated at the first row. Not sure how comfortable it would be at the regular rows. Compared to Jetstar Business Class on my previous report, SQ, on the other hand, is on another league and has maintained its high standards of offerings, but also with high prices to boot. Seats are definitely more comfortable and choices of food/beverages and amenities much more diverse. Definitely worth my redemption (especially since my flight is operated by the B77W), but not sure if it would be worth paying through my own pockets for it. Well, lucky if you can afford it!
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