Back in 2009 I decided to go to Israel and at the same time try LH F in hopes of visiting their First Class Terminal after reading so many praises from travelers. I went via FRA and after some much needed relaxation in the pool of the hotel the night before, I woke up somewhat refreshed at 0500A and decided to get an early start and have breakfast at the LH F Terminal.
I made my way to the station to catch the S8 train and within a few minutes I arrived at the airport. I headed towards the LH F counter where a smiling agent greeted me and issued my boarding pass. I asked if one could walk to the F Terminal and she pointed me in the direction of the building instructing me to walk outside towards it for a couple of minutes.
The LH F Terminal
It took me less than 10 minutes to get there and when I finally arrived I viewed the imposing building from below. It sure looked impressive and I couldn't wait to get inside its exclusive confines. It sure resembled a heavenly mirage amidst the busy and chaotic turmoil of its surroundings.
I rang the bell and a voice instructed me to wait for my assistant to escort me inside. In about 2 minutes Kate arrived and welcomed me. She was professionally groomed and had the look of a model. So far the first impression has been great. Then I was escorted through security where the process was performed efficiently and in a very dignified way, unlike the mass herding that one is accustomed to at most US airports. Kate asked for my passport and then showed me where to drop my bags. She wished me a good stay and said that she will be back to check on me later on.
Right after security there is a small duty free shop to the left followed by the entrance to the lounge. Upon entering the bar and dining area are to the right and the office cubicles to the left. Overall it is quite a spacious setting and I proceeded to have some breakfast from the nicely stocked buffet. There is a chef on premise making sure that items were restocked frequently and available for any special orders. There is also a Cigar Room for smokers as well as relaxation rooms and showers.
Private computer room
Kate eventually came back and escorted me once again through security. I guess this is a formality for all TLV bound psgrs. Afterwards I was directed to passport control and then was introduced to the driver that took me in a Mercedes sedan directly to the plane.
The ride from the terminal to the gate was a rare treat that I enjoyed. One seldom has the opportunity to get so close to the aircrafts and have a first look at ramp activities. Once we reached the gate where I saw the 744 majestically parked, my driver escorted me through the stairs in the back of the jetbridge and carried my bag all the way to the upper deck by my seat. He then introduced me to the two flight attendants working the F cabin who immediatedly welcomed me and helped me settle down.
Ride on the Mercedes-S to the plane
My plane waiting at the gate
Today's flight was going to be a very special one as it turned out that I was the only passenger in F. How often does one get this luxury to have an entire cabin to oneself? Although I am no stranger to traveling in F on intercontinental flights, I must admit that I don't indulge in it as often as I would like and the very few times that I am fortunate enough to enjoy it, I cherish the experience dearly. And no matter how often I fly in Business class, there is just no comparison.
So I settle into my seat and the FA brings me some macadamia nuts and a drink. A minute later the captain passes by and welcomes me onboard. While still on the ground, I receive my amenity kit, pajama and menu set. I peruse the choices for lunch and everything looks enticing. I am ready to partake in this Lucullian feast.
Having some time to spare before departure, I take out my camera and decide to take pictures of the cabin to document today's journey. Below are some samples:
Designed by Jean-Georges Klein
Choice of Hors d'oeuvres
Caviar w/traditional garnishes Smoked Tuna filled with Crabmeat on Lime Creme Fraiche w/Walnuts Medium rare Tenderloin of Beef with Apples and Jelly of Tabbouleh and Yogurt Dialogue of Beetroot and Comte Cheese with Thyme
Salad or Soup
Frisee, Radicchio, Chicory and Lamb's Lettuce with Cucumber, Pumpkin and Brown Mushrooms with your choice of Vinaigrette or Potato Dressing
Clear Oxtail Soup with Cheese Stick
Choice of Main Courses
We are proud to present our traditional Roast Goose w/Red Cabbage, Potato Dumplings and Herb Crumb Butter as an Alternative to the Compositions of our Star Chef
Nut crusted Slice of Halibut w/Aniseed Beurre Blanc, Leaf Spinach and mashed Pumpkin
Gratin de Legumes d'Anton, Root Vegetable Casserole and Leaf Spinach w/Parmesan Sauce
Breast of Veal simmered in Hay with Savoy Cabbage and baked Potatoes
Selection of Cheese and Dessert
Comte, Crottin de Chavignol, Roquefort, Le Coutances and Brie Cheese garnished w/Grapes, Walnuts and Celery
2005 Douro Reserva, Quinta das Tecedeiras, Portugal
2002 Chateau Belgrave, Cru Classee, Haut-Medoc, France
2005 Tokaija Edes Late Harvest, Oremus, Hungary
Etter Weihnachtspflumli, Switzerland
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey Old No7 Johnnie Walker Blue Label Bushmills Malt 10 Years old Smirnoff Red Vodka Bombay Sapphire Distilled London Dry Gin Cognac Lheraudd Cuvee 30 Calvados Pays d'Auge AC, Daron Fernet Blanca Tequila Walcher Williams Exclusiv Etter Zuger Kirsch, 42 Vol. %, Jahrgang 1998
Liqueur and Port
Baileys Irish Cream Niepoort Port
Once we took off and leveled at 35,000 feet, the FA started the service and set up the carts even though there was only one passenger. I was offered a red rose - a hallmark of LH F's service since the 50's (maybe late 40's or early 50's) followed by an amuse bouche consisting of pear on top of phyllo pastry with blue cheese.
Since caviar was featured as an appetizer, I couldn't refuse such an offer and I had it along with the Smoked Tuna and the Beetroot with Comte cheese.
A reminder that you are in F
For the main course I opted for the seasonal Goose which proved to be outstanding. The meat was cooked to perfect tenderness and the sides were delicious.
After the main course, I chose some Crotin and Coutances cheese with grapes and finished with the Delicacy of Chocolate along with a glass of Tokay. To conclude the meal service in style, the FA rolled out the cart with liquors and a box of chocolates with unusual flavors such as cactus pear, green tea or mango among others. The service provided was flawless in every aspect and the dishes were nicely presented and prepared.
At one point during the meal service, the FA who was serving me apologized that she had to go to the Business class section to help out but assured me that her colleague will look after me. When she returned she made sure that I was taken care of and I appreciated her professional demeanor throughout the whole trip.
After the meal I strolled around the cabin for a bit and checked out the WC's. To my surprise the rear WC in the upper deck had a window.
Amenities in the WC
Once we landed in TLV my carry on was waiting for me by the stairs and one of the FA's escorted me downstairs. Upon seeing me descend, the FA's in the lower deck stopped the psgrs from exiting in order to allow me through the door first. Now that is service!
Lufthansa - First Class
Frankfurt - FRA
Tel Aviv - TLV
I was glad to try LH F and visit their famous F/C Terminal. The flight experience and the lounge facility did not disappoint. Although the catering was excellent, it was not as outstanding as the one I had flying LX from MIA-ZRH in 2001. Nevertheless, LH F is a great product and I can imagine that it is even better now with their new F seats. I had a particularly excellent FA serving me on this flight and it was a joy to be a passenger under her care. She was proactive, professional, engaging and a great hostess.
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Thanks for this FR.
I think it's the first time I see one includind the FCT in Frankfurt.
If it weren't for the old seats, that would be a truly awesome experience, especially on such a short flight.
Their interim product with one seat in the upright position and one bed really was extraordinary.
I don't think I will get to try that interim seat. I have seen pictures of it and it seems to offer the best of two worlds. The bed with the straps next to the seat seems like something out of a dungeon.
Thanks for sharing this FR
First Class Terminal and to be driven to the airplane are a nice experience
In 2009 was there still the foie gras burger with the ginger ketchup ?
Now it has disappeared from the menu and the quality is decreasing except for the beverage offer
On board the FAs are usually great but I've never taste a catering that was worth first class, except the caviar but I'm not fond of.
Wine offer is obviously not a first class selection
Unfortunately I don't recall foie gras burgers, otherwise I would have been first in line to try them. Can't tell much about wines since I rarely drink alcohol (partly due to a medical condition)so I am not an expert. I understand that when it comes to that the British tend to excel and the French of course.
nice sharing! a good point is a caviar!
thank you for your flight report
My pleasure. Caviar are also disappearing from F these days.
First class pictures for a first class experience. F and J seat layouts which provide a window and an aisle seat next to each other seem to be a disappearing breed. No matter if these LH first class seats look old fashioned to some, they do allow couples and colleagues to traveling together and enjoy the view outside. Thanks for this report !
I agree. If anything I find that the new generation seats are somewhat narrower, especially in J. Yes, you now can have a lie flat seat, but at the cost of reducing the width of the seat. When it comes to people being able to sit together as a couple, I think the J seats on OS and LX are a good compromise. They have singles and pairs throughout the cabin.
Thanks a lot for this new FR, I am pleasantly surprised with the full F service on this short flight when some airlines (namely LX) is having European type of service on this route (even if operated by long haul aircraft)
Having the whole cabin for yourself is a memorable experience, nice set of crew too!
Catering seems good, clearly LH F product is appealing.
Thank you ;)
I think back then BA also offered a full long haul F service from LHR-TLV in their widebodies. To be honest I thought that the pajama was not needed but I did not complain when I got it. It's a bit ironic that my trip to Israel was on LH and not LY.
Great report, very detailed with lots of good pics! thanks for sharing. Everything seems great except the seats, IMO< are really ugly, plus not having full aisle-access in First is very 90s, even in 2009.
Having direct access to the aisle is a true luxury. Thx.
What a wonderful terminal.
I have to try it at least once although I prefer to travel on ST or OW airlines.
I actually like Star Alliance a lot because of their extensive list of members. OW is more exclusive with a lot of premium carriers. ST...well, let's just say that it reminds me of the group of misfits in high school that did not belong anywhere and banded together.
Thank you for this FR ! The service and catering really seems pleasant and is a nice surprise on such a route. But the cabin itself and particularly the seats reminds me of a Star Trek episode of the 70's...
Those seats are definitely not pretty and the headrest looks like 3 pieces of marshmallows stuck together.
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