September 2013 saw me take the First Emirates Flight as a Gold Member on Skywards.
F1 travelled to Monza for the Italian Grand Prix and this gave me the opportunity to fly First Class on Emirates once again.
The Outbound journey was on 4th September 2013 and Inbound on 13th September.
Mumbai - Milan ( 4th September 2013 ) :
Shots from the Lounge :
The First Class Suite in the Boeing 777-300ER is one of the best in the Airline Industry. I also got a quick peep into the cockpit. Some stills of my seat :
Taxiing to the Runway :
The Breakfast Menu :
Breakfast. The Presentation excellent as always :
Time for some privacy and time to catch up on some sleep :
The Doors of the Suite shut to ensure complete privacy and also have a "Do Not Disturb" feature and believe me, no one disturbs :)
The Mumbai Dubai Leg is always a short flight and soon enough we were approaching Dubai International Airport :
Nearing Touchdown at Dubai :
Touchdown and we had the company of the famed Airbus A380 :
Shots from the Dubai International Airport :
The First Class Lounge offers A-la-carte dining to its guests and I helped myself to some lip-smacking Indian Starters and Delicious Desserts :
Shots from the Emirates First Class Lounge :
The 2nd Leg of the Journey wasn't as comfortable as the first as it was an older aircraft. However we only had 2 guests onboard in First Class and the crew left no stone unturned in ensuring a comfortable flight for me.
My Seat :
Taxiing for Departure :
So, What's for Lunch?
Time for a quick bite onboard :
The Flight to Europe offers some Picturesque views :
My Bed for the next few hours. Very Comfy and I immediately fell asleep
Nearing touchdown at Milan Mapensa Airport :
Touchdown at dusk :
My ride to the Hotel was a Mercedes Benz S 350.
Milan - Mumbai ( 13th September 2013 ) :
A Mercedes Benz S 350 for the pickup again :
Enroute to the Airport :
The sky looks stunning :
Milan Mapensa Airport :
A Brisk Check - in, Fast Track Security and Immigration and it was time to enjoy what the Lounge had to offer!
Dinner Time in the Lounge!
Boarding commenced from the Lounge and I quickly settled into my seat, no Suite on this flight either.
Night Flights always reward you with some amazing amenities. Who can forget the Goodie Basket!!
Dinner Menu onboard :
Time to have some dinner. The Options were brilliant and the food was really well made :
I chose to head to bed immediately after dinner and the Lie-Flat Bed does its job amazingly well.
The Time advances and after a 3.5 hours of sleep, we were nearing touchdown at the Dubai International Airport :
Touchdown on a hazy morning in Dubai and a line of Emirates Aircrafts ready for Departure.
Shots from the First Class Lounge :
The wait at the Lounge was a longer one and I really enjoyed some sleep in the Quiet Room.
It was time to board the afternoon flight to Mumbai for the Final Leg and the Boarding commenced from the Lounge.
Settling into my seat :
Dubai International Airport is a big hub for various airlines and here are some sharing airspace with Emirates :
Various Emirates Flights leaving for different destinations across the world :
Takeoff from Dubai and bound for Mumbai :
No Mattress or Duvet onboard this flight :
Mumbai and we are home :
There is definitely a difference between the services offered in First Class and Business Class . However one must opt to fly First when First Class Suites are on offer.
Emirates Airlines strive to ensure that their guests have an enjoyable flight and it was nice to see the crew recognize my Gold Status. Offering Personalized Services is a hallmark of Emirates and I would like to thank them for all the Hospitality shown to me.
Next post? - Emirates Business to Dubai and this time I have a co-traveller. Watch this space!
July 2013 was my First Business Class Experience on Emirates Airlines.
I flew to Düsseldorf to attend the 2013 German Grand Prix.
The Outbound journey was on 4th July 2013 and the Inbound on 13th July.
Mumbai - Düsseldorf ( 4th July 2013 ) :
A Prompt Transfer service to the airport, a brisk check in and breezy completion of the formalities characterize the service of Emirates on-ground.
I quickly settled into my seat as we waited for pushback :
The Flight to Dubai was a Brand New Boeing 777-300 ER and the control console was a fantastic looking tablet. The Tablet has a plethora of functions from controlling the Personal TV Screen to activating the in-seat massager. Lighting Options and Seating options add other value additions.
ICE - Information, Communication and Entertainment, the award winning Inflight Entertainment of Emirates offering programs for all ages :
Business Class Seats :
The Menu Onboard :
Taxiing to the runway :
Breakfast time! Emirates pampers their Business Class Guests!
Keeping myself entertained during the journey :
Nearing Touchdown at Dubai International Airport :
A Journey of 1948 kms and we have arrived at Dubai!
Dubai International Airport boats of dedicated lounges for its Business and First Class passengers and numerous lounges are spread across the 3 different terminals.
Enroute to the Business Class Lounge :
View from the Lounge :
Shots from the Lounge, Boarding commences from the Lounge itself!
After a restful 3 hours in the Lounge, it was time to board the flight for Düsseldorf.
The 700-300 ER to Düsseldorf was an older aircraft but then this isn't the most frequented sector.
Personal TV Screen :
The Seat Console :
My Seat in Business Class :
Enjoying Apple Juice as I settle into my seat :
Waiting for Pushback :
2009 F1 World Champion Jenson Button and his partnership with Tag Heuer.
Takeoff for Düsseldorf!
Some Sprite and Assorted Nuts in the Beverage Service :
The Menu for Lunch!
The Lunch Service Commences :
After a fantastic 3 course meal, I chose to catch up on some sleep and the 3 hour nap was extremely comfortable in the Lie - Flat Bed!
6 Minutes to Touchdown :
Arriving at Düsseldorf. An Amazing City from the Sky :
Emirates Chauffeur Services in Europe are top - notch and I had a BMW M5 waiting for me in the arrivals hall to take me to Cologne!
Enroute to Cologne :
It was a very comfortable and smooth 1st leg of the trip and I was taken care of very well by Emirates!
Düsseldorf - Mumbai ( 13th July 2013 ) :
I always opt for the late evening flight and the return leg was no different.
Emirates never fails to impress me and this time they had a BMW 750 Ld waiting at the hotel to take me to Düsseldorf.
The Exquisite Luxury of the BMW 750 Ld!
Enroute to Düsseldorf, spotted my personal car, the Passat on the Autobahn :
Düsseldorf Airport :
Brilliantly built Airport :
Shots from the Emirates Lounge in Düsseldorf :
A Lavish Buffet spread in the Lounge :
Boarding commenced from the Lounge and I quickly settled into my seat. This time the Boeing 777-300 ER was the new aircraft!
The Sunset nearing at Düsseldorf Airport and we wait for the pushback :
Taxiing to the Runway :
Takeoff Time :
Video Link of the 777-300 Takeoff :
Enroute to Dubai in the setting sun :
The Console for Seat and the Joystick to make calls :
Dinner Service on-board. I had my fill in the Lounge but the spread on-board is too much to resist. Gluttony!
Emirates replicates the Constellations seen in the sky within the plane during a night flight. They leave no stone unturned in ensuring that you sleep under the stars :
A 4 Hour Nap and it was time to land into Dubai. Emirates AV welcoming their guests into Dubai International Airport :
The Business Class Lounge next to the gate :
Buffet Spread for Breakfast :
The Last Leg was in an Airbus A330-200 and this plane seemed to be a generation old.
Takeoff Time :
I chose to sleep the final leg of the trip and returned home after a refreshing trip.
A Big Thank you to Emirates Airline for all the Hospitality showered on me. The Business Class on Emirates Airline is a fantastic product offering but once you have travelled First.. you will forget all else.
The Next Update would feature the First Class Experience to Milan in the month of September ( 2013 ).
Sunday was the Big Day!! The Final day of the Paddock Club Diaries for this Season! The last of the 4th and Final Paddock Club Experience for me.
Well, Lets relive it!
UAE is known for its fancy cars and I came across a couple on my way to Yas Island.
Enroute to Yas Island :
I reached the Paddock Club and the First event of the day was the GP2 Sprint Race :
Kimi Raikkonen joined us in the Suite to oblige the guests with autographs!!
Eric Boullier talking about the Team's Performance so far
A quick lunch and it was time to go down for the Final Pit Lane Walk of the weekend and the Final one for me to be at. I wanted to make the most of it.
Shots from the Pit-Lane Walk :
A Moment with Steve Robertson ( Kimi Raikkonen's Manager ). He is a very approachable man and very humble.
The Pit Lane Walk ended and preparations were in full swing for the race.
Cars doing installation laps :
Lotus Boys taking sighters of the Track :
The Grid Preparations :
The Etihad Airways Fly-Past :
The Cars rolled out for the Formation Lap and the Mechanics had to run back to the pits!
Video Link :
The Cars lined up on the Grid and Expectations were high. Kimi Raikkonen started at the back of the grid after the disqualification on Saturday and I was praying for a strong result.
Race Start Video Link :
The Race began and Kimi jumped the Marussia but ran a bit wide on the kerb. The Resulting imbalance caused contact with the Caterham and damaged the front suspension rod. It was a First Lap retirement for the Iceman and a good weekend that went from bad to worse for me :( A Rare Retirement for the Iceman...
There was still a race to be won and here are some shots from the Race :
McLaren Mercedes during their Pit-Stop
Video Link :
The Lotus F1 Team in the Race :
Lotus F1 Team Pit-Stop Video Link :
The Chequered Flag came out and it was Sebastien Vettel again who took victory! Mark Webber finished 2nd while Nico Rosberg held off a late charge by Romain Grosjean to hold onto 3rd place. Kimi Raikkonen was the sole retirement in the race.
Video Link ( Chequered Flag ) :
Fireworks display :
Parc - Ferme :
It was time to say goodbye to my friends at Lotus F1 Team and as I headed out, I saw the Yas Marina Hotel shining in all its glory!!
Some more exotics on the way back :
It was a good weekend from a neutral point of view but very disappointing as a Kimi Fan.
I was sad to see it end like this. This was the last race in 2013 that I would be at and it turned out to be the last one for Kimi too as he decided to go in for Back Surgery.
Overall it was a satisfactory 2013 for me. It all started with an All Expenses Paid trip to the Malaysian GP thanks to Tourism Malaysia. Then the German GP, Italian GP, Indian GP and the Abu Dhabi GP to make it 5 races for the season. I was with the Lotus F1 Team in the Paddock for the 4 races and I must say it was a great experience. I shall cherish every moment.
A Special Thank you to Oliver Anderson, Anne-Charlotte Remy, Sophie Stapleton, Anna Pamin, Fleur Foster, Francois Puentes, James Robinson, Gaby Mills, Anita Nyers, Fred Garcia and Luca Mazzocco for all the Hospitality shown to me.
I made some really dear friends in this season and I am thankful to God that I got a chance to meet such wonderful people!!
A Big Thank you to YOU my followers and readers on various social platforms who have been patient enough and enjoyed reading everything that I have shared over the past year.
2014 will have its own experiences and I pray that I get a chance to be at a couple of races... Fingers Crossed.