Airbus’ swish Settee Corner concept seat is a business class couch

By David Flynn, April 2 2019
Airbus’ swish Settee Corner concept seat is a business class couch

With an increasing number of airlines considering flat-beds in business class for single-aisle jets such as the Airbus A320 family, Airbus itself has revealed a new twist on the concept.

Introducing the business class Settee Corner, in which the passenger reclines rather than the seat.

Making its debut at this week’s Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, the Settee Corner seat was developed with Geven as a potential seat for Airbus’ long-range A321LR jets, creating a welcoming home-like environment for business travellers on extended journeys.

A standard A321LR cabin layout would permit 12 seats (set at a 32" pitch) with two settees per row – one per passenger, situated on either side of the aisle.

The seat itself, located immediately next to the aisle, is adapted from a sturdy but lightweight economy design, and it’s fixed in place – there's not an inch of recline.

But the aisle-adjacent seat isn't intended to be used for very long.

Passengers would take their place in the seat only during taxi, take-off and landing – but for the rest of the flight, they’re free to sprawl across the bench, just as they might do on their favourite couch at home.

A padded section at the front of the settee flips up to boost the useable space for sleeping or sprawling.

The corner nook also opens to reveal a stowage bin.

There’s plenty of space to stretch out if you’re sitting by the window and perhaps taking in a movie…

… but the most comfortable position is nestling into the settee and along the contour of the seat itself.

The single-aisle settee is one of several developments which Airbus is showcasing at Hamburg’s annual airline industry seatfest, along with XL-sized overhead luggage bins which offer 40% more space for carry-on bags, and will first be flown by American Airlines on its latest A321neo jets.

The Airspace XL bins not only accommodate larger bags – up top 24” x 16” x 10” – but allow bags to be loaded on their sides rather than placed face down, with room for four bags instead of three per overhead bin.

David Flynn travelled to Hamburg at his own expense.


David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

19 Aug 2011

Total posts 168

In concept a little like BA's patented sofa concept for Club World, described in a previous post. However, it really doesn't look that comfortable. Either upright at the aisle, leaning back a little in front of the screen (which appears a little close), or go foetal on the sofa.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

13 Jan 2015

Total posts 602

Yes I agree. Looks very hard and uncomfortable. Not everyone sleeps in fetal position and even then it looks quite narrow around the area for you shoulders. I'd prefer the SQ style bed over this

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Mar 2014

Total posts 133

wow that looks awesome! also looks like the rejected BA designes...

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 471

No airline will order it - will hugely reduce yield in J.

Qantas - Platinum One

18 Jan 2011

Total posts 84

This looks incredibly uncomfortable


Emirates Airlines - Skywards

30 Nov 2015

Total posts 743

Wow, I don't like that concept at all.


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

23 Sep 2017

Total posts 149

It’d be good to see a picture with a body on it, otherwise it just looks like a contortionists fantasy at best.

Probably nothing more than a completely impractical waste of space.
Would be better to look at modified Apex suites on N/B aircraft.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

06 Oct 2017

Total posts 37

Don't tell CASA about the overhead bins with 40% more space ;-)

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 1090

It would be interesting to know how much space this alternative uses in comparison with the existing lie-flat seats airlines such as AA and B6 use on their A321s.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

03 Jul 2018

Total posts 13

The "idea" of a couch on the sky sounds good and comfortable, but that's where the comfy-ness stops for me

Looks pretty uncomfortable for a plus sized person like me. might be difficult for travelers w/ claustrophobia

Besides, the seat ahead looks very close (although it might be because the picture was taken in a certain angle/lens)

Storage - ok, leg room near the window - ok, rest not ok at this point in time. have to see it for real to understand more

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

26 Apr 2016

Total posts 24

The TV screen is at a weird angle at best. And the lounge configuration is just silly. Quite a lot of wasted space that is banking on the assumption that every flyer wants to automatically recline.

Some of us want desktop space with large areas for multi-tasking (reading reports, using a laptop/checking a mobile and writing notes), as well as enjoying a beverage and a bite to eat without sitting it in your lap.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

03 Jul 2018

Total posts 13

Agree on the TV angle - it seems to me that the telly is docked in a corner of an otherwise larger user area, which also, from the image supplied, limits the desktop/table space, which isn't very user friendly/beneficial

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

14 Mar 2017

Total posts 158

A business seat for short hall that takes the place of two seats and you can't actually stretch out while watching the TV?

It's never going to fly.

17 Sep 2015

Total posts 387

It doesn't match how most of us sleep. One wonders which designer came up with such an impractical idea.

The Lufthansa (abandoned) idea of borrowing from rail sleeping berths/couchettes and having berths on top of one another in economy was a far better idea, but it also has never flown.

08 May 2020

Total posts 35

I like the idea, but maybe needs more work.  

Potentially room for innovation if airlines move the overhead bins and incorporate it into the seat design.  The extra height could means more options.  For example, leg space and suitcase space interleaved.

I am not sure about your claim of AA being the first to fly those new oversized overhead bins - I am quite sure BA has them installed on one or two of the neos that just arrived or on one or two of the refitted ones.  I am 100% sure I flew recently with these overhead lockers on a BA plane. 

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