Brussels Airlines is channeling the exclusivity and allure of a boutique hotel in its new Airbus A330 business class.
The Belgium flag-carrier tapped London-based JPA Design to shape its new intercontinental A330 business class seats and cabin, a process which was rooted in Belgian influences ranging from Art Nouveau to Dries Van Noten.
Taking wing from April 2019, the seat itself is the increasingly-popular Thompson Vantage, which the Star Alliance member and part of the sprawling Lufthansa Group already flies on its current A330 fleet, but elevated by JPA Design through a modern palette.
The 30 business class seats follow Vantage’s trademark staggered layout, including a handful of thrones – or in Brussels Airlines parlance ‘king’ seats – which see a solo passenger flanked by two side tables.
Each set reclines into ‘lounge sofa’ mode for enjoying the 15.6” HD video screen (and supplied noise-cancelling headphones)...
... or a fully lie-flat bed which can be adjusted between firm and soft settings.
Just don’t sleep through the meal service, where the airline promises “a fine culinary experience” starting with Laurent Perrier Champagne, continuing through “a four-course gastronomic meal created by a Belgian Michelin Star chef” and finished up with coffee and Neuhaus chocolates.
At the rear of the business class cabin a self-serve ‘Belgian café’ boasts a choice of eight famous Belgian beers under a domed ceiling light featuring an elegant Art Nouveau motif.
If you look down rather than up, you may notice that the carpet pattern in the business class cabin takes its cues from the vault design of historical Antwerp central station.
Throughout the whole cabin, the airline says, “Art Nouveau patterns reflect the premium Belgian hospitality and bring a sophisticated and relaxed atmosphere on board.”
The new Airbus A330s also mark the debut of premium economy on Brussels Airlines, replacing the Economy Privilege rows of the current A330s which simply add extra legroom in front of a standard economy seat.
The 2-3-2 premium economy rows are nestled in their own cabin decorated with soft purples and blues and a dash of the airline’s signature red in the seat detailing.
Each traveller will enjoy more personal space through the wider seats and 38 inch pitch and 140° seat recline, along with comfortable cushions and an expanded armrest. Creature comforts include a 13.3” HD screen and AC and USB power ports.
Brussels Airlines says it expects to have ‘renewed' its intercontinental A330 fleet by early 2020, with seven new A330s coming in as older jets are put out to pasture.