Etihad Airways will open its all-new flagship first class lounge at Abu Dhabi in May – but until then, where do passengers the airline's Airbus A380 three-room The Residence supersuite cool their heels pre-flight?
Tucked away in the far corner of Etihad's Abu Dhabi T3 business class lounge...
... behind a section that's roped off for first class passengers...
... sits this discrete little nook.
The fancy frosted doors may be missing but this special area set aside for The Residence passengers still boasts highly personal service and a full a la carte menu.
Any visit to The Residence lounge, indeed any visit to any Etihad lounge, begins with delightful Arabic coffee – flavoured with rose water and cardamom – and dates.
Other sweet treats are temptingly nearby...
... but you'd be wise to leave room for a proper meal.
The dining table boasts the same exquisite Nikko Ceramics Silk Platinum dinnerware as used for the inflight first class meal service.
Here's the menu:
And before you ask about dessert:
I started with a fresh-baked bread basket which had zero chance of survival.
As a starter, there was no simply going past the delectable locally-farmed Yasa premium caviar.
That was followed by lobster and pumpkin ravioli – a seemingly odd but in practice superb combination...
... and a carpaccio of Australian beef fillet.
If this is what Etihad Airways can do with just one small part of its business lounge, we can't wait to see what the airline will conjure up in May when it will have an entire first class lounge as its stage.
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