Cathay Pacific luxes it up with refreshed first class, business class

First class gets even classier with new Bamford amenities and bedding, while a series of wellness tweaks are added to the menu.

By David Flynn, November 15 2019

Cathay Pacific is now rolling out an eagerly-anticipated upgrade to its long-range first class and business class services. That anticipation comes not due to any perceived failings in the Oneworld airline's current premium cabins, but purely because these changes have been hinted at, rumoured and talked up for so long, that to have them finally revealed means we can share the details.

Styling up the softer side of first class.
Styling up the softer side of first class.

And for this 'soft product' refresh, it's all about the details – the little touches. Some of these are part of recent improvements such as Cathay's business class sleep service: a snooze-centric combo of mattress topper, slippers, pillow and duvet.

Cathay Pacific's improved business class sleep service.
Cathay Pacific's improved business class sleep service.

Others focus on the first class experience, which survives across much of Cathay Pacific's flagship Boeing 777-300ER fleet.

A centrepiece of this a new collaboration with luxury UK lifestyle brand Bamford for the supply of amenities – ousting current skincare partner Aesop – and bedding and related accessories.

Cathay Pacific's new Bamford first class amenity kits.
Cathay Pacific's new Bamford first class amenity kits.

"We are incredibly excited to be unveiling many wonderful enhancements in our First and Business Class cabins, and to have Bamford, a renowned leader in sustainable luxury, as the cornerstone of our premium inflight experience," says Vivian Lo, Cathay Pacific's General Manager for Customer Experience and Design.

Cathay Pacific's Vivian Lo says the new premium cabin experience is all about 'a sense of harmony.'
Cathay Pacific's Vivian Lo says the new premium cabin experience is all about 'a sense of harmony.'

"These enrichments to the products and service in our premium cabins are a resounding expression of that commitment and of our belief that every journey is our customers' most important one. All of these enhancements have been made with our customers in mind by listening to their feedback and ultimately giving them more reasons to fly with us.”

Bamford's botanical sleep spray is applied during the turn-down service.
Bamford's botanical sleep spray is applied during the turn-down service.

Finessing first class

Once first class passengers settle into their seat, there will be what Lo calls a "a new service moment" with a welcome reception tray sporting a personalised welcome note, a hot towel and a glass of sparkling JING jasmine silver needle tea.

A revised menu brings wellness to the fore, with lighter options for the main and breakfast meals plus healthy alternatives such as superfood bowls and lighter protein side dishes, while JING teas and cold-pressed Bless juices featuring metabolism-stimulating ingredients are offered before and after  breakfast to help passengers wake up refreshed.

Sweet dreams in Cathay Pacific's Boeing 777-300ER first class suite.
Sweet dreams in Cathay Pacific's Boeing 777-300ER first class suite.

The dining service has been updated to a new suite of contemporary tableware from renowned brands across the globe, including chinaware from Noritake, cutlery from Robert Welch and full-size wine glasses from Riedel.

Healthier meals and metabolism-boosting drinks make their way onto Cathay's first class menu.
Healthier meals and metabolism-boosting drinks make their way onto Cathay's first class menu.

Bamford's contributions are the male and female amenity kits with natural skincare products "presented in glass bottles" (and also available in the washrooms), a cosy 600-thread-count sustainably sourced cotton mattress and duvet and a soft full-size pillow, while the brand’s popular Botanic Pillow Mist is added to the turndown service.

You don't have to be in a five-star hotel to enjoy a first class turn-down service.
You don't have to be in a five-star hotel to enjoy a first class turn-down service.

Bamford in business class

The business class sleep service sees a new range of bedding developed by Bamford: a soft mattress topper, a two-piece duvet made from 100% sustainably-sourced cotton, and comfy slippers (still no pyjamas, though).

Cathay Pacific continues to bring sharp focus to the business class experience.
Cathay Pacific continues to bring sharp focus to the business class experience.

The larger, plusher night pillow is enveloped in a 400-thread-count pillowcase, and complements the day blanket and pillow.

Bamford's new unisex business class amenity kits will begin appearing on flights from 1 December, issued in four colours that will rotate throughout the year.

Cathay Pacific's new Bamford unisex business class amenity kit.
Cathay Pacific's new Bamford unisex business class amenity kit.

Executive Traveller review: Cathay Pacific's new business class sleep service

David

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

23 Feb 2017

Total posts 9

I flew cx from dubai last week. New bedding is comfortable. However with no personal airvents, I found the cabin to hot to use the blankets. Nice big pillows though. Is it just me, but do the slip on slippers never fit?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

02 Sep 2018

Total posts 109

Asian shoe sizes are almost always too small for my feet.

Bummer about Aesop... :(

19 Nov 2019

Total posts 1

Just flew MXP-HKG in First. Fantastic, the soft product changes make a big difference. Crew were warm, professional. New amenity kit, the bag is much nicer than the previous Aesop bag, brand less well recognized (to me). Bamford seems after some reading to be a well respected lifestyle brand, the Bamford cosmetics in the bag, surprisingly are labelled Made in PRC, which didnt really align with the organic/botanical brand image. Food and drinks were of high quality, very well presented.

Stepped off a CX flight with the refreshed first and these changes really are noticeable. I've always liked the attentiveness of the crew and those hand-written notes. I will miss the Aesop products though, Bamford is clearly a 'name' brand but so was Aesop and I feel it was a better fit to the luxury organic botanical positioning. CX has one of the better non-private first class suites, similar to the QF one in some ways, I will be very interested to see if the Boeing 777X first class goes all the way with a sliding door or keeps this more open nature. Also, did a leg in business class and the new sleeping products are great as well.


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