Virgin Atlantic’s new A350s have a private business class dining booth

“Table for two?” Virgin’s Airbus A350s will let business class flyers enjoy a shared experience on their next holiday.

By David Flynn, September 3 2021
Virgin Atlantic’s new A350s have a private business class dining booth

Virgin Atlantic’s latest Airbus A350s will swap their spacious business class lounge The Loft for a more private dining space for two.

Christened The Booth, it's a continued evolution of Virgin's signature inflight bar for passengers in the Upper Class business cabin.

The Booth will debut on a second tranche of five A350-1000 deliveries, due from the end of 2021, which in turn will introduce a 'leisure' configuration in contrast to the previous 12 'premium' jets.

Serving Virgin's network of holiday destinations such as Orlando and Caribbean instead of larger centres like New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong and Johannesburg, these Airbus A350s skew their seating layout accordingly.

The business class cabin is being downsized from 44 berths to just 16, although Virgin is retaining the same Upper Class suite.

Virgin Atlantic's Airbus A350 Upper Class.
Virgin Atlantic's Airbus A350 Upper Class.

With both A350 versions having 56 premium economy seats, the leisure A350 gets one hundred more economy seats, taking the tally from 235 to 335.

With so few business class seats on these holiday-mode A350s, Virgin Atlantic took a different approach to carving out a social space for its premium passengers.

The Loft features on Virgin Atlantic's first slew of 'premium' Airbus A350s.
The Loft features on Virgin Atlantic's first slew of 'premium' Airbus A350s.

Developed in partnership with UK firm Factorydesign, and modelled after what you might spy in a cosy cocktail bar, The Booth has seating for just two travellers on either side of a small table, with 27" video screens and streaming Bluetooth audio.

Table for two: The Booth is a more intimate inflight space for Virgin Atlantic's 'leisure' Airbus A350s.
Table for two: The Booth is a more intimate inflight space for Virgin Atlantic's 'leisure' Airbus A350s.

Virgin Atlantic hasn't revealed how The Booth will be made available to its well-heeled holiday makers, although we expect it will be offered for cocktails or perhaps the airline's High Tea service (the table seems on the small side for sharing a meal) and perhaps packaged as an Upper Class up-sell.

The Booth could be a great place to share some High Tea.
The Booth could be a great place to share some High Tea.

Also read: Behind the design and evolution of Emirates’ Airbus A380 bar

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.

QFF

19 Sep 2013

Total posts 177

Surprised at the J seat reduction. Would have expected more leisure folks choosing to fly J these days.

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 954

This tranche of A35Js are largely replacing the previous leisure oriented 744s so it makes sense that they are much less premium heavy.  

Joe
Joe

03 May 2013

Total posts 623

Another gimmick by Branson. Just like the massage/manicure service and space on the A346's, this will eventually be used for seats.

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 954

These bars and lounges etc may appear gimmicky to some but there is no doubt VS and EK are the two airlines that have done it best.  VA also did well on their now departed 77Ws.  Some others such as QF's A380s were poorly thought out and largely unused.  I have flown on QF's A380s is F and J a number of times and have never seen the lounge used by anyone.  Maybe they will be more popular after the refit but there is still no bar to give you a reason to go there so I'm not hopeful.

23 Oct 2014

Total posts 197

I think this has more legs than “running tracks and gyms in the cargo holds”


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