Everyone knows I love flying! The flight attendants, the captain’s voice over the inflight announcement system, the thrill of the altitude, fine wines and beautiful creative food – life really is meant to be lived at 30,000 feet.
I mean everything about flying excites me! The sound of the wheelie bag rolling on the floor of the tarmac, the sound of overhead locker clipping in, the queues, getting my passport stamped, filling in those cool customs forms – it’s not a mode of transport, it’s something way more than that! It’s a way of life.
So the obvious question, is there anything ground related I love? Well yes there is one thing… but it’s kinda related to flying – It’s the Airline Lounge before the flight.
So what’s so special about airline lounges? Well let me explain…
The Private Room
Some lounges have private rooms, which are incredibly useful. The private room has become a necessity in Travel Czar-land. Typically a holiday is not a holiday, but an opportunity to work outside the office. Calls need to be taken, work meetings do not stop, and well it’s “me” time so I have a space where I don’t need to engage with the rest of the world. There’s a computer, copier/fax, comfy sofas, food service and plenty of wine.
The Private Meeting Room (Qantas Lounge – Sydney)
Plus it’s great to entertain people and have a little partay there if you want!
So what do you do if you’re a little tired and need some sleep. Some lounges have these lovely cabanas. They’re like mini hotel rooms, they have a sofa bed (which is oh so comfy), a ensuite bathroom, plasma TV, room service and a work desk. It’s a home away from home. The perfect place to dream about the flight you are about to board.
The Cabana (British Airways Concorde Room- London Heathrow Terminal 5)
When you are lounging, it can be quiet exhausting, so you need to be fed. Thankfully, the dining rooms across most lounges are nothing short of perfect, with items ranging from….
Roast chicken stuffed with pear with red potatoes, purple cabbage and fig chutney
Beautiful Australian Lamb Cutlets with a rustic slaw
Fresh Blue Fin Tuna Sashimi
Shaw River Buffalo Mozzarella with Vine Ripened Tomatoes
Grass fed Steak in Red Wine Reduction Sauce with Creamy Mash
Flaky Crab Meat & Corn Chowder
New England Clam Chowder
Lounge champagne is always so lovely! It’s not the actual drink itself. The chatter of the crowd, the view of the tarmac, the excitement of the trip… not sure what it is, but it taste better in the lounge. Whether it’s Champagne Delamotte, Bollinger, Moet or Taittinger, Veuve Cliquot… it completes me.
The only time I can relax is when I’m actually on a plane – but the having a spa treatment is the next best thing to relaxing on board.
Whether I’m in the Elemis lounge (British Airways – London & New York) having a beautiful scalp massage or the back massage in the Payot product (in Qantas Sydney or Melbourne Lounges) – its love to the ultimate. The caring hand of beauty therapist soothing every ache, relaxing every tendon… it’s the best thing you can do before you board that plane.
Boarding Call (the best part of being in the lounge)
Time in the lounge is limited unfortunately…. when your flights gotta go, you gotta leave! The boarding call is the sound of the bell, your time as a lounge lover is over.
Most people try to find themselves in life… what’s their calling in life? I have found my calling… it’s the boarding call.
Onboard (Boeing 747)
Onboard (Airbus A380)
So I guess the question is…. What’s it like when the plane lands? Well to be perfectly honest… it’s the worst part!
When the Qantas A380 hits the tarmac in London Heathrow – I am filled with such sadness… why oh why must the journey end. Life is about the journey not the destination. As I watch the sky cam…I know the fun, the joy, the zen of my 24 hours is about to end. I belong in the sky (or in a lounge), I feel like a fish out of water when I’m on the ground (other than when I’m in a lounge). The pain is somewhat eased by my indirect flying patterns (I am often off the plane for a few hours or days ready to catch a connecting flight onward to another part of the world).
Even if I’m stuck on the ground – there are typically some amazing views to enjoy in the places I get stuck at (see below), so I just have to sit, sip a cocktail and wait for my next boarding call.
Life is a journey, so keep traveling!
New York – In Snow