The Premier Lounge at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport (CGK) seems to be the catch all lounge for many airlines.
Airlines from all 3 alliances, as Priority Pass, Diners Club, Lounge Club, and Lounge Key members can be admitted.
I had planned on spending a fair amount of time in the lounge to get a better sense of the lounge, but with the usual horrible traffic in Jakarta, and intermittent light sprinkling, it took nearly 2 ½ hours to get to the airport from the Grand Hyatt Jakarta.
By the time I got through immigration, I barely had enough time to get to the lounge and snap a few pictures before heading to the gate.
The lounge is on the dark and dingy side, and was fairly crowded.
Food offerings include soup, potatoes, chicken sausage, rice, and noodles were offered, but did not look too appealing.
There was a juice dispenser.
There were a couple of display cases of different types of desserts.
There was a refrigerator drinks as well.
The Premier Lounge is certainly not a “destination lounge”, but could be a decent place to kill some time before a flight. I did not even have a chance to see how the internet connection was.
I specifically chose this flight as it is operated by a brand new A350 which had been in service for about 7 months. I found it somewhat strange that Singapore would choose to operate this plane on such a short flight, but I was not one to complain.
I redeemed Singapore Airlines miles for this flight, which was under 15K Singapore Kris Flyer miles, and about $75 in taxes. Tickets in business class were selling for nearly $1,000 on this short flight. Surprisingly, the business class cabin was nearly full.
Once aboard, I was welcomed and directed to my seat.
I was the first to board, and the business class cabin was empty. The business class cabin is set up in a 1-2-1 configuration, so every seat has direct aisle access.
The two middle seats do have a privacy shield between them.
I chose seat 11K, the front row seat on the right side of the plane.
The seats are a nice rich brown. There was a colorful yellow pillow also waiting at my seat. The seats are very wide, so feeling cramped will not be a problem.
There is plenty of legroom, with a “cubby” in the corner when sleeping. The cubby had a decent amount of space so your feet wouldn’t get squished while trying to sleep.
Above the foot cubby, there is a sliding door which contains a mirror, although it is somewhat awkwardly placed if really wanting to utilize it.
The armrests are a textured bronze color, which included the table and storage compartment. The IFE control was also located on the right side.
The TV screen is very large, and had a nice clear picture.
The seat controls were located on the left side, and were easy to use.
To the left of your head were the light controls.
Up in the right corner, behind your head were USB outlets, an HDMI outlet, and electrical outlet.
For the pre-departure beverage, I chose water, and was given a bottle of mineral water.
I was also given a warm towel that was wonderfully scented.
There was a menu in the seat pocket, which was double sided. One side had the menu from Singapore to Jakarta.
The other side had the Jakarta to Singapore meal options.
The business class bathroom was not too large. It contained a formica sink.
Amenities included mouthwash, cologne, lotion, and face spray.
There was a flower on the wall to add a splash of color.
For the meal, I chose the Nasi Lemak. The entrée didn’t look too appealing, but it tasted better than it looked. It came with a small ramekin of salted fish, a couple pieces of melon, and a mocha type flan with fruit.
I chose a multi-grain roll.
I did have a problem with my fork as it was obviously bent. I am not sure why this wasn’t picked up by the catering company, as it would be easy to replace any damaged silverware and reflects badly on the airlines.
Service on the flight was friendly and professional, as you would expect on Singapore Airlines. All in all, I really enjoyed this flight, and just wish it would have been longer than an hour and 20 minutes.
After finally checking in for my flight, I took a quick tour of Terminal 2 before heading to the lounge. It should be noted that check-in for Singapore Airlines opens at 4:30 AM, however on the TV screen in front of their customer service desk indicated that check-in began at 5:30 AM.
I headed to the Singapore Airlines SilverKris Lounge, which was actually a mistake since I was flying business class on Singapore Airlines, I could have gone to the SiliverKris Gold Lounge, however, the signage for that lounge is rather poor.
I actually passed the lounge on the way to the lounge but the sign was not clear. When going up the escalator the SilverKris Gold Lounge is right to the left once getting off of the elevator.
Once presenting my ticket at the front desk, I was admitted to the lounge and directed to the left.
There is a business center with cubicles, some of which had Mac computers.
To the right is the main seating area of the lounge, with several different seat arrangements.
The food offerings are located to the left.
There is countertop seating.
There are several refrigerators full of drinks.
Alcohol was being offered at 6 AM.
There are two coffee makers and a hot chocolate machine.
Hot dishes included fried rice with salted fish and chicken, something that resembled fried cheese, chicken curry, fried carrot cake, congee, spaghetti, vegetable curry, sausage, omelets, steamed buns, dim sum, chwee kuay, French toast, pancakes, baked egg Florentine, and noodles.
Cold options included museli, yogurt, fresh fruit, salad fixings, cheese, bread, pastries, cereal, pre-made sandwiches, and desserts.
As I had been on the road for over 24 hours, I was able to take a shower before boarding the flight.
There are two shower rooms, and they are very small. After putting down my carry-on luggage, I was barely able to close the door.
There is a sink with amenities. A packaged towel is also provided.
The shower had two showerheads with dispensed shampoo/conditioner and body wash.
Although small, the shower room was very functional.
The food offerings are pretty diverse and large. The food isn’t that bad either. The lounge did get very packed at times. I think if you had the option, the SilverKris Gold Lounge might be a better option since its likely to be less crowded. I can’t say for sure however, as I did not visit that lounge.
ANA Airlines Flight NH 5 Los Angeles to Narita, Tokyo Departs 11:25 AM, Arrives 4:25 PM Seat 18D
On a recent trip to Jakarta, I flew ANA airlines. I will only cover the LAX-Tokyo Narita segment.
Like many airlines, you are able to pick your seat prior to departure. Even when doing an online check-in 24 hours prior to departure, you can change seats.
When doing my online check-in, I noted that the entire front row was suddenly open. In hoping to get an entire row to myself, I chose seat 18D.
Much to my surprise, once boarding had been complete, my once empty row was completely full.
Waiting at my seat was a pillow, blanket, and a pair of headphones.
Once seated, I noted that the seat was extremely narrow. This is due to the entertainment system, and tray table are both incorporated into the seat, thus making the actual seat narrow.
For the lunch meal, I chose the Western option, which was roasted chicken. The chicken was good, but the skin rubbery. The mashed potatoes and vegetables were okay, and reminded me of what you would find in a TV dinner. There was a potato salad with some lettuce, along with a piece of ham. A small serving of soba noodles was also included. Dessert was a sponge cake with a non-descript flavor frosting.
After meal service, a small snack service is set-up in the galley. It consisted of chips and crackers. The most curious thing I found in the snack basket was a mayonnaise flavored cracker. I did not try it, so I can’t comment on it.
For the pre-landing meal, I again went with the Western option, which was lasagna. It was pretty dry, and the pool of marinara it was sitting in did not add much moisture to the dish. It was served with a side of vegetables, that did not pair great with lasagna. A cup of strawberry yogurt and some cut fruit completed the meal.
Upon landing, we were fortunate enough to be parked next to the ANA R2-D2 plane, one of the commemorative Star Wars planes.
On the return flight home, I was lucky enough to fly the Star Wars BB-8 jet, which I will cover later.
The meals in economy class on Asiana are much better than what you would find on US domestic carriers.
That being said, they are not gourmet by any means. There is an Asian and Western option.
For the first meal, I chose the chicken entrée. It was sitting atop a small puddle of Velveeta cheese like sauce. There were a few vegetables thrown in, along with potatoes that would have gone a long way with a crunchy texture. It was served with a shrimp salad that had way too much mayonnaise for my taste. Dessert came in the form of a chocolate pudding cake. Like most Asian desserts, cakes in particular, it was not overly sweet. I did not eat the roll.
The pre-landing meal consisted of chicken in marinara sauce, paired with penne pasta in a thick cream sauce. A couple pieces of broccoli was also thrown into the mix. A small salad was also served that was heavy on the mayonnaise, therefore I did not eat it. A plain cake was served, which was somewhat moist. Again, I did not eat the roll.
The meals in economy class on Asiana airlines is more than passable. There is no comparison between what you would find on a US domestic carrier. Portion sizes were also considerably larger than what you would find on US domestic carriers.
Asiana Airlines Flight OZ 722 Hong Kong to Seoul Departs: 1:15PM, Arrives 5:30PM Seat 8J
Upon having my boarding passed checked-in at the gate, I was informed that I had been upgraded to business class. While looking around at the gate, I noted a group of at least 100 students waiting to board the plane. I’m guessing that had something to do with the upgrade.
This flight is operated on a 747, and has Asiana’s old business class seat which are angled flat. Although the Smartium business class seat has much more privacy and is more comfortable, this flight only last a little over 3 hours. Nobody was seated next to me, so I had some semblance of privacy.
Business class is located on the upper deck. Business class is set up in a 2-2-2 configuration.
The seat is on the narrower side. Although there is a small divider between the seat, there does not seem to be very private.
There is a decent sized TV screen. There is an ample amount of leg room as well.
Waiting at my seat were a thin pair or slippers.
The seat controls look outdated, but were easy to use.
Air vents were a welcome sight, and something rarely seen on internationally configured planes. These were also welcome as Asiana tend to keep their planes very warm.
There is a huge storage area next to the window seat.
There is also a control button for the divider between the seats.
A pair of outlets is also located between the seats.
I was offered a pre-departure beverage and chose a glass of water.
A hot towel was also offered.
Phiaton headphones were offered.
Once settled in, menus were offered.
For lunch, I chose the Western option.
An appetizer of smoked duck breast was served with a red pepper relish and some greens. The duck was tender, but did not have a strong smoke flavor. IT was served with a side salad with greens and frisee but was a little overdressed.
The entrée was beef stew with noodles and green beans. The tray looked like part of a TV dinner. The stew was fairly tasty, although it looked somewhat messy.
A fruit plate consisting of watermelon, grapes, melon, and dragon fruit was served next.
Lastly, a small container of vanilla Haagen-Dazs ice cream was served.
The business class bathroom was fairly spacious. The sink was fairly wide and had a decent amount of space.
L’Occitane amenities were offered, which I generally like.
Service was friendly and professional. Asiana’s service is not overly pro-active, but if ringing the service bell, an attendant will be at your seat in a matter of moments.
It was a pleasant surprise to upgraded on this sector.
The flight from Los Angeles to Seoul included a main meal, mid-flight snack, and finally a pre-arrival meal. Flight attendants would wander throughout the cabin after the main meal service with cups of water on offer.
The main meal in economy was surprisingly good. I chose the beef steak, which had a Cajun type rub. The steak was very tender and pretty flavorful. The mashed potatoes tasted like it came from a box but was passable. The vegetables were a little overcooked. The spicy cold noodle salad, actually had a slightly sweet taste. The shrimp was pretty tender though. I did not eat the bread. The mocha cake was typically Asian in flavor, meaning not very sweet.
A mid-flight snack of a ham and cheese croissant sandwich was served. The sandwich was decent, but was heavy on the bread and lacking in filling.
The pre-arrival meal consisted of a chicken and mushroom entrée. The meal didn’t look appealing, but is about what you would expect at Flame Broiler. There was an odd kidney bean, garbanzo bean salad which I did not really like. The fruit was a little under ripe and lacking in flavor and sweetness. I did not eat the bread.
There was only one meal served on the flight from Seoul to Hong Kong.
There was a chicken and mushroom type dish. This was similar to the chicken and mushroom meal from Los Angeles to Seoul, but only slightly different. It was served with an apple mayo salad, which I did not like. I did not eat the bread. Dessert was a yellow cake, which was slightly moist and just sweet enough.
The economy meals on Asiana are much better than what you would find flying on domestic carriers to international destinations. They are not gourmet by any means, but is decent enough to keep you occupied for a short period.