United Airlines Unveils Polaris Business Class
Exciting news on the business class air front. Untied Airlines has unveiled its all-new United Polaris business class featuring a reimagined departure-to-landing experience for intercontinental travelers. I recently traveled on United from Los Angeles to Sydney in business class and was shocked at the 2-4-2 configuration. Thankfully I was seated in one of the two seats on the side, but couldn’t believe anyone would pay for a business-class seat jammed in with three other passengers.
“United Polaris will change the game in international business travel with an exceptional level of relaxation and comfort throughout our customers’ journeys,” said Oscar Munoz, president and CEO of United. “This completely reconceived experience exemplifies the new spirit of United and the innovation, excitement and operational momentum across our airline.”
The new custom-designed, exclusive-to-United seat will offer direct access to the aisle, 180-degree flat-bed recline and up to 6 foot 6 inches of bed space. All forward-facing, suite-like pods, each customer’s personal suite will feature a “Do Not Disturb” sign, mood lighting, one-touch lumbar support, several storage areas, multiple surfaces for simultaneous working and dining, a 16-inch high-definition entertainment screen and, for seats in the center of the cabin, electronic privacy dividers. I’m particularly thrilled with the privacy dividers, much needed in United’s business class cabins.
Each pod will feature Saks Fifth Avenue custom-designed bedding featuring plush duvets, lightweight day-blankets and a large and small pillow for each United Polaris customer. In addition, mattress cushions will be available upon request.
Even slippers and pajamas will be available by request on flights longer than 12 hours. I love bringing home airline pjs, something I wear quite often afterwards if comfy enough. Flyers will also be able to request a gel-cooled pillow—how about that? New amenity kits will feature ergonomically designed eye shades, calming lavender pillow mist and additional products from Soho House & Co.‘s Cowshed Spa.
The Dining Experience
Upon boarding their flight, each United Polaris customer will be welcomed with a pre-departure beverage of his or her choice and gourmet chocolate. While in the air enjoy regionally influenced in-flight menus updated seasonally, developed in partnership with The Trotter Project of acclaimed Chicago restaurants Urbanbelly, bellyQ and Belly Shack.
The airline will offer an upgraded wine experience, with the highest-quality options curated exclusively by United’s Master Sommelier. Inflight service will also include made-to-order signature ice cream sundaes, a dessert cart with a variety of petit dessert options, chocolate truffles and wine flights. On daytime flights longer than eight hours and on all flights longer than 12 hours, hot mid-flight snacks such as lobster macaroni and cheese will be available.
United Polaris Business Class Lounges
United will also open United Polaris business class lounges in nine locations around the world featuring private daybeds, spa-like showers and hot meals served in a boutique restaurant setting. Premium sparkling wines and spirits, snacks and bottled water will also be offered.
The first new United Polaris lounge will open at Chicago O’Hare International Airport on Dec. 1, 2016. Lounges in eight other locations – Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston, New York/Newark, Washington Dulles, Tokyo Narita, Hong Kong and London Heathrow – will follow in 2017.
United Polaris Introduction
United will begin to introduce United Polaris on Dec. 1, 2016, with the new inflight food and beverage experience, new custom bedding from Saks Fifth Avenue, new amenity kits and the new United Polaris lounge in Chicago. The United Polaris business class seat will first take flight in December on Boeing 777-300ER aircraft and subsequently on Boeing 787-10 and Airbus A350-1000 aircraft, as well as on Boeing 767-300 and 777-200 retrofits.
More information on the United Polaris business class can be found at united.com/Polaris.
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