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December 21, 2016

Review: Etihad Airways The Residence Lounge

The Residence Lounge is exclusive only to guest who travels in the A380 Residence on Etihad.

It is located inside the First Class Lounge of Etihad Airways at Abu Dhabi.

Etihad Airways First Class Lounge & Spa

Etihad Airways First Class Lounge & Spa

 
Entrance of Etihad Airways First Class Lounge & Spa

Entrance of Etihad Airways First Class Lounge & Spa

  The Residence lounge is hidden towards the back of the First Class Lounge. The only admission to the lounge is to fly the Residence. No other ways, period. When I arrive at the lounge, my lounge butler; Mr Salah is already waiting me at the door to welcome me.
Welcome to the Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

Welcome to the Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

 
Welcome to the Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

Welcome to the Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

 

Upon entering the lounge, it really took my breath away.....

It is luxury, private, spacious and please to the eye. The lounge has the right size, not too large or small.

The lounge design is in the same contemporary luxury style that underpinns Etihad lounge design.

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

 
The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

 

Apart from a generous lounging area, it offers private dining up to 4 passengers at the sametime.

It also has a own bar setup on the side table with coffee machine.

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

The Residence Lounge of Etihad Airways

 

My personal lounge butler gave me a tour of the Residence Lounge, it has its own private bathroom include shower.

It also feature a private prayer room with cleaning area.

Personal bathroom with shower at the Residence Lounge

Personal bathroom with shower at the Residence Lounge

 

After the tour, before I ask anything. My personal butler Mr Salah already have the champagne open and ready to pour....The hospitality was so wonderful.

Bollinger La Grande Année 2005

What an amazing book on the table!

My butler Mr Salah is French-Algerian, he is incredibly friendly and humble. We have a good connection from the beginning!

After some lounging, it is time for lunch in the private setting of the Residence Lounge.

Dining at the Residence Lounge Etihad Airways

Dining at the Residence Lounge Etihad Airways

 

The dining ware is designed by Vera Wang specially for The Residence.

Vera Wang designed dining ware at the Residence Lounge

Vera Wang designed dining ware at the Residence Lounge

 

The canapes is Abu Dhabi farmed Caviar.

I have my share of doubt about this before trying, but it was surprisingly good and creamy.

I love how the Caviar is presented, with 3 set of silver spoon and a pearl spoon!

I enjoyed talking with my butler, Salah a lot, he has incredible knowledge about all the lounge offering.

We found out we have a few common friends at Etihad and we shared our love of France, of course.

My butler insist I should try some of the signature cocktails the lounge offers. He asked me what kind of flavour and strength I like.

Based on my answer, he recommended me; Melbourne (Etihad name all the signature cocktails after its destination)

Later we moved on to try "Los Angeles" with a cloud on top of the Pacific! How creative!

The Executive Sous Chef of Etihad, Steve personally came to deliver me the first course and every course after.

What an honour to dine like this!

Starter: Chicken Liver Pate, beautifully plated.

Interval: Lemon Sorbet

Main Course: Grill Duck Breast

I think Etihad probably have the best plating I've seen in any airline fine dining.

Dessert: Mille Feuille

The food taste fine despite the ongoing challenge to get the fresh produce and ingredients in the Middle East.

I love the presentation even more than the taste! On a personal level, I still think Air France Salon La Premiere offer the best food but Etihad have certainly tried very hard here and deserve good recognition.

After a full lunch, Salah suggest we walk over to the Cigar Lounge to try some of the fine cigar it has on offer.

Residence passenger are entitled to try any cigar free of charge.

Salah has incredible knowledge on Cigar, he patiently explained every Cigar on offer.

I eventually settled on Hoyo de Monte.

My butler explaining the difference of each cigar.

My butler explaining the difference of each cigar.

 
Cigar Lounge at Etihad First Class Lounge

Cigar Lounge at Etihad First Class Lounge

 

Etihad have 8 A380 in the fleet now. The A380 flies three times daily to London, daily to New York, Sydney, Melbourne and Mumbai.

The departure time to Sydney, Melbourne in the evening are very close. Also in the early morning London and New York departs within an hour of each other. So what if we have 2 Residence guest from 2 flights came at the same time?

The answer is Etihad have a 2nd private Residence Lounge!

The 2nd Residence Lounge is a little smaller in size, but offer all the luxury amenity like the first lounge. I have the opportunity to see it and took some pictures.

The 2nd Residence Lounge

The 2nd Residence Lounge

 
The 2nd Residence Lounge

The 2nd Residence Lounge

 
The 2nd Residence Lounge

The 2nd Residence Lounge

 

Well, I have too much fun and time is my enemy. I ran out of time quickly while I was enjoying everything it has on offer...

In case you have more time, there are many more facilities you can enjoy in the First Class Lounge.

Gym inside Etihad First Class Lounge

Gym inside Etihad First Class Lounge

 
Ladies Salon (Style) inside Etihad First Class Lounge

Ladies Salon (Style) inside Etihad First Class Lounge

 
Shave/Salon inside Etihad First Class Lounge

Shave/Salon inside Etihad First Class Lounge

 
Six Sense Spa inside Etihad First Class Lounge

Six Sense Spa inside Etihad First Class Lounge

 
Relaxation area inside Etihad First Class Lounge

Relaxation area inside Etihad First Class Lounge

 
Children's area inside Etihad First Class Lounge

Children's area inside Etihad First Class Lounge

 

Bottom Line

The Residence Lounge is almost like a 2nd home but in a great luxury way. I feel totally relaxed with unmatched attention, care, privacy and luxury. The butler is at my service anytime. I strongly recommend to arrive the airport at least 4 hours or more prior to your flight departure time to enjoy the excellent facilities and benefit associated with your Residence Flight. Residence guest are entitled for complimentary Spa and shave/style. Also not to mention the fine cigar and a glass of cognac!

Tips on Smart Travel and finding the best airfare

I use Momondo to search extensively across the best airfare before buying it. Have a look at this post to see how it is working for getting a cheaper ticket! Momondo definitely features the best First and Business Class deals of any Flight Search Engine out there.  I have put together many useful travel tips and airfare promotions in my Smart Travel section to guide you travel in more luxury with lower price!

Other Etihad Airways Post

Comments

  1. Absolutely impressive. It is certainly “bucket list” stuff !! I thoroughly enjoyed your video, and your website here is an inspiration. I have a new photographic website and wonder if I may post a couple of your pics from here…naturally with an acknowledgement and link to your site here.

    P.S. My main website is http://www.unitedcomputerconsultants.com which of course I would be delighted to have you visit.

    • Sam Chui

      Sure, thanks for the compliment. I’d appreciate if you could link back to my website.

  2. Joe

    If you are transiting from the residence to another flight that doesn’t have the Residence, can you still use the Residence lounge?

  3. Jerry

    Everything looked great, except: you should have gone for the Cohiba Robusto 🙂 . The Lufthansa HON lounges are also not bad. I will try them again on 18 Jan when I fly Thai First Class from Munich to Bangkok.

  4. Georges E. Noël

    I’m impressed! I thought that Emirates First Class was great but this is flabbergasting. The problem is “time”, it’s all beautiful but how many people find the time to really enjoy the lounge when in transit, as an example. Leaving from Abu Dhabi gives the opportunity to use the lounge, provided that you are not held-up by some business or late meetings. Anyway, it’s definitely worth to give it a try, and I will when opportunity will come-up. Thank you for this interesting review.
    My best wishes for a merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

    • Sam Chui

      thanks for your comment. Please at least allow 4 hours in transit to enjoy the private lounge facility fully.

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Airline Lounge, Etihad