ANA have launched a new Business Class "The Room" on their B777-300/ER aircraft. Currently, the new Business Class is available between Tokyo Haneda and London Heathrow. There will be a total of 12 completely redesigned B777-300/ER's featuring this new product.
Upgraded aircraft will have four cabins, including 8 First Class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration, 64 Business Class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration, 24 Premium Economy Class in a 2-4-2 configuration, and 116 Economy Class seats in a 3-4-3 configuration, making a total of just 212 seats.
I started my journey at Tokyo Haneda Airport. This trip is an invite from ANA. Opinions are my own.
ANA Lounge Haneda Airport
There are 2 ANA Lounges at Haneda Airport. One is near gate 110 and the other one is near gate 140 with limited operating hours. I visited the one near gate 110, which is closer to the boarding gate.
The ANA Lounge is well designed and organized, it has a minimalistic feel. I was visiting around 15:00 so it wasn't overly crowded as compared to morning or evening peak hours. I strongly recommend a walk inside the lounge (turn left) as it is quieter toward the back side of the lounge.
In terms of food, ANA Lounge didn't disappoint. There is a cold salad bar, sushi, rice balls and several hot items such as beef hamburg and Japanese chicken curry with rice. There is sake, beer machines and soda machines around.
There are 2 food serving areas, my advice is to use the one towards the rear of the lounge (left) as it is much quieter as most people use the one closer to the entrance.
There is also a ramen bar near the main food area. It is by order only. The lounge is very bright and I could enjoy food and watch planes go by from the window.
There were a few shower suites in the ANA Lounge, of which I took advantage of to freshen up before my 12 hour flight to London. Notably, There is a Dyson hair dryer!
Boarding of my flight was given in the priority order of First Class and ANA Diamond members, then Business Class then Premium Economy and finally Economy. It was done with utmost efficient and in a very organised manner.
There was a typhoon that swept over Tokyo 2 days ago prior to my journey, so ANA flight network operation was disrupted and there was a 5 hour delay on my flight. Luckily, the flight was still operated by the new Business Class configured B777-300/ER.
The Room - New Business Class
There are 3 sections of New Business Class (total 64 seats) which span over more than half of the B777-300/ER fuselage. My seat was 17K, located in the 3rd section. It is a reverse facing seat. You can notice how wide the seat is immediately.
If you happened to sit in the middle seat, there is a divider to protect your privacy. It can also be lowered to create a pair seat for 2.
The seat felt a bit short/stubby from the first glance but I didn't have any problem sitting up right. There was good legroom in the up right position.
I was very impressed with all the features and its design. All very clean and neat.
"The Room" is really wide, it can comfortably fit 2 passengers. Here is a photo of my next door neighbour and myself sitting together in my seat.
We took off around 17:10, flight time to London was 11 hours and 45 minutes. The routing was flying North over to Hokkaido, then towards Far East Russia, then head NW over Siberia and finally towards Northern Europe on a great circle route, which is faster than a straight line.
The aircraft registered as JA793A was just 1 month old delivered new from Boeing.
4k Resolution Camera View
I enjoyed watching the forward and downward camera with a 4k clear resolution view. I could also see the full moon rising over the horizon. Watch the takeoff video here.
As we departed at 17:00 and were heading West, we were chasing the setting sun on the whole flight towards London. Lucky I got to see the full moon rising on the horizon.
ANA is one of the few airlines providing pyjamas in Business Class. There is also a "Globetrotter" brand amenity kit placed on each seat.
The in-flight service started once we reached cruising altitude. The ANA menu was like a book and came in 4 different language (Japanese, English, French and German)
I had the Amuse-bouche and mimosa (my favourite drink). Then I chose the Japanese Washoku (Japanese meal) for dinner.
The starter was pre-dominantly fish and served on 3 small plates (Bonito fish sashimi, sushi and duck). To drink with my starter, the flight attendant recommended that I have a glass of mild sake.
I had the Japanese braise beef "sukiyaki" as my main course. The beef was very soft and almost melted inside my mouth. The portion, however, was a bit on the small side.
Dessert was a fusion between Japanese and French pastry, from the chef Pierre Hermé collaboration.
IFE and Wi-Fi
The ANA IFE is fantastic, the 24" inch screen supports 4K resolution viewing and there was also 3 live TV channels (News and Sports). The camera view is so very clear in 4K resolution. I was told that you could hook up your laptop screen to display on the 24" screen with a HDMI cable.
I used the on-board Wi-Fi internet, which doesn't restrict usage. The whole 12 hour flight costs $21.95, which is comparatively quite reasonable. The speed was also relatively fast.
Full Flat Bed Position
When the seat goes fully flat and turns into a bed, it is really wide at the upper end and much narrower at the footwell space. Because of the shape of the bed, you can either sleep straight or sleep diagonally; I had to sleep diagonally, as there was not enough space for me to sleep straight, my feet did not touch the wall in front when I slept diagonally. The privacy is also excellent when the dividers are deployed.
I had a Japanese pancake Okonomiyaki snack about half way through the flight and a bowl of ramen with chicken risotto before landing. The ramen I had was easily one of the best tasting! However, in my opinion the meal portion could have been bigger.
We landed at Heathrow around 20:30. Watch the smooth landing from the on-board 4k camera view here.
I was very impressed with the New Business Class "The Room" of ANA and I think it is a vast improvement over their current staggered Business Class. Both the hard and soft product are of high quality. Here are some of the pros and cons from my experience.
- Widest Business Class seat and double the width compared to the previous seat.
- Personal doors for privacy.
- 4K resolution entertainment on 24" monitor, fast internet Wi-Fi connection and electric window blinds with two shades.
- In full flat position, the upper half is very wide but the width and space is reduced towards the leg and foot area, due to the design.
- A tall person may have to sleep diagonally to be able to fully stretch out.
- The seat cushion is a little hard. The second meal could be presented better without trays (more restaurant style dining as many airlines do in Business Class).
Currently, this product is available between Tokyo and London. ANA will introduce journeys between Tokyo and New York JFK (2 flights a day) from the start of 2019 winter schedule. Next year, it will also be available on the Tokyo and Frankfurt route. (date TBA)