Off we go…to #KatchTheKoala in Etihad First Apartments

Hello from Abu Dhabi. Last night, Shipra and myself turned up at Mumbai Airport to catch a flight in Etihad’s famous First Apartments, which rules the roost currently in being the most innovative First Class product out there. While I’ve been there on this one before, yesterday, we got on the shortest Etihad First Apartments flight, which basically is Mumbai to Abu Dhabi.

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On arrival at the airport, we were met by the efficient Pranaam Guest Services crew of the Mumbai Airport who navigated us through till we arrived at the jet-bridge. I’d like to thank Citi Prestige for making this happen.

This trip was a wonderful opportunity to go back to the First Class Lounge operated by GVK at the Mumbai Airport. The lounge was all decked up because it is Christmas, and they also have a new cross-promotion going on with Garuda Indonesia which recently started operating from Mumbai. There was even a special Indonesian menu on offer.

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After that, it was time for the flight in the Apartments. The staff was professional and efficient as usual. With the ME3 airlines, the concept of warmth does not really come across truly well. The crew tried, but one could see through their effort. Or maybe I’m just being cynical. Or maybe the guests in The Residence were getting all the attention!

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Middle of the night, we turned up at Hyatt Capital Gate, a hotel I’ve wanted to stay at for a while. The Capital Gate building is the World’s furthest leaning man-made tower, and leans 18 degrees westwards. On arrival we were surprised by an upgrade to the Executive Suite, while we were booked in the Capital Suite. There was a bottle of champagne and some cake waiting to celebrate Shipra’s birthday which was last week.


And there is more in store, as we head up for a much longer Etihad Apartments flight tonight to Australia. We’d love to hear about things to do as we go around Sydney, Melbourne and down the Gold Coast. And we invite to you to follow along the action with us. Here is where we will be posting along the way. There will be tweets, Instagram stories, Snaps and then more.

Look forward to hearing from you! And Happy Holidays!

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About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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  1. Nope…not cynical at all. Etihad is definitely top notch , but the cabin crew needs to be a little less mechanical. But , I guess we all are ready to overlook that if we get good value for our money / redeemed miles, in terms of the overall experience.

  2. katchakoala? really? They are an endangered species and need to be treated seriously dude. They are not play things for the Indians over-running Australia. How would you like it if I said I am going to India to #katchakurrymuncher ? You wouldn’t. So bugger off mate and leave our bloody koalas alone. Don’t kill them off like you have with the great Indian tigers.

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