Emirates First Class Experience at The Australian Open
The World Loves Melbourne was thrilled to be hosted by premium airline Emirates at The Australian Open. Having enjoyed a previous trip to Dubai (a fabulous destination with sumptuous luxury, shopping and attractions) we were keen to experience the best of Emirate's top line hospitality at the tennis.
Celebrating its first year as Official Airline Partner of the Emirates Australian Open Series, Emirates has taken hospitality at this year's Grand Slam event to new heights with an A380-inspired hospitality Suite. The unique design of the 10 x 15 Suite emulates the luxurious experience of flying in the Premium Class cabins on-board Emirates' flag-ship A380 aircraft - complete with replica Emirates A380 Onboard Bar that has been flown in from Emirates' hub of Dubai for the occasion, and the renowned service of Emirates' crew.
Simply amazing! Dare we say an oasis in the hospitality scene at the Australian Open. The internal area of the Suite features tennis racquet ceiling fans to ensure guests remain cool during the tournament, an internal dining lounge, as well as a wall showcasing the Emirates global route map with 145 global destinations. (We want those tennis racquet ceiling fans).
The Suite's A380 bar offers a refreshing array of beverages perfect for relaxing court-side, such as traditional Summer Pimms, chilled champagne and summer juices, which Emirates serves alongside the Emirates Australian Open-inspired Ginger Deuce cocktail - a refreshing mix of ginger ale, vodka, citrus, lime and pineapple.
The sophisticated interior design incorporates silk wallpaper and the finest fabrics and cushions sourced from high-end French design house, Elitis. The lounge seats within the Suite reflect the spacious Emirates A380 seating and feature their own seat-belts to further the "in flight experience" for guests - without even leaving the ground. The World Loves Melbourne was highly impressed by the plush carpet inside the Suite - a step above the normal in a hospitality situation given that people like ourselves may drop the odd crumb or spill a drink.
Outside the Suite on the terraces was another world of finery. Two terraces with stunning vistas of Melbourne's Yarra River cater for alfresco dining and feature balustrades containing more than 600 hand-painted red and white tennis balls.
Pimms and champagne were served on arrival. Exceptional was the replication of Emirates premium in-flight service - Suite guests are waited on in the style of Emirates' Dine on Demand service that is available to all of the airline's First and Business Class passengers when travelling 40,000ft in the air.
Emirates delivered on high quality canapes, with prawns and truffles featuring...
Kudos to Head chef Markus Werner, who presides over an impressive menu of modern Australian fare, with hero international fusion dishes to reflect Emirates' expanding global route network.
Emirates Global Route Map with 145 global destinations. Emirates have been purchasing a large number of A380s and have the most impressive fleet in the world.
Emirates resounds with luxury options and hand, foot and neck massages are available to customers from One & Only, all the way from Hayman Island!
"We're delighted to bring the hospitality and service that Emirates is known for the world-over to the 2015 Australian Open, in the inaugural year of our sponsorship," said Rob Gurney, Divisional Vice President, Commercial Operations, Australasia.
"Emirates is proud to invite guests onboard our flagship aircraft in the 34 destinations we operate our A380 to, and therefore we felt it's fitting to showcase the luxurious fittings of our A380 cabin within this year's Suite theme. We are aiming to provide our guests with a unique and interesting experience that will hopefully be a talking point for the event."
Emirates treated us to an Australia Day BBQ. This seafood selection was compelling, featuring Marinated calamari with nam yim and chilli, Selection of Australian oysters with condiments, and Queensland blue swimmer crab with avocado and sweet potato. Emirates consistently delivers when it comes to the little touches and the Silver Service style included meals served on white china.
The Main Affair consisted of wonderful Shared platters from the BBQ. The Mixed Australian BBQ platter with gourmet sausages, grilled lamb cutlets, chilli jam, beetroot chutney and grilled field mushrooms and char grilled kipfler potatoes and onions was met with strong acclamation from our table of executives and notaries.
Also among the selection was Black pepper and wattle seeds, Gippsland Natural grass fed beef rib eye with paw paw salsa, char grilled field mushrooms and kipfler potatoes.
At the back of the table is the Mixed Aussie seafood platter with Barramundi burgers with tomato relish, prawns and scallops with spiced pineapple salad. The combination of top class seafood and BBQ meats with superb accompaniments was perfect on Australia Day.
A fabulous cheese platter was served to guests, again replicating the First and Business Class in-flight experiences.
Desserts also complemented the Australia Day theme including an Australian Lamington and Pavlova...
Emirates then supplied us with cushions and a Panama hat and hosted us at the Venus Williams v Radwanska and then the Djokovic v Muller match, with premium seats.
Emirates operates 84 flights a week from Australia to Dubai with the Emirates A380 flying to 34 destinations across the globe, including four flights per day on-board the flagship A380 aircraft from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. In 2015, Perth will join as an Australian A380 destination with West Australian residents having the opportunity to experience the aircraft for the first time from 1 May with three flights per day between Perth and Dubai.
This was a fabulous and memorable evening. Thanks to Emirates and PPR for a wonderful occasion!