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A Wistful Peek at First Class on a Qantas A380

Where: Australia
June 22, 2012 at 3:52 PM | by | ()

Now that we've pitted Economy vs. Premium Economy on the Qantas A380, it's time to go to the other end of the spectrum and do some daydreaming about First Class.

You'll have to excuse our poor iPhone photos of the First Class cabin—we did a quick tour of the plane before boarding, and had some technical issues with our other camera. (The blurriness, we blame on the soft lighting and, well, awe.)

Since we didn't fly First Class, we've also added some professional PR images from Qantas to illustrate how the First Class Suite works as a recliner, a dining table for two and a comfy bed.

Here's what we can tell you about flying First Class with Qantas:

· There are increasingly fewer First Class seats in the fleet, since the big market for Qantas is Business. First will be phased out completely on some aircraft.

· You drive your First Class Suites using a touch-screen panel that controls seat angle, lighting, the blinds and entertainment options.

· The seat collapses into a bed measuring 83.5 inches long and 29 inches wide. It can even give you a massage. The mattress is covered with sheepskin and a pure cotton sheet. Top that off with a duvet and warm wool blanket. Sigh.

· Watch movies on your 17-inch touch-screen TV while you dine on a gourmet menu designed by Aussie chef Neil Perry.

· The amenities are by Payot—separate kits for men and women —and include soft cotton PJs.

· While Economy, Premium Economy and Business passengers get coffee made in a French press, First Class coffee is made with a real espresso machine. We specially requested one way back in Economy, and can tell you it is pure bliss at the end of a 14-hour flight.

For a more in-depth, first-hand account of what it's like to fly First Class on the Qantas A380, we recommend clicking over to our friend One Mile at a Time. Just be prepared to ogle (and maybe cry).

Convinced First is for you? We checked on prices for flights between LA and Sydney in August (when Economy fares are at their cheapest) and the best we could find was $20,338 roundtrip. Ouch.

[iPhone photos: Jaunted; other images courtesy Qantas]

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