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Old 26th September 2018, 11:08 PM   #1
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Default Short Taipei Escapade on SQ Business

Just 3 days after I returned from New Zealand, it was time to fly again as I went up to Taipei for a short escapade. Being a morning peak departure, there was a short queue at the Business Class check-in counters at T3, but we were checked in swiftly and boarding passes issued.






Went to the crowded (as expected due to the morning peak) Silver Kris Lounge to grab some breakfast.






Apart from the standard not-so-impressive breakfast buffet selection, there were 2 'live' stations offering Mee Siam and Seafood Congee.








My breakfast items. It was all very average, especially the Singapore Carrot Cake, which seemed less tasty than the last time I had it in this same lounge some time back.








Proceeded to the gate at A19, where boarding had just commenced.



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Old 26th September 2018, 11:28 PM   #2
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30 August 2018
Singapore Airlines
SQ 876
Singapore (SIN) - Taipei Taoyuan (TPE)
A330-300
9V-SSI
Business Class
Flight Time: 4H25M



Another A333 at the adjacent gate during boarding.




Boarded the youngest aircraft in SQ's A333 family.




No introduction needed for this angled-flat Regional Business Class seat on the A333s, which would be gradually replaced with the B787-10s with the new lie-flats. We were seated at the last row of Business. Flight was about 70% full in Business Class on this sector.




As soon as we settle in, welcome beverages of juices, welcome mix or water was offered as this was a morning departure. I had an orange juice.




View out the window.




Crew offered newspapers and magazines, and handed out hot towels.






Pushed back with safety video played.






Flight time was estimated at 4hrs.




Started the taxi to Rwy02C, passing Terminal 4. The T4 narrowbody gates were seriously underutilized, with most gates ending up as remote stands for SilkAir and Scoot aircraft.



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Old 26th September 2018, 11:43 PM   #3
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Passing T4




Departure from Rwy02C.








Video of the takeoff.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtSDjWf6gEs


Visit to the well-stocked lavatory after seatbelt signs were turned off.








Blue skies and sea.




After takeoff beverages were offered and I requested for a soya bean milk, which is offered only on oriental flights. Watched the local comedy Ah Boys to Men 4.




Lets take a look what is offered for breakfast.






And the selection for the return SQ877 sector for August.

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Old 27th September 2018, 09:44 PM   #4
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The wine list.




Breakfast service commenced.




The breakfast tray was served with fresh fruits, butter and jam. A selection of breakfast pastries were also offered. Had a coffee to go along.




Raisin bran with milk and yoghurt.




For the main, I had Booked-the-cook the Grilled Angus beef burger with portobello mushroom, onion jam, cheese and tomatoes. Typing this report, I just realised there was no cheese in the burger.... However it still tasted pretty good.






My friend pre-ordered the Nasi Briyani (An Indian specialty, fragrant Basmati rice, cooked with aromatic spices, herbs, tomatoes, saffron and milk, is served with tender chicken simmered in gravy), which was delicious!




Somewhere over the South China Sea




Requested for a Mao Feng tea from the Chinese tea selection. It was served with a pack of almonds and cashews.




F1-branded SQ mineral water offered.




View of the cabin and seat.



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Old 27th September 2018, 11:12 PM   #5
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An hour to go after completing my movie.




Started on my second movie, a Hong Kong comedy.




Ordered a cappuccino to keep myself awake, especially with the early start of the day.




Started the descend into Taipei. We were flying in the clouds for the most part over Taiwan.






Descending into Taipei from the south.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6JL3-V0ijXM


Approach and landing into Taoyuan Rwy05R.














Video of the landing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRNoK23Pync&t=14s
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Old 28th September 2018, 08:17 PM   #6
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Missing the Tigers in Changi. Making do with the Taiwan versions.




Parked at the gate.




Disembarked and last look at the seat and aircraft.






Another pleasant flight on SQ Business Class, with high standards of onboard service and offerings maintained.

Luckily, queues for immigration was short and priority baggage came out early.




From the airport, we bought the Airport Metro round-trip and 48hrs metro pass combo tickets, which offers significant savings. The new Airport metro line allows us passengers to reach Taipei city center in less than 40min. Very much improved convenience!




We stayed at Caesar Park Hotel, which is very conveniently located beside the Taipei Main Station and the airport metro. Was upgraded to a bigger and newly-renovated room, which is clean, modern, comfortable with a very spacious bathroom.






View from the room. CI A330 can be seen approaching Songshan Airport in the city center.






First meal would be heading to near Ximending area for the famous pork ribs at Emperor Foods restaurant. It was my first time tasting the dish, and it certainly did not disappoint.




View of Taipei 101 at night.

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Old 28th September 2018, 11:25 PM   #7
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Dinner at a popular eatery 'JingFeng' for Braised pork rice and other traditional Taiwanese dishes.






The next morning, we visited the Michelin bib-gourmand recommended Fu Hang Soy Milk. The queue was snaking long, but moved fast and we were able to place our orders within half hour of queuing. Heard that queues of an hour or more is common and so we were considered lucky.








The very simple menu.






Our order. The salty soy milk was an acquired taste (either you love it or hate it), while the rest were traditional Taiwanese breakfast food and were pretty good.








Creative drinking fountain design in front of Eslite Hotel.




Exhibition where each numbered booth had songs played according to those popular at your age shown on the booth number.

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Old 28th September 2018, 11:38 PM   #8
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Hotpot dinner at the famous Wulao Hotpot Restaurant. This hotpot eatery is not cheap, but very popular and reservations are strongly recommended. The hotpot is really amazing, with delicious stock and food items such as the famous milky ball, accompanied by wonderful service, making this the top on my list of hotpot experience (and I am generally not a hotpot fan).








The next day, late lunch was had at ToGo Market, a new concept seafood market and eatery. The seafood could be freshly caught or selected and cooked on the spot, or you could order from the extensive menu. Prices were very reasonable for the quantity and quality of the food.










Steamed wagyu beef and seafood. It was all very fresh. Another great meal!










Spot the rainbow after the afternoon rain.

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Old 29th September 2018, 12:08 AM   #9
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Ximending and Red House in the evening.






Having Taiwanese food again at another of my favourite eatery in the Ximending district.






On the day of departure, we had another traditional Taiwanese breakfast of glutinous rice roll and soy milk from a popular takeaway stand.




Returning back to Taoyuan T2 via the Metro, the SQ check-in counters were very empty, granted it was only about 1.5hrs before departure.




After security and immigration, we headed to the SQ Taipei Silver Kris Lounge.




The interior of the small lounge definitely had seen better days and in need of a revamp. However, it was cosy enough for a short stay.






Hot and cold beverages.






Selection from the hot buffet. There were Taiwanese and Singaporean dishes on offer.

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Old 1st October 2018, 11:33 PM   #10
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More hot dishes. The selection of food is not bad for an out-station lounge catering to only 2 SQ flights a day.




My choices from the buffet.





Nearing 30min to departure, we left the lounge for the gate D4. A boarding pass check was conducted before we headed down to the waiting lounge. there were SQ-branded sweets for yours to take as well.







02 September 2018
Singapore Airlines
SQ 877
Taipei Taoyuan (TPE) - Singapore (SIN)
A330-300
9V-STO
Business Class
Flight Time: 4H16M



The aircraft was all ready for boarding.






Boarding was called shortly after.




Boarded and proceeded to my seat, again at 16K. As usual, a pillow and blanket was already placed on each seat. Bottled water were also placed in the bottle holders.






Inflight magazines were similar to my last for flights, ie. for the month of September.




SQ fleet info

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Old 1st October 2018, 11:44 PM   #11
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Welcome beverages were offered an I selected a champagne. Business cabin was about half full.






Boarding was completed efficiently and we pushed back.




Taxiing to Rwy23L.










Took off from Rwy23L.











https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RsLStZ22ltk
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Old 1st October 2018, 11:59 PM   #12
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Made a turn back northwards and flew past Taoyuan airport, before cutting across the northern tip of the island, flying down along the eastern coast.










Over the city of Hualien.




Requested for a pair of slippers from the crew. Slippers, socks and eyeshades were only provided on demand.




As usual, the lavatory was clean and well-stocked with amenities.




Shortly after departure, mixed almonds and cashews were served, along with my after takeoff beverage choice of Singapore Sling.






A peek at the menu selection for this flight. This would be the September selection.






And the selection for SQ876.

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Old 2nd October 2018, 10:57 PM   #13
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Lunch was served, starting with Classical Gravadlax along with selection of breads. The salmon and roe were all fresh.






For the main, I chose the Pan Fried Pork Piccata with Polenta. It was good but unmemorable.






My friend had the Prawns in Preserved Bean Curd Sauce with egg white fried rice. This dish was pretty tasty. However, note that both dishes were missing the garnishings. Either the crew forgot or catering did not load the garnishes.




For dessert, they ran out of the brownie and we were left with the mango sorbet. Not a favourite of mine as it was a tad sour.






A selection of cheeses and fruits were also offered.




The crew, noting that we did not really liked the dessert, offered us some Haagen Dazs ice-cream from Economy instead. Now, this is what a proper dessert should be! Funny that Economy would have a more satisfying dessert than Business.




Pralines to end.




View of the cabin.




1.5hrs more to SIN.

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Old 2nd October 2018, 11:36 PM   #14
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Descending into Singapore at dusk.








Landing in Changi Rwy20R.







https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhpLqFMPTP4


Taxied to Terminal 2 Gate F50.








Last view of my seat and disembarked.








Another run-of-the-mill high standard SQ Business Class experience with good service and offerings. The regional J seat on the A330s is still acceptable and comfortable for short/mid-hauls, though I will be looking forward to trying SQ's new regional Business Class seats for my future travels!

Thank you for reading and comments are welcomed.
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