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Old 14th September 2019, 07:48 PM   #16
yflyer
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Whisky on the rocks as a night cap...



Bottles of water were distributed...



I unwrapped the grey blanket and used that, and the large, soft pillow, to get comfortable...


Last edited by yflyer; 15th September 2019 at 11:27 AM..
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Old 14th September 2019, 08:23 PM   #17
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The rest of this 3+ hour flight to Hong Kong passed quickly...



Cabin crew were soon preparing for arrival into Hong Kong...

The curtain between PEY and J was drawn open...



Wonderful J hard product aside, I had no doubt that the pax in J had been pampered to bits...



And odds were that pax in Y would also have had a good experience too, by economy class standards.

But what about the sandwich class, Premium Economy, in between Business and Economy?

My impressions of SQ Premium Economy on the 77WR

- Cabin crew in PEY were superb. This was, of course, usually true of all SQ cabins, including Y.

- The seat and overall cabin ambience in SQ's 77WR PEY was top notch. I found SQ's hard product to be a match for most airlines' PEY, as far as the seat and cabin were concerned.

- The added space and seat comfort of PEY would be most valuable on long flights, such as the full SIN-HKG-SFO flight, or other long sectors such as SIN-LHR, or SIN-SYD. Maybe even 5 or 6 hour sectors like SIN-DEL or SIN-HND. On shorter sectors like SIN-HKG, I think PEY would be nice to have, but not essential.

- On SQ's PEY catering, this was no different from Y. For me, my enjoyment of a flight was partly derived from the F&B onboard, so the Y catering did detract a little from my overall PEY experience. I think SQ should really do something about raising the level of catering to justify the price premium.

Comparing SQ's PEY on Different Fleet Types

- Comparing PEY on the 77WR vs PEY on the SQ A380: These were essentially the same hard product. I would consider them about equal, although the A380 PEY cabin feels even more spacious, given the wider cabin width. The 2nd gen SQ A380 PEY also has the advantage of being located in the front of the A380 main deck, with restrooms directly behind PEY-- no need to pass the Y cabin to use the restrooms.

- I found SQ's 77WR PEY superior to SQ A350 PEY. The SQ A350 PEY seat frame is a little smaller, and just too close to Y for my liking.

- Overall, I would rate SQ's 2nd gen A380 PEY to be the best, followed by a tie between SQ 1st gen A380 PEY and 77WR PEY, then followed by SQ's A350 PEY.

Comparisons with other Airlines' PEY

- Comparing SQ 77WR PEY with CX PEY on the A350, I would say the seats were about equal. The CX A350 PEY seat was quite superb (And better than SQ's A350 PEY seat). Specifically, the thigh rest on the CX A350 seat was better designed than the SQ thigh rest.

- CX has the same catering approach for PEY as SQ: the catering was Y catering. But SQ Y catering is better than CX Y catering, so foodwise, I would prefer SQ PEY.

- QF PEY has by far the best catering, which was close to business class standard.

Comparing Aircraft Types

- Purely in terms of cabin environment, noise and comfort, I think the A350, 787 and A380 offered the best cabin ambience. On these aircraft, the ride was smooth and quiet. The effect of the better humidity and better cabin pressure of the A350 and 787 was quite subtle, but I thought that I could definitely detect a small difference. After so many trips on the A350 and 787, I could not help but think that on the 77WR, the noise level was a little higher, and the cabin a little drier and less comfortable, compared to these newer planes.

- While SQ's 77WR was still a great aircraft to fly, technology has moved on, and the A350 and 787 both offer an even more pleasant cabin environment than the 77WR.

Last edited by yflyer; 15th September 2019 at 11:29 AM..
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Old 14th September 2019, 11:20 PM   #18
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We landed in HKG and were at the gate bang on time, at 10.15pm.



PEY pax were among the first off the plane, after F and J...



Immigration queues were not long at that hour, and I was out of the terminal fairly quickly.

Outside, in the arrivals area, things were quiet -- with no sign of the crowds and disruptions from earlier in the week.



That was one benefit of arriving late at night at HKG...by that hour, everyone not travelling or working had probably gone home to sleep.



Many folks who arrived also took photos.

I think everyone was quite relieved that the terminal appeared to be operating normally, with no evidence at all of any of the previous days' turmoil.

The arrivals area was busy, but mainly with arriving passengers.



I caught the HKIA Express Train to Kowloon Station...



This was a very comfortable, and quick, way to get from the airport to Kowloon or Hong Kong.



In less than 30 minutes, I was in Kowloon...


Last edited by yflyer; 15th September 2019 at 11:33 AM..
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Old 14th September 2019, 11:32 PM   #19
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At Kowloon station, which was part of a large shopping and business complex, I took the lift to the shopping mall level...



...and walked through the shopping mall to the W Hong Kong, which was directly connected to the mall and train station complex. I would not even need to leave the building to get to my hotel.







Although the W was connected directly to the mall via a side entrance, I headed out of the main doorway and walked outside to catch the glimpse of the exterior of the W...



So far so good. I headed up the lift to the lobby of the W.



To be continued!

Last edited by yflyer; 15th September 2019 at 11:34 AM..
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Old 15th September 2019, 01:40 PM   #20
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Continuing with the TR...

This was not the first time I had stayed at the W in Hong Kong. My first stay was at the end of 2011, which was my first experience staying at the W.

I was wowed back then. What would my second impression be?



Then, as now, the quirky decor made me smile. Not a lot had changed since those days -- and not a lot had to. This was still a unique property, design-wise, and amazingly things still looked as fresh and new as they did on my previous stay.



The Woo Bar in the lobby was still open when I arrived...



...but rather than head there, I went straight to the lift lobby to head up to my room after check-in. The lift lobbies were done up like a library...



...and the book-theme extended to the room numbers and doorbells...



Inside, a beautiful room with an open concept bathroom, and stunning views of Victoria Harbour and Hong Kong Island across the water (Pic taken at "Blue Hour" the next day.)...

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Old 15th September 2019, 01:57 PM   #21
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I have to confess to being just a little underwhelmed when I entered the room: on my first visit in 2011, I was totally wowed by what was then considered very daring and creative hotel room design. But since that time, after the over-the-top, psychedelic rooms at the W Bangkok and W Kuala Lumpur, this room almost looked sedate by comparison.

But this was still a wonderful room, whose design still looked cutting edge and current...





...with lots of delightful design touches such as the brushed metal, tree branch-themed lamp stand and cupboard handles.







Tivoli Audio Clock Radio with analog clock...



Universal charging cable...



Welcome snack...



Beautiful metal/glass cocktail mixer as part of the minibar setup...



Nespresso capsule-compatible coffee maker...



...and yoga mat in the wardrobe...


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Old 15th September 2019, 02:00 PM   #22
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The open concept bathroom was stunning as well, with separate shower and tub...



Shower stall...



Large tub with TV...



Bliss toiletries...

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Old 15th September 2019, 02:05 PM   #23
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Overall this was a wonderful hotel room, large by Hong Kong standards, and with a design that had withstood the test of time very well.

I woke up the next morning to bright clear skies (Not something to be taken for granted in Hong Kong)...



My 37th floor room had good views of the entrance to the Western cross harbour tunnel connecting Kowloon and Hong Kong Island...



...as well as the neighbouring 118-storey International Commerce Centre (ICC) building, the tallest building in Hong Kong, and also where the Ritz Carlton Hong Kong hotel was located.

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Old 15th September 2019, 02:13 PM   #24
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A glance at the day's morning paper showed that things were getting back to normal at the airport, which was good since I was heading back out to Singapore the next morning on SQ1...



I headed downstairs for breakfast...

By day, the lobby was a bright, stylish affair...



I loved the large white mosquito on the wall...



...elsewhere more of the signature quirky, OTT W design elements....



The lobby restaurant was an equally stylish affair...



This was a large dining room with views of the harbour and port...



...with an adjoining buffet area which was one of the most striking interior designs I had ever encountered...



Quite an incredible setting for a breakfast buffet...



Fruit juice in individual bottles...



..and a superb selection of both Western and Asian buffet dishes...





Needless to say, there was a live egg station and also a cook-to-order noodle station...



Needless to say, I began the day with a wonderful, memorable breakfast!
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Old 15th September 2019, 03:58 PM   #25
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I spent the day at meetings with my client, who was located on the Kowloon side of Hong Kong.

I asked my colleagues what the situation was like. For the most part life went on, although everyone I spoke to had a view on what the protesters were trying to achieve, and whether their demands made sense. It was clear that this was a divisive topic, and one that was having some impact on business and the workplace. Things were definitely slower and quieter.

To an outsider like myself, everything looked normal the day I was there -- business as usual, and no different from any of my past trips to Hong Kong.

But things could occasionally become unpredictable: you never knew when something could happen. One colleague related how, one evening not long ago, he was in a group having dinner at a restaurant in a shopping mall, when they noticed shops around them closing their shutters, as some sort of minor disturbance or demonstration drew near outside. They were essentially stuck in the building for some time, before they eventually headed outside and found a car/taxi that was willing to drive them out of the area to safety.

All that said, work continued and everyone still had to go about their lives. As long as you kept up with the news, and avoided the obvious hotspots where gatherings and events took place, you were probably not in danger.
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Old 15th September 2019, 04:24 PM   #26
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After a very full work day, which included discussions and briefings/debriefings over lunch and dinner, I returned to the W.

There would be no opportunity to do any sightseeing on this trip, let alone head out for a run.

This view of the stunning night time Hong Kong skyline, taken as I strolled along the ICC driveway near the W, was as close I was going to get to Hong Kong island on this trip.



I did manage to head up to the 76th floor, to take a look at the W's swimming pool...



No opportunity to dip into the pool on this occasion, but this did look like a great place to spend time, especially during the day when the views must have been spectacular.
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Old 15th September 2019, 04:34 PM   #27
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Back in my room that evening, I set my alarm for 5am the next morning and went to bed.

SQ1 HKG-SIN was an 8am departure. This meant that catching the first HKIA Express Train out of Kowloon Station, at 5:53am would get me to the airport with time to spare.

Early the next morning, after checking out of the W, I found myself trudging through the deserted, but brightly lit, ICC shopping mall to Kowloon station.




It was a short walk, less than 10 minutes, to get from the W to the station. What a convenient hotel to stay in, if you had to catch an early morning flight out of Hong Kong.



Quite a few other pax were waiting for the first train of the day, at 5:53am.



The train was already quite full by the time in arrived at Kowloon station...



The sun was already up by the time the train neared HKIA...

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Old 15th September 2019, 04:43 PM   #28
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The train pulled into HKIA at 6.13am in the morning...



Unlike my previous trips to HKG, once train doors opened, passengers were funneled to a central queue for travel documents to be checked before being allowed into the departure area.



At this time, access to the airport from the train station was restricted to passengers only...



The document checks did not take too long for each passenger, but the queues meant that those at the head of the queue were in the terminal much more quickly than those at at the end of the line.



Once inside, everything was business-as-usual with check-in counters, shops and restaurants all open...





I picked up my boarding pass at the SQ check-in counter...



...and headed airside, using the shorter queues at the automated passport and boarding pass scanners, and also avoiding a very long immigration queue by using the automated processing system, which seemed to work fine for me without any pre-registration or sign-up required.
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Old 15th September 2019, 04:59 PM   #29
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In the airside, area, it was business-as-usual...


Shops were busy...I picked up a couple of boxes of famous Kee Wah mooncakes to bring home...



I was also pleased to see that the airside food court, which had been undergoing renovations, had re-opened, and that Zheng Dou (正斗)Tasty Congee and Noodle Wantun Shop, had also resumed operations at their outlet there, along with other famous names like Putien.



This had always been my go-to place for a congee or wantun noodle fix in HKG...



I used to rush there for noodles and/or congee during the SQ1 transit stop in HKG enroute from SFO to SIN...

Alas, the queues at Zheng Dou that morning were too long for me to indulge...



...so I diverted instead to the SilverKris Lounge (My lounge experience that day covered here)...



...before heading to the boarding gate nearby...


Last edited by yflyer; 15th September 2019 at 07:19 PM..
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Old 15th September 2019, 05:52 PM   #30
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At the boarding gate, it was 9V-SWO again! This was the same plane that flew me to Hong Kong two days prior.



During the time I was in Hong Kong, SWO had flown to SFO and then returned to HKG. And now we were headed back to SIN.



I was in Economy today...



My seat was 41C...a first row bulkhead aisle seat...



This was a great seat, with good legroom, and a whopping three windows to look out of...



Recline was very good, with the seat base moving forward slightly to cradle the passenger at a comfortable angle when reclined...



The regular Y seats had paddle shaped footrests extending from the seat in front (These were not present in the bulkhead row).



Seat width in this 9-abreast 3-3-3 cabin was very good as well.



No underseat obstructions in the regular rows...



IFE was one of the latest versions of the Krisworld system, presented on a large, touch-enabled widescreen.



USB power was available on the seat back, under the screen, with A/C power under the seat.

Bulkhead rows had USB and A/C both under the seat.



A view of the row 49 exit row seats, all with ample legroom...



Overall, an excellent Y seat product which I would still rate as state-of-the art.

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