On the Ground: The 83-mile trip from my home in Pennsylvania to JFK can be a hassle, but this time there were no traffic delays, so I made good time and arrived at the airport with time to spare. Check-in was pleasant and uneventful. The sun and the moon and Earth must have been in alignment that day because I was through security in no time and made a beeline for the Lufthansa lounge.
Pre-Flight: Brussels Airlines passengers at JFK can use the lounge of its parent company, Lufthansa, where I whiled away an hour and a half checking emails, reading international newspapers and partaking of the snacks and drinks on offer. Once the flight was announced, it was a short walk to the gate, and within a nanosecond I was in my seat after surrendering my coat to the flight attendant and stowing my carry-ons. Soon after I was settled, I was offered a glass of Champagne and some nibbles.
The seat configuration is a 2-1-2/1-2-1 staggered layout. My seat was on the aisle of a 2-1-2 row. No one had the window seat, and I was pleased to have the privacy. I had a single seat on my flight home and thoroughly enjoyed it. The seats are fully lie-flats with all sorts of luxurious adjustments for precise seat softness, a massage (I liked that!) and lumbar options. The seat settings are made using a touch screen and are memory settings, which is a plus when you must readjust it to leave your seat.
In-Flight: After we were airborne, I settled in and then checked out the menu; I chose the chicken. Since Brussels Airlines won GT’s 2012 and 2013 Best International Business Class Wines on the Wing awards, I sampled two from their list: the Les Vieux Murs Pouilly-Fuissé 2009, which was superb, and the Frescobaldi Tenuta di Castiglioni 2009, which also lived up to the airline’s reputation. The meal was delicious and was followed by Belgium’s notoriously fabulous chocolates!
After dinner, I turned my attention to the entertainment offerings. There were many viewing options, from TV shows to current and past movies. I decided to watch a movie before catching a little shut-eye. An hour before landing, a continental breakfast was served.
The Experience: One of the key elements to any travel experience is the people providing the service. I have nothing but high praise for Brussels Airlines’ personnel; from the checkin counter to the flight attendants, they were all very friendly and accommodating … true professionals! The whole experience was more than pleasant, and I will definitely fly Brussels Airlines again.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Friendly and helpful agents
- Priority tagged bags
- Airport lounge
- Complimentary in-lounge food
- Priority boarding
- Helpful and courteous flight attendants
- Pre-flight beverage service
- Pre-flight newspapers and magazines
- Extensive on-demand menu
- Self-serve in-flight pantry
- Amenity kits
- Lie-flat seat/bed
- Mattress and comforter
- In-flight menu with three entrée choices
- Top-shelf wines and liquors
I had just taken off my sandals, stepping onto the white-sand beach for a late-morning walk to a secluded spot I heard about from a front desk clerk, when I glanced down and saw the time on my phone. It had just turned 11 a.m., which meant it was only 7 am back home, the perfect time to call and say good morning to by husband before he left for work. Not quite ready to head back to my room, I decided I’d test the WiFi signal and made the call as I continued walking toward the shoreline.
San Antonio celebrated 300 years of progress in May 2018. With a clear vision following that anniversary year, the Texan city set its sights firmly on 300 more. While commemorating this milestone, the city underwent a major overhaul to prepare for the next phase in its history.
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