On the Ground: I was eager to experience EVA’s Royal Laurel cabin, upgraded last year. Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport is one busy place; as the airline’s hub, many flights depart at the same time and even with several premium check-in counters, there was a wait. The staff was friendly, courteous and extremely helpful. Once I reached the counter, check-in was quick.
Pre-Flight: I did not see any priority security lanes, and the process was long and arduous — more a fault of the airport than the airline. After duty-free shopping, I headed to the EVA lounges, true oases of calm located upstairs. The Infinity lounge — recently renovated, clean and modern with twinkling lights in the ceiling — was crowded, but I found a seat and a plug and grabbed a drink from the large selection of beverages and food (Asian and Western options). I didn’t have much time there, but I got some work done and changed for my flight. With more time, I would have tried the shower facilities.
In-Flight: Each seat in Royal Laurel is private and personal, a step away from a suite with a high back and side. I was happy to be in a window seat in the 1-2-1 configuration, pleased with the ample storage and large ledge by the window. I stowed my bags, keeping my laptop, reading material and other amenities accessible from my seat. The brand-new Rimowa amenity kit, a comforter and pillow were all waiting.
My flight passed quickly. I kept busy with movies from the generous entertainment options, work and sleep in the lie-flat bed. Before dinner, I enjoyed a glass of Dom Perignon Vintage 2003. The menu offers two regular dinner options and a healthy choice. The appetizer was a stuffed egg with caviar served aside a pan-seared scallop with tomato salsa on asparagus and lettuce, followed by Italian minestrone soup and a salad. For my entrée, I selected braised pork spareribs wu shi style. Cheese, fruit and ice cream or mousse followed. I paired all with a Chassagne Montrachet Vielles Vignes 2010. Flight attendants provided snacks and small meals throughout the flight; I enjoyed a savory potato cheese tart when I woke up hungry. Before landing, another meal was served; I chose the Western selection: fruit, bread, penne with mushrooms in a pesto cream sauce with a chicken patty wrapped in bacon.
The Experience: EVA, now a member of Star Alliance, met all my expectations. From beginning to end, my flight was top-notch. It’s a good sign when a long flight seems to pass in the blink of an eye.
- 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
Are you looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own refined adventure of a lifetime. You can custom order your new Volvo, tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.
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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Dance the night away with Grand Hotel’s Ballroom Dance offer, available May 16–18. Dancers of all skill levels will experience a diverse range of ballroom dance styles, alongside daily breakfast and dinner, a welcome reception and complimentary golf green fees.
Though air travel slowed as airports temporarily closed and borders shuttered to stifle the spread of coronavirus, the airline industry — led by oneworld alliance member airlines — enacted enhanced protective measures to reduce risk and protect passengers.