On the Ground: British Airways check-in at Newark is located on the bottom level, near baggage claim. It was a bit difficult to find, as it is far removed from most check-in counters, but the process was quick. Security was a nightmare, which was not in any way British Airways’ fault, and as soon as I was behind the closed doors of the dedicated lounge, all the chaos from outside was soon forgotten. I had a drink, checked some emails (with free WiFi) and made my way to the gate for boarding. (28/30)
Pre-flight: BA has a unique configuration of 2-4-2. Starting left to right, the individual pods face opposite directions, except for the two middle seats, which sit side-by-side, facing the same direction. On this particular flight, I was on the outside of the middle, and with the privacy screen up I was in my own little world. (Unfortunately, on my return flight I was in one of the two middle seats — this offered less privacy and required crafty maneuvering and climbing to access the aisle and overhead bin when the aisle passenger seat was in the lie-flat position.) I was impressed by the lie-flat seats and was thrilled with all the storage space, including a drawer that perfectly fit my laptop, shoes and reading material. I settled in as flight attendants hung coats and passed out welcome beverages. Shortly after take-off, they distributed menus and amenity kits. (28/30)
In-flight: The power outlets, tray table and added storage space made doing work a cinch. The entertainment options included movies, TV programming, games and music. Throughout the flight, passengers can help themselves to snacks at a station in the galley, which is a nice feature. I chose the Indian dining option on the outbound leg and found myself picking at it with disinterest. The food on my return flight was much better: chicken breast with vegetables and potatoes, followed by a second meal service of traditional English tea — scones and clotted cream included. The breakfast service, served shortly before landing, was plentiful, with fruit, yogurt, pastries and breakfast sandwiches. (39/40)
The Experience: The premium service does not end when passengers disembark at Heathrow. I received a pass to access the fast lane at customs, a fantastic service that helped me navigate the process in mere minutes. In addition, I was invited to freshen up in the Arrivals Lounge. Time constraints prevented me from taking advantage of that perk, but it’s a nice thought. I was quite pleased with my experience on British Airways. If I had been able to combine my seat to London with the cuisine I enjoyed on the return trip, I would have been hard-pressed to find a single complaint.
Total Score: 95/100
Since its prestige for attracting the world elite grew in the 1960s, Greece remains the go-to destination for glittering holidays. Each step of the journey is enrobed in luxury, from culinary traditions with the highest standard of execution and name-brand, high-end shopping to first-rate wellness locales and elite accommodations, like 5-star hotels, private villas and yachts.
I imagine that when writer Hans Christian Andersen mused, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” he was standing at the edge of Copenhagen’s historic Tivoli Gardens, one of his favorite haunts, enlivened by the swirl of human happiness that surrounded him: children laughing; carousels spinning; games of chance played for prizes; lovers holding hands; hungry people whispering over sweets, hot drinks, beer and towering, open-faced smørrebrød, Denmark’s quintessential sandwich. That fairy tale lives on today at the second-oldest amusement park in the world, a spectacle of folly architecture, bakeries, gardens, rides, restaurants, puppet shows and joy ... and which also happens to be one of the city’s most storied places to convene for business.
The restored Park Hyatt Toronto reopened its doors, bringing luxury, sophistication and glamour alongside a nod to the hotel’s Canadian heritage. Alessandro Munge of Studio Munge collaborated on the hotel’s refresh, drawing inspiration from Canada’s seasons and natural landscapes.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
I recently dined at Irwin’s in Philadelphia. The restaurant is located on the rooftop of the Bok Building, a former school turned collective of small businesses, non-profits, artist workshops, a bar and restaurant. I previously visited Bok for the bar and yoga classes, and I was excited to experience the restaurant.
Cathay Pacific reaffirms its commitment to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with a pledge to use Sustainable Aviation Fuel for 10 percent of its total fuel consumption by 2030. The airline has made pioneering efforts in supporting SAF development for more than 10 years.
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
Arriving early afternoon in Puerto Rico, we jumped in an Uber and took a short, 15-minute drive from the airport to La Concha. As it was Tuesday, the streets were not too busy and the hotel lobby was calm. During the weekend, the scene likely would have been more bustling. We were greeted by a staff member who requested proof of vaccination and government-issued ID, and were given a wristband to indicate we were fully vaccinated. All guests are required to be vaccinated and wear masks at all times while moving around the hotel. Hand sanitizer stations were placed around the lobby, in elevators and in each common area.