Few things rival the feeling of jetting across an ocean in a flat bed. Add in an on board bar, exquisite lounge and friendly service and you enter a world of travel worth celebrating. For an exciting trip to London we used 40,000 Virgin Atlantic miles per person to experience "Upper Class", Virgin Atlantic's take on business class...
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Upon entering JFK terminal 4, you'll move to the right side of the terminal to the swanky dedicated area for Delta and Virgin Atlantic Upper Class and Sky Priority flyers...
Upper Class + Sky Priority Check In #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
As you can see, no lines to be found here and for a change, plenty of people ready to help!
We were greeted by a friendly agent below this sign, welcoming us, ensuring we knew how to make our way to the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse and wishing us a safe journey.
Just about everyone agrees that Virgin Atlantic does lounges as well as they can be done. I'm certainly not going to disagree. Why hear it from me when you can experience it yourself! Here's the entrance...
Clubhouse Entrance #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
Once inside you'll want to make the difficult choice of which cozy area to settle into. We settled for the area below, which reminded me of a space ship or something like that...
Don't the pods look cool?
Lounge Sitting #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
Whatever your choice in seating area, you can sit and relax while waiter service brings you unlimited food and drinks. As the 360* shows, we opted for some champagne...
If you're restless and/or hoping to turn a glamorous lounge into your favorite pub, you can take in a game of pool in the best of surroundings.
Club Pool #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
Waiter service, pool table, free massages, what more you could ask for I don't know...
Ah yes, a bar, that's another good thing to ask for. You'll find bottomless Lanson champagne, Grey Goose, Hendricks and an extensive cocktail selection.
Club Bar #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
The Seat + Bed
After a welcome on board, look for the stylish purple looking seats in front of the onboard bar. I must say, on this flight, we had one of the best crews I've ever experienced, friendly every step of the flight while also being personable.
VS Upper Sitting #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
Once settled in you'll find a storage area under your foot rest and to the side, allowing you to pop any iPads, books and shoes out of the way.
And of course, you can get your entertainment cued up for the flight. Interestingly, on most flights, Virgin Atlantic starts the system before take off, allowing you to unwind from the get go. Nice touch.
An amazing feature of Virgin Upper Class, which is fairly unique to business class on any airline is the ottoman, which allows couples, friends or colleagues to dine together. You'll want to convince whichever one of those you're with to come to your seat, it's much more comfortable.
On this particular flight, it was Laura's turn to venture over to my seat. Big time win. Good luck!
VS Upper Sleeping Joking #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
While I chose to visit the on board bar for the sheer novelty if not some champagne, Laura intelligently converted her seat into a bed, ready for sleep immediately after dinner.
A bed on a plane is always a surreal treat, especially using miles.
VS Upper View From BED #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
Mattress, duvet, movie. Ready for sleep on Virgin Atlantic flight 112. Cool to look around from the mattress isn't it?! Anyway, on to my whereabouts...
Of course if you're not a sleeper, there's always the bar, where we (I) found our extraordinary crew waiting to pour me a drink at 33,000 feet somewhere over the Atlantic. You'll find three seats and plenty of standing area if it's a "crowded bar".
Virgin Upper Class Bar #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA
Food + Drink
On a short night flight we were happy to skip appetizers and get straight into the main course. I chose steak with bearnaise sauce while Laura chose chicken with paprika and risotto. Full appetizer and main course for our flight can be found HERE. Dessert and cheese HERE, drinks with Red, white and champagne HERE, cocktails and tea HERE.
Just to set the mood at the dinner table. P.S. expert tip, steal the salt and pepper shakers, they're legendary!
Steaks on a plane part.... I can't remember, we collect a lot of miles and take quite a few awesome flights. Never gets old though!
I really enjoyed the cheesecake duo! Nicely plated, team.
The Experience + Tips
Virgin Atlantic Upper Class is one of the best ways to fly between the US and London. Period. I thoroughly enjoy the ground experience, from dedicated check in to world class lounge in mere minutes. It's the little things that matter and I LOVE the specific calls for boarding on each flight, allowing more time in the lounge, bypassing general boarding lines. If you're on the A340 I highly recommend seat A on any row past 8 for privacy, and a seat in the first three rows in seat A for sleep. Oh, and if you're lucky, ask for a cockpit tour, sometimes they say yes! Especially true when you follow these tips...
Cockpit visit #theta360 - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA