Welcome to JarvisMarcos.com, a thorough and extensive database of my travel reviews.
I fly over 100,000 miles per year in First and Business class cabins and review every new product that I try. Similarly, I review almost every luxury hotel and airport lounge that I set foot in
I book the majority of my travel using sales, promotions and a variety of other tricks - often leveraging the power of hotel points and airline miles. If I use a special technique of any kind to book a travel experience, I'll mention it in the review.
This means that hopefully you'll have all the tools you need to book your own amazing trips too!
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When one man, for whatever reason, has the opportunity to lead an extraordinary life, he has no right to keep it to himself.
Qantas has one of my favourite First Class products in the world. I had been looking forward to stepping onto one of their A380s again for quite some time. Nothing beats that feeling of finally being welcomed aboard and taking your seat in a cabin you've been dreaming about for months on end.
The refurbishment of this lounge has been a great success. The transformation is truly remarkable. What was previously a laughably dated looking lounge has become an elegant, well lit and classy venue. The food remains as good as it always was and for a business class passenger the drinks offered are well above average. Emirates treats its business class passengers very well indeed.
The UAE is perfectly positioned for a UK traveller. You can hop on an overnight flight from London at around 9pm on Thursday and will arrive in Dubai or Abu Dhabi at 7am on Friday morning. Friday is when the UAE really parties, with most hotels laying on extremely lavish brunch buffets, featuring all manner of seafood, foie gras, freshly baked cakes and free flowing champagne. I always like to make Friday my arrival day for that reason.
Unlike Hyatt and IHG who are notorious for playing games with their best rate guarantees (i.e. thay weasel their way out of the guarantee any way they can and hope to leave you with an expensive, non-refundable reservation in the process), SPG is very fair indeed.
As far as BA lounges go, this one is pretty good. The lounge is clean, the service is great and the variety of high quality food is truly excellent. I loved the setting of the bar but the cocktails could definitely use some work. Similarly boarding from the lounge is a nice idea but the execution fell a little flat, once we filtered into a line of Economy passengers downstairs.
Whilst this is one of the best BA lounges I've ever set foot in and nothing was massively wrong with it I wasn't wowed. When it comes to lounge refurbishment programmes, AA is very much the dominant partner in this transatlantic joint venture.
Overall this is an absolutely fantastic lounge. AA have really come far in the last couple of years. Their 777s now all feature flat beds with direct aisle access and WiFi and slowly but surely their lounges are becoming equally cutting edge.
Ample daylight, runway views, fantastic food, a variety of top shelf spirits, almost every soft drink ever and power points at nearly every seat. What's not to like?
The new bedding is a vast improvement as is the new tableware. The food is not much better than the old Do&Co catering on this route but then again LHR-JFK is BA's flagship service and has always received an extra level of care and attention.
If BA can roll both the Do&Co and White Company partnerships successfully, fleetwide, they will go some way to undoing all of the harm that has been done to their reputation after the last three years of cost-cutting. Add in a new seat due in 2019 and then the only issue that remains is the poor quality of the lounges.
BA don't exactly have an easy road ahead of them but for now at least, it appears that things are moving in the right direction.
Perhaps I went into this with my hopes set too high but I really don't feel that this lounge is anywhere near the level of Cathay's Business lounge next door, let alone the First Class section. The Qantas decor isn't as luxurious, the food is not as good, there is a lack of natural light, runway views and power sockets and if you don't like gin, the drinks selection is far more limited.