After five years of design and development work, Air New Zealand’s new business class cabin is set to officially launch this week. This includes the new Business Premier Luxe offering in the bulkhead row, first revealed by PaxEx.Aero in late March.
The new views now available are always renderings of the final product, not the reality. But they do reveal a few more details about the new Business Premier and Business Premier Luxe options.
Sliding door suites for Business Premier Luxe
The first row of each business class cabin (row 1 and what appears to be row 9, although row 8 is missing) will feature a pair of sliding doors to increase passenger privacy. A full-height door will slide from the front of the seat, filling the seat entry area to the floor. A second mid-height door will slide forward from the seat shell, completing the space.
The rendering also shows a much larger ottoman space in the Business Premier Luxe space. This space can be used for a second passenger to sit for meals. Rendering shows the largest single-top table with two place settings.
A seat belt is also included on the ottoman for the guest passenger, slightly adjacent to the large in-flight entertainment screen included in the suite.
Half door for Business Premier
Regular Business Premier seats will not have the full height door for added privacy. They will, however, still have a mini door that closes above the side table, somewhat protecting the aisle.
This design is either a gimmick to claim a sliding door over the seats or a nice option to increase mid-thigh clearance for seat-entering passengers. Or even, maybe a bit of both.
Footroom in the Business Premier seats shrinks, unlike the larger space in the bulkhead row.
Other details on Air New Zealand Business Premier seats
All seats are equipped with USB-A and USB-C ports, as well as universal power outlets. Wireless charging is also included on the narrower of the two side tables at each seat.
Seat covers are fabric rather than leather, a move the company says helps reduce the carbon emissions impact of flying. Plates and other service items will also be 20% lighter than the previous generation, further reducing fuel consumption and emissions.
The company claims to have invested more than 170,000 man-hours to design and develop the new headquarters. This includes working with Boeing and other partners to ensure it can fly on the airline’s 787 fleet. When the design was first unveiled in March, the company said “M]over 80,000 design and engineering hours went into the new Business Premier seats, along with 18 months of research and testing. towards the clients.”
SkyNest Economy Sleeping Pods
Business class is classy, but many more travelers will fly in the back half of the plane. Air New Zealand’s new 787-9 configuration also gives them a big win. The new cabins will also include its “SkyNest” sleeping pod in economy class.
First announced as a concept in February 2020 and developed by the company’s Hangar 22 innovation center, the SkyNest bunk bed design offers six fully flat beds for part-time use by Economy Class passengers.
Initially, the carrier intended to choose whether or not to launch the seating option after its inaugural Auckland-Newark flights. Although the pandemic has delayed some of the new routes, it has not halted SkyNest development.
Additional details on the Business Premier Luxe, Business Premier and SkyNest products are expected later this week when the company releases its official announcement.
A favor to ask while you’re here…
Did you enjoy the content? Or learn something useful? Or do you just think that’s the type of story you’d like to see more of? Consider support the site with a donation (any amount counts). It helps me stay independent and avoid credit card blocking.