© 2016 Qatar Airways
I’ve long lost count of the number of flights under my belt, but I still find myself staring in wonder through the plane window each time. Despite this gratitude, I’ll (sheepishly) admit that a flight lasting 10-plus hours is not my favorite thing.
However, when I flew from Dallas to Doha, Qatar, with the award-winning Qatar Airways, a part of me actually didn’t want to leave the plane.
For about 14 hours, I happily sat in the lap of luxury in business class. The star treatment began as soon as I took my seat in the pristine and modern Boeing 777-200LR/F aircraft (with a 2-2-2 seat configuration) and was handed a glass of champagne to enjoy before take-off. As I settled in for the long-haul flight ahead, I discovered the impressive features and amenities at my disposal.
To begin with, Oryx, Qatar Airway’s onboard entertainment system, put my previously downloaded podcast episodes and Kindle books to shame. It offers more than 2,000 entertainment options to watch or play on 17-inch monitors, including games, television shows, music and movies ranging from classic films to new releases to sections devoted entirely to Bollywood and the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Then, there’s the impressive in-flight dining. My final destination in Doha was Four Seasons Hotel Doha, where I had plans to try out the newly opened Nobu Doha, helmed by renowned chef Nobu Matsuhisa. So, it was a pleasant surprise to see the cuisine of Nobu — along that of another Michelin-starred international chef, Vineet Bhatia — on the a-la-carte menu. With the ability to order from the menu anytime (breakfast is served all day, too), I savored dishes such as Nobu’s shrimp with soba noodles and mushroom and leek soup with crispy rice, as well as tasty mango and chili prawns by Bhatia.
Passengers can also choose refreshments including cappuccinos, fruit juices, mocktails, wine, champagne, cocktails such as “Purple Skies” (lychee, pomegranate and citrus with Belvedere Pure vodka) and more. Ordering dessert is a must, particularly when it’s from French bakery Laduree. Food service was excellent, as the attendants are attentive and quick to respond to any requests.
When hours of movie-watching and clever mood lighting (intended to decrease the effects of jet lag) finally began to lull me to sleep, I took advantage of the pajama set and the Giorgio Armani amenities kit offered to each business-class passenger. The kit contains Armani’s Si perfume and lotion, lip balm, an eye mask, a pair of socks and a set of ear plugs. Then, I reclined my seat to lie fully flat — a huge perk on an overnight flight — and woke up in Doha in what felt like no time at all.
Note: Since Jan. 1, 2016, Qatar Airways now flies nonstop from Los Angeles International Airport to its Doha hub at Hamad International Airport. Other upcoming U.S. routes to be launched this year include Boston in March and Atlanta in June. Qatar Airways has routes to and from Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, New York, Chicago, Miami, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.