Review: NEW ANA 777 “The Suite” First Class

Filed Under: Airline Reviews, ANA

In July 2019, All Nippon Airways introduced spectacular-looking new first & business class seats with barely any lead time, as their first plane with these seats entered service just weeks later.

I knew I had to try them, because both first and business class look industry leading. As of now ANA is offering their new cabins to London Heathrow and New York, and they’ll soon also be offering them on flights to Frankfurt.

While I had reviewed ANA’s new business class (“The Room”) from New York to Tokyo a couple of days prior, it was now time to review ANA’s new first class (“The Suite”) from London to Tokyo.

The reason I flew to Tokyo twice on this trip is because ANA has significantly more first & business class award availability to Tokyo than from Tokyo, so this was the only way I could redeem miles for both experiences on one trip.

Booking My ANA First Class Flight

All Nippon Airways is in the Star Alliance, so there are plenty of options for redeeming miles for them, assuming you can find award availability. Some of the best options for one-way first class tickets include the following:

The very best value for redeeming on All Nippon Airways is to book through Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, as you can redeem just 120,000 miles for a roundtrip first class ticket from New York or London to Tokyo. Unfortunately they don’t allow one-way awards, so in this case that wasn’t an option for me.

I ended up redeeming 115,000 LifeMiles miles for this ticket, and paid a total of $303 in taxes and fees (there were no carrier imposed surcharges, but rather the fees were so high because I was originating in the UK, so had to pay the Air Passenger Duty).

LifeMiles is transfer partner with Amex Membership RewardsCapital One, and Citi ThankYou, and in this case I redeemed miles I already had in my account from having outright purchased them, given that LifeMiles often has sales on buying miles.

ANA First Class “The Suite” Review

I got to Heathrow Airport at around 4PM for my 7PM flight to Tokyo. ANA departs from Terminal 2 at Heathrow, and ANA first class passengers have access to the Singapore Airlines first class lounge. I won’t be reviewing that this time around, since I’ve done so in detail in the past.

Singapore Airlines first class lounge Heathrow


Singapore Airlines first class lounge Heathrow

Boarding for the ANA flight was scheduled to start at 6:30PM at gate B46, so I headed to the gate at around 6PM. At 6:20PM they started to “open up” the queues, and then at 6:30PM on the dot boarding started, with first class and ANA Mileage Club Diamond members being invited to board first.

All Nippon Airways departure gate London Heathrow

Before I start this flight review, for context check out my review of ANA’s “old” first class from a recent flight from Chicago to Tokyo, to see just how much has changed.

All Nippon Airways 212
London (LHR) – Tokyo (HND)
Friday, January 10
Depart: 7:00PM
Arrive: 3:50PM (+1 day)
Duration: 11hr50min
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300ER
Seat: 2K (First Class)

This flight was boarding through two doors, though the forward door was being used exclusively for first class passengers, meaning I was one of only two passengers to use the door.

Upon entering the plane I was greeted by what can only be described as a rockstar team, including the first class flight attendant, the first class purser, and the chief purser.

WOW, ANA’s new first class is a massive improvement over their old product in every way — I was so impressed. As before, ANA’s first class cabin has eight seats, spread across two rows in a 1-2-1 configuration.

All Nippon Airways first class suite cabin


All Nippon Airways first class suite cabin

As I was escorted to my seat, the first class flight attendant explained in the most adorable way that the right side of the cabin was all “mine,” as the only other first class passenger was in 1A.


All Nippon Airways first class suite cabin

The center seats in ANA’s new first class are ideal for those traveling together, and such an improvement over the old seats — in the old configuration they had partitions between center seats that made it impossible to enjoy the flight together, while now there’s a partition that can be moved up or down.


All Nippon Airways first class center seats


All Nippon Airways first class center seats

I had assigned myself seat 2K, the window seat on the right side in the second row. On the surface this might not look like a cutting edge first class product, but what sets it apart is the massive TV and well thought out design.


All Nippon Airways first class suite


All Nippon Airways first class suite

The seat was wide, though ironically I think the business class seat is wider.


All Nippon Airways first class suite

The first thing that stood out to me was the truly ginormous 42″ 4K TV at each seat, making this the biggest TV you’ll find at any first class seat.


All Nippon Airways first class suite

To the front left of the seat was an enclosed storage compartment.


ANA first class suite storage

To the side of that was a tray table, which could be pulled in or out, and could also be folded over in half. The ottoman could also double as a buddy seat, should you want to dine face-to-face with a travel companion.

ANA first class suite tray table

To the right side of the seat were the entertainment controller, seat controls, outlets, and HDMI plug (which for whatever reason wasn’t working yet, but this will be an awesome feature when it’s functional). There was also some more storage in this area.


All Nippon Airways first class suite


All Nippon Airways first class suite entertainment controller


All Nippon Airways first class suite controls


All Nippon Airways first class HDMI

To the left side of the seat was a literature pocket, though this secretly doubled as a large mirror when you opened it up, which was pretty cool. I could see most people completely missing this feature.


ANA first class suite literature pocket


ANA first class suite mirror

Then there was a narrow coat closet to the side of the seat.


ANA first class suite closet

Much like in business class, there were electronic blinds, which is an elegant feature.


ANA first class suite window blinds

There were individual air nozzles, which is such a welcome addition, as ANA’s old first class seats didn’t have this.


ANA first class suite individual air nozzles

ANA’s new first class hard product is top notch. It addresses all of the complaints I had about the old seat — how they were “boxed in” (preventing you from talking to the person next to you, or even looking out the window), how there were no individual air nozzles, etc.

Not only that, but the seat is incredibly well thought out.

Already waiting at my seat upon boarding was a pillow and a blanket, which was in addition to the more substantial bedding available with turndown service.


ANA first class pillow & blanket

There were also a pair of high quality Sony headphones.


ANA first class headphones

Then there were a pair of pajamas, a cardigan, and slippers. I was proactively given large pajamas — these are definitely Japanese sized, because the top was basically the shirt equivalent of jorts (which is to say my arms weren’t fully covered).


ANA first class pillow pajamas


ANA first class cardigan

ANA first class slippers

There was also an amenity kit containing an eye mask, ear plugs, a dental kit, and some toiletries from “The Ginza.” I quite like the facial cleanser they have in there, especially since it’s in a convenient travel size container.


ANA first class amenity kit

The amenity kit contents were pretty basic, but that was because a moment after settling in I was brought a basket with all kinds of other amenities, from lip balm to leg refreshing sheets (which I’ve still never tried on an ANA flight… what’s wrong with me?!).


ANA first class slippers

At this point I was also presented with a wifi voucher for the flight, offering free wifi with no data caps for the entire flight… yay!

ANA first class free wifi

At this point the first class flight attendant, first class purser, and chief purser, all stopped by my seat one-by-one to welcome me onboard. The chief purser told me the flight time would be about 11 hours. I was then offered a pre-departure drink, and selected a glass of champagne.


ANA first class pre-departure drink

By 6:45PM the cabin doors were closed, meaning the whole boarding process took just 15 minutes. That’s because of the light load — if I overheard the ground staff correctly in the gate area, there were two first class passengers, 61 business class passengers, 11 premium economy passengers, and 51 economy passengers.

It’s pretty crazy when nearly half of the passengers onboard are in business class!

At 7PM we began our taxi, at which point the safety video was screened. We had possibly the shortest Heathrow taxi ever, and by 7:05PM were cleared for takeoff on runway 27R.

10 minutes after takeoff the seatbelt sign was turned off, at which point the curtains between cabins and the galleys were closed.

ANA 777-300ER first class cabin

Service got started quickly after takeoff. Just 15 minutes after takeoff I was presented with the menu for the flight, as well as a warm towel.

ANA first class menu & warm towel

I was reminded that I could have whatever I wanted whenever I wanted, though I followed the traditional format of the menu, and had dinner after takeoff and then a snack before landing.

The dinner menu read as follows:

The drink list read as follows:

Less than 20 minutes after takeoff I was presented with my first drink. I continued with champagne, as they were serving Krug Grande Cuvee. It’s interesting to note that they seem to load both 375ml and 750ml bottles.

On the surface that seems smart, since it’s potentially less wasteful. However, I think they may have gotten the wrong read on me. 😉 They opened the 375ml bottle, and a couple of refills in I heard them pop open a 750ml bottle. I only ended up having a glass from that bottle, which I felt kind of guilty about, in retrospect.

ANA first class Krug champagne

To go along with the champagne I was offered the amuse bouche, consisting of a goat cheese macaron, butternut squash tart, asparagus and chive soup, and cheese pepper bars.


ANA first class dinner — amuse bouche

I decided to have the Japanese set menu for dinner, though also asked if I could have the caviar first. What followed was probably the best meal I’ve ever had in first class.

Dinner began with caviar along with all the traditional accompaniments.


ANA first class dinner — caviar


ANA first class dinner — caviar

Then the Japanese feast began. I was blown away by the quality of the meal. When you go to a good omakase restaurant in Japan, everything is so fresh that they’re basically killing the fish in front of you. I was amazed by the flavors and freshness of everything, given that we’re talking about airplane food.

To start I was offered:

  • Scallop, mascarpone, and avocado with citrus gelee
  • Grated daikon radish with salmon roe
  • Simmered prawn in soy-based sauce
  • Simmered pond smelt in soy-based sweet sauce
  • Simmered abalone in soy-based sauce
  • Marinated herring roe in soy-based sauce
  • Smoked salmon rolled with sweet-vinegared daikon radish
  • Simmered black beans in soy sauce
  • Marinated snap pea in soy-based sauce


ANA first class dinner — Japanese menu

Next up was the clear soup with deep-fried sea bream and shredded vegetables.


ANA first class dinner — Japanese menu

Then there was seared tuna and poached squid sashimi.


ANA first class dinner — Japanese menu

Then to finish off the Japanese portion of the meal, I was served:

  • Simmered chicken meatballs in white miso sauce
  • Sesame tofu
  • Simmered yellowtail in soy-based sauce
  • Steamed rice, miso soup, and Japanese pickles


ANA first class dinner — Japanese menu

I was beyond stuffed at this point, but figured I had to take one for the team and try one of the desserts. I selected the warm apricot tart with vanilla ice cream.


ANA first class dinner — dessert

At the conclusion of the meal I was offered a bottle of water, another warm towel, and some petit fours (great, just what I needed).


ANA first class dinner — petit four

I can’t do justice to how good every part of this meal was, from the food to the service. There were two flight attendants working first class, so each passenger essentially had their own dedicated flight attendant.

The one taking care of me simply couldn’t have been better — she seemed to enjoy her job, and was so attentive and just generally delightful without being overbearing.

At the conclusion of the meal I asked to have my bed made, and in the meantime checked out the two lavatories at the front of the cabin. Both lavatories had bidets, and one was particularly spacious.

ANA first class lavatory


ANA first class lavatory


ANA first class bidet

In bed mode the seat was spacious. I’d love to see ANA offer a real mattress pad, rather than a mattress sheet, because the bed is on the hard side. I realize a lot of people prefer hard beds, so it would be nice if they provided the option of whether you wanted a hard or soft mattress pad, just as Japan Airlines does.

ANA first class suite turndown service


ANA first class suite turndown service

I particularly like that ANA’s new first class suite has doors, which their old first class didn’t have.


ANA first class suite turndown service


ANA first class suite door

At the conclusion of the meal I browsed the entertainment selection. I was in disbelief at the size and quality of the screen, though as was the case when flying ANA business class, the entertainment selection as such was lackluster.

In that sense the HDMI functionality will be awesome — what could be better than watching 90 Day Fiance on a plane on a 42″ 4K TV? Of course that’s probably never going to happen for me, since it would require not watching 90 Day Fiance the moment that new episodes are released…

ANA first class entertainment system


ANA first class entertainment system


ANA first class entertainment system

ANA first class entertainment system

By the time I was ready to sleep we were about 8hr30min from arrival in Tokyo.

Map enroute to Tokyo


Progress enroute to Tokyo

I got some solid rest, but was wide awake just three hours after going to sleep. Since I was arriving in Japan in the evening, I figured I might as well stay up.


Map enroute to Tokyo

At this point I decided to get some work done. ANA’s 777s used to have slow wifi where they charged based on data, while they now have high speed wifi with pricing based on time, rather than data.

ANA wifi pricing

There were three wifi pricing plans:

  • $6.95 for 30 minutes
  • $16.95 for three hours
  • $21.95 for the full flight


ANA wifi pricing

As a first class passenger wifi was free, which just requires entering the code that you’re given. Free, high speed wifi with no data caps? Yes please!


ANA free first class wifi

Shortly after waking up I opened the blinds a bit, and was treated to a beautiful sunrise.

Sunrise enroute to Tokyo

One other cool feature of the plane that I hadn’t realized up until this point — the plane has a nose camera that shows the altitude and speed.

ANA 777 onboard camera

Soon after waking up I was asked if I wanted anything to eat or drink. I noticed on the menu that they had some iced coffee drinks, so I ordered an iced cappuccino, which was excellent.

ANA first class iced cappuccino

Later on I ordered a hot latte, which by comparison wasn’t good at all, and matched my previous experiences of ordering speciality coffee drinks on ANA (which I haven’t found to be very good).


ANA first class latte

I worked for a few more hours, and then about 90 minutes before landing decided to order something to eat. The anytime dining and pre-landing menu read as follows:

The options from the “light dishes anytime” menu appealed to me most, so I ordered the open-faced sandwich with smoked salmon to start, which was quite good.

ANA first class pre-landing meal

I then had the mushroom and artichoke risotto, which I also enjoyed.


ANA first class pre-landing meal

To finish off the meal I had some fresh fruit.


ANA first class pre-landing meal

We began our descent around 2:40PM Tokyo time, and had some lovely views on approach, as it was a nice afternoon.

View approaching Tokyo

This was my first time landing at Haneda during the day, so much like when I departed Haneda a couple of days prior during the day, the views were lovely. Can anyone identify the below airport?


View approaching Tokyo

Also, does anyone know what the below is? Some sort of a bridge leading to a ferry, or…?

Final approach to Tokyo Haneda Airport

And does anyone know what exactly this is?


Final approach to Tokyo Haneda Airport


Final approach to Tokyo Haneda Airport

We landed on runway 34L at 3:10PM, and pulled into gate 111 at 3:15PM, 35 minutes ahead of our 3:50PM scheduled arrival time.


Final approach to Tokyo Haneda Airport

Arrival gate Haneda Airport

I was through immigration in no time, and despite not having purchased a ticket in advance, made the 3:35PM bus to the Andaz with time to spare.

ANA First Class Suite Bottom Line

Wow, what a flight. Everything about the experience was flawless.

For one, ANA’s new first class suite is top notch. It’s by no means revolutionary, but it’s incredibly well designed, and they’ve addressed all of the issues I had with their old seats, from the slow wifi to the poorly designed “cubicle” design.

Beyond that, though, the soft product was unbeatable. The crew couldn’t have been lovelier, and I think I had the best meal I’ve ever had in first class on any airline.

Suffice to say that with this flight, ANA first class has gone up a few notches in my book.

What do you make of ANA’s new first class suite?

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Comments
  1. Excellent write up Ben. I’m flying ANA F next month but unfortunately west coast route with the old equipment even without originating in Japan their Japanese dinner looks outstanding. I hope you had some of their premium sake with that food.

  2. The sail like structure is apparently a ventilation tower for the aqua line which passes underneath.
    https://goo.gl/maps/kQ7A7CpAggYKihvM8

    As for the bridge, it leads to a rest stop, then becomes the tunnel from Chiba prefecture to Tokyo.
    https://goo.gl/maps/UBo8MJUM3pUqkv678

    Great review! I recently flew the new ANA economy from NRT to JFK, the monitors behind the seats were the best I had seen in any economy cabin, wish they had a wider selection of movies.

  3. Some googling reveals that the road leading to “nowhere” is actually a tunnel, not a ferry port. The sail-looking thing is a ventilation shaft for the tunnel.

  4. Thanks, I was really looking forward to this review!
    A fun side note though: I flew ANA F recently (old product), and just googled the The Ginza products from the amenity kit because they feel so great (particularly the night serum). Believe it or not, the night serum + day moisturizer kit, each 45mL in, retails for an eye watering 180,000 yen or roughly USD 1600!! I can’t believe they provide such expensive products in an amenity kit hah. I wish I had used them more sparingly :).

  5. The “bridge leading to a ferry” is the Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line, a bridge-tunnel combo that crosses Tokyo Bay. Leaving Tokyo, it starts out as a 4km bridge than becomes a 10 km tunnel.

  6. Don’t ANA FAs tell their names? On, say, Qatar Airways, it is guaranteed that an FA will tell you her name as she introduces you to your seat.

  7. Lucky, it’s Kisarazu Air Field (JGSDF – Camp Kisarazu). The other one is Umihotaru parking area on the Tokyo Bay Aqua Line expressway. Cheers.

  8. So they still stock the Hibiki 17 and the 21 depending on route. Now we know where the lion’s share of the supply is going.

    Also a fast way to maximise your ticket’s worth!

  9. Wow! Food better than Air France! I’ve flown the old F twice and wish I had a better opportunity to try the new one.

  10. Whenever I read these first class reviews (here or other blogs), I’d love to know what percent of readers actually find and book more than one award seat on their preferred dates, assuming their vacation travel dates aren’t 100% flexible so they take vacation precisely when award inventory opens up and they aren’t flying alone. I’d be surprised if a survey revealed anything higher than single digit percentages. To me (sadly) these reviews are just a quick scroll through pretty pictures.

    Come on Mega Millions jackpot, so I can just pay cash for this stuff!

  11. The second unidentified picture is a bridge-tunnel combo, the Tokyo Bay Aqua Line, and I think the third picture is a ventilation tower for the tunnel.

  12. Jay – 11 months out on some crap day of the week. That’s how I had to roll. (Flying in March, booked in April 2019.)

  13. The likely reason for the half bottles of Krug is that they’re significantly less than half the cost of a full bottle. You can often find them for only 50-60 USD versus 150-160 USD for the full bottle.

  14. Doesn’t seem like Lucky is a big whisky drinker, so I guess he’ll never enjoy the real star of the flight, the Hibiki 21. I’ll save the champagne drinking for Salon on JAL F.

  15. for all you Whiskey drinkers, according to ANA beverage list, Hibiki 21 is only available on TYO to JFK, FRA, LHR routes. other routes have Hibiki 17 just in case you’re booking ANA F and expecting Hibiki 21.

  16. Flew the new first suite from JFK-HND and NRT-JFK in November. The finest meal I have had on a flight as well amazing flight attendants and very comfortable seats/beds. Glad that you have had a similar experience.

  17. @Sharp Eye You’re misinterpretation what people are asking, and sort of ironic given the name you picked. They’re wondering why Lucky didn’t try the Hibiki 21 which was available on his flight.

  18. Jorts are jean shorts, I don’t think your PJ top was like jean shorts just because it had 3/4 length sleeves 🙂

  19. I know you have to book a roundtrip with ANA using Virgin miles, but do both flights have to be in the same class ? I can only find First one way, and business on the return. Will they let me do it and if they do, how many miles would I be charged ? thanks

  20. Drinking champagne when there is Noguchi Naohiko onboard – pfft

    (Only joking, drink what makes you happy)

  21. Soft product doesn’t seem like it changed from the old products. The essential question is whether the hard product in F substantially better than J to justify the increase in miles?

  22. @Zymm I saw that too, maybe he meant capri’s?

    This all looks lovely and I am dying to try it. My issue is that I’d need to be able to book it with only a month or two notice and it seems like that is impossible with only miles. And the cash price is astronomical, how are the chances at buying business and upgrading with miles?

  23. @jay

    From ORD, ANA F isn’t that hard to book. I’m flying J in 3 weeks (Friday 4 pm departure) and F is still available .

  24. ANA is fantastic. Flew with them in J. Tokyo Haneda is amazing. The wifi at the airport is lightning fast. Hope I can find an opportunity to fly ANA again. The FAs are just genuinely nice. The biggest thing is the wonderful people of Japan. Politeness was born there.

    Lucky great review and yes I did say video trip reports are needed but this was good. You did go for the Japanese meal. I love the amount of dishes and options presented.

  25. Wonderful review! The new ANA F products, features, food and drinks look amazing.
    What was the seat length, longer than 71″ I hope?

    Questions is, what stops the US carriers offering such exquisiteness and royalty to F and J class fliers in terms of comfort, food, drinks, features, amenities etc. (like the so many Asian airlines do)?

  26. I flew F on ANA’s A380 HNL-NRT in October and it was almost identical to this. Totally blows the competition out of the water and was superb from start to finish. Kudos to NH!

  27. @lucky The HDMI port in your photo looks like a tag has been added saying “INOP”. Am I right in guessing that means the HDMI port has been rendered inoperable? If so that’s a shame. I can only imagine hooking up my laptop to watch a couple of my own movies or better yet a nintendo switch to get 12 hours of quality time a good game!

  28. Of course, having only two passengers in first class should guarantee a good service…if not, then something is wrong. You should have had the rest of the champagne for breakfast….I would have.

  29. Hidden on the menu with little fanfare is Hibiki 21 year old whiskey. It sells for around $1,000 a bottle and is excellent. I have a couple every time I fly ANA first.

    New seats look amazing though I also enjoyed previous version. Food has always been a strongpoint for them. ANA first easily bests JAL.

  30. Oops. Sorry. I missed the Hibiki comments prior to mine. Last I flew from ORD they had both 21 and 17. Both are very good and hard to find. Amazing that they serve either let alone both!

  31. For my flight IAH-NRT F in February I’d do the same meal plan. Caviar to start and then the Japanese service.

    I wouldn’t care to watch 90-day Fiance on any size screen although my wife loves the show. FWIW she was a 90-dayer 28 years ago.

  32. For those of us who don’t have the miles to spend, the cash fare from JFK or LAX is over $20k RT.
    Thinking about trying this at home. Order in an oz. of caviar, some great champagne, Hibiki 21, sushi from the top SD sushi bar, and an in-home Japanese masseuse. I won’t have a happy landing like Ben, but I will have a happy ending.

  33. I flew ANA J seat HND to Okinawa on a 773, man that was a beat up interior. Nothing like this one! Yay for Krug…who needs the stinking whisky?!

  34. Does the larger lavatory still have the drop down “shelf” just above the floor to stand on so you can avoid standing on the lavatory floor while changing into/out of the pj’s?

  35. @lucky I would rather your view than using google so can you please post an article about the correct way to consume caviar? I.e typical accoutrements, method, best brands etc. Thanks.

  36. Flying ANA F from ORD in November. Any chance the new product will replace “The Square” by then??

  37. Lucky, i’d love to hear your thoughts on the value of new ANA F over J. e.g. “i’d pay x miles more to fly F”. The service in F is so good, but i’m not sure what premium it’s worth.

    Was there no mattress pad at all for the bed? my old F flight in november had some kind of pad.

  38. Question for the group. How would one book ticket thru Virgin Atlantic Flying Club or the 120k mile r/t award? Call them direct?

  39. Looking forward to the 2020 edition of your top business class and first class products!

    Guess you gotta check out Starlux first before you rank, though I’m guessing Starlux (given its A321neo seating configuration) won’t make the list.

  40. Is this your first time having the Japanese menu on either ANA or JAL? Looking at your past reviews it seems that you’ve always ended up choosing the international option, which is surprising since the Japanese option is usually much more interesting (especially with ex. TYO flights). You must be a recent convert to Japanese cuisine 😉

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