Asiana A380 First & Business Class Revealed

Asiana will soon begin commercial service with their A380s, which they’ll be taking delivery of shortly. While they’ll first be flying them regionally as “training” flights, they will launch longhaul A380 service to Los Angeles as of August 15, 2014.

While we’ve already had seatmap pictures and an idea of what the cabins will look like, Asiana has now set up a website dedicated to the Asiana A380. Or as they call it — since they seem to feel the need to come up with a ridiculous special name for everything — ASIANA380 Special Edition.


Asiana A380 First Suite

Asiana will be putting their signature First Suite on the A380, which is the product they also have on some of their 777-200 aircraft. There will be a total of 12 suites. It looks like a solid product, whether you want to play chess with a colleague, have your picture taken with an omelet, or do a horrible photoshop job of a flight attendant presenting you pajamas. 😉

Asiana A380 First Suite

Asiana A380 First Suite

Asiana A380 First Suite

Asiana A380 First Suite

Asiana A380 First Suite

Asiana A380 Business Smartium

Asiana’s business class will be called Business Smartium, which is only slightly less ridiculous than the previous name, Quadra Smartium. This is a fully flat business class product, somewhat similar to Alitalia’s Magnifica Class, which I flew earlier this year.

Asiana A380 Business Smartium

Asiana A380 Business Smartium

Asiana A380 Business Smartium

Asiana A380 Business Smartium

Asiana A380 Business Smartium

Asiana A380 public areas

As I explained in a previous post, with 495 seats, Asiana has one of the denser A380 configurations. Their Korean counterpart, Korean Air, has 88 fewer seats, but has both an onboard bar and lounge, as well as a duty free gallery.

Asiana’s features seem to be limited to a small lounge at the top of the upper deck, which is otherwise wasted space (unless you’re Etihad, in which case you put a bedroom up there).

Asiana A380 upper deck lounge

Meanwhile one of the first class bathrooms will be fairly large, though won’t feature a shower or anything special like Emirates.

Asiana A380 first class lavatory

Bottom line

Asiana’s first and business class on the A380 will be nice, though hardly cutting edge. But what really sets Asiana apart is their food and service, which in my opinion is among the best in the sky. I look forward to sampling the A380 the first week that it operates to Los Angeles!

Steak in Asiana first class

Filed Under: Asiana
  1. Hey Lucky, my wife and I are booked in F in November ICN-JFK. Think there’s any chance they’ll be using an A380 on that route by then?

  2. I’ve seen a lot of people on planes.

    And I’ve seen a lot of omelets on planes.

    But I have NEVER seen someone so excited and supermodelly at the sight of one.

  3. I’m soooo excited as well! So first class is on the upper deck then?
    @Matt, I have a feeling Asiana won’t start ICN-JFK A380 route until mid-2015 given their 3rd and 4th A380 deliveries aren’t due until that time.

  4. Lucky, if a next-gen cabin revamp/update were to be done in the future, do you think Asiana will come up with a name worse than “business smartium”?

  5. Lucky – did they change look of the suites? It looks different than the suites on the 777 I flew. The new look looks more sleek.

  6. @ mangoceviche — I think they made some cosmetic updates, but I think the “bones” of the seat themselves remain the same.

  7. Now if they would just tweak their web site to be user friendly they would be up with the other airlines.

  8. So what do you consider “cutting edge”?

    This looks to be nicer than LH F for example. Those 32″ monitors are massive (maybe even too big). I might not even need to wear my glasses. I’d venture to guess that the vast majority of flyers would be very happy/excited to fly the F class product. Maybe you fly F too much if you are not wowed. The C class looks to be on par with most newer products and quite nice. Certainly nicer than LH’s latest C class product. Those slimline Y seats look like torture though.

  9. Where do you think the huge first class lavatory will be? On the lower deck also? or on the upper deck (similar to where the other large bathrooms of other A380s are located.)

  10. @ Joey — I believe it will be on the lower deck on the right in front of the first class cabin. But it looks like there might be a bigger business class lavatory as well.

  11. I just got back from flying asiana first class on the suites. My brief experience.
    The first class lounge is pathetic, they basically offered disgusting and few food options. Two positive qualities- they walk you to the plane and have a really nice shower facility. But food wise, the breakfast was measly, salty dim sum and just lacking overall.

    In terms of the suites, yes, it was my first experience in first class (ICN-JFK route) and I had rather high expectations. In terms of comfort, Cathay business class (ewr-hkg route) was probably just as comfortable. Service was definitely good, food was tasty but nothing worth of a $15,000 ticket.

    Pajamas were comfortable for sure and the bed was made up for me after my lavish what felt like 10 course dinner. However, the temperature was too high, I had to ask them to lower it and they still kept it around 73-75F which is not what I want to sleep in especially in pajamas and a first class blanket.

    I honestly think the united airlines business class pillows are more comfortable for sleeping and certainly larger than what I was offered on Asiana.

    Snack and breakfast options were two thumbs down. I have been served better food on united business class.

    Service- 8 out of 10
    Food- 7 out of 10 (steak was tasty and soft)
    Sleeping arrangements- 4 out of 10
    Space- 10 out of 10 (you have a gosh darn suite)
    Privacy- 6 out of 10 (even the short flight attendants can see into the suite just from walking by)

  12. I forgot another important aspect of a thirteen hour flight. The IFE, tv, video screen. While it is definitely large (biggest in sky?), it had maybe 10-15 movies total. Again, these are first world problems but for a long flight, I want 100 options.!!!!

  13. Bigger or smaller restroom then TG A380. While doing my business felt like I was in another zone. It could fit at least 3 standard bathrooms. If not more.

  14. That’s a good question from Lark. For $5K more you can try Etihad’s Residence product!

  15. I hope they train their pilots how to do manual landings on the A380! You never know when the Instrument Landing System (ILS) and Glide Slope Approach are not working.

  16. This is a trivial concern of course, but if Asian could have made one change it should have been to the fabric they use on the seats in first. It was taken from a motel corridor carpet circa 1983.

  17. @ john — In theory more capacity can mean more award space, though there are a bunch of other factors as well, so I wouldn’t count on it.

  18. Is this how the regional from ICN to HKG on the A380 will look or are those configured differently?

  19. Neither I nor lucky nor 90-98% of people reading this blog will likely ever spend 15k on a ticket (not individually at least).
    Bathroom size- not that good too. The agents definitely cleaned it each time someone used it which was nice, but it wasn’t to spacious and the fabric for the seats does feel like it came from a factory from 1982..

  20. @ John – there was a TON of F space on OZ201 (LAX-ICN) when they first announced A380 on this route. However, it has dried up significantly – very slim pickings for the rest of 2014 (didn’t check further than that).

    @ Lucky – while F may not be super-innovative, don’t you find they struck a good balance in use of space? No needless duty-free areas or uninhabited lounges. A shower would’ve been nice but having a decent-sized bathroom is very much appreciated. Look forward to your review!

  21. P.S. Airlines must REALLY, REALLY not want anything “intimate” going on since they steadfastly refuse to follow SQ’s example and allow an unobstructed double-bed.

  22. @Ivan Y: Any intimacy problems you might have in The Residence cannot possibly be blamed on Etihad.

  23. @ Ivan Y — Totally agree, I think ultimately they did a great job maximizing capacity while also having a nice product.

  24. @ Steven L — good point about Residencies but I was talking about “regular” first-class seats; for example Etihad only allows partition to slide about 1/3 way so you can talk to a person but it doesn’t completely go down because they elected to make people sleep sideways.

  25. Just flew OZ202 ICN/LAX in (old) F. Not as impressed as I had hoped. Bed linens and pjs were decent but the seat in the bed position was more like an odd zigzag shape. The footrest part of the seat never made it to flat so reaching the fixed ottoman was not really doable. Turn down service included laying out the bed linens but oddly not reclining the seat into flat position. same with morning service: they removed the linens but left the seat in the flat position.

    Food was mediocre at best, including a gloppy shrimp and veggies in brown sauce that would be more at home in UA J. And the service was WEIRD. My FA needed to “excuse me, sir” or “I’m sorry, sir” for EVERY SINGLE THING including topping up my champagne glass or refilling the water glass or even removing every dirty dish even when it was obvious that the food was gone. And she seemed to require a response from me affirming that, yes, she could remove each offending plate or refill each empty glass. Is this a Korean thing?

    Air China F on the way over was MUCH better in all areas. Hard product, food, and service was great.

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