Introduction: To Grub Steaks and Getting CX’d – A February of Flying (Twice)

Introduction
SkyTeam Lounge Hong Kong
Hong Kong Airport Midfield Terminal
Korean Air 604 777-200 Business Class Hong Kong to Seoul Incheon
Korean Air 71 777-200 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Vancouver: Part 1
Korean Air 71 777-200 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Vancouver: Part 2
Our Whistler Apartment: Pinnacle Ridge
Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort: My Thoughts
Westin Wall Center Vancouver Airport
Plaza Premium Lounge Vancouver
Korean Air 72 777-200 Business Class Vancouver to Seoul Incheon
Korean Air 607 747-400 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific 723 A330-300 Economy Class Hong Kong to Kuala Lumpur
The Boulevard by St. Giles Kuala Lumpur
Cathay Pacific 720 A330-300 Economy Class Kuala Lumpur to Hong Kong


I’ve been a longtime keen skier, hiking off to Niseko, Japan for a four-day ski every Chinese New Year since 2008. Unfortunately, that ended with the 2011 Japan earthquake/disaster, with my mother shuddering at any remnant of radiation that existed in any of these places.

To reminisce that, a couple of friends invited us to Whistler, Canada for some more skiing (which is kind of a stupid move, given studies show that there’s more radiation in Canada than Japan nowadays). Being a longhaul flight fan, I obliged.

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Whistler, Canada

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Whistler, Canada

Soon, I pulled up flights on Korean Air business class for HK$28,000 and flights in Cathay Pacific premium economy for HK$24,000 (everything else was really expensive). While Cathay Pacific business class was only HK$30,000 if we were in Canada for a week or longer, unfortunately we were only here for six days, and our time was really restricted. For both my parents and I, Korean Air was kind of a no-brainer, and would allow me to try their longhaul product.

09/2 Korean Air 604 HKG – ICN 12:35 – 17:00
09/2 Korean Air 71 ICN – YVR 18:40 – 11:20
14/2 Korean Air 72 YVR – ICN 13:05 – 17:45
15/2 Korean Air 607 ICN – HKG 20:00 – 22:55

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200ER Business Class

An event popped up a few days later in Kuala Lumpur, so my school got the six of us roundtrip tickets in Cathay Pacific economy class. While the HK$28,000 deal was fair, there was an HK$2,000 fare on the following flights to Kuala Lumpur, which suited our needs perfectly.

25/2 Cathay Pacific 723 HKG – KUL 08:50 – 12:45
28/2 Cathay Pacific 720 KUL – HKG 09:00 – 13:05

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Cathay Pacific Airbus A330-300 Economy Class

As the two trips were less than ten days apart, I’ll stick them together to the same report.

The whole itinerary was as follows:

09/2 Korean Air 604 HKG – ICN 12:35 – 17:00 777-200ER
09/2 Korean Air 71 ICN – YVR 18:40 – 11:20 777-200ER
14/2 Korean Air 72 YVR – ICN 13:05 – 17:45 777-200ER
15/2 Korean Air 607 ICN – HKG 20:00 – 22:55 747-8I
25/2 Cathay Pacific 723 HKG – KUL 08:50 – 12:45 A330-300
28/2 Cathay Pacific 720 KUL – HKG 09:00 – 13:05 A340-300

map

While I was really hoping to try Korean Air’s 747-8 product, unfortunately maintenance problems brought me back to one of the 747-400s, which I’d flown before. This means that no new products were tried on this trip, so I’ll focus more on the soft product for all flights.

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Korean Air Boeing 747-400 Business Class

Furthermore, while I was also looking forward to flying on “last hurrah”-ing on one of Cathay Pacific’s A340s, that flight was switched to an A330.

While we had a chalet (Pinnacle Ridge) in Whistler, I’ll review that, so you guys can see if the HK$6,000 per night deal for 11 people was as good as it sounds.

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Pinnacle Ridge, Whistler

As our flight was departing at 1 PM on Valentine’s Day, we made arrangements to stay at the Westin Wall Center Vancouver Airport the night before, mostly so we wouldn’t have to leave the chalet at 6 AM in the morning. The rate was pretty nice at HK$1,250 per night for a club room, though unfortunately my father blanked out for a bit and went through Booking.com for HK$500 extra, with no free WiFi included (you get free Internet when booking directly through spg.com). :/

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Westin Wall Center Vancouver Airport Executive Club Two Queen Bed Room

Then at the Kuala Lumpur event, Alice Smith booked us at The Boulevard by St. Giles. Rates were cheap at HK$1,400 per night.

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The Boulevard by St. Giles Kuala Lumpur Deluxe Twin

Overall, it was a whirlwind month, and I’m excited to report back on my travels!

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