A dozen of ANA‘s 777-300ER aircraft are slated for an interior update, launching new first class and business class products for the carrier. Dubbed “THE Suite” and “THE Room” respectively, the refreshed cabins are slated to serve the Haneda-Heathrow route on NH211/NH212 starting on 2 August 2019, with the service transitioning to daily later in the month as additional aircraft are converted. The dates are subject to change based on completion timing for the upgrades. The carrier collaborated with famed architect Kengo Kuma and leading British designers Acumen on the efforts.
The aircraft features a premium-heavy layout, with 8 first class seats, 64 business class, 24 premium economy and 116 in economy. It replaces a similar 212-seat arrangement, reducing the business class capacity by 4 while increasing economy class seats by the same number.
Our partnerships with Mr. Kuma and Acumen illustrate that ANA has sought out the input of the most influential voices in the design community for these innovative new cabin designs. In 2010, we were the first in Japan to introduce the full flat seat with all aisle access and in order for ANA to continue to lead and set the global standard for comfort and convenience, we knew that it would be necessary to integrate the latest insights from design professionals as we sought to redesign the flight experience and elevate every aspect of travel for our passengers.– Hideki Kunugi, Executive Vice President of ANA
THE Suite – First Class Seat
THE Suite, ANA’s new first class seat, brings comfort and privacy to passengers. the new seat features a door for privacy but also the option to lower a divider between the center pair seats for couples traveling together. On the technology front THE Suite features a 43(!!) inch 4K monitor, the largest for a personal entertainment screen in flight. Power outlets are also available making work at the seat.
Both First Class and Business Class feature new lights made by Panasonic, custom-designed specifically for ANA. Inspired by natural sunrise, the lights are designed to improve comfort and convenience during sleeping, reading and dining. Premium passengers also receive bespoke seat mattress and bedding in partnership with Nishikawa. The unique product is tailor-made to the seat cushion for the most comfortable seating and quality sleep experience for customers in the sky.
THE Room – Business Class Seat
THE Room, ANA’s new business class product, offers a significantly wider seat/bench for passengers, though that space does not completely translate over into the sleeping position.
The cabin layout is similar to the Qatar Airways QSuites with the forward/rear facing seats alternating. Unlike QSuites, however, the ANA version does not combine into a 4-pack for groups traveling together. The center pairs do have a divider that lowers, however.
The fully flat beds also feature a door for privacy. Similar to THE Suite first class seats THE Room also offers 4K monitors for passengers as well.
The seat is the Safran Fusio product, customized for ANA’s implementation.
The design process is just as much about what we decided to include as what we decided to omit. My work is about understanding how space is used and creating the most comfortable conditions in any environment. I enjoyed working with ANA and Acumen to combine the best of Eastern and Western design traditions and create a finished product that sets a global standard by embracing Japanese heritage and international outlook.– architect Kengo Kuma
Premium Economy & Economy Class
The Premium Economy cabin does not see much in the way of changes with the new layout. Economy class passengers see a slight downgrade, as the cabin shifts from a 2-4-3 seating arrangement to the narrower 3-4-3 approach far more common today.
The new economy class seats do feature the updated 6-way headrest, a small comfort win for passengers in the back of the plane.
Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity
All passengers will have access to the updated inflight entertainment system, powered by Panasonic Avionics. The kit includes integration with the companion app, allowing passengers to preselect their entertainment playlist on a personal device before boarding. Their PED syncs to the in-seat system, acting as a controller for the entertainment system on board. PEDs can also be used as a second screen for streaming IFE content during the flight.
Some of the new layout aircraft appear to be new(ish) deliveries from Boeing rather than true retrofits. The carrier has had a handful of 777-300ER frames in storage at Paine Field in Everett for months now. The first to enter service with this new interior is one of those aircraft.
And they all have a new radome on top as well as the new interiors. PaxEx.Aero confirmed that the Panasonic Avionics eXConnect Global Communications Suite solution is part of the passenger experience upgrade for this subfleet.
Our work focused on transforming the cabin experience by fusing the rich history and culture of Japan with modern design principles and technologies. Combining our expertise in aviation interior design with the renowned visionary approach of Kengo Kuma, together we have created a striking cabin that has elevated the ANA customer experience to its highest level across all classes.– Ian Dryburgh, Founder and CEO of Acumen