News: London Gets More Singapore Airlines A380 Service, A New Mandarin Oriental & More Service From Norwegian

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London seems to have been in the travel news quite a bit lately so I’ve picked out three items that looked interesting (and that may be of use) and pulled them together into a single blog post.

Norwegian Moves US Routes To London

Norwegian has been expanding significantly over the past two years and it recently announced new services between Europe and Los Angeles and New York as well as an increase in slots that it owns at London’s Gatwick airport.

Now, in the latest schedule update, the European low-cost carrier is cancelling two of its seasonal routes between Europe and Boston and making up for it by adding the freed up capacity to its London Gatwick base.

a group of sailboats in a body of water with a city in the background

The cancelled routes are:

  • Copenhagen – Boston (1x/week summer seasonal service)
  • Oslo – Boston (2x/week summer seasonal service)

From 12 June 2018 Norwegian will increase the number of weekly flights between London Gatwick and Boston from 4 to 7 and will operate the following schedule:

DY7147 LGW 16:50 – 19:05 BOS (Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri & Sun)
DY7147 LGW 16:15 – 18:30 BOS (Thu)
DY7147 LGW 16:05 – 18:20 BOS (Sat)

DY7148 BOS 20:35 – 07:55+1 day LGW (Mon)
DY7148 BOS 21:20 – 08:40+1 day LGW (Tue, Wed Thu, Sat & Sun)
DY7148 BOS 20:30 – 07:50+1 day LGW (Fri)

Copenhagen and Oslo’s losses are Gatwick’s gains and, considering the difference in the number of flyers out of London when compared to Oslo or Copenhagen, I’m not exactly surprised to see Norwegian make this move.

(HT: Airline Route)

Singapore Airlines Adds More A380 Service To London

Singapore Airlines recently unveiled new Business and First Class cabins for its Airbus A380 aircraft but, as things stand, the airline only has one aircraft with the new cabins installed.

The first route to get the new cabins is be the Singapore – Sydney route (the new A380 appeared on this route earlier this week) and, although it hasn’t been confirmed by the airline, it is generally expected that the second route to offer the new cabins will be Singapore – London.

While the new First Class cabins are getting a lot of people excited some seem to be forgetting that there’s a negative side to the cabin upgrades. The existing Singapore Airlines First Class cabin offers 12 Suites….

a room with a chair and desk

…while the new cabin layout leaves room for just 6 suites – that’s going to impact award availability quite significantly.

This is why the latest schedule update from Singapore Airlines is good news.

For July and August 2018 Singapore Airlines has scheduled a 3rd daily A380 to operate between Singapore and London (HT: Airline Route)

Here’s the new schedule for 1 July – 31 August 2018:

SQ306 SIN 01:10 – 07:45 LHR (Daily A380 Service) **New**
SQ308 SIN 09:00 – 15:40 LHR (Daily A380 Service)
SQ318 SIN 12:35 – 19:15 LHR (Daily 777 Service)
SQ322 SIN 23:30 – 05:55+1 day LHR (Daily A380 Service)

SQ305 LHR 09:25 – 05:30+1 day SIN (Daily A380 Service) **New**
SQ317 LHR 11:25 – 07:30+1 day SIN (Daily A380 Service)
SQ319 LHR 20:50 – 16:55+1 day SIN (Daily 777 Service)
SQ321 LHR 22:05 – 18:10+1 day SIN (Daily A380 Service)

Before the schedule change the number of First Class suites available on the route was set to drop from 24 to 18 when an A380 with the new cabins is brought into service. Now, thanks to the addition of the 3rd daily A380 flight, the number of First Class suites on the route will actually see a net increase for two of the busy summer months….so that should be a short-term reprieve for anyone looking to book awards.

A New Mandarin Oriental For London

London already has a Mandarin Oriental property in Knightsbridge (useful if you like buying over-priced bling in Harrods) but, from 2021, the city will boast a second property managed by the luxury chain.

The new property will be situated in Hannover Square….

a map of a city

…..and, will be marketed as “Hanover Bond” after the square it sits in and the high-end street nearby.

According to Mandarin Oriental:

Mandarin Oriental Mayfair, London will be an intimate, boutique property featuring 50 guestrooms and suites as well as 80 Residences at Mandarin Oriental. It will be developed by Clivedale London and designed by architects, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners to provide an exclusive oasis of contemporary luxury.

The property will feature a vibrant fine-dining restaurant, a lobby lounge, stylish bar and a private roof terrace with bar overlooking Mayfair.

The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, located in the building’s upper floors, will be some of the most exclusive private homes in the city. With the world of art, fashion, culture and business already on the doorstep, owners will enjoy direct access to the hotel experience, which will include an indoor pool, a comprehensive fitness centre and an intimate spa, providing Mandarin Oriental’s renowned wellness services. A full suite of five-star hotel services will be available to owners, including in-residence dining, housekeeping, valet parking and a dedicated 24-hour residential concierge.

The location of the new Mandarin Oriental is hard to beat if you’re in London to visit the major tourist attractions or to do some shopping. With Oxford Street, Bond Street and Regent Street just steps away from Hanover Square and with two underground stations in close proximity getting to points of interest should be easy.

Add to that the fact that, by the time the property opens, the closest underground station will offer access to Crossrail (and therefore Heathrow) and I’m not sure you’ll find a better located hotel in London.


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