It’s No Gamble With This Service In She Skies
Switzerland, Switzerland wine, wine, wine lover, travel, wineries, wine tasting wine tours
Domaine du Daley winery Switzerland
The Swiss sure know how to travel in style.
Their trains are awesome and so, too, are their planes.
I’ve taken Swiss Air to Switzerland before and recently was aboard its sister airline, Edelweiss Air, for its non-stop service between Las Vegas and Zurich. Edelweiss flies twice a week, Mondays and Fridays.
Next June, a third weekly nonstop will be added. The flights from Vegas will then be on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
The plane is the 285-seat Airbus A330 and the cabins are comfortable, the entertainment options so plentiful you’ll need to take a few flights to get through them all, and the service is superb.
It’s that last quality that transforms this flight from transportation to experience.
I was in Business Class from Vegas to Zurich and Economy Plus from Zurich to Vegas.
In each class, it was like being seated in a 5-star restaurant.
And while it may sound unusual, I was actually more impressed with the service in Economy Plus than I was in Business Class.
That’s because in Business, I expected it and even looked forward to it. For more than a week, I was rubbing my palms together in anticipitation of being wined, dined and pampered Swiss style while jetting over the Atlantic to a great destination.
Edelweiss Air’s Business Class certainly met all of these lofty expectations.
But in Economy Plus? Every time I looked up, the flight attendants were coming down the isle with the drink cart. They came around more often than the cocktail girls in Vegas casinos. They were as prevalent as edelweiss in the Alps.
They certainly don’t disappear after the meal service and never hesitated to keep me well supplied with Swiss wine. “Of course,” the bespeckled and friendly (and, dare I say, quite attractive in that sophisticated way of the Swiss women) flight attendant would say when I asked for another small bottle.
Edelweiss serves wine from the middle of the Lavaux region. All Swiss wines are excellent. They are light, flavorful and smooth, and since there’s so little of it for export it is nearly impossible to get outside of Switzerland.
You had better take advantage of it while you can get it. At least that’s my philosophy and I got the feeling that most of the exporting is done on these flights by the Edelweiss’ flight attendants.
The food is great, too, even in economy. I had a beef and rice dish served with enough rolls you would think there’s a bakery on board. There’s also breakfast service an hour and a half before landing with fruits and eggs. You won’t get off the plane hungry, and that’s a good thing whether your are arriving in Vegas or Zurich.
In Business Class, it’s a feast, as if you are some sort of important diplomat. They start you out with a piece of twisty bread with a hint of cheese baked into it (and a drink of your choice) and follow that up with salad; I opted for the grilled lobster and it was excellent. There are four main dish options and I went for the crab stuffed with prawns wrapped in bacon. I chose wisely.
This is followed by a cheese plate and dessert.
The entertainment options include movies, TV shows, a couple of video games and something you should probably watch when headed to a country as beautiful as Switzerland, videos of Switzerland’s scenery, mountains and activities.
I spent some time playing the golf game and enjoyed it until I dropped half a dozen consecutive balls in a water hazard. While this may bear some resemblance to my actual golf game, it did rouse me up a bit just as I was preparing to press the button to put my Business Class seat into its lay-flat mode so I could settle in for some sleep.
Therefore, I recommend you save the golf game until after you have slept.
I was soothed by the fact that I could plug my iPhone into a USB port, giving it not only a full charge upon landing but also enabling me to listen to my music. I did this both ways and on the return trip I was startled to awaken and learn we were just an hour and a half from arriving in Vegas.
At the time of my flight, there was no on-board Internet service.
Still, with all the service and entertainment options, the 11-hour trip goes by surprisingly quick. Not once did I reach into my backpack to pull out a book or even flip through my most recent Sports Illustrated, which is saying something, believe me.
The Airbus is not the only thing that flies on this flight; so, too, does the time.
Because I know you want to know about beverages, all the drinks in Economy Plus are included in the price of a ticket but not in coach. If you are in coach, a bottle of Swiss wine that will fill two glasses is $7, which is a reasonable price considering the quality of the wine (beer and cocktails are also available and in all classes, of course).
Edelweiss Air is part of the member of Lufthansa Group and you can check schedules and fares at: www.edelweissair.ch/en