Air New Zealand’s Skycouch Economy seat has won the Aviation category in Conde Nast Traveller’s 2011 Innovation and Design Awards.
The Kiwi designed Economy Skycouch was selected ahead of new First Class A380 cabin designs entered by both Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines.
Conde Nast Travellers' Innovation and Design Awards celebrate excellence in travel across ten categories including Aviation, Gourmet, Culture and Retail. An expert panel developed a short list from all entries, and the winners were chosen by a readers' vote. The magazine commented that Air New Zealand is "... smoothing the way with its inventive approach to economy seating."
Air New Zealand Deputy CEO Norm Thompson says, "This latest award reinforces how revolutionary the Skycouch concept is in the commercial aviation sector. While airlines have made incremental improvements to their premium cabins over the years, no other airline has put this level of research and development effort into improving the Economy flying experience.
"Conde Nast Traveller's readers are very experienced travellers who understand how the flexible Skycouch space makes such a difference to long haul Economy travel, where most travellers would give anything to be able to lie down for a rest. The ability to be able to rest on a sofa-like platform - without the cost of upgrading to a premium cabin - is a huge relief for those travelling on 12 hour legs to Los Angeles and 24 hour journeys to London."
Air New Zealand offers the Skycouch option on the first 10 outboard rows of the Economy cabin in its new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft operating NZ1 and NZ2 between Auckland and London, via Los Angeles.
Issued by Air New Zealand Public Affairs ph +64 21 747 320
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Air New Zealand is proud to be a member of Star Alliance. The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Its acceptance by the market has been recognised by numerous awards, including the Air Transport World Market Leadership Award, Best Airline Alliance by both Business Traveller Magazine and Skytrax. The member airlines are: Adria Airways, Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Blue1, bmi, Brussels Airlines, Continental Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Spanair, SWISS, TAM Airlines, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, THAI, United and US Airways. Air India, Avianca-TACA, Copa Airlines and Ethiopian Airlines have been announced as future members. Overall, the Star Alliance network offers 21,000 daily flights to 1,160 airports in 181 countries.