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Old Oct 11, 19, 9:51 pm
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: SNA
Posts: 183
LAX to Morocco Via Zurich

Part I of VI: Swiss International LAX to ZHR
Part II: Zurich (Post Production)
Part III: Edelweiss ZHR to RAK \
Part IV: Marrakesh, Sahara, Essaouira
Part V: British Airways RAK to LGW
Part VI: Virgin Atlantic LHW to LAX via SFO


October 9, 2019

Swiss Air Business Class

Seat: 9A

So this will be my first trip review on flyertalk and like many great reviews this starts off at LAX. My favorite airport is John Wayne as it is compact and efficient but alas, no trans-Atlantic service and I always wanted to visit the Star Alliance Lounge at LAX.

I arrived at 1400 PST for my 1915 PST flight, plenty early to take full advantage of the many lounges and to get some photos. Being at the airport that early meant I avoided many of the crazy lines LAX is known for. Upon arriving at the Business Class queue, I was promptly assisted by a gate agent manning the first-class desk as no one else was there. She was polite and professional, advising me of the Star Alliance lounge and asked if I wanted my bags checked directly to Marrakech. As I had an overnight layover in Zurich, I declined. TSA Pre-Check was operational and there was only five people in line. (Note, Pre-Check is available at TBIT at the LEFT side of the terminal.)

TBIT before it gets crowded

What difference a few hours makes.

TSA Pre-Check is on your left hand side.

Onward ho to the lounge! Going through the beautiful TBIT I arrived at the Star Alliance Lounge. In addition to the better quality of food, the LAX Star Alliance lounge is known for its terrace where you can people watch. Food-wise, they had the noodle bar, soups, three hot options, some crackers with hummus, a cheese station, desserts, and a large selection of drinks. Now, I will utter Flyertalk heresy and state that I found the fried rice and soggy buffalo wings at the KAL Lounge more filling than options available at Star Alliance though the latter did have much better quality. As to the noodle bar, Little Saigon has pho that is light years ahead of what is offered at the Star Alliance Lounge so if you have more than a few hours at LAX travel down to experience some real pho.

Something from the noodle bar.

Some sort of curry, brown rice, olive Mariana pasta, and some green peas.

Some of the available desserts.

With more that three house to spare, I decided to do a LAX walkabout. First, I went to the aforementioned Priority Pass lounge around 1530 PST. Lounge crowding was not that big of an issue around that time and I got my carb fix in for the day with the fired rice and had some protein with the buffalo chicken. While I was enjoying the food, I took a short time-lapse of the TBIT. After wolfing down the foodstuffs at the KAL lounge, I decided to make the long walk to Terminal 7 to utilize the United Lounge. Unfortunately, the Alaska lounge was closed.

After visiting the two lounges I managed to get some good shots of planes:

My ride to Zurich

After walking to the TBIT lounge in Terminal 7, I headed back to the TBIT Star Alliance Lounge for a shower. The facilities there are well maintained but the hot water consistency is variable in the showers. Afterwards, I had an upper and a downer espresso martini before heading down to board my flight. Unfortunately, the gate lice situation is bad on with Swiss Air with large lines blocking the entire left walkway.

As previously mentioned, I am flying business class from LAX to Zurich, however I decided to splurge on a throne seat, mine was 9A. With this being my first international long haul, I think the seat was excellent for those wanting privacy. Paralleling what others have written, the seat has a large amount of storage space and is very comfortable except for a somewhat narrow cubbyhole for your feet.

Moving onto in-flight service, I found the food excellent, but the service was a little slow…for an American. Pre-departure beverages consisted of orange juice, water, or champagne. The flight attendant crew was extremely professional. Approximately, 30 minutes after takeoff, we were served a nice collection of warm nuts. Looking into West Coast to Zurich services by Swiss International, the slower service seemed to be consistent, so I brought along additional snacks from Petrossian Caviar at LAX. Appetizer was smoked salmon with a collection of Swiss cheese. I choose the beef as my main course and it was surprisingly tender and flavorful. The only hiccup in the flight was when my in-seat power shorted out and disabled my IFE sound system. I guess it was my fault trying to plug in a gaming laptop into my seat. That being said, the flight attendants did honor my request for a seat change to an empty business class seat in the same row.

Coming Up Zurich!
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