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A Stockholm weekend

A Stockholm weekend

Old Dec 9, 2023, 1:16 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Nov 2019
Location: Newcastle, UK
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A Stockholm weekend

This week takes me to Stockholm is search of more Tier Points and a bit of a weekend filler. Booking outbound on the slightly later 9:35 allowed me the luxury of languishing in bed until 6:00 and a cab at 07:30 allowed the further luxury of two mugs of coffee before setting out into the wild.

A chatty and personable driver that Id met before made for a short trip to the airport and at least its not raining.



Hand baggage only, so straight up to departures which has changed a little bit, the tensabarrier maze has been disassembled! Chatting to the security chap apparently this has improved wait times looks like Newcastle have figured out what we all knew long ago!



However, an unpleasant surprise awaited beyond, it seems security is closed due to issues at the scanners



With 90 minutes to departure Im not feeling any great desire to stand in an unmoving queue so back down to arrivals and this artery clogging creation to pass some time



BA check in is still well populated so Im not worried about being last man standing.



Time to enjoy the brew and then Ill have another wander up to departures

Last edited by JapesUK; Dec 9, 2023 at 2:03 am
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 1:59 am
  #2  
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Once more into the breach dear friends. Security was better, but not great and according to the guy on duty at the fastpath lane it was sheer weight of passengers that caused the delay, who knows.



The new scanner room has changed once more




And finally at the lounge a full hour after landside arrival. New signage saying refurb opening 2024


And a keyhole view of the work in progress



And now with around 10 minutes to gate its time to settle in with the traditional coffee and fizz

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Old Dec 9, 2023, 2:31 am
  #3  
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With the delays through security my natural timing was way off kilter today and I made it to gate at last call and am the last but one to board. Walk on gate 10 today for a change.





And as it turns out, I was last to board, one no show.

Chatting to the crew on boarding and it seems Ill be seeing them again on the Stockholm flight!

G-EUYW today is a new one for me



All buckled up, doors are closed, pilots announcement complete and we are 5 minutes to scheduled departure.

Next stop, London Heathrow
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 4:59 am
  #4  
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Despite being buttoned up early we the then sat on the stand for quite a while as we had been given a 9:45 slot. Bizarrely flighty got itself very confused and believed that we had taken off early.




Eventually pushed back at exactly 9:45 and a quick taxi saw us in the air by 9:55

Within seconds we were up into the low cloud which is no issue, Ive seen the view a fair few times now! Ive picked a window seat for the Stockholm leg so hoping for clear skies towards arrival, fingers crossed.

With seven rows in Club Europe this morning the crew are going to be busy during this short hop. They wasted no time and were in action almost as soon as the plane cleared the first ping.

I had forgotten to order any special meals until I realised my omission during online checkin late last night so for the two outbound legs today Ill be choosing from the standard menu.





Charcuterie plate was the pick of the day as I dont remember having tried it before, and accompanied by the usual morning trio of drinks. I thoroughly enjoyed the charcuterie and would order that again.





The crew were incredibly efficient and on the ball, the entire cabin was served in under twenty minutes, we hadnt even started descent. One of the best services Ive seen to date. Top ups offered and gratefully accepted and towards that latter part of the flight the Christmas chocolate mints made an appearance. In another post on the forum someone compared these to catnip, I have to agree




We made good time down to Heathrow and then were stacked in a holding pattern apparently due to a runway switchover. Pilot has announced another ten minutes in the pattern so landing is going to be a little late but not too much.

Finally on the ground at 11:10 and a short taxi to the arrivals gate where we then sat and waited as there was nobody at the gate ready for our arrival! No complaints from me, at least it is not a bus gate.

I decided to go land side and come back through security via the first wing rather than do the T5 transit route. I dont know if it is faster or slower, but it is more fun

Last edited by JapesUK; Dec 9, 2023 at 5:31 am
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 5:04 am
  #5  
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Easily into arrivals, into the lift, and up to departures which is pretty busy but not rammed.



A stroll down to the far end of the concourse leads me to the first checkin area which is pretty quiet.




Very quickly though boarding pass check and security although I did get stopped for setting of the detector as I had forgotten to remove my watch!

I saw the same guy that had got off the plane immediately before me sorting out his stuff after security so today it was a dead heat between air side and land side.

Into the first class lounge which is surprisingly busy. Finally found a seat out on the mezzanine and next order of the day is liquid refreshments.


Last edited by JapesUK; Dec 9, 2023 at 5:30 am
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 5:34 am
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No surprises on the choice of liquid



Turkey and ham pies today, pretty tasty, but, BA, would it kill you to do chicken gravy rather than beef?!



And another nod to the festive season on the free pour bar



With 45 minutes left to departure it is almost time for a gentle wander to duty free to see what the samples of the day are.
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 6:31 am
  #7  
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Saw this on the way out, and it put a grin on my face as the next time Im here Ill be heading to the Concorde room

Samples of the day were this Piaff champagne which was, in my tastes, wet! I could imagine this on a sunny day sat outside and chilling.



The only other sampling station was this little Baileys cart




Across the concourse and to gate A12 where boarding was already in progress.

And now sat in 1F and looking forward to 2 hours and a little bit over to Stockholm.
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 6:44 am
  #8  
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G-NEOY which is another new one for me.



Weve been told that some of the medical equipment was used on the last flight and so we are awaiting replacements and as I type this the replacements have just arrived. Were currently 15 minutes past the scheduled departure so hopefully up in the air soon.

Menus have been handed out and Im looking forward to trying the turkey.




Time to settle back and hopefully well be in the air soon. Doors are closed and pilot is hoping for push back in the next couple of mutes

Next stop, Stockholm
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 6:59 am
  #9  
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G-NEOY which is another new one for me.



Weve been told that some of the medical equipment was used on the last flight and so we are awaiting replacements and as I type this the replacements have just arrived. Were currently 15 minutes past the scheduled departure so hopefully up in the air soon.

Menus have been handed out and Im looking forward to trying the turkey.




Time to settle back and hopefully well be in the air soon. Doors are closed and pilot is hoping for push back in the next couple of mutes

Next stop, Stockholm
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 9:34 am
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So your estimate on NCL Aspire lounge time-to-completion was better than theirs

I wonder if it (and fast track) will be in operation by mid-January...
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 10:26 am
  #11  
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Lovely flight again, great crew, compliments will be going in to BA for them all.

One quick snap on the way up from Heathrow and we were almost immediately into the clouds



Another really good CE meal! The turkey was very good and the portion size generous, I would definitely choose this again but, alas, no more BA Club Europe flights this year.




Arriving about 10 minutes late into a very snowy Stockholm the first sight that greeted us was a four abreast convoy of snow clearers and I’m afraid I was so surprised that we were past them before I even reached for the camera.

Into a gate and quickly off the plane and into the airport.




Now, every day is a learning day and today I learned….

Arlanda Airport Signage for hotels is rubbish
Google maps is hopeless at the airport
And…. There are TWO Radisson Blu here!!

Of course I chose the wrong one Google maps led me a merry chase all the way outdoors to Sky City




And not only was this the wrong hotel, it was easily reachable indoors… all part of the adventure I guess

The young lady on reception had obviously seen it all before and had a box full of pieces of paper explaining how to get to the correct hotel. Off I trotted, indoors this time, to Terminal five, then bus stop 3 for the Free P3 shuttle that took me straight to the hotel door
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Last edited by JapesUK; Dec 9, 2023 at 2:04 pm
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 10:37 am
  #12  
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The Radisson is very nicely appointed and the young lady on reception was far and away the best that I have met in any Radisson to date. She proactively checked my outbound flight and offered a late checkout, explained the restaurant and again proactively offered the 10% discount. The when I said I was heading into the city tomorrow she offered suggestions on luggage handling and the shuttle and Express. A flawless checkin and yes, another positive feedback to give, this time to Radisson.




Not entirely sure what this chap is all about



The room was a one level upgrade and is more than adequate for a one night stay.






The view is not much, but very snowy




Bags unpacked and clothes hung up I realised a fatal flaw in this weekends plan, I forgot to pack my boots Having experienced the lethality of my casual shoes on snow when walking fruitlessly to the first Radisson this may put a serious crimp in any exploring tomorrow, we will see.

Down to the bar and the first order of business, a local beer




Now comfortably ensconced in the bar it is18:30 local and time to finish this fine brew before obtaining a refill and perusing the menu

Last edited by JapesUK; Dec 9, 2023 at 12:13 pm
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 12:22 pm
  #13  
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A quite varied menu and nowhere near as expensive as I expected. Before going onto the food, worth mentioning that tonights stay is 65 Including breakfast!! Obviously booked well in advance, during the sale, and at members rate, but even so, incredible value.






When in Sweden, eat meatballs. These Deer and Moose meatballs were very tasty and they were also the recommendation of the receptionist.




Followed by a very generously portion of Creme Brulee




Nearly 8:30 now and almost time for bed but before I retire there is a Groenstedts XO Swedish cognac on the menu that I have never heard of so I think that, and an Americano, will make a very suitable nightcap.
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 12:46 pm
  #14  
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Editing the previous post causes the page to crash.. think I broke it! Coffee and cognac delivered and time to ask for the bill



After getting the glass up to temperature it is fair to say I will not be looking to add this to my collection, it’s a bit brutal. Total bill including 3 beers came to 65, certainly paid more for less in most Radissons.

And with that it is time to retire for the night. Breakfast opens at 4am and closes at a very unsociable 10am on a Sunday.

Last edited by JapesUK; Dec 9, 2023 at 1:37 pm
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Old Dec 9, 2023, 3:11 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
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Originally Posted by JapesUK

Not entirely sure what this chap is all about
My Swedish is not good, but "Fighter Pilot for a Day" seems to be the gist of the poster on the desk - advert for sim trips or games, possibly?

Something to do tomorrow if your footwear is not up to spec
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