I had an 8.5 hour layover in Seoul, which was quite painful but a little bit less with the lounge access. Asiana's business class lounge was pretty big and quite airy. I went straight to the shower area and found that I needed to first get the key from the receptionist, and I had to leave my boarding pass. There was a little bit of a wait but wasn't too bad. One thing that I found interesting was that all the workers on the floor wore jackets and skirts and looked like flight attendants, even those who were cleaning the tables and refilling the food!
|Asiana's Business Class Lounge - Seoul|
The bathroom was nice and clean and had everything I needed. It was nice to be able to freshen up and get ready for the next leg of the trip.
After showering, I went and grabbed one of the booths with a chair massage. The chair was actually pretty good, and I liked the privacy from the booth and called Dan from there since it allowed us to talk more freely.
|Massage chair at the Asiana's lounge|
I saw a lot of people eating Korean cup noodles, and I found myself wanting one too even though I was still really full. :) But I caved in and got one...hehe.
|Korean cup noodles|
I walked around the airport in search of dessert. I actually had something in mind already which was the Haagen Dazs coffee ice cream with chocolate almond crunch. I was so proud when I actually found it. :) Yay!
After what seemed like a really long time, it was FINALLY time to board. :) I went to the gate and people were already lining up. It was interesting to see but the ground staff bowed before they started the boarding process.
|Asiana's business class seat|
I chose to sit on the 2nd floor, which I liked because it's very quiet. There's also a space next to the seat for small items - which I liked.
The seats looked a bit worn, but there was plenty of space and legroom. The seat did not lay completely flat, but almost. It was definitely still enough for a good night's sleep.
All the flight attendants were very courteous, and they actually changed outfits a couple of times which was interesting. They also bowed at the beginning of the flight, and then they changed into a more casual look and wore aprons during the food service.
|Fried eggplant stuffed puree with tomato confit|
The king prawn salad was also very small in size, but was definitely enough since I knew I'd be having a lot more food later on.
|Grilled king prawn with couscous and baby leaves, asparagus|
Mushroom soup is my favorite kind of soup and I really liked the soup that Asiana served. It was rich and creamy, just how I liked it!
|Cream of mushroom soup|
By this point I was already quite full, but I regained my appetite after seeing the main entree, the Korean Ssambap. WOW! This was definitely the most extensive airline meal I'd ever had, and probably one of the best. I felt like I was eating at a real Korean restaurant. There was kim chee, burdock root, ssamjang sauce, soup, fresh veggies, and then the meat with rice.
|Cheese course: munster, taleggio, comte|
For dessert I had a choice of fruit or apple tart, and being unhealthy, I chose the apple tart...hehe.
I watched a couple movies and then went to sleep. I woke up in time for breakfast, and I was intrigued to try the banana loaf. I had never seen one served on an airplane; usually the breakfast choice is either croissant or muffin. The banana loaf was quite tasty, it was a bit darker and denser than usual but still very good, and served warm.
For the main breakfast entree, I tried the porridge which was a bit bland, but was good when eaten with the yellow pickle.
I landed in LA, and the immigration line was already quite long. I had to recheck my luggage to San Francisco, and waited for a couple hours at the airport. Interestingly enough, my "first class" domestic ticket did not allow me access to the United lounge. Strange, huh? So I just waited at the gate and grabbed some gossip magazines and snacks. It was my first time riding in domestic first class. But really, for such a short flight there was really nothing to write about. I was so tired I think I slept the whole way and didn't really think the flight was that memorable. :)
Finally, after two weeks in Asia and multiple layovers, I was finally back in the Bay Area.
It had been a really relaxing trip, and I was glad to able to go home to visit my family and friends. It was tough being apart from Dan for two weeks, but we somehow managed...lots of skype. :) Next time I'm bringing him with me though...hehe.
Going home to Indonesia is always an interesting experience, because in a way I feel like I have two homes. In a way, the Bay Area feels more like a home to me, but since my family is in Indonesia, that is also home for me. I guess I'll always have two homes!