On a recent trip to Thailand with Qatar Airways to create our Luxury Thailand guide, we had the opportunity to experience Qatar’s Business Class cabin from Edinburgh to Doha and then from Doha to Bangkok. The Edinburgh to Doha route uses an Airbus A350 so the seats are the Super Diamond seating formation (read review here) while the Doha to Bangkok flight was a larger A350-1000 that offered the famous Qsuite cabin which really is an incredible experience.
Al Mourjan Business Lounge – The Garden
As we started our journey in Edinburgh (read review here) we had a three-hour turnaround in Hamad International Airport where we were able to experience the new Louis Vuitton Lounge by Yannick Alléno (read review here) which is open to Louis Vuitton VIPs and Qatar Airways Gold and Platinum members through the Privilege Club. We also explored the new Al Mourjan Business Lounge – The Garden, which opened in May 2023 in The Garden airport extension.
Hamad International Airport
In the realm of travel excellence, Qatar Airways takes centre stage, with its singular hub, the Doha Hamad International Airport. This airport, a reflection of the airline’s commitment to luxury and comfort, offers an array of exceptional amenities, from luxury shopping experiences to a lavish airside hotel while a delightful display of modern artwork graces the airport, with two standout pieces: the renowned Lamp Bear, a majestic giant teddy bear valued at a staggering 7 million USD, and Kaws’ captivating creation, “Small Lie.”
Business Class passengers enjoy the privilege of accessing the renowned Al Mourjan Business Lounge and the new Al Mourjan Business Lounge in the Garden. These oases offer rejuvenating shower facilities, nap accommodations, and a gym.
Culinary delights abound in Al Mourjan, with a diverse selection of global cuisines on offer, spanning Middle Eastern, European, and Indian flavours. The primary dining areas present both buffet and à la carte dining options. Those seeking libations will find a plethora of bar choices, including one within the restaurant, where Champagne flows generously, featuring brands like Charles Heidsieck Champagne – Rosé and Philipponnat Champagne Royale Reserve Brut.
We enjoyed Qatar’s Meet and Greet service the entire time while in the airport, which is complimentary to Platinum and Gold Privilege Club members. Staff greet you off the flight and take you through bag check and into the terminal and then onto your next flight. Hamad International Airport is going through a significant building process at the moment (huge as it is already) many flights arrive and then need a bus to take them to the main terminal, the new building will mean that all arrival flights will arrive at an air bridge instead.
There was a separate Business and First class bus when we arrived at the airport which then took around 15 minutes to get to the departures hall. Upon arriving at the departures hall there was a separate Business and First class bag check and it took around five minutes to complete a bag check before we arrived into the main terminal.
After experiencing the Louis Vuitton Lounge the Meet and Greet staff collected us from the Al Mourjan Business Lounge – The Garden which is in Concourse C and then took us to Concorse A via the monorail (the monorail takes a few minutes and runs frequently). From the Teddy Lamp, it was a 10-minute walk to our gate.
Meet and Greet Staff were then able to fast-track our boarding process and took us down to the plane so we could board immediately.
As this was an A350-1000 plane there were separate entrances into the aircraft for Business customers and Economy customers, which means you enter straight into the Business Class section of the plane.
Cabin and Seat
Qsuite is unlike anything else in the sky right now and is simply incredible. Qsuite made its debut in the airline’s fleet in June 2017 during a flight from Doha to London. Since that initial introduction, the airline has progressively incorporated this cabin style into numerous long-haul routes and the Qsuite design is featured on four distinct aircraft types, specifically all Qatar Airways’ A350-1000s and Airbus A350-900s, as well as on selected Boeing 777-200LRs and 777-300ERs at the time of writing.
If Qsuite is available on a flight it will be indicated on the seat map on the app when you check-in. All seats, including Qsuite on aircraft offering them, are open for assignment, except for passengers who have purchased a “Lite” Business Class fare. In such cases, seat assignments are only available during the check-in process.
It is worth also noting that Qsuite cabins are split into two smaller cabins, this means that overall there is less footfall in the cabins which cuts down the noise and distractions further.
Image layout © of Aerolopa
The configuration follows a 1-2-1 layout with the middle section facing forward and backward. In the centre section, families or couples travelling together have the option to request a quartet of Qsuites (Quad formation), arranged as a group, meaning passengers seated in a Quad can lower the partitions, creating an open space while keeping the exterior doors to each Qsuite operational.
For couples travelling together choose centre seats, these either face forward or backward and passengers will either have the tables in the middle (Twin Seat formation) or to their side (Double Seat formation) presenting a closer seating arrangement. Solo travellers may prefer to opt for the Single Suites beside the windows.
The space itself is roomy and bigger than a standard business-class seat space and includes a fully reclining seat that changes into a bed. Standard business class seats offer adequate storage space for items like water bottles, books, and laptops. However, in the Qsuite, storage space is further enhanced with a side compartment that can be lifted to accommodate additional belongings, like clothes and shoes, and also raises up to form an armrest while you’re seated.
There is plenty of space to stretch out.
Additionally, a spacious table is available for larger items such as laptops, pillows, and blankets, providing convenient storage solutions.
And below the table is a console and remote control as well as plug socket and USB charging points.
Beneath the touchscreen TV, there is a bi-fold table. This table measures 18 inches in depth, with a width that can vary between 21 and 25 inches when extended, the space beneath the table offers a spacious footwell, and it even subtly extends at the base to provide extra room for stretching out in bed.
Where Qsuite comes into its own is that every suite features a sliding privacy door as well as direct aisle access through the sliding door, guaranteeing the utmost privacy and comfort. For passengers in adjacent centre suites who are not traveling together, the privacy panels can be effortlessly retracted with the touch of a button, creating a your private space that is perfect for sleeping.
If you want complete privacy during your flight – Do Not Disturb indicators, can be turned red to let the flight attendants know that you’d prefer not to be disturbed at the moment, just make sure you don’t turn it on by accident or you will miss your meal!
Shortly after takeoff, a flight attendant distributed The White Company pyjamas to passengers. He made an initial estimation of the size each passenger might require, with the option to change sizes if desired. These comfortable pyjamas were neatly packaged in a plastic and cloth bag, which also included a pair of slippers.
The business class cabin boasts four toilets and a total of 42 Qsuites. These toilets provide ample space to change into pyjamas. Additionally, each toilet is equipped with a convenient fold-down bench, offering added convenience during outfit changes. You’ll find a well-appointed array of Dyptique amenities in each toilet, including soap, facial mist, and lotion. Dental kits and razors are stored in a designated drawer beneath the sink for easy access.
When you’re ready to get some rest, simply request the assistance of a flight attendant to prepare your sleeping area. They will provide you with a mattress pad, and a generously sized pillow, and arrange your Qatar-themed decorative pillow along with a cozy, warm blanket, which was originally placed at your seat when you boarded the flight.
A large 21.5 inch touchscreen entertainment screen (other Qatar Business Class is 17 inches) graces every seat which has touch-screen functionality in addition to being able to be controlled by remote control. Qatars Oryx One entertainment system offers a huge global selection of music, radio, Hollywood, and Bollywood movies, sitcoms, and short programming, which includes documentaries, and comedy – the list goes on and on so you won’t run out of things to watch.
Onyx One-branded Phitek noise-canceling headphones are included in every Qsuite. These headphones are waiting at your seat when you board the aircraft. Notably, the flight attendants do not collect the headphones prior to landing, allowing you to enjoy their use throughout the entire flight.
Beneath the countertop and adjacent to the seating area is a sizable remote control, equipped with a 4.5 inch touchscreen, enabling seamless control of the in-flight entertainment system.
Referred to as “Super Wi-Fi,” the A350-1000 aircraft (along with the B787, A319 and select B777, A330, and A320 aircraft) offers inflight connectivity. Qatar Airways aims to extend this high-speed option to all its planes in due course, and it is available for purchase starting at £10 for a session, however, Qatar Privilege Club members enjoy one hour of free Super Wi-Fi just by logging in with your membership details.
Amenities & Facilities
The airline has a partnership with the renowned French fragrance brand Diptyque for skincare products and every business class seat comes with an amenity kit that includes an eye mask for sleeping, socks, earplugs, hand cream, body lotion, and lip balm, and an exclusive 10ml Diptyque fragrance. Note that the amenity kit comes in a leather pouch, on standard Qatar Business Class the kit comes in a gift box.
Qatar Qsuite Amenity Kit
Standard Qatar Business Class Amenity kit
Passengers are offered a towel, also by Diptyque, to rejuvenate their face and hands before and after each meal service and toothbrushes and razors are available from a drawer in the toilets. And worth noting that staff checked and cleaned the toilet areas each time before you used it and toilets include Diptyque products as well.
The flight commenced with a choice between Brut or Rose champagne, which was served while the flight was still on the ground.
The wine list is extensive and includes full-page descriptions along with photos of each bottle. Choices encompass three white wines, three red wines, a sweet white wine, and a port. Flight attendants are well-trained and capable of providing expert recommendations for wine pairings with various dishes. They also typically pour the wine at your seat, adding a touch of restaurant-style finesse to the experience and all business class cabins on Qatar Airways are absent of service carts – again underscoring the brand’s commitment to precision and attention to detail.
After take off I ordered a wine which was served with a portion of nuts.
The selection of cocktails and mocktails is extensive, featuring classics like an Old Fashioned and Dry Martini. An array of spirits is available, ranging from Grey Goose, Chivas Regal, The Glenlivet, and Hendricks Gin. Beer options often include Stella Artois and Leffe.
Menus and wine lists were provided prior to take-off, and orders were collected in advance. Qatar Airways offers a dine-when-you-want service, so you can literally eat when you want and as much as you want. However, it is worth ordering, or at least picking what you want to take as they can run out of popular items.
On this evening flight, there were two appetizers, four mains, cheese and dessert and options available, along with a range of lighter snacks and breakfast.
The table is stored under the TV and comes forward with ease and is adorned with a tablecloth, mini metal salt, and pepper mills, a bread basket, and a battery-operated candle.
I started with an amuse-bouche which was a dressed scallop.
For started I went for the Smoked Salmon Carpaccio.
For mains I chose Pan Seared Cod with Yellow Thai Curry
To finish I opted for the Cheese Board and Crackers. By this point, it was around 2am and zzz was calling me so I didn’t bother with a sweet dessert.
I then got ‘into bed” and slept till we reached Bangkok. I missed the breakfast as jetlag had kicked in by that point, but there was a lovely little chocolate box waiting for me when I woke up.
If you are looking for what is an incredible Business Class experience, then Qatar Airways is the only way to fly and we truly enjoyed our time flying from Doha to Bangkok. Find out more about Qatar’s Business Class products here and Qsuite cabin here.