Mackay’s newest sporting and entertainment venue will now carry the name Virgin Australia Stadium Mackay, following our three-year naming rights sponsorship announcement.
As part of our commitment to the area, we will also be opening a new Lounge and offering Business Class services before the end of 2011.
The new 260m² Mackay Lounge will offer:
· lounge seating for up to 70 Guests
· Premium Luke Mangan designed refreshments
· A premium selection of beverages
· Business services including complimentary WiFi, power, PC and printer
· Entertainment and relaxation with newspapers, premium magazine titles and a Panasonic high definition flat screen television featuring FOXTEL and free-to-air programming.
Our new Virgin Australia Lounge experience is a stylish yet practical space in which to work, socialise or unwind in comfort prior to your Virgin Australia flight departure from selected domestic airports.
Offering a great selection of complimentary benefits including a new Luke Mangan designed buffet menu and premium wines, business services, news, and entertainment, the Virgin Australia Lounge is your airport haven.
We’ve just been released a new TV commercial to promote the Lounge (see below).
The new Brisbane Domestic Lounge opened last week (27th July), joining the flagship Melbourne Lounge as both being recently renovated by renowned architect Tim Greer of Tonkin Zulaikha Greer. – see the photos here
To find out more, including entry rates or how to join visit the website here
Have you already experienced either of these two fantastic spaces prior to your flight? Favourite part? Any tips for your fellow travellers when using them?
Today we have announced the first routes for our new ATR aircraft, under the regional alliance with Skywest (subject to regulatory approval).
From October 2011 we will commence new services from Brisbane to Gladstone (double daily service) and Brisbane to Port Macquarie (daily return service) plus add extra services between Canberra and Sydney, bringing the total number of flights between the two cities to 60 each week.
Thursday May 26th will always be known as the day Virgin Australia started their business class offering in Australia, with their first Airbus A330 beginning operations between Sydney and Perth – known as the “Coast To Coast”.
Sir Richard Branson Arrives at the Virgin Australia brand launch aboard the A330 Cable Beach
The aircraft, VH-XFB is named “Cable Beach”, after the beautiful West Australian coastline.
Even with a 50 minute delay leaving Sydney Airport, the flight crew were able to make up time and arrived on time into Perth!
This is the first Airbus to join the Virgin Australia fleet, will eventually be joined by three more, and of course joins the existing Boeing and Embraer aircraft.
By July, there will be a three-daily service operating the Coast To Coast route between Sydney and Perth.
This is the first aircraft to have business class included on a domestic route for Virgin Australia, which is significant in it’s own right, but more significant is what is on offer:
* Generous reclinable luxurious Business Class seating.
* Our new Business Class menu is your stylish restaurant in the sky where you can enjoy gourmet food created by our chef Luke Mangan.
* Business class guests have access to the Lounge (the new designer Melbourne Lounge opened earlier this week – see here)
* Priority Check in plus very generous Baggage allowances are also provided.
Virgin Australia today opened Melbourne as the first of its contemporary new airport lounges, designed by renowned architects Tonkin Zulaikha Greer (TZG).
Welcome to the new Melbourne Lounge
Virgin Australia Group Executive of Product and Guest Services Martin Daley said: “Our new lounge showcase Virgin Australia’s focus on providing a seamless, first-rate travel experience for business and leisure travellers.
“The crisp contemporary design balances the functional requirements of frequent travellers with luxury finishes, providing an inspiring and relaxing space for Guests to escape. Featuring multiple zones for meetings, wireless internet capabilities and a “quiet library”, the lounge is well-equipped to cater for modern business needs; while the high bar acts as the dynamic hub where Guests can celebrate and socialise.
“We’re also very pleased to announce that we are extending our culinary
Luke Mangan designed Food & Beverage offering
partnership with Luke Mangan, offering a fresh seasonal menu that draws on Luke’s extensive experience in fine food.” Mr. Daley said.
The new menu will be offered in all Virgin Australia lounges*. In designing the menu, Luke Mangan focused on the very best seasonal and flavoursome Australian produce, as he did with the inflight menu. “I took great care in tailoring the selection to the busy travel schedules of Virgin Australia Guests who are looking for a quick but delicious snack.
A beautiful continental breakfast with fresh fruit is served in the morning; seasonal salads and soups are offered throughout the day (with hot treats in our larger lounges); and evening introduces delicious Australian cheeses as well as mini cakes and gourmet biscuits to satisfy a sweet tooth”, Consultant Chef for Virgin Australia, Luke Mangan, commented.
We understand that Guests will come into the lounge looking for a tasty bite to eat and it is a priority to ensure the selection will change frequently with the seasons,” Mr. Mangan said.
The Flying Lady
TZG architects Director, Tim Greer, said the new design focused on creating a haven for guests to escape and imagine.
“An airport can be seen as nothing more than a place of movement: movement of planes, luggage and people. I have taken this idea as the starting point for the design of Virgin Australia’s Melbourne lounge and created a deliberate flow from one space to another, demonstrating and facilitating the ease of travel.
“In essence, the Melbourne lounge is designed with plane-inspired organic and streamlined architecture and reconnects with the glamour days of air travel, when it was a time to relax in a luxurious setting”, Mr. Greer said.
Key features of the new Melbourne lounge include:
* Contemporary design, featuring modern digital artwork Imaginary Object #1. #3, #4, 2007 – 2008 by Australian artist Daniel Crooks, illuminated Marblo bars, intricate timber paneling, vertical glass screens, natural light and expansive views;
* Multiple quiet zones for meetings;
* Wireless internet with power and data throughout, workstations and PCs;
* A “quiet library” retreat;
* High comfort contemporary designer furniture including Walter Knoll leather chairs;
* A Luke Mangan-designed menu, offering high quality meals and snacks;
* Premium wine and beer selection from 11am;
* All hours barista service;
* Australian made and owned GROWN organic skincare products.
Virgin Australia launched the lounge program in May 2006 and now has six lounges in the Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide and Perth domestic terminals.
Sydney Premium Entry
Today’s announcement follows the April launch of the Sydney loungePremium Entry and Premium Valet service, offering an exclusive entry, check-in and security screening point for Velocity Gold members, Business and Premium Economy Guests at the Sydney T2 Domestic terminal. Priority Screening was introduced in Melbourne earlier this month, providing these premium Guests with an exclusive security screening lane.
“These are all key parts of our plans to provide travellers with a streamlined, hassle-free experience both in the air and on the ground”, Mr. Daley said.
* Luke Mangan designed menu is not available in the Brisbane temporary lounge facility this will be available upon opening of the new Brisbane lounge.
Yes, we have a new name, but there are many more exciting changes to our airline.
We have new planes with elegantly redesigned cabin interiors. We’ve got new uniforms, new menus and in-flight entertainment.
We have a new Business Class service, with more legroom than any other domestic business class across Australia. And that’s just the beginning.
But there are some things that haven’t changed.
Like our people. The staff and crew who have brought you award-winning service are still at the heart of the Virgin Australia flying experience. And it’s still their passion that will make flying with us memorable.
Watch our new Virgin Australia television commercial (above) which features our mutli-talented and award winning crew as well as industry experts Juli Grbac, responsible for the Virgin Australia uniforms and Hans Hulsbosch, who created the new airline’s logo and plane design.
The commercial brings to life the essence of Virgin Australia by focusing on our two most visible assets our people and our stylish new planes.
Let us know what you think of the TV commercial in the comments below!
Check out the recently revealed Virgin Blue Boeing 737-800 (VH-VUZ) with the AFL team Gold Coast SUNS themed livery, as part of our official sponsorship and support of the AFL’s newest team.
Approximately 200 sq metres of environmentally friendly vinyl went onto the plane to create the Gold Coast SUNS logo, with a special print process used for the vinyl to ensure it handles the extreme environments that the aircraft operates in (travelling at 900km per hour and -50 degrees while in the air and then sitting on a tarmac in Darwin in up to 50 degree heat).
Made by 3M, the vinyl used is not only cheaper than paint but also more environmentally friendly.
120cm wide strips of vinyl were installed onto the plane. The longest strip fitted was 5m long.
It took 5 days to digitally print and then cut the vinyl then another 3 days for a team of 5 hand picked specialists to install it.
Today we have launched a new premium quality on-board retail menu for you, our Virgin Blue, Polynesian Blue and Pacific Blue guests, designed exclusively by leading Australian chef Luke Mangan.
This new retail menu offers a superior quality product, with delicious fresh meals and a totally reinvigorated snack and beverage menu focused on Australian-owned and made produce.
Luke Mangan’s philosophy behind the new menu was to source the finest, freshest local and Australian ingredients and showcase them with a clean and contemporary twist. Renowned for his modern creations, this menu across economy and business class also highlights his French classical training and Asian influences, and features simple, fresh and clean flavours.
As part of this strong retail collaboration with Virgin Blue, the leading Australian chef has introduced a range of Luke Mangan branded products on board – such as fresh salads and paninis and Luke Mangan Gourmet Chunky Beef pies with tomato relish.
“The retail menus will feature a range of Luke Mangan branded products. This entire distinctive product range is a result of the unique close working partnerships between myself and leading boutique producers around Australia who have high quality produce”, Luke Mangan said.
“When it comes to travelling economy, I wanted to make sure we selected high quality food that travellers actually wanted to buy such as fresh and delicious meals they could enjoy on board.”
Virgin Blue Group of Airlines Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director John Borghetti said the new menu was about creating a first-rate in-flight experience for guests.
“We want to lead the way in providing a great range of quality in-flight food and beverages as we build on our strategy to be the airline of choice in Australia.
“Luke Mangan is renowned internationally for his expertise in food and we knew he was the right person to help us redefine onboard menus. Just because you are up in the air doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy fresh, great tasting meals and snacks.
“Additionally, when we launch Virgin Blue domestic business class, guests can look forward to a food service of unrivalled quality, with a fresh seasonal menu that draws on Luke’s extensive experience,” Mr Borghetti said.
The Virgin Blue partnership with Luke Mangan includes:
• A completely new, high quality choice of retail food on all Virgin Blue, Polynesian Blue and Pacific Blue flights with no direct impact on guest fares
• Meal selections which bundle menu options
• Business Class food on V Australia and our new transcontinental Airbus 330s, is exclusively designed by Luke Mangan
• Luke currently owns and operates glass brasserie at the Hilton Sydney, The Palace by Luke Mangan, South Melbourne, Salt & the adjoining World Wine Bar in Tokyo, Salt grill, Singapore and Salt grill onboard P&O’s Pacific Dawn, Pacific Jewel and Pacific Pearl.
• Both the domestic and international business class menus feature a range of different dishes, including exotic spice blends such as Cajun spices, Moroccan spices, sumac and Luke Mangan’s own dukkah.
Make sure you let us know what you think next time you are on board!