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August 22, 2013 / oneworld82

13 days in Paradise – A seat (LH F), a Porsche, a bed (LH F/EY F), Southern OZ plus Auckland, and a tasting menu (QF F)

So it’s finally happened: the moment I’ve longed for 11 months, the chance of doing my first round the World trip with the excuse of visiting South Australia, Victoria, and the Auckland Region in New Zealand. And what better time of the year to leave Texas to go to get some Australis wintertime in, well, Australia? Probably none. While I am writing this I am comfortably sitting in the Lufthansa First Class Terminal in Frankfurt, after a sumptuous lunch and while sipping a glass of Suntori Yamazaki 12 years old whiskey. Something’s missing though… oh yeah, a cigar! Let me move to the cigar lounge… Villiger 1888… Now we’re talking. But let’s go with some order, I am getting ahead of myself here…

Last July I had the chance to visit part of Australia – namely Sydney, Brisbane, and northern Queensland – for the first time in my life. It was a blast – the country really struck me and I made myself the promise to come back soon. That soon became very soon after I was able to find a first class award seat on Qantas from Melbourne to Los Angeles on the A380. So, it was set. I’d go back Down Under in 2013. What ensued was some concerted planning to find comparable seats to get me there. I will spare you all the planning and scheming involved. Let just say that my choice was in the end narrowed down to either one of these two itineraries:

1. Flying DFW-LHR-AUH on a mix of AA/BA/EY First and then connect on Etihad First to Sydney and Qantas Business to Adelaide
2. Flying DFW-FRA-DXB on LH First and then continuing on EY First as mentioned above.

In any case, I had decided I would take the long way to OZ.
After much waiting, Lufthansa finally opened up some first class seats for partners at T-14 and T-6 for DFW-FRA and FRA-DXB respectively, and so my itinerary was decided. Aren’t you excited already to read and see what happened? If so, keep reading!

Leg 1

Leg 1

Leg 2

Leg 2

Leg 3

Leg 3

I will keep the report on this thread and post links to the various posts. I will try to post as many pictures as possible, but given FT limits you will still be able to find all my pictures in my blog. The report will have the following Chapters:

Chapter 1 – DFW-FRA on Lufthansa Old First Class + LH Lounge in Dallas
Chapter 2 – Renting a Porsche in Frankfurt to get to the Rhine River and Lufthansa Arrival Lounge
Chapter 3 – Lufthansa First Class Terminal
Chapter 4 – FRA-DXB on Lufthansa New First Class on the B744 (a Bed in the Sky) + Grand Hyatt Dubai
Chapter 5 – Etihad Airways First Class Lounge in Abu Dhabi
Chapter 6 – AUH-SYD-ADL on Etihad Airways First Class and Qantas Business Class
Chapter 7 – Adelaide
Chapter 8 – Barossa Valley & Adelaide Hills (SA Wine Region)
Chapter 9 – The Grampians National Park
Chapter 10 – From Port Fairy to Melbourne: The Great Ocean Road
Chapter 11 – Melbourne and the Park Hyatt Melbourne
Chapter 12 – Qantas International Business Class Lounge in Melbourne plus MEL-AKL on Qantas Economy Class
Chapter 13 – Auckland and Bucolic Waiheke Island + Hilton Hotel Auckland
Chapter 14 – AKL-MEL on Qantas Business Class and Qantas Club in Auckland
Chapter 15 – Qantas First Class Lounge in Melbourne
Chapter 16 – Getting back home: MEL-LAX on Qantas First Class on the A380, LAX-DFW on American Airlines First Class + AAdmirals Club in LAX

The trip report is detailed and – like I mentioned – picture-intense. Feel free to skip to the section that suits you/interests you the most. All comments are welcome (I care for compliments as much I do for critiques – as long as they are constructive).

Thanks for reading folks!

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