KLM Previews New World Business Class (WBC) Seats & Cabin Interior…and finally some roll-out dates

KLM has taken to Pinterest and their newsroom site to premier photos of their new World Business Class (WBC) seats as well as the updated cabin with new colors, carpeting (from old flight attendant uniforms), and amenities. The seats will first be available on the airline’s 22 Boeing 747-400s.  July 2013 will see the inaugural flight of the first KLM aircraft with the new interior including the new seat. KLM’s Boeing 747-400 fleet, consisting of 22 aircraft, will be redecorated first. It is expected that the entire 747-fleet will be redecorated by April 2014. Work on KLM’s 15 Boeing 777-200s is planned for the summer of 2014.

The lie-flat seats looks great and are a huge step-up from the current recliner seats.

A reminder of the current WBC seats…

Now, if only Delta would bring back decent low level SkyMiles award availability on Air France and KLM! See the full updated WBC picture gallery here.

Cabin Interior
KLM has teamed up with Dutch top designer Hella Jongerius to introduce a brand-new atmosphere, furnishings and style in World Business Class. The guiding principle is the customer’s comfort and privacy as befits KLM. In addition to the new full-flat seats, the interior features new carpeting, panel decorations, curtains, lighting, blankets, cushions and upholstery. First up for redecoration are KLM’s fleet of 22 Boeing 747-400s. In so doing, KLM will be changing all of WBC in the height of Dutch design, thereby combining its Dutch roots with international allure.

Full-Flat Seat
The new full-flat seat offers customer optimum comfort. It can be reclined horizontally so the passenger can lie fully flat. The seat position in the cabin and the partition between television screens ensure greater privacy for passengers. There are also storage compartments in the seats beside the passengers and under the television screens. The number of seats in World Business Class will be reduced from 42 to 35 aboard the Boeing 747-400. KLM has chosen the Diamond Seat manufactured by B/E Aerospace.

Design Concept
The guiding principle of new design is to ensure that passengers feel at home on board. That involves a transition from a business-like look to a greater sense of being at home. This has been achieved by using a characteristically warm colour palette, more sustainable materials, and by enhancing personal comfort. The design is timeless, recognisable and unified by the decorative dot patterns that feature on every item.

KLM Blue
Naturally, the new interior features the fresh and recognisable KLM blue. To ensure the sense of comfort on board, Hella Jongerius has blended warmer and darker colours into the existing colour range making the KLM blue sparkle even more. The five new colours are aubergine, dark brown, midnight blue, cobalt and dark grey.

Innovative and Sustainable
Sustainability is another point of focus for KLM in all new developments. The new design therefore had to be innovative as well as sustainable. In meeting this requirement, Hella Jongerius sought new solutions within the existing options available to the airline industry. The carpeting, for instance, was manufactured partly of discarded KLM ladies’ uniforms. KLM recycles all of its discarded carpets in collaboration with carpet manufacturer Desso based on the cradle-to-cradle principle. This is in line with the CSR policy KLM has pursued for years.

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  1. Wow, so we’re looking at ~2 years until the whole widebody fleet is reconfigured (assuming they are doing the Airbus aircraft…)? That’s a long time before they’re even semi-competitive…

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