Being an Alitalia Princess at Casa Alitalia
PHOTO: With Valentina in my own private suite at Casa Alitalia (c) Sery Kim
After two years of traveling professionally, I would say I am pretty gosh-darn spoiled. In fact, I would say I am the penultimate high-maintenance traveler. I am used to flawless, happy customer service: my flight attendants are always smiley, the check-in is always easy, and business class is always relaxing. But even in my ultra privileged world of travel, Casa Alitalita -- the new lounge in the flagship Alitalia brand -- shocked me today to the core with their exceptional design and service.
I am not really sure what I expected with Alitalia; however, I'm pretty sure I thought it would be rather junky (sorry Alitalia). After all, when I flew out of Rome February 21st this year and hung out in the Alitalia Lounge, it was more than forgettable. In fact, it was basically worse than the general boarding waiting pen. Old, ugly, small with the tiniest offerings of food-and-beverage. So, basically, I was expecting the Kmart of business class travel.
PHOTO: Me in my own private, V-VIP suite at Casa Alitalia (c) Sery Kim
So imagine my absolutely jaw-dropping shock when I walked in Casa Alitalia, the new business class lounge of Alitalia airlines.
The lounge at Rome Fiumicino is located in the boarding area G of the airport, which is dedicated to the long and medium-haul flights. Walk in and you are immediately struck by the decor of the welcome foyer plus the brand-new smell. Gorgeous florals as well as an equally gorgeous welcoming attendant greet you royally. For those who aren't traveling business class, you can actually pay 35 euros for access for the day and I would say it is highly worth it.
PHOTO: The food at Casa Alitalia (c) Sery Kim
Once your boarding pass is scanned, you turn right into a lounge in a cozy 800 square metres, with room for over 115 seated guests. The decor definitely feels like a lovely Italian home more than a public business class space and the interiors are sexy and modern with furnishing designed by Poltrona Frau. I love the smell of the leather emanating from the ultra comfortable, overstuffed chairs which, again, help fuel the feeling you are in a place which embody Italian culture.
In addition to the decor, I would say one of the things which really sets Casa Alitalia apart from other business class lounges is the food.
The catering service at Casa Alitalia has a live cooking area where, twice a day, a chef prepares a selection of pasta dishes and pizzas in front of the guests (see photo above). After trying both the pasta as well as the pizza, I would say both could stand its own in the heart of Rome, particularly in the super touristy areas between Piazzas spanning Vatican and the Colosseum.
PHOTO: Lovely gifts from Casa Alitalia (c) Sery Kim
Additionally, there is a buffet and a bar area with sparking wine from Cantine Ferrari, Alitalia's sparkling wine supplier. I had a few glasses while I was shocked with several special gifts from Casa Alitalia such as my own private V-VIP room. I've never been in such a room in a business class lounge -- with its humungous television, seating area for six and it's own private butler service. The "average" traveler can not access this room -- "This is the room we would give to President Trump!" -- so I was truly flattered to be given the space.
I really could have spent an entire day just in the Lounge enjoying the food, drinks and wi-fi. Grazie mellie Alitalia for making me feel like an absolute Princess!! I have never felt so loved and appreciated by an airline!!!!!