As previously reported by Business Traveller, KLM is to launch a fully-flat business class seat next year, with Dutch designer Hella Jongerius commissioned to design both the seat and cabin interiors.
KLM's managing director Erik Varwijk revealed plans for the fully-flat seat to the Dutch press last year (see online news November 10, 2011), but it has taken until now for official confirmation from the carrier.
KLM says it has asked “leading Dutch designer Hella Jongerius to revitalise its World Business Class (WBC) cabin interior across the fleet”, with a view to “uniting international allure with top Dutch design to emphasise a sense of pride in its Dutch heritage”.
Specific details and images of the new seat will not be available until the second half of this year, but the carrier says it intends to create “an entirely new business class look and feel”.
KLM’s fleet of 22 B747-400s will be the first to see the new seat and cabin interior, with work beginning on the first aircraft in June 2013.
Jongerius is well known for her seating and furniture designs, including the Polder Sofa, which KLM described in its release as “both comfortable and beautiful”.
"The challenge is one of safeguarding individual comfort in amiable settings using innovations,” said Jongerius “In so doing, I can optimally combine traditional details, and my industrial textile and colour skills with high-tech functionality.”
The new seat will leave partner Air France as one of the few major European flag carriers not to offer a fully-flat business class product. German carrier Lufthansa recently unveiled its new fully-flat seat which will launch on its B747-800 aircraft (see online news March 8).
For more information visit klm.com.
Report by Mark Caswell