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SCL to LIM LanPeru J Class & LIM to JFK LanPeru J Class

The W has a noon checkout.  Sweet.  We had a relaxing morning, coffee out, packed, and checked out just before noon.  Spent a lazy afternoon on the roof by the pool, had a sandwich, swam laps, read.  One other guy came up for an hour and at lunch three business men had a sandwich.  Otherwise it was bliss (except perhaps for the unexpurgated seven CD collection of the career of Florence and the Machine which the pool boy played for his amusement).

Took a private cab to the airport; depending on the time of day, if freeway traffic is light,
the trip from Santiago centre to the airport is only half an hour.  Although the airport is a zoo, if
you’re travelling business there is a separate business check in area by door
six.  Totally removed and distinct, not
just a different queue; how civilized.
It is sane and organized.  Then,
there is a private immigration counter for premium passengers.  So a moment of sanity.  Then, however, there is the lounge.  There are two in SCL and we should have gone
to the partner airline lounge but we didn’t, we went to the LAN lounge, and it
had its drawbacks.

 

The packed out LAN lounge, SCL; partner lounge was nicer.
As a space, it’s small and cramped, even if lightly
used.  The air is stale.  There aren’t very many power outlets.  But lots of pluses too: The food is pretty
good, as lounges go, with sushi, fresh fruit salad, cheeses and meats, mini
sandwiches, even Hagen Dazs ice cream.
For the boozers there are three reds, two whites and actual French
champagne.  Air Canada only has club soda
and LAN has mineral water both still and sparkling.  The WiFi connection was excellent.  So all around still better than the departure
lounge.
We headed out to the gate for 8:40, although the flight was running late.  Finally we boarded, on time, but by the time
we left the gate and were taxiing for takeoff we were half an hour late.  That wouldn’t have mattered to us except we
were connecting in Lima for the NYC flight. You can of course fly direct from
SCL to JFK, but not necessarily on points and of course this was all about points.
They were serving an “express” dinner on this flight (3.45 hours).  The choices were beef, conger eel
(seriously), or pasta.  SS took the beef,
I took the pasta, neither was particularly
good.  We watched some movies
while most slept, and arrived (thankfully) only about 10 minutes late.
Newish Boeing737, 2-2-2 config in biz; comfy

 

the “beef” dinner

 

the pasta dinner…
We had lucked out when we booked this flight, x months ago.  We were originally on a day flight which
would have given us three nights in NYC.
We were, it turns out, booked on a Dreamliner, but as we all know the Dreamliners
suffered an FAA setback, and we were bumped to a night flight, Santiago to Lima,
then Lima to JFK.  At Lima we arrived
with an hour before departure.  There was
security then, for whatever reason, more security at the gate.  Then the plane was late.  But we embarked and it took off and I guess
that’s all that matters.
All the Boeings we’d flown so far were quite modern; the
final LAN Peru  leg wasn’t.  It was an older aircraft, the legroom and
seat width not comparable to the newer aircraft.  It was as though this was the aircraft
LAN  was ready to retire, and maybe had to
bring out of retirement until the Dreamliners got the OK.
Time for retirement LAN
If you wanted to eat, there was a snack available after
takeoff (salad, quiche, key lime pie) but SS and I opted to sleep.  Flat yes, not as solid as Air
Canada, but with a very comfy duvet.  I got about 5.5 hours and SS
about 4 hours uninterrupted sleep.
The vanity bag was Salvatore Ferragamo; definitely better than AC.  Breakfast was either “full” or continental; both of us chose the latter.  It came with, and I quote, “Juan Valdez instant coffee.”
On arrival I figured out that Nexus passengers were eligible
for the Global Entry system and we breezed through Immigration and
Customs.  Got a cab (flat rate) to the
city and, luckily, were able to check in early, before 10, at the Sofitel.

 

We
stayed at the Sofitel in London a few years ago.  It was one of the best hotels ever, which we
had scored on a deal.  The NYC version is
not quite as posh or as fine, but it’s comfortable, central and peaceful for
midtown.  Since we’re only here for a few days it made sense to be in the thick of things, although downtown is my general preference.
Four walls and a window.

 

Nice towels, good water pressure, lots of hot water, Lanvin products.  Could be worse.

 

The NYC Yacht Club.  The Sofitel, W 44.  Not shown, the Iroquois and Algonquin, next door.

HereHare

The author of Here Hare has traveled to over 45 countries on six continents, and has lived in Canada, the UK and Australia.

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