Last week my wife and I spent 10 days in Italy between Rome, Sorrento and Capri. We saw many amazing sites including some of the Amalfi Coast, The Vatican, The Roman Ruins, etc. etc. I’ll cover that part of the trip in other posts.
The great big cherry on top of the trip was the 2 hours we were able to spend at Lufthansa’s First Class Terminal (FCT) in Frankfurt. It would have been nearly 3 hours, but we were a bit delayed departing Rome.
For those of you unfamiliar with the FCT, it is a dedicated stand alone terminal located just to the west of Terminal A at Frankfurt’s airport. Its designed primarily for people originating their travels in Frankfurt to entirely bypass entering the regular terminal. Although the terminal can be used by passengers connecting through Frankfurt who are arriving or departing on First Class Lufthansa tickets. It’s fairly easy to get there from the other terminals. From Terminal A you leave the secure (airside) part of the terminal, and before exiting the terminal near the front doors, take the escalator downstairs to the baggage claim level. Be careful not to follow the signs for the Welcome Lounge. It is an entirely different lounge and has nothing to do with the FCT. From there you exit the terminal, turn left and walk perhaps 500 yards/metres towards the taxi queue. The FCT is next to this queue. You can reach the FCT from Terminal B by taking the tram to A and go from there.
This is the entrance to the FCT from the lower level:
Once you enter, there is an elevator to the left that brings you up to the main level where you will be met by a Personal Assistant who will take care of your documentation (you hand over your passport and boarding passes to him or her for processing) and introduce you to the Terminal. Directly from there you go through a very civilized security screening process since you are technically airside once inside the FCT.
In our case, it was my wife’s first time and our UBER FANTASTIC Personal Assistant, Hendrik, took it upon himself to give her the guided tour of the entire facility and explained what she would be experiencing while at FCT.
Once you pass security directly to your left is a small, but very nice Duty Free Shop and then the floor plan opens up to the rest of the terminal. Here are a few pictures that she took while walking around:
From there to the left is the private dining area where you can order items directly from a menu. Consider this a restaurant within the terminal.
A typical place setting:
Next are images from the self service buffet area. There is a lot more food than the photos indicate. There are dozens of platters/stations to try. Their variety and quality of the food is excellent. Everything from the basics to extremely creative dishes are available. The several that I sampled, were all excellent!
Additionally there were 2 very impressive carving stations:
Also available was a very well stocked Wine Cart where you can serve yourself:
Here are a few other pictures of the area including the magazine/newspaper rack which has both German and English titles available:
Views from my seat:
And of course a couple of our ducks escaped my carry on to take a nip at a very fine Glenmorangie Single Malt:
Other parts of the terminal that are not pictured include the impressive Cigar Lounge with a great variety of Ports, Grappa, etc. and the Shower/Restroom area.
Approximately 15 minutes before our scheduled departure, Hendrik returned to escort us to our waiting Porsche Cayenne that would take us directly to our waiting 744 for our flight to Chicago. As part of this, you are “processed” out of Germany in the FCT’s dedicated Passport Control:
Once our passports are stamped and returned to us, we part ways with Hendrik and are shown to the waiting Porsche (sorry for the blurry image, tried taking it one handed):
I was able to capture the video of the ride out to the aircraft. Watch it here:
I want to take this opportunity to share what happened to us while visiting the FCT and in my opinion the amazing care we received.
If you are not aware, Lufthansa offers little theme inspired rubber ducks as a souvenir for your visit to either the FCT, or any Lufthansa First Class Lounge in Frankfurt and Munich. The duck is usually waiting for you in the shower room if you decide to grab a shower, but you can also ask for one directly. For some (not me of course…..) its a personal mission to try and acquire these “enten” (german for duck). The ducks are labeled based on whether they are from a lounge or FCT and whether from Frankfurt or Munich. In my opinion, I would suggest that the FCT duck is the more difficult to acquire. So in the days, weeks and months leading up to the trip I kept telling my wife how critically important it is that we visit the FCT to get their version of the duck. My wife gets into the spirit of things and agrees to the duck hunt. Once we arrive to the FCT and Hendrik leaves us to enjoy our time, my wife goes back to the shower/bathroom area to get her FCT duck. To her shock, the attendant says we have no more ducks. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. All this build up by me since February, and there’s no duck. Understandably, my wife is disappointed that there will be no FCT duck to take home with us. Apparently they had a run on the ducks during the previous 2 weeks due to increased passenger traffic due to Oktoberfest.
During our stay at the FCT, Hendrik checks in with us to see how things are going and I share with him the fact that they are out of ducks. In a joking way, I tell him that we are let down that no FCT duck will go home with us. Hendrik couldn’t believe that they were duck-less and commits to finding a resolution. I figure he’ll look around and report that none could be found. Oh well, not the end of the world I guess.
So time passes on and our departure time arrives. We are taken downstairs to the Porsche, processed and go plane side. We board and settle into our seats thinking what a great experience FCT was, even without the ducky souvenir. As we are sitting there waiting for the doors to close, in walks a Lufthansa representative and finds our seats. He looks at my wife and says: “Mrs. LufthansaFlyer, this is for you”. I look over and see an FCT duck sitting in the middle of his cupped hands. My wife is beaming ear to ear. I never imagined that anything like this would happen. Taking up valuable resources and time to track down a duck and deliver it to a passenger waiting in her seat? Simply WOW. It is safe to assume that Mrs. LufthansaFlyer has become a Lufthansa fan for life. She could not believe that they went to all that trouble to have a duck delivered to her at her seat.
This is the little guy:
We thank him profusely and literally within a second or 2 of him exiting the plane, the doors are sealed and we start our journey home. We’ve been home for 3 days, and when we talk about the trip, this FCT experience is the one that we talk about the most among all the other great things we had seen and experienced.
Thank you Lufthansa for going above and beyond and creating a fantastic experience and memory for us!!!