Press release from Lufthansa today after the plane arrived in Frankfurt:

The new Queen of the Skies has arrived in Frankfurt. Today Lufthansa became the first airline in the world to take delivery of a Boeing 747-8. After the handover at Boeing’s manufacturing facility in Everett, Washington, the new “Jumbo” with the registration D-ABYA performed a touch and go at Hamburg Airport, where Lufthansa Technik is based, before flying on to its future home base in Frankfurt, where it landed safely. On 1 June, the world’s first passenger flight with a Boeing 747-8 aircraft will depart from Frankfurt as flight LH 418 bound for Washington Dulles International Airport in the US capital, Washington DC.

“We are looking forward to welcoming the Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental to our long-haul fleet. In future we will offer our passengers on board this completely newly developed long-haul aircraft an exclusive travel experience and the comfort of our new Business Class. The Boeing 747-8 is characterised by lower noise emissions, lower fuel consumption and significantly reduced CO2 emissions. That enables us to combine maximum comfort with sustainability,” Lufthansa Executive Board member Carsten Spohr said at the large reception held at Frankfurt Airport.

When the new 747-8 enters scheduled service on 1 June 2012, Lufthansa passengers will have their first opportunity to experience the new Business Class. With the new Business Class, the exclusive First Class and the refined design of the Economy Class seat, the new Jumbo offers passengers in all classes the ultimate in travel comfort. The Boeing 747-8 is 76.3 metres long, 5.6 metres longer than its predecessor, the Boeing 747-400. The new Lufthansa Jumbo can seat 362 passengers: eight in First Class, 92 in Business Class and 262 in Economy Class.

Lufthansa will take delivery of 20 Boeing 747-8s up until 2015. The first five aircraft are due to be delivered to Lufthansa this year. They will be deployed on routes from Frankfurt to Washington D. C, New Delhi, Bangalore, Chicago and Los Angeles.