En route from Paris to Kuala Lumpur via Dubai

It was probably the very last time we try to take the RER train from Gare du Nord to Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG). Recently, every time we have tried to do so, we have failed. This time it was because of a body found on the tracks… sad but not atypical, and as a result, all trains cancelled. Taxi!

Safe and well ahead of time, we arrived at the terminal 2C at CDG airport, and you know what: it immediately felt like traveling toward affluence and prosperity. Terminal 2C caters for travelers flying to Asia and Africa, where the world’s economic growth is happening, and it was clear that the terminal was ready to serve clients with high purchase power. There was a seafood bar serving the best champagne, oysters and caviar, and Ladurée for those with a sweet tooth; not forgetting all major French and international fashion houses.CDG airport terminalLaduree, CDG airport terminalOur Paris-Dubai leg was flown by Emirates A380 aircraft and the terminal where we landed in Dubai was brand new, opened in January this year, specifically designed to cater A380 aircraft travelers.

Once again, we were spoiled by a beautiful terminal with shops and restaurants one would not typically see at airports.  One of those restaurants is the Belgium Le Pain Quotidien where the concept it to share a cozy croissant, sandwich or salad moment in a wooden, rustic setting. Le Pain quotidien, Dubai airportFor beer lovers, there is Heineken Lounge, and New York-style hamburger lovers have their Shake Shack. Both have a reputation for serving delicious food.Heineken Lounge, Dubai airportShake ShackBoth in Paris and Dubai, I felt that this was the right direction: people spend so much time at airports and different terminals, and it is really no longer enough to provide just a few restrooms and wireless internet. Travelers want more comfort but they also want more variety. Terminals do not all need to look the same and it is OK to make interesting choices in terms of the offer. People want to see terminals and airports as places where one can spend nice, quality time. A bit like at home!

I look forward to my return to Emirates A380 Hub in early March –who would not like to spend some fun time in a terminal as lovely as this!?

Emirates A380 Hub: http://www.emirates.com/english/flying/emirates-a380/hub.aspx

Shake Shack at Emirates A380 Hub: http://www.shakeshack.com/location/dubai-dxb-airport/

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