Monday, July 17, 2017

The Perfect Summer

It really is the little things that make travel memorable- the time you clear security in 5 minutes from entering the airport, the time you clear your upgrade unexpectedly into your favorite seat, and of course, when someone along the way takes that extra step to making your day just a little better.

It's the escape from the normal on scales small and large that keep us coming back, and make us crave getting to the next jetbridge.  Even when you dedicate a fair amount of energy to traveling well, it's easy to get stuck in the monotony, and caught in the minutia. 

I'm happy to say that my current trip defies these traps.  I'm wrapping up a lovely, if short, weekend on Whidbey Island, WA with family.  The weather was perfect- warm days, cool nights, and sunsets made for storybook covers. I grew up here, and I don't get back nearly enough, especially in the summer.

Bringing all this ennui back to topics I cover in this blog, I have to comment on the recent upgrading and expansion of the SEA airport.  In case you've been living under a rock for the last 10 years or so, Seattle has become the SFO of the north, and as the industry and money have moved, the airlines and services have followed.  What once was a 2nd tier dominated airport, nearly to capacity with Alaska Air 737s, has become a bustling hub of the major players.

Most importantly (for me) just last year American started multiple nonstop service daily from LAX, and introduced the route with some killer deals.  Since then, I've rarely flown Alaska.  What's more, the 'Battle for Seattle'- a showdown between Delta and Alaska for dominance at this up and coming hub has ripped open airline alliances, and killed interline and codeshare deals between Alaska and both Delta and American. 

It's an interesting time to be alive...

However, what I really wanted to write about, less the small diversion, is that even American Express has apparently had their eye on Seattle, and a few years ago launched the 'Centurion Studio,' a smaller version of their Centurion Lounge, in the B Gates to test the waters.  Apparently, they got their answer loud and clear, and within the year started an expansion to the space that recently opened. 

It's fast become one of our favorite stops due to the beautiful views of Mt. Rainer, the nice food options, and especially the lounge staff.  From check in, to table service, to the bartenders, everyone is friendly and attentive. 

Tonight, I wandered up to the bar trying to decide what I was in the mood for.  I was immediately cut off, and was informed he had the perfect thing.  What I was served went a little like this:

"The Perfect Summer"

1.5 oz St Germain Elderflower
1/2oz fresh lemon
1/2 oz blood orange liquor
1/2oz simple syrup
Fill with crushed ice, float Prosecco to fill hi-ball glass
Garnish with a slice of grapefruit

And that, my friends, is the way to end a summer weekend before getting back to work.

Fly well,


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