Virgin Blue continued its onslaught into the corporate market today with the opening of the new Sydney airport ‘Blue Room’, extending its rollout of the next generation of airport lounges across the nation.
Australia’s hottest new music sensation, Duncan James, helped Virgin Blue’s Chief Executive, Brett Godfrey, kick off the celebrations today with a special performance of his hit debut single “Speed of Life”.
The new lounge has been ‘Virginised’ to offer travellers a modern, high-tech and business friendly facility that is both relaxing and fun.
By self-funding the Blue Room, Virgin Blue continues to address the needs of the discerning business traveller, without compromising its position as Australia’s low cost and low fare leader.
The Sydney Blue Room follows Brisbane as the second facility that will further strengthen Virgin Blue’s inroads into all sectors of the business market including the airline’s recent signings with many of Australia’s top fifty Corporate Accounts.
Virgin Blue Chief Executive, Brett Godfrey, said, “In the same way that Virgin Blue has helped revolutionise air travel in Australia, we plan to transform the expensive and dated product currently in the market, by offering a refreshing and affordable alternative to the traditional airport lounge.”
He continued, “During 2003 there has been a coming of age for Virgin Blue as we are now making a solid impact on every segment of the market due to our high frequency, friendly service and on time departures. The only niche that we are struggling in seems to be a few Commonwealth agencies who appear to be less concerned about getting good value for the taxpayer than our growing list of major corporate clients.”
Virgin’s Blue Room is its latest innovation in terms of choice for both corporate and leisure travellers and part of the ongoing strategy to enhance the Virgin Blue experience for airline Guests without increasing fares.
Anyone can access the Blue Room facilities by paying an introductory pay-as-you-go $5 entry fee or by snapping up a special ‘early bird’ annual Blue Room Passport* for $175 before 30 September. The $195 standard annual membership fee will apply thereafter.
Guests can also choose to buy exclusive Blue Room Voucher* Booklets containing 50 prepaid $5 coupons that can be redeemed for entry and/or massage and beauty services, food or refreshments in any Blue Room.
The vouchers can be used by both members and non-members of the Blue Room and are designed to give companies the freedom to supply cash equivalent coupons to travelling staff so they can take advantage of the convenience of the lounge when they please, without having to worry about blowing the budget nor filing numerous detailed expense claims to their boss.
Other complimentary services in the Blue Room include: * State of the art surround sound Sony Wega Theatrette with movies on the big screen (popcorn optional).
* Workstations where travellers can ‘plug in’ and go about their business.
* Comfy armchairs to relax in while watching the large plasma or digital televisions.
* A ‘play-zone’ incorporating Sony PlayStation® consoles for big kids looking to brush up on their game skills.
* A quality selection of newspapers and magazines.
* Express Check-in for those with hand luggage only.
* Courtesy fax and photocopier.
For a reasonable fee the Blue Room also offers:
* Convenient valet parking service.**
* A ‘Chill Out Zone’ where Guests can relax with day spa treatments including beauty and massage therapy.
* A café serving delicious meals and gourmet coffees.
* A private bar offering bubbles, beer, bourbon and other alcoholic beverages at pub prices.
Sydney is the first Virgin Blue port to offer a Valet Parking Service for busy flyers who want the extra time and the personalised service and convenience.
This service is provided in conjunction with Sydney Airport and offers short or long term parking while operating on a ‘user pays’ basis to ensure it has no impact on the airline’s operating costs. Concluding his comments on the both the Blue Room and Valet Parking, Brett Godfrey noted, “This is clearly the best and most efficient way forward for us to allow the airline to continue passing the savings onto the travelling public, while sticking with the same low fare strategy we’ve maintained since day one.”
In addition to providing further service enhancements, Virgin Blue is also leading the market with new time saving initiatives, including a number of technological innovations. The newest Virgin Blue innovations and enhancements include: