Etihad Airways launched its first Airbus A380 route between Abu Dhabi and Heathrow on Saturday (December 27) featuring its new range of seats and cabins.

The aircraft, which will operate daily on the route, includes Etihad’s new economy seats, 70 business class “studios”, first-class “apartments”, and The Residence, the first “multi-room” suite on a commercial aircraft.

Etihad’s  CEO James Hogan said: “The response from air travellers to our new A380, particularly The Residence by Etihad penthouse suite, has been incredible and we’re delighted to introduce the aircraft into commercial service.”

The first passenger to pay the $20,000 price to use The Residence during the inaugural flight was Miami-based businessman Gino Bertuccio.

The Residence features a living area, bedroom and shower room, and passengers are served by butlers trained at London’s Savoy hotel.

Etihad is planning to introduce the A380 on to all of its Heathrow services by August 2015.

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