Russian carrier Transaero, the airline one step removed from having a hot tub in first class, is introducing three-cabin 737s for short- and medium-haul routes. (Article is in German, quotes via Google Translate)
I believe this will be the first commercial 737 with three classes o service (American’s new Airbus A321s flying New York JFK – San Francisco and Los Angeles will have three cabins, and United is transitioning away from the three-cabin narowbodies they were running on those routes).
First class cabins on these planes will consist of just four seats, and the planes will serve routes between Moscow and Western Europe, former Soviet states, and Israel.
As for amenities beyond flat beds:
The catering will be provided by the first-class luxury Moscow restaurant “Café Pushkin” and served by private VIP flight attendants.
Even economy on these birds won’t be terrible, with 34 inches of pitch (compared to a US-standard 31 inches). Six of these planes are projected to be going into service for the winter schedule.
I have long wanted to fly Transaero’s Imperial Class — which is really just about its inaccessibility, they used to partner with british midland but you could redeem for business class but not first, and Transaero’s new interline agreement with JetBlue does not include reciprocal frequent flyer earn and burn.
Without a mileage redemption partner, I cannot imagine that I will — though clearly this Russian premium carrier has really stepped up its game on Europe routes! British Airways has a mix of equipment serving Moscow, including a 747, but most flights between Europe and Russia have intra-European business class as their forward cabin product… something akin to coach with a blocked middle seat and upgraded meal.
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