This Is the Best Airplane Seat in the Skies Today

The top prize for cabin innovations taking flight in this year’s Crystal Cabin Awards was awarded to Delta Air Lines, for its new Delta One Business class suite. The awards, given out during the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg each year, are considered the Oscars of the aircraft cabin industry. The decision on the winners is made by a jury of industry experts among airlines, manufacturers, and designers. So what makes these Delta One suites so special that a jury of industry peers would be heads over tails for it? This new cabin class is both a passenger experience revolution and an admirable technical feat.

It’s easy to understand the appeal of suites: The private spaces harken more to the golden age of rail travel than the modern age of air. They offer passengers a unique level of privacy and calm — a small oasis where you can feel comfortable reading, eating, watching television, or sleeping without being observed by your neighbors. Suites will ruin you for lesser cabin conditions, but up until now only the most affluent could afford them. While suites are a great way to fly, they are hard for most business travelers to explain to accounting when filing those expense reports.