Review – Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

by Zac George
a room with a chandelier and chairs

The Residence by Etihad is a product I’ve wanted to try since the day I saw it online. I’ve flown first many times now and decided I would finally do it as it would be incredibly awesome to review. Last night I landed from Abu Dhabi, and I wanted to get the posts out as quickly as I could. So this will be the first post of the Residence introduction.

When booking, the concierge will ask how many bags you have, I had two checked bags and one carry-on. You’ll see in the picture there are two cars, 1 for luggage and the other for the guest. I organized to be picked up 10 hours early from the St. Regis, and the concierge was more than happy to arrange that, (I had tons of work to get through). That morning I got a call from the chauffeur to alert me that they were outside and to take my time if I needed.

Etihad Residence Chauffeur

The passenger car was an Audi A4, and the car for luggage was a Mercedes Van.

Etihad Residence Chauffeur

The drive from the St.Regis took about 25 minutes. The chauffeur dropped me right outside the first class check in section at Terminal 3 where Etihad staff were awaiting my arrival.

Abu Dhabi Airport

The staff guided me to the bag drop area where I gave them my bags. If you have carry-on luggage only there is no need to check in as the staff print your boarding pass for you before you arrive.

Etihad First Class Check In

The staff also guided me through security and even handled the passport check.

Etihad First Class Lounge, Abu Dhabi

I’ve reviewed the first class lounge before but this time was going to be different. Etihad has separate Residence areas in their Abu Dhabi, Melbourne, New York and London lounge. The residence lounge is exclusively for Residence passengers, and they can bring guests. The lounge has a dedicated butler, and Greg was my butler for the majority of the afternoon.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

The residence lounge has two doors, one in the main area of the lounge and one in the back corridor which is pictured above.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

The lounge isn’t massive, but there’s no need to be. It’s very private, quiet and luxurious.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

The ceiling features the same hanging pendants which are found in many of Etihad’s lounges around the world.

Etihad Residence Lounge Pendants

The lounge has enough seating for ten people, but I’d imagine it wouldn’t usually have ten people in there.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

The leather is the same Poltrona Frau leather that’s found in the first class seats and the Residence.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi


Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi Seating

Post from RICOH THETA. – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

You’ll also notice the plates, cutlery, and glasses are quite different to what’s in first class. The plates are 18 carat gold designed by French company Bernardaud, The cutlery is 18 carat gold (on one side) which is designed by UK company Studio William, and the Glass is by Vera Wang.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi Dining Table

Post from RICOH THETA. – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

The lounge has a small bar/table area opposite the dining table which is where you can have light snacks and where the plates, menus, and cutlery is stored.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

You also have a coffee machine and water available, but I recommend having a coffee prepared by the chef in the kitchen instead of the machine.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

Etihad also has a second room which is either used for high-level VIP’s, Residence guests if the other lounge is occupied or large groups for meetings.

Etihad VIP Room

The lounge has very similar decor but is a little smaller and features different plates, cutlery, and glass. I’d assume if a Residence guest were using the area the cutlery, plates, and glass would be swapped out.

Etihad VIP Room


Etihad VIP Room


Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi


Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi


Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

As I sat down, Greg brought some water and nuts to me on the sofa.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

As it was nearing lunch time, I decided to start dining at the table.

Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi


Etihad Residence Lounge, Abu Dhabi


Etihad Résidence Lounge, Abu Dhabi

Etihad knew my age beforehand, so they got me a non-alcoholic sparkling date drink which was actually very nice, I ended up having three bottles of it in the lounge.

Sparkling Date Drink


Butler Greg with sparkling date drink


Pouring of the sparkling date drink


Sparkling Date Drink

The attention to detail is incredible, everything was plated beautifully and looked amazing.


Etihad has Yas Caviar in the lounges and onboard which is farmed in Abu Dhabi. Some have said it’s a little salty, but I found it perfectly fine.

Yas Caviar

The caviar also came with various condiments.

Caviar Condiments


Bread Plate

After having the caviar, I decided just to relax and get some work done. Greg provided me with some amenities for the lounge which are the same as the ones found onboard

Christian Lacroix Pyjamas for the Residence

I was also given a Residence luggage tag; you’ll see a lot of Residence branded things in this post.

Residence Bag Tag

After working for a few hours, I decided to have some more food. I choose to have a Palak Chicken Curry.

Chicken Curry

And for dessert, I decided to have the Apple meets Cinnamon.

Apple Meets Cinnamon Dessert

The lounge also has it’s own private bathroom complete with a shower, it also has a prayer room.

Shower and Prayer Room

Yes, bathrobes in the lounge!


I’d love to get a set of Residence branded robes one day 😉

Residence Branding

The bathroom was spotless, everytime it would get used it would be cleaned. That’s impressive service.

Bathroom Sink

The bathroom house Acqua Di Parma amenities which are also the same ones found onboard the aircraft.

Acqua Di Parma Amenities


Toilet and Shower


Acqua Di Parma Shower Products


Prayer Room


Prayer Room


Prayer Room

While I had a shower the butler offered to shine my shoes which was pretty great; I also got my shirt pressed.

Shoe shining service

After the shower I decided to have more food, it was about 7:00 in the evening so I went for a dinner service. At 6:00 butler Greg’s shift had ended so I was greeted by Salim.

Lounge menu’s


And here is the a La Carte menus:

And lastly the bar and lounge menu:

For dinner, I went with my favourite meals in the lounge, the Emirates Palace dining. It’s the same menu available for first class but is presented a little differently for Residence guests. The lounge will be getting an updated new version of the menu from February.

Dates with Charmi


Chicken and Barley Soup


Scallops Mughrabia




Lamb Medfoun



You’ll also notice the menus have the branding on them; it’s the small details that make it feel exclusive.

Residence Menus


Residence Menus

After having my dinner, I was offered some Arabic Coffee and Dates, of course, I couldn’t say no!

Arabic Coffee


Arabic Coffee

Warm coffee and sweet dates, a perfect mix.

Arabic Coffee & Dates

I was also shown the menu’s for Style and Shave & Six Senses Spa, all of the options are free of charge for Residence guests.

Style and Shave & Massage menu

I went with a 15-minute shoulder massage which was very soothing and was a perfect way to prepare for the long flight.

Massage Chair

When I got back to the lounge, Salim had written down the names of the plates and cutlery for me. I mentioned to him that I love the design and he went out of his way to do write them down. Etihad, you never fail to impress me. It’s the small things like that which make the experience personal.

I also decided to take some photo’s of the plates and cutlery for show as it’s just beautiful.

Residence Studio William Cutlery


Residence Bernardaud & Studio William cutlery

Sadly my time in the lounge was over, and it was time to board. As a Residence passenger you’re picked up from the lounge by a staff member and transported to the gate by buggy, it felt kind of awesome and kind of awkward at the same time.

Buggy to the gate


You may also like


Adam January 30, 2017 - 8:57 am

Awesome review, I love the Etihad First Lounge in Abu Dhabi and this looks like an even better version. Where did you fly in the Residence? Can’t wait for that review.

Hasan January 31, 2017 - 2:28 am

Hi !

Lovely post. Love you how write and frame all your content. I can kind of relate to it because that how I like to analyse my experiences.

Just a quick question ? What route did you fly and what was your redemption/purchase plan ?

I’m flying the residence in June from AUH-LHR. Pretty excited about it.

PS – the pick up cars in your pic is an Audi A8L and the other is a Toyota family car.

Your insta friend : TravellingIsAWayOfLife

Zac George January 31, 2017 - 2:53 am

Thanks Hasan, I flew from Abu Dhabi to Sydney, Cheers.

Ryan February 1, 2017 - 3:40 am

Hey Zac! I really like your perspective on this review, but is it just me or some of the images couldn’t be loaded?
I’m also curious to know your redemption/purchase plan, as Hasan asked before.
Another thing that confuses me, were you not allowed to drink alcohol there?

Zac George February 1, 2017 - 2:23 pm

Hi Ryan – Sometimes It’s the strength of the internet, usually refreshing the page rectifies the problem. Cheers.

Adam February 2, 2017 - 10:46 am

Great review. Your photography really helps to capture the story. Did you redeem points for this booking?

etihad February 28, 2017 - 12:12 pm

can you please explain how you afforded it. You didnt answer the questions in the flight review so i thought i would try here. Please stop alluding from the question and give a straight answer. If you dont feel comfortable sharing here feel free to email me as I am extremely curious.

Zac George February 28, 2017 - 12:16 pm

Hi there First of all, it shouldn’t matter how I afforded It as it’s no one’s business however, I will answer your question. I work full time 5 days a week and have saved for 2 years. All of my travel is self-funded and not given by airlines. If it was, I would advise so. My interview with CNN clearly pointed out how I earned and paid for it. Thanks for reading.

slotbitches June 20, 2019 - 4:29 pm

Wow, awesome blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your website is magnificent, let alone the content!

Comments are closed.