After the recent refurbishment of South African Airways‘ short-haul fleet, the carrier has now rolled out its new business class on three new A330-300’s with two more to follow. The aircraft features a brand new business and economy class product, brought to life by Priestmangoode.


Just like the short haul cabins, the long haul aircraft now feature a myriad of South African inspired weaves, prints and colours, which are both contemporary and evoke a sense of origin. “The interior design is upmarket and resembles the elegant surroundings of SAA’s airport lounges, where warm neutrals invite customers to feel at home.” states SAA in their press release.


In Business Class, the carrier has installed 46 Thompson Vantage XL seats in a staggered 1 x 2 x 1 configuration offering all-aisle-access, an improvement compared to their previous version.


Economy Class on the A330 is fitted with 203 newly designed slim-line seats, all with extra personal space and generous legroom. Each seat has been fitted with a 10,1” screen, individual USB charging ports and access to shared PC power points.


Priestmangoode have also injected personality and texture to the bulkheads and partition walls throughout the aircraft, adding more touches of ‘Africa’ in a contemporary, elegant finish.


The design also features splashes of colour which come to life through the use of the seating. Bright blue flashes appear with the adjustment of the economy headrest, and the bright red flashes in business class can be found in the seat’s side-storage and footrest compartment.


The new interiors certainly go a long way to helping the carrier turn its product around. “Beyond product refresh – which our customers will surely enjoy – this is an important milestone for us in the context of the implementation of our Long-Term Turnaround Strategy (LTTS) we unveiled three years ago. The new aircraft will bring much needed efficiencies and this is expected to impact positively on the company’s bottom line,” explained SAA Acting CEO Musa Zwane.


We love the interiors, which offer the right level of customisation of a hard product, a holistic approach to the interiors as a whole, and a product that responds to the requirements of today’s passengers. Currently found on the Sao Paulo route, as well as Jo’burg – Lagos and Jo’burg – Cape Town, we hope to see the product rolled out and retrofitted on the rest of the fleet soon.

The Big Picture

Posted by:Jonny Clark

5 replies on “A Deeper Look At South African’s New A330-300 Interiors

  1. FINALLY! An interior that’s not all black, dark blue or grey. Colour please people! Looks nice. Like their product…their short haul cabins are very nice and comfortable.

  2. Indeed, vibrant colours reflecting earthy tones of Africa. Must have been an interesting project to be involved in, with so much choice of colours, art, design and culture to incorporate into the overall final product. Now, if SAA could follow the same trend and palette for their crew + staff uniforms (to replace the current boring 20 year old unflattering blue uniforms), they would be on a winning streak, not to forget the other on-board hard products like crockery + cutlery, menus, amenity kits etc. Awesome stuff!

  3. Pingback: You Went Where???

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