La Compagnie, a new business class-only airline that will connect Newark Liberty International Airport and Paris's Charles de Gaulle Airport, was officially announced in New York this week, with flights starting July 11. Founded by industry veterans Frantz Yvelin (L’Avion) and Peter Luethi (Swissair; JetAirways), the carrier will offer four to five weekly flights this summer, building up to daily flights by the end of the year.
The three pricing tiers, which depend on cancellation and change options, start at $1,800, $2,400, and $4,600; there will also be occasional promotions with the hope that the airline will appeal to both business and leisure travelers.
The carrier’s only Boeing 757-200—painted in the company’s signature blue—has a single-aisle configuration with 74 lie-flat seats, complete with a whopping 62 inches of pitch. (A second aircraft will join the fleet in December.) Other passenger perks include access to airport lounges, two free checked bags, Caudalie amenity kits, personal Samsung Galaxy tablets in each seat, and a menu by chef Christophe Langree of Paris’s Hôtel Matignon; complimentary WiFi will be rolled out soon.
According to Luethi, Newark was selected for its proximity not only to Manhattan, but also business centers in New Jersey and Philadelphia. In addition, Terminal B was recently renovated, and immigration is more efficient than at JFK. La Compagnie is still awaiting official approval from the DOT and FAA, but Luethi says it should happen in the next couple of weeks.
Brooke Porter Katz is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @brookeporter1.