A replica of the iconic 1970s Boeing 747-200 First Class inflight lounge has been unveiled as the newest installation at the Qantas Founders Museum in Longreach.
The custom-made replica was built as a set for the airline’s Centenary safety video and was recently gifted by Qantas on long term loan to the Founders Museum.
It will feature in the Museum’s main exhibition hall, alongside original Qantas 1970s uniform by Emilio Pucci and onboard products from the era including menus, silverware and crockery.
Qantas took delivery of its first B747-200 aircraft in 1971 featuring a nautical themed upper deck lounge for First Class customers that was accessed by spiral stairs.
The lounge had space for 15 passengers, a cocktail bar and included seats that swivelled 360 degrees.
It was considered revolutionary at the time and was part of a new era in travel brought in by the 747.
The replica lounge has been built to scale using original aircraft wall panels taken from a retired Qantas 747-200 in the Mojave Desert. It features fabrics and vivid colours of the decade meticulously recreated to match the originals.
The upper deck lounge was replaced in 1979 when Qantas became the first airline to introduce Business Class on its 747 fleet.
Unveiling the retro lounge at a commemorative event in Longreach, Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the national carrier was delighted to share an important part of Qantas’ one-hundred-year history with the Qantas Founders Museum.
“The Boeing 747 aircraft revolutionised international travel and the Queen of the Skies was a much- loved aircraft that took millions of Australians on their first overseas adventure”, said Mr Joyce.
The upper deck lounge was an exclusive retreat for passengers travelling in First class where they could enjoy a drink or two, smoke, dine on prawn cocktails and socialise in style.
The retro lounge exhibit will complement the Qantas 747 aircraft on display in the air park at the Qantas Founders Museum and offer visitors a realistic glimpse into a unique time in aviation history.
Qantas Founders Museum CEO Tony Martin said “We are excited to be able to showcase this new exhibit within the Museum which will be able to take aviation and travel enthusiasts on a walk down memory lane for generations to come.”
Qantas donated funds raised from the 747 retirement joy flights in 2020 to help cover installation costs.
The Qantas Founders Museum is hosting a program of events through the airline’s Centenary year. For more information visit the Qantas Founders Museum website.
Images of the custom-made replica lounge are available to download here.