In September, the two companies announced that United had selected OTG to transform the shopping and dining experience in Terminal C at Newark Liberty, with a $120 million project funded by OTG.
Specifics of those plans have now been announced, including design renderings, chefs and restaurant concepts.
They include Saison, a classic French bistro by Alain Ducasse; Vesper Tavern, a gastropub-style tavern by Paul Liebrandt; Riviera offering French country fare by Alex Guarnaschelli; Mario Carbone’s Italian steakhouse; and Josh Capon’s SRF Bar.
Food halls are being reinvented as a global bazaar of exciting culinary choices, with chefs hand-pulling fresh noodles at Kaedama, Shoushin Yanaura’s ramen bar; authentic Mexican street fare at Alex Stupak’s Taqa Taqueria; Nonna’s Meatball Cafe by Amanda Freitag; and hand-crafted treats at Jacques Torres’ Melange Bakery.
Port Authority executive director, Pat Foye, explains: “World-class amenities help make airports world-class, and OTG Management and United Airlines have produced an array of superb culinary offerings at Newark Liberty International Airport.
“OTG has proven itself with top-notch offerings already at both John F. Kennedy International and LaGuardia airports, and we welcome them to Newark Liberty in what will surely make the traveling experience there even better.”
An array of F&B options
In total, more than 55 new dining venues will provide travellers with an array of culinary choices, and OTG owns and operates all restaurants with the chef partners driving restaurant concepts and menus.
Renowned architects and designers will reshape the dining and retail space of the terminal that will combine comfort with beautiful, free-flowing spaces, seamlessly integrating technology, craftsmanship and design.
Design partners include David Rockwell of the Rockwell Group, Jun Aizaki of Crème Designs, David Mexico of David Mexico Design Group and Andrew Cohen and Jeremy Levitt of Parts and Labor Design.
Nearly 60 gate areas will also be updated with custom seating and tables creating a lounge-like atmosphere.
And, as in the restaurants, travellers can use iPads throughout the gate areas to track their flights in real-time and order food, beverages and other amenities via a visual menu available in 20 different languages, with orders delivered to customers’ seats within 15 minutes.
Power and iPads
Additionally, travellers will not have to search for a power outlet, with over 10,000 outlets and USB interfaces accompanying the redesigned terminal seating, along with complimentary Internet browsing on nearly 6,000 OTG iPads.
Art will play another key role in the revitalization of the terminal. Local artists’ works will be on display in the gate areas, as well as the main atrium that welcomes travelers as they come through security.
In an industry first, United MileagePlus members will be able to use award miles to purchase dining and retail amenities at Newark Liberty Terminal C restaurants and stores using OTG’s unique iPad customer experience platform.
This innovative technology marks the first time travelers will have the option to use mileage redemption for in-person purchases.
Customers will be able to scan their boarding pass or enter their MileagePlus number on any of the almost 6,000 iPads that will be available throughout the terminal’s restaurants, bars and gate areas when the project is complete.
The iPad will display the customer’s up-to-date flight information and offer dining or beverage options in up to 20 different languages.
The cost of the items will be displayed in both dollars and miles, and at check out, MileagePlus members will have the option to pay with award miles, offering a seamless experience for the savvy traveler.
With this integration, United and OTG are aiming to reimagine the airport experience at Newark Liberty’s Terminal C through "elevated dining, design and technology".
Kate Gebo, United’s vice president of corporate real estate, says: “United is committed to providing a flyer-friendly experience for our customers on the ground as well as in the air.
“At our Newark hub, we’re creating new dining and retail options to provide an exceptional customer experience that incorporates the amenities and convenience that our customers tell us they want when they travel.”
With the redesign already underway at Terminal C, more than 45 of the new restaurants and retail markets will open over the next seven weeks in a transition program.
Offering a taste of what’s to come, menus will highlight the chef-curated dishes and customers will be able to experience the new technology with an initial 1,000 iPads.
The full experience is expected to be phased in over the next 18 months, with the first permanent installations debuting in the summer of 2015.
Rick Blatstein, OTG CEO, says: “The United experience at Newark Liberty will be a world-class setting that combines beautiful spaces with cutting-edge technology and some of the finest dining options anywhere.
“We view travel as a lifestyle, and our mission is to treat the airport itself as a destination, and more than just a place travellers pass through on their way to somewhere else.
“We are so pleased to work with United and our culinary and design partners to make this vision a reality.”