• Joe Breitfeller

Qantas Founders Museum Unveils 747 Retro Lounge Exhibit

A replica of Qantas’ iconic 1970s Boeing 747-200 First Class inflight Lounge has opened as a new exhibit at the Qantas Founders Museum in Longreach, Australia. The replica was built as a set for the carrier’s Centenary safety video and has now been gifted to the museum.

747 Retro Lounge Exhibit at the Qantas Founders Museum - Courtesy Qantas Founders Museum

On Wednesday (April 21, 2021), Qantas announced the unveiling of a new attraction at the Qantas Founders Museum in Longreach, Australia. The exhibit features a replica of the iconic 1970s Qantas Boeing 747-200 First Class inflight lounge, which was built as a set for the carrier’s Centenary onboard safety video. The custom-made replica has now been gifted by Qantas to the museum on long-term loan and will be featured in the museum’s main exhibition hall, alongside a 1970s Qantas uniform designed by Emilio Puccio and onboard products from the era.

Speaking at a commemorative event in Longreach, Qantas Group’s CEO, Alan Joyce, said,

“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.”

Also commenting on the new exhibit, Qantas Founders Museum’s CEO, Tony Martin, added,

“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 took delivery of their first B747-200 in 1971, which featured a nautical themed upper deck First Class lounge, accessed by a spiral staircase. The revolutionary lounge featured room for 15 guests, a cocktail bar and seats that swiveled 360 degrees. The upper deck lounge was a place where First Class guests could socialize in style, while enjoying a drink, smoke or dine on prawn cocktails. The replica was built to scale using original aircraft wall panels taken from a retired Qantas Boeing 747-200 in the Mojave Desert and the colorful fabrics were meticulously recreated to match the original color scheme. Qantas replaced the upper deck lounge with their industry-first Business Class cabin in 1979.

Qantas Founders Museum CEO Tony Martin with Qantas CEO Alan Joyce - Courtesy Qantas Founders Museum

The retro lounge will complement the Qantas Boeing 747 aircraft on display at the airpark at the Qantas Founders Museum, which is hosting a program of events throughout the airline’s Centenary year. Qantas donated funds raised from their 747 retirement joy flights in 2020 to help cover the installation cost of the new exhibit. For more information, visit the Qantas Founders Museum website here.

Source(s): Qantas, Qantas Founders Museum