Thursday, August 17, 2017

AirAsia RedQ: One of the Coolest Workspaces in the World


For nine years now, I've considered the classroom as my work area; a relatively small space where dreams are nurtured and envisioned. Two weeks ago, I have been given a chance to visit a workplace where passionate people converge, connecting people and culture. It was enlivening. The moment I entered AirAsia's new corporate hub, the RedQuarters or RedQ, I felt a silent fulfillment of wishes and realized dreams.

Together with eight media people, I was invited for a tour of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to check out the new corporate base of the world's best low-cost airline (Skytrax World Airline Awards for nine straight years). KL is my second home in Asia since it became a hub for affordable flights around the Southeast Asian Region. My dreams of exploring Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Laos, and more were realized with AirAsia's lowest fares. 


At four o'clock in the afternoon, NAIA Terminal 3 was very quiet. I then realized that it's the middle of a workweek, hence, the almost empty terminal. Our AirAsia flight Z2940 left Manila at around sundown, commencing our four-day jaunt.

I tried working on my writing backlog whilst on the plane but got engrossed on the featured travel stories of Travel3Sixty magazine. It was not until the aroma of inflight meals which started to fill the plane that I started to put down the magazine; dinnertime.

I then grabbed the Hot Meals menu and scanned their selection. Santan, AirAsia's award-winning inflight menu, features eight delicious dishes across its networks, highlighting the unique and distinct flavor of the region. A wide array of choices for small eaters and belly busters are available, complete with nutrition information, perfect for calorie-conscious folks.

AirAsia Inflight Meal
Trying out the newest inflght menu of AirAsia
I had Chicken Lasagne with Philippine-made Lemongrass Pandan brewed tea, plus some chips to complete the meal. The tomato and cream sauce complemented the oozing melted cheese on top. The crunchy steamed broccoli and carrots also added a layer of texture into it. My local brewed tea was also quite good. I actually wanted to get another meal but restrained myself from doing so.

By the way, it will save you a few bucks if you purchase your meal while booking your flight online. Also, there are more options for pre-booked meals.

After the filling meal, I effortlessly snoozed afterwards. 

Arriving at Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 at ten in the evening, the group swiftly passed through the efficient immigration counter and went to Gateway@KLIA2 Mall for the routine travel errands; my companions exchanged money (I have a stash of Malaysian Ringgit with me) while I bought a sim card for MYR20 (US$ 4.65) to attend to my social media needs while on the road.

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Tune Hotel KLIA2
We had dinner somewhere in the mall and were ready to call it a day (or night). Good thing our home for three nights is just a mere eight-minute walk away from the airport. It was just good to finally rest after our four-hour flight.

TuneHotels.Com has a limited service hotel concept. Operated by Tune Hotels, their famous “5-star sleeping experience at a 1-star price” accommodation provides lowers hotel fees by eliminating costly extras that you don’t sometimes use. Adapting the same concept of its sister company, AirAsia, you actually have the freedom to choose add-ons that are offered on a pay-as-you-go basis including toiletries, AC, breakfast, internet access, and so on.

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Instagrammable chill spot
Tune Hotel KLIA2’s location is perfect for layovers as it offers a premium accommodation right across the entrance gate of the airport. Going to Kuala Lumpur from the airport would be too much of an effort for transit passengers as the one-hour one way ride to the city is very time-consuming; might as well use that time to book at Tune for proper rest. 

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Funky lounge area
AirAsia’s famous red and black color theme was utilized on the reception area. The funky dome-shaped light fixtures against the high ceiling adorned the whole space.

The room was basic yet hip; there’s an open clothes rack, two single beds with cool bedsteads, fluffy pillow and warm duvet, ceiling fan, individually-powered AC, flat screen TV with satellite channels, work table with lamp and chair, drinking water, and a full-length mirror.

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Our home for four days
The room was also furnished with an en suite toilet and bath with hot and cold shower, toiletries, hair dryer, and bath towels.  The room is simple yet functional; very tastefully designed.

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Modern retro feel
My roommate and I chatted a bit before falling into a coma at around midnight. I thought that having our accommodation right across the airport would bother us because of the noise coming from the aircrafts. But no, soundproofing provided us a lovely sleep that felt like we're at the comforts of our very own room.

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Classic AirAsia red and black color theme
Breakfast doesn't always come with the room rate but at MYR28 (US$6.52) per person, it’s definitely a better option for guests rather than looking for something to eat at the airport on the wee hours of the morning (breakfast is served daily from 4:00 am to 10:00 am).

Tune Hotel KLIA2
All-day casual dining restaurant
The buffet spread is a mix of continental and Malaysian breakfast dishes. I enjoyed the fried noodles section and the nasi lemak. I just wished they would pump up the choices more and have a different spread each day. Nonetheless, our meals were very filling.


Honestly, after having been to Kuala Lumpur countless of times, it was only the exclusive access to the AirAsia RedQuarters that made me sign up for this trip. I was too excited to finally see firsthand the soul of my all-time favorite airline.

AirAsia RedQ
One of AirAsia's Mantra
RedQ, short for RedQuarters, is AirAsia’s new corporate hub which covers an area of 18,000 square meters and houses 2,000 Allstars (AirAsia staff). The new headquarter's cool name was conceived by an AirAsia X cabin crew member, January Ann Baysa from the Philippines through a contest. Since then, RedQ became synonymous to the ideal workspace. As they say, it is where dreams are fulfilled.

AirAsia RedQ
Bosses' workspace
It took us around five minutes on foot from Tune Hotels to finally reach the highlight of the trip that day.

We entered the secured receiving area and went inside a huge playground, well, a playground for adults. 

AirAsia RedQ
Open-plan office space layout
The atrium layout provided a relaxed environment. People in their most casual outfit (some in their gym attire 'coz they have an in-house gym) roamed around the open space.

RedQ also employs an open plan, there are no enclosed space as workspaces except for themed meeting rooms, which still uses glass walls for an open feel. You could literally see and feel the dynamic flow of each work area without removing each cubicle its own individual style. You’d truly feel at home with this kind of environment.

AirAsia RedQ
Cantilevered themed meeting rooms
Notable features were also highlighted such as transparent glass elevators, a bamboo bicycle (that can actually be used inside), pastel-colored bean bags scattered on faux grass, indoor steel bridges, and more. AirAsia’s Allstars in its RedQ home really know how to work hard and play harder.

AirAsia RedQ
Where the coolest minds meet
I've been constantly traveling for seven years now and AirAsia truly helped me to fulfill my dreams of seeing the world even with my meager means. And as I went back to the classroom after the trip to accomplish my desire to change the world as a public school teacher, it dawned on me that having a fun spirit and cool environment could definitely enhance my student's learning. And just like AirAsia’s RedQ, I know that even with this tiny space, my students and I could foster an atmosphere where Everyone Can Fly.

AirAsia RedQ
Food choices at AirAsia's RedQ
AirAsia has daily flights to Kuala Lumpur from Manila, Cebu and Davao.

Philippines AirAsia

Tune Hotel KLIA2
Lot Pt. 13, Jalan KLIA 2/2,
64000 KLIA, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
Contact Number: (+60) 3.8787.1720 |(+60) 3.8787.1728

RedQ
Jalan Pekeliling 5,
Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (KLIA2),
64000 KLIA, Selangor, Malaysia





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