Virgin launches Hat Valet in time for Derby Day


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Virgin Australia today launched the Hat Valet service which provides first-class handling of a racegoer’s most important fashion accessory, the headpiece, for customers travelling from Sydney to Melbourne during this year’s Spring Racing Carnival.

The airline will hand-deliver hats and fascinators while offering a host of unique and personalised services commencing this Saturday ahead of Derby Day, to ensure guests arrive in Melbourne in style and race-day ready.

Services exclusively available in the airline’s flagship Sydney Lounge include complimentary blow-dries and hair styling, make up touch ups, ModelCo make up kits, and a dedicated shoe shining service by social enterprise franchise, Buffed.

Australia’s race carnival darling, Rachael Finch, experienced the Hat Valet service today at the official launch joined by Australia’s premier milliner Nerida Winter.

“Headwear is what makes the races so much fun and glamorous!” Ms Winter said.

“When you consider Australians spent around $50 million in race wear for the Spring Racing season last year and retail stores like Myer can see up to one headpiece per minute fly out the door during the busy pre-racing season period, we know how important this accessory is to race-goers. They want to be able to wear them again.

“And let’s be honest, it can be stressful transporting them. Virgin Australia has porters on standby in their Sydney and Melbourne lounges, complete with spare hat boxes, to ensure a hand-delivery service every step of the way.

“I know some of my clients love Virgin Australia’s Hat Valet service and look forward to using it on their trip to Melbourne every year,” Ms Winter said.

Virgin Australia Group Executive, Public Affairs, Danielle Keighery said: “The Spring Racing Carnival is one of the biggest events on Australia’s sporting calendar and Virgin Australia will once again ensure our guests arrive in Melbourne race-day ready.

“Virgin Australia is continually looking to enhance the customer experience and we are delighted to bring this popular service back to racegoers this year along with a host of complimentary services for our lounge guests such as hair styling and make-up touch up kits thanks to ModelCo.

“For the first time this year we welcome Buffed into our Sydney Lounge, which is a shoe shine social enterprise that supports homeless, displaced or marginalised Australians,” Ms Keighery said.

Buffed supports people excluded from mainstream employment and provides them the skills, location, equipment and the environment to set up a business as shoe and leather treatment artisans. Buffed is now permanently available in Virgin Australia’s Sydney Lounge for a small fee of $8, all of which goes to the Buffed artisan.

The Hat Valet services are exclusively available to all Business Class guests, Platinum, Gold and Lounge members through the premium kerbside entry of Virgin Australia’s Sydney Lounge.

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