American Eagle Airlines, the regional affiliate of American Airlines, is launching First Class service on all 25 of its existing Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets...

American Eagle Airlines, the regional affiliate of American Airlines, is launching First Class service on all 25 of its existing Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets and the 22 new CRJ700s it ordered in December 2009.

With the introduction of nine First Class seats, Eagle will offer customers a premium product with the same level of service customers experience on American Airlines, a founding member of the oneworld alliance. Customers may now purchase a First Class seat on any CRJ-700 flight, for travel from July 2.

American Eagle will offer a complimentary First Class dining service that includes a continental breakfast with cereal or hot oatmeal and yogurt and a lunch or dinner that includes a fresh salad or a sandwich and dessert. First Class customers receive warm, cleansing towels and mixed nuts prior to their meals, which are served on china. On flights of shorter duration, beverage service will be accompanied by a gourmet snack mix.

“We’re pleased to introduce First Class service on our CRJ-700 aircraft,” says Peter Bowler, president and CEO of American Eagle. “By July we will have our fleet of 25 CRJs converted by American Eagle mechanics to the new First Class and main cabin design, and we will have taken delivery of the first two of our 22 new CRJs that will also feature First Class comfort and amenities.”

American Eagle has long operated a fleet of 25 Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets and in December 2009 it ordered 22 more. The carrier is outfitting all 47 in two-class configurations that feature First Class seating as well as new economy-class seats. Every seat on every American Eagle CRJ700 is being upholstered in leather

American Eagle will offer First Class service from its Chicago and Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) hubs. From Chicago, customers will be able to book First Class service on flights to Atlanta, Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C., Newark, George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Oklahoma City, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, San Antonio, and Salt Lake City.

From DFW, customers will be able to fly First Class to Cleveland, Milwaukee, and the Arkansas destinations of Little Rock and Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport in Bentonville/Springdale.

American Eagle worked closely with engineers at Bombardier to design new custom leather seating for both premium and main cabins in its CRJ700s. With ergonomically contoured back and seat cushions, seats throughout the aircraft will offer more comfort and luxury than previously. A unique,  articulated seat-bottom will allow customers to recline with less impact on the legroom of passengers seated behind them.

In the main cabin, a new ultra-slim design will improve comfort and stability and, due to its enhanced back structure, also offers an additional inch of between-seat space compared to American Eagle’s existing CRJ700 seats.

Four-way adjustable headrests are featured on both the First Class and main cabin seating. With the addition of the First Class seats, Eagle’s CRJ700s will have either 63 or 65 seats in the main cabin and nine seats in First Class.

Eagle also will offer Priority AAccess on all flights offering First Class service, allowing premium customers to board at their leisure. In addition, the regional airline will offer Premium Baggage service to its First Class customers, ensuring their checked bags are expedited to the baggage claim area after landing.