Cupcakes, a celebrity and an unmissable marching band – no, that’s not an American Fair, that’s Virgin Australia re-launching its service between Melbourne and Los Angeles.

The airline resumed flights this week with a bang – literally, bang on the marching drum – at Melbourne International Airport.

Ahead of the inaugural flight, the carrier recruited an American-themed marching band to make some noise and entertain passengers at the check-in hall while cupcakes kept their stomachs dancing and LAX Duty Free vouchers brought the smiles.

Friend of Virgin Australia and Melbourne local, Dannii Minogue, was also there to celebrate the launch before boarding the flight. She said she was thrilled that the airline is finally bringing its “renowned service” to her hometown.

Virgin Australia

“When you step on board ‘The Business’ you can see why it was voted the best in the world, but Virgin Australia makes you feel like a VIP no matter which cabin you’re in.”

Dannii Minogue

“The crew are always so friendly and helpful especially when travelling as a family. I’ll certainly be taking this trip regularly with Virgin Australia.”

The all-American experience kept on coming at 32,000-feet as guests flying on the Boeing 777-300ER to the United States were treated to the-ever-popular Hershey’s milk chocolate bars and Budweiser beer, while Business Class passengers got their hands on Pumpkin Pie served with Crème Fraiche for dessert.

Virgin Australia’s Group Executive John Thomas said North America is an important market for the airline and he’s delighted at the opportunity to  bring the carrier’s “flair and sophistication” to the route.

“Delta will also codeshare on our Melbourne services, and passengers can earn Velocity Points and Status Credits, have their baggage checked through and enjoy reciprocal frequent flyer benefits on the ground,” he said.

Virgin Australia 2

Flight VA23 will leave Melbourne on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at 11.30am to arrive in Los Angeles at 9.00am (local time). The return flight VA24 will depart LAX on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 8.55pm to arrive in Melbourne at 5.45am.

The Boeing 777-300ER operating on the route gives guests access to Virgin Australia’s ‘The Business‘ with lie-flat beds and direct aisle access.

To celebrate the new service, Virgin Australia’s Melbourne Domestic Lounge will serve American-themed food until 7 April including hot cakes with streaky bacon, maple syrup and potato hash for breakfast as well as bagels with cream cheese. At lunch time and dinner, patrons will be able to dine on American cheese burgers with fries and ketchup, shrimp chowder with crusty bread and Krispy Kreme Donuts.

Did you happen to be at the airport during the launch? Send us your pics by posting them below.