Baker, Ahles & Kaskovich

New American Airlines Dreamliner will have premium economy

An American Airlines Boeing 787-8 parked at Terminal D at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport.
An American Airlines Boeing 787-8 parked at Terminal D at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport. mfaulkner@star-telegram.com

When American Airlines begins flying its newest version of the Dreamliner out of DFW Airport in November, it will come with a new cushier class of seats for its best customers.

The Fort Worth-based airline’s Boeing 787-9 aircraft will be the first plane with American’s new “premium economy” class. Premium economy seats will be behind business class and in front of extra economy in the main cabin, and will have wider seats, more legroom, amenity kits and enhanced meal service.

The Boeing 787-9 will fly on routes between DFW and Madrid, and DFW and Sao Paulo, starting on Nov. 4. Customers can buy tickets for these flights starting today.

“As the first U.S. airline to introduce premium economy seating on international flights, we continue to innovate new ways to meet our customers’ expectations with the products and service they value,” said American’s chief marketing officer Andrew Nocella.

American said it will initially make the premium economy seats available to select members of its AAdvantage frequent flyer program. It will not sell premium economy tickets until early 2017.

The Boeing 787-9 will have 30 business class seats, 21 premium economy seats, 27 main cabin extra seats and 207 economy seats. All seats will have personal seat-back entertainment systems along with power and USB ports.

American also plans to install the premium economy product on its Airbus A350 when it arrives in 2017 and retrofit its Boeing 777-300ERs, 777-200ERs, 787-800s and Airbus A330s with premium economy in the next three years.

New old owner for Crescent

Within weeks of announcing a new real estate investment fund, Fort Worth’s John Goff has returned to his roots with one of its first purchases — the Rosewood Crescent hotel in Dallas.

The hotel will be renamed the Hotel Crescent Court, returning the historic, iconic brand to the Texas landmark, Crescent said. Crescent will invest $30 million in the property, owned by Rosewood Hotel & Resorts, a Hunt family company that was sold to Hong Kong investors in 2011.

Goff’s Crescent Real Estate just closed a $200 million, invitation-only fund that will focus on properties in the U.S. and will likely have more than $4 billion in investment capacity. Goff said he combined his two real estate firms, Crescent Real Estate Holdings and Goff Capital Partners, to manage the fund.

Goff, Crescent’s chairman, was an owner of the Hotel Crescent Court in the early 1990s. Goff invested with the late Fort Worth financier Richard Rainwater to start Crescent Real Estate in 1994. Members of Dallas’ famed Hunt family were also investors and contributed the hotel to start the real estate investment trust.

The Hotel Crescent Court was built in 1985.

Big day for Chesapeake settlement

For those who sued Chesapeake Energy, Monday is a big day.

Attorney Dan McDonald and his co-counsel at Circelli, Walter & Young have until July 11 to get 90 percent of their clients to agree to the $52.5 million settlement with the Oklahoma City energy giant or return to court and an uncertain future.

McDonald has expressed optimism in reaching that goal and, in an email to those who hired him last week, said they “expect to meet or exceed our thresholds.” Besides getting the right number of people to sign up, they also have to represent 95 percent of the natural gas production from May 2011 until February. McDonald’s firm has more than 13,000 clients.

In the email, McDonald continued to encourage those who haven’t signed up to accept the deal by 5 p.m. Monday.

Under the proposed deal, Chesapeake and its partner, Total E&P USA, will pay $29.4 million and $13.1 million in cash, respectively, plus $10 million through a Chesapeake promissory note payable in three years. Individual clients are expected to get payments ranging from a few hundred dollars to several thousand.

The $52.5 million payment is based on 100 percent participation and would be prorated to conform with the number of clients participating, according to the settlement agreement. There is also a provision to negotiate further if the approval thresholds are not met, the document states.

Things are already winding down at the McDonald Law Firm. According to a former employee, McDonald has been letting people go, including staffers who did nothing but scan documents, landmen who researched leases and paralegals.

Surgery center with a view

Texas Health Southwest Fort Worth last week opened a new $40 million, 108,000-square-foot professional office building that includes a sports orthopedic surgery center.

The expansion includes a five-story professional office building and matching parking garage, both of which are across the street from the hospital’s main campus.

The surgery center includes an observation deck between the operating rooms for families and other visitors. There also is a conference center for educational classes, an endoscopy center and clinic, and 15,000 square feet of office space for lease.

Texas Health Southwest is owned by Texas Health Resources, which recently purchased the former Forest Park Medical Center in Fort Worth a few miles away.

Andrea Ahles: 817-390-7631, @Sky_Talk

Max B. Baker: 817-390-7714, @MaxbakerBB

Steve Kaskovich: 817-390-7773, @stevekasko

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