While world travelers would argue that airport lounges in the United States have a long way to catch up with world standards, there are some United States airport lounges in the United States that are worth checking out. While these often come as perks for flying first class, others are accessible depending on the credit card you have in your pocket. Additionally, you can get in almost all of them by paying a fee at the door.
The Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse at John F. Kennedy Airport allows you to get complimentary treatments at the spa which can include facials, hair styling or manicures. Guests can use upscale bath products to take a shower. A large selection of tapas and top-flight champagne makes this a great place to relax.
Another great lounge at John F. Kennedy Airport is Lufthansa First Class Wining and Dining Lounge which is accessible only to those flying first-class on this airline as it takes a special code to operate the elevator. Enjoy the complimentary single-malt scotch or other drinks before embarking on a delicious five-course meal or choose from the a la carte menu.
The Club at Atlanta’s Airport is consistently packed. This is one of the few airport lounges to offer complimentary cocktails. The Bloody Mary’s here are superb. This lounge offers outstanding workstations, and they have telephones if your cell phone is not working.
While Delta operates many Sky Clubs around the world, their flagship lounge is the one in John F. Kennedy airport. The outside patio-like area facing the tarmac makes this a great place to unwind while snacking and drinking.
While there are over 600 United Clubs around the world, the one at Washington D.C’s Dulles Airport is unique because it is located in the original cafeteria to this airport. The art deco architecture has been lovingly restored to its original grandeur.
The five American Express Centurion Lounges west of the Mississippi River each offer unique twists on local culture. When feasible, local wines are featured along with food created by local chefs to take advantage of iconic foods in the area. Many have flat-screen televisions and those west of the Mississippi River feature showers.
Most of the Star Alliance Lounge at Los Angeles International is located outside making it a great place to relax if you are tired of being stuck indoors. The lovely patio features a waterfall, which can help to calm frayed nerves in a natural way. You can also check out a book from their library or watch a movie from their large collection. Dine on a variety of complimentary snacks while enjoying an alcoholic beverage.
The Cathay Pacific Lounge at San Francisco International Airport is worth checking out. After leaving the elevator, make sure to check out the aviation art in the hallway on the way to this 9,000-square-foot lounge. A variety of seating makes it easy to relax in this lounge. This lounge has very nice shower rooms hidden in the back of it. While the hours for food are limited, the Hong Kong noodles are fantastic here.
One of the most beautiful airport lounges in the United States is Air Canada’s Maple Leaf Lounge at Los Angeles International Airport. This lounge in Terminal 6 was designed by Brent Comber using birchwood. As with most lounges, this intimate lounge features free food and drink.
Alaska Airlines’ Board Room in Concourse D is a beautiful space to work. This lounge is spread across two floors with patrons having the option to use the elevator or the stairs to access the upper level. The bottom level contains plenty of workspace along with Seattle’s famous coffee.
While airport lounges in the United States still need to move forward to catch up with many parts of the world, these 10 lounges are the best lounges available. Many of them have been redesigned to allow ample room for work and relaxing. Check them out the next time you are in their respective airports.
Airline lounges are an invaluable resource to the frequent traveler. When times are tough and stressful, they are an excellent resource to recover and when you’re on a leisurely vacation they are a great way to get your travel started in luxury.
Most airlines have frequent traveler or other reward-based programs where you are entitled to a whole retinue of upgrade options and improved meal and beverage choices. Of course, these are well-known additions to getting better seats for a fraction of the cost of upgrading your seats on an individual basis. These perks are great on their own and very popular, but common among them is a way to gain entrance to these airport lounges. Some airlines have different degrees of luxury and freebies, corresponding to different degrees of membership, such as whether one is a first class member or a business class member or how often they fly or whether they are using the particular airline credit card or other loyalty reward.
Members of the lounge will find some great customer service and personal attention that they might not get from the main gate personnel which can be a very welcome change of pace.
The American Airlines Admiral’s Club in Los Angeles International Airport is one of the best in terms of ease of use. It is located in Terminal 4 on the concourse level right by Gate 40. It is open twenty and a half hours a day and features complimentary WiFi and PCs to use it on, as well as bathroom amenities such as showers and even a room for the kids to play in.
The Malaysia Airlines Business Class Golden Lounge London Heathrow is also at Terminal 4, albeit 8,000 miles away in England. It is next to Gate 6 and the Gulf Air Lounge. It features wide and luxurious seating and decorative furnishings throughout. Not just Malaysia Airlines, but OneWorld and Emerald members have access to this first class airport lounge. But there’s plenty of space for all these passengers as this lounge is one of the largest found in an international multi-service terminal.
The Qantas First Class Lounge in Sydney and the Qantas Business Class Lounge in Hong Kong are very popular with travelers. They allow customers who have any Qantas flight to partake in their offerings with a guest who is not a member, provided they are on the same flight. In some cases, even affiliate airlines, such as Emirates, are enough for entrance. Some of the food includes Neil Perry original dishes and there is cocktail service with signature specialty drinks or simple beer and wine. Or, if it’s not that hour yet, there are hot breakfasts for a welcome change of pace from the airplane fare.
The Thai Airways Royal First Class in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi airport makes it a point to greet you with a responsive hostess and a flute of champagne. This lounge is well known for its opulence and luxury, as members enjoy caviar and beverages in a spacious cabin. There is usually a masseuse available to help prepare you for your flight.