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The World’s Finest First Class Airline Lounges

I’m an airline product geek, and yearly I prefer to publish an inventory of what I contemplate to be the world’s greatest enterprise class seats, the world’s greatest top quality airways, the world’s greatest top quality lounges, and so forth. On this submit I needed to share my up to date rating of the world’s greatest top quality lounges.

First, I needed to speak briefly about my methodology for rating top quality airline lounges, after which I’ll get into my rankings, with an evidence of every.

Why it is best to belief OMAAT lounge opinions

Hopefully I don’t have to elucidate this to common OMAAT readers, however I really feel like that is value mentioning for individuals who aren’t common readers…

On a regular basis I see media shops rating top quality lounges, although they’re nearly at all times simply going off inventory media pictures and the way airways describe their lounges, fairly than precise firsthand expertise.

Why do you have to belief OMAAT lounge opinions?

  • I pay for all of my very own flights, both with money or miles
  • I don’t let the airways know that I’m reviewing their merchandise, and exit of my option to stay as nameless as attainable (there are very restricted exceptions, which I particularly disclose)
  • I’ve visited nearly each top quality lounge on the planet, most a number of occasions, so have numerous context for what makes an ideal lounge
  • I don’t have any type of monetary relationship with any airline
  • That is my ardour, I’ve been reviewing airways for 15 years, I’ve written tons of of airport lounge opinions, and have logged hundreds of thousands of miles

There aren’t many websites that may say the entire above, and within the case of another ranking businesses (like Skytrax), I actually want we’d see a bit extra transparency concerning the monetary relationship they’ve with the airways they rank.

My methodology for rating top quality lounges

Let me emphasize that my rankings are fully subjective, and that’s by design. One of many challenges with reviewing airline lounges is that everybody is in search of various things.

Some airline lounges have bedrooms which might be nearly like resort rooms. That’s priceless you probably have a protracted layover, however nugatory you probably have a brief layover. In the meantime different lounges have high notch meals, however that’s of restricted use in the event you’re between lengthy haul flights and aren’t hungry. Different lounges can prevent time getting via safety and to the aircraft, but it surely is dependent upon the circumstances.

I’m going to try to stability the above facilities, although you may shift round which lounge is greatest based mostly on what you worth essentially the most. I’m not saying anybody’s rankings needs to be in the identical order as mine, although I feel most individuals can not less than agree with my basic checklist of the highest lounges.

Let me additionally word that I’m solely placing one lounge from every airline on the checklist, even when that provider has a number of nice lounges.

Why I’m not absolutely updating rankings this 12 months

Because the begin of the pandemic it has been powerful to replace my checklist of the world’s greatest top quality airline lounges:

  • Many worldwide top quality airline lounges proceed to stay closed, given the dearth of lengthy haul enterprise journey, particularly in some areas of the world
  • Some airways have significantly scaled again their fleet of planes that includes top quality, making me surprise if a few of these top quality lounges will stick round
  • Even among the many lounges which might be open, lounge providers have largely been scaled again to attenuate contact between individuals

Nonetheless I feel there’s worth in conserving this checklist up to date, so right here’s what I’m going to do:

  • I’m not going to alter my rankings in comparison with early 2020 (the final time I formally revealed my rankings)
  • With every lounge I’ll word the final standing of issues — whether or not the lounge is open, and if a lounge isn’t open, what the chances are that it’ll reopen (I’ve added a bit on the backside of every rating with “the most recent for 2022”)

Hopefully the above is sensible, and in 2023 I hope to have the ability to replace these rankings in a approach that absolutely displays the long-term adjustments airways are making to their lounges.

The world’s 11 greatest top quality airline lounges

With the above out of the way in which, under are what I contemplate to be the 11 greatest top quality airport lounges, beginning with the most effective.

1. Air France First Class Lounge Paris (CDG)

Air France’s top quality is the entire bundle. Not solely does Air France provide one of many world’s greatest top quality inflight merchandise, however the provider’s floor expertise in Paris is equally spectacular.

In the event you’re connecting in Paris, you’ll be picked up at your aircraft and pushed to the primary class lounge, after which in a while will likely be pushed from the primary class lounge to your connecting flight.

Air France top quality lounge automotive service

There’s a lot to like concerning the Air France top quality lounge, although my favourite factor might be the restaurant, which has an Alain Ducasse menu. In my expertise it’s the most effective meals provided in any airline lounge on the planet. It’s not simply that the meals high quality is superb, however the service and presentation are equally good.

Air France top quality lounge restaurant space
Air France top quality lounge eating
Air France top quality lounge eating

There’s not a first-class floor expertise on the planet that’s as seamless and has as a lot consideration to element. It doesn’t matter whether or not you’re originating in Paris or connecting, Air France has considered all the main points.

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Air France top quality similar day, or choose enterprise class passengers should buy entry to the lounge for 500EUR.
The newest for 2022: Air France’s top quality floor expertise is kind of working as normal proper now, which is one other factor that units Air France aside.

2. Lufthansa First Class Terminal Frankfurt (FRA)

Relatively than simply providing an ideal top quality lounge, Lufthansa has taken it to the subsequent stage with its First Class Terminal. This lets you skip the principle terminal at Frankfurt Airport altogether, and as an alternative drive proper as much as the First Class Terminal, after which be pushed to your aircraft when your flight is able to board. All formalities, together with check-in, safety, and immigration, are dealt with within the lounge.

Lufthansa First Class Terminal exterior

The lounge itself is gorgeous, with attentive service, an ideal restaurant catered by DO & CO, a cigar bar, nap rooms, and collectible rubber duckies.

Lufthansa First Class Terminal bar

As an aviation geek my favourite half is being pushed throughout the apron to the aircraft. This is among the few conditions the place I hope my aircraft is parked as removed from the terminal as attainable. 😉

Lufthansa top quality automotive service

Why doesn’t Lufthansa get the primary spot? As a result of the expertise is inconsistent. It’s improbable in the event you’re originating in Frankfurt, however in the event you’re simply in transit, the expertise isn’t almost as seamless.

The one time you’ll be picked up out of your flight by automotive is in the event you’re arriving at a distant stand. In any other case you’ll doubtlessly need to stroll 1000’s of steps and navigate your individual approach via the maze which is Frankfurt Airport. The horror. 😉

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Lufthansa or SWISS top quality similar day, or Miles & Extra HON Circle members can use the lounge when flying a Lufthansa Group airline similar day, whatever the class of service.
The newest for 2022: The First Class Terminal reopened as of September 2021. With Lufthansa retiring its A380s, the provider’s top quality footprint has been significantly diminished, as top quality is presently solely obtainable on 747-8s.

3. SWISS First Class Lounge Zurich (ZRH)

SWISS’ top quality lounge in Zurich is spectacular, and includes a attractive design.

SWISS top quality lounge entrance

Along with service all through the lounge, the SWISS lounge has a wonderful restaurant, and after the Air France lounge I’d say it’s in all probability my favourite restaurant in an airport lounge.

SWISS top quality lounge eating space

However there are two different options that make this lounge distinctive. The primary is that the lounge has personal bedrooms for these with lengthy layovers. The beds are as snug as those you’d discover in high resorts, to not point out the bed room has a view of the tarmac and runways, which made me not wish to sleep.

SWISS top quality lounge bed room

Moreover, the lounge has a big terrace with views of the gates. In summer time they’ll even have ice cream on the market for company to get pleasure from.

SWISS top quality lounge terrace

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Lufthansa or SWISS top quality similar day, or Miles & Extra HON Circle members can use the lounge when flying a Lufthansa Group airline similar day, whatever the class of service.
The newest for 2022: The SWISS top quality lounge Zurich is sadly presently closed, although hopefully it reopens within the coming months.

4. Cathay Pacific The Pier First Class Lounge Hong Kong (HKG)

By way of design, Cathay Pacific’s The Pier First Class Lounge in Hong Kong is one among my two favourite lounges. The lounge is designed in a approach that makes you are feeling such as you’re in a very swanky resort and even dwelling, fairly than at an airport.

Cathay Pacific top quality lounge entrance
Cathay Pacific top quality lounge bar

The Pier additionally has an excellent restaurant with a la carte eating.

Cathay Pacific top quality lounge eating space

On high of that, the lounge has personal rooms the place you may loosen up, or simply watch planes cross by exterior.

Cathay Pacific top quality lounge nap room

Visitors additionally obtain a complimentary 10 minute foot therapeutic massage, which is a pleasant teaser.

Cathay Pacific top quality lounge therapeutic massage space

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying oneworld top quality similar day, or oneworld Emerald members can use the lounge together with a similar day oneworld ticket, no matter vacation spot or class.
The newest for 2022: The primary class part of The Pier is sadly presently closed, and it’s anybody’s guess when it reopens. This was closed even earlier than the pandemic, as Hong Kong noticed a droop in enterprise journey. I wouldn’t be stunned if this lounge by no means returns in its authentic type.

5. Qantas First Lounge Sydney (SYD)

This lounge nails all of the fundamentals. The lounge is bodily gorgeous and spacious, with numerous pure mild and panoramic views.

Qantas top quality lounge seating

I like the meals in Qantas top quality lounges. The menu is designed by Neil Perry of Rockpool Bar & Grill, and my favourite is the salt & pepper squid (although nothing on the menu will disappoint).

Qantas top quality lounge eating

On high of that, passengers obtain a complimentary 20 minute spa remedy, with the selection between a facial or therapeutic massage.

Qantas top quality lounge spa remedy room

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying oneworld top quality similar day, or oneworld Emerald members can use the lounge together with a similar day oneworld ticket.
The newest for 2022: The Qantas top quality lounge reopened as of November 2021, and it’s presently even open to pick out different passengers, because the neighboring enterprise class lounge hasn’t but reopened.

6. Qatar Airways Al Safwa First Class Lounge Doha (DOH)

The Qatar Airways Al Safwa Lounge feels type of like a museum. The ceilings are in all probability 40 ft tall, and there’s a lot house. Not everybody will love the minimalist and industrial design, however personally I do. Whereas many different lounges really feel crowded, this one feels empty regardless of how full it really is.

Qatar Airways top quality lounge seating
Qatar Airways top quality lounge water show

The lounge additionally has a restaurant with stable meals, although to not the extent you’d discover within the Air France or SWISS lounges. One different function I like concerning the lounge is that it presents personal bedrooms for passengers with lengthy layovers, and I’d say these are the second greatest airport bedrooms after these within the SWISS lounge.

Qatar Airways top quality lounge bed room

Whereas all of these issues are nice, the lounge additionally has some complicated insurance policies. The lounge has a spa, however all remedies are outrageously priced. Need to use the new tub within the lounge? That can price you ~$55. Lounge brokers additionally appear to implement inconsistent guidelines about who can use the bedrooms.

This can be a nice lounge, although it might be so significantly better in the event that they didn’t have such inconsistent and illogical insurance policies.

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Qatar Airways top quality similar day (regional top quality flights are eligible), or it’s attainable to purchase entry to the lounge for 600QAR (~165USD) per individual when flying Qatar Airways enterprise class.
The newest for 2022: The Qatar Airways top quality lounge is as soon as once more open for enterprise, and is working as regular.

7. Thai First Class Lounge Bangkok (BKK)

Thai is one other airline that does an ideal job caring for you each step of the way in which on the airport. The airline will decide you up at your arriving flight and take you to your departing flight later (usually by buggy).

Thai Airways top quality lounge buggy service

The lounge has a number of semi-private residing rooms for passengers to make use of, with extra privateness than you’ll get in most lounges. There’s additionally numerous a la carte meals, although it’s not fairly to the extent of what you’ll discover in another lounges.

Thai Airways top quality lounge seating

The spotlight of the lounge? Top notch passengers obtain a complimentary hour-long full physique therapeutic massage. That’s an effective way to loosen up earlier than a protracted flight. As you’d anticipate, that is by far the most effective spa remedy provided by any airline.

Thai Airways top quality lounge spa remedy room

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Star Alliance top quality similar day.
The newest for 2022: The Thai Airways top quality lounge is presently closed, and for that matter I wouldn’t be stunned if that is everlasting. Thai Airways appears to be planning to retire its Airbus A380 and Boeing 747 fleets, leaving the airline with out planes which have top quality.

8. Etihad First Class Lounge Abu Dhabi (AUH)

The lounge is effectively designed, with a restaurant, gymnasium (which not one of the different lounges have), a spa, and so forth.

Etihad Airways top quality lounge entrance
Etihad Airways top quality lounge gymnasium

The meals within the lounge is fairly good, although the airline has positively reduce on catering since opening the lounge.

Etihad Airways top quality lounge eating space

The lounge additionally doesn’t have any correct nap rooms, apart from a leisure space with seats that recline a bit.

Etihad Airways top quality lounge nap space

Nonetheless, that is an throughout very stable lounge.

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Etihad top quality similar day, or be an Etihad Visitor Platinum member touring similar day on Etihad.
The newest for 2022: The Etihad Airways top quality lounge was reopened, however with restricted hours. I wouldn’t assured that this lounge sticks round in its present type, provided that Etihad Airways could retire its complete Airbus A380 fleet, which means that Etihad would solely have 5 Boeing 787-9s with top quality. It appears unlikely that the airline will preserve a devoted top quality lounge for simply 5 planes.

9. Emirates First Class Lounge Dubai (DXB)

Th Emirates top quality lounge Dubai is extra of a concourse than a lounge. That’s as a result of the lounge actually spans all the size of the terminal. On one hand that’s tremendous spectacular. You might have a lounge that’s tens of 1000’s of sq. ft, and at occasions there’ll solely be just a few company.

Emirates top quality lounge seating
Emirates top quality lounge seating

The lounge additionally has a restaurant with a la carte eating, a cigar bar, a spa with complimentary 15 minute remedies, and extra. One different superior function is you can board your flight straight via the lounge, assuming your flight departs from the “A” Concourse.

Emirates top quality lounge eating space

The issue? The lounge is so massive that it really feels extremely sterile and unwelcoming. You are feeling such as you’re sitting in a terminal fairly than in a high top quality lounge. The lounge doesn’t have an intimate and residential-feeling design, such as you’d discover in Cathay Pacific’s lounge, for instance.

That is in all probability the primary time in historical past {that a} lounge being too massive has been a criticism.

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Emirates top quality similar day, or be an Emirates Skywards Platinum member, or you should buy entry for $200 if touring on Emirates in financial system, or purchase entry for $100 if touring on Emirates in enterprise class.
The newest for 2022: The Emirates top quality lounge is open and working as normal.

10. Singapore Airways Personal Room Singapore (SIN)

The Personal Room is a lounge inside a lounge inside a lounge. Whereas it doesn’t have facilities like nap rooms, spa remedies, or provide escorts to/from the gate, it options an ideal restaurant with a la carte eating (together with the power to customise dishes), and an throughout very elegant environment with refined service.

Singapore Airways top quality lounge seating
Singapore Airways top quality lounge eating space
Singapore Airways top quality lounge eating

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Singapore Airways Suites or top quality similar day.
The newest for 2022: The Singapore Airways Personal Room is closed, and we don’t have a timeline for when it’ll reopen.

11. Oman Air First Class Lounge Muscat (MCT)

A couple of years in the past Oman Air opened a wonderful top quality lounge at Muscat Airport. Lengthy-term the airline could have solely two planes with top quality, so it’s fairly spectacular that the lounge is so big.

Oman Air top quality lounge eating space

Along with the cool design, the lounge has attentive service, a la carte eating, and a spa within the enterprise class part the place you will get a remedy.

Oman Air top quality lounge eating

Easy methods to entry this lounge: You have to be flying Oman Air top quality similar day.
The newest for 2022: The Oman Air top quality lounge is open. Oman Air has expressed curiosity in becoming a member of the oneworld alliance, so it’s attainable that ultimately oneworld Emerald members could get entry to this lounge.

Honorable point out: Etihad Residence Lounge Abu Dhabi (AUH)

This will’t be included on the checklist because it’s not technically a first-class lounge. Particularly I’m speaking concerning the Etihad Residence lounge at Abu Dhabi Airport, which is solely for passengers reserving Etihad’s uber-luxurious three room onboard suite, generally known as the Residence.

The enjoyable begins on the bottom, as you get a non-public lounge, a butler taking care of you the entire time, no matter meal you’d like, as many massages as you’d like, and so forth. In addition they deal with you each step of the way in which, from the second you arrive on the airport till the second they introduce you to your onboard butler. You don’t even need to check-in.

Etihad Residence Lounge
Etihad Residence Lounge service
Etihad Residence Lounge eating

The newest for 2022: With Etihad in all probability retiring its complete Airbus A380 fleet, that additionally spells the top of the Etihad Residence. Sadly this lounge service will in all probability be a factor of the previous.

Backside line

Most individuals dread having time to kill time on the airport, although the above lounges make spending time at an airport a pleasure. From an hour-long full physique therapeutic massage, to being pushed to your aircraft in a luxurious automotive, to getting a non-public bed room that makes you are feeling such as you’re in a resort, these lounges have all of it.

I’d like to emphasise that I feel anybody can be affordable to suppose that the above lounges needs to be in a unique order, however hopefully that is not less than a helpful checklist when it comes to the 11 all-around greatest top quality airline lounges.

Sadly many of those lounges proceed to stay closed, and for that matter we may see lasting adjustments to the providers that they provide. Personally I’d be stunned if the Thai Airways top quality lounge reopens, and I additionally wouldn’t be stunned if the Etihad top quality lounge doesn’t stick round in its present type.

I’m curious to listen to what OMAAT readers make of my rankings! Are there every other lounges that ought to have been on the checklist?

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