What do Flyertalkers thing is the best airline club out there? Membership clubs, First Class lounges, or Biz Class lounge, etc. are all open.
One of my favorites is the US Airways Club in Philadelphia. It is huge, streching the entire distance between Terminals B and C, over the Philadelphia Marketplace. It is all one big, open room, but divided into little sections by the placement of the chairs and tables, etc. It is a bit inconvenient if your connection doesn't invlove a change in terminals, as it replaces the many Clubs scattered between the two terminals.
The only ones I've seen are DL CRCs and the Biz. Elite lounge in ATL - all of which are extremely nice! I've heard that the BA and VS lounges are extremely nice and I'm sure the SQ ones must be too ...
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I haven't really been in that many, but out of the handful I have, I'd say the Crown Room in Cincinnati and the RCC on B Concourse in ORD were tops. And ohmygod was the Arrivals Lounge at LHR (that I had no business being in) heaven on earth.
I haven't lost my mind......I sold it on eBay!!
I have to say that the new DL CRC at Lindbergh Field is great! Very intimate, but stylish and high-tech (internet access, flat screen monitors, etc). They now have a liquor license as well...(they opened ahead of schedule and didn't serve liquor for a few days). Close to gates too.
I like the RCC at LAX too, but not the CASH bar. The Admirals club at MIA is great, except the CASH bar too.
I really like the club that KLM and other airlines (except SA which has its own) use for business / first class customers at the Johannesburg airport. Great selection of local and non-local foods (hot & cold) and wines. Very nice liquor selection. Big comfortable chairs. Usually not too crowded.
Business Flyer Magazine ran an article a few months ago where they "created" what would be their ultimate business class from among the features of all the different airlines. Their choice for best lounge was the Virgin Atlantic lounge at Heathrow.
I cannot provide any first hand experience to validate Business Flyer's claim
However, of the clubs I have visited, the Delta International Business Class lounge in Atlanta was easily the best among the few I have been priveledged to sample. I snuck a peak past the door into the Delta International 1st Class Lounge at Atlanta, and it look even nicer.
The International Business Class Lounge used by South African Airways in CapeTown was just ok. Kind of small, with drinks and snacks laid out in the center near a drink cooler. But they did have showers in the lounge, and as my wife and I had just came in from a 3 week overland trip through South Africa, I am sure my fellow passengers where really glad the showers worked
Without fear of contradiction nothing beats the CX Wing in HKG - in particular the First Class lounge. Each time I go there it seems there is something new to discover. Highlights:
- very modern yet soothing design by Conran
- concierge to take your hand luggage and coats
- waiter service for refreshments or buffet in a separate restaurant style area
- food (yes! high quality dim sum and other treats)
- full bathrooms to freshen up in, complete with mini-bar
- laptops on request with free internet access
- a new individual entertainment system to watch TV and movies, activated by swiping your boarding pass, system tells you when it is time to board your flight
- a secluded library area with a great selection of art and architecture books (supplied by Phaidon).
Second on my list is the BA Arrivals lounge at LHR T4. After a long haul flight a stop in here is highly recommended. Be sure to take advantage of the free massage service.