Old Jul 4, 17, 11:12 am
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: In between BRU, AMS, DUS and LUX...
Programs: AF/KL Plat, BA Gold, TK Silver, IHG Platinum, MR Gold, HH Gold, A-Club Silver, Hertz PC
Posts: 724
Chapter 4 : Heading to Tokyo !

The night was fine but woke up a quite early due to sunlight hitting my room (and also maybe the jet lag kicking in…). As I wanted to take the bus back to the airport around 3pm, I asked for a late check-out and was given the opportunity to keep the room until 2pm, as IHG platinum member. Note that I purchased my bus ticket to the airport at the hotel reception.

The bus ride back to the airport was less smooth than I hoped and it took a good hour an half to reach CTS due to heavy traffic. I arrived at the airport around 16.40 and my flight was scheduled to depart at 18.00. The airport lobby was very crowded, with lots of tourists enjoying their last minutes in Hokkaido at the airport food court and shops. You could even purchase some fresh seafood to go !

Japan Airlines has a new dedicated facility for First class and Emerald passengers very similar to the one in HND, with direct access to security check point and the lounge.

Check in was very smooth and asked if some first class upgrades were available. The agent got initially a bit confused by my question, but her colleague assisted her and I got the last seat of the F cabin for that flight for 7000 JPY.
Security was a breeze and I then headed to the newly redesigned first class lounge upstairs.

The design theme used for this lounge is similar to the one in HND. The lounge has two entrances, one for the J class and Sapphire passengers (Sakura lounge), and one for the First class and Emerald passengers (Diamond First lounge). I only visited the latter.

The lounge features the 3 usual sections (buffet area, lounge area and work area) and has great open views on the outside. Some nice artwork is present throughout the lounge. Besides the traditional beverage selection, the buffet consisted into a couple soups (I took some potato and scallop soup, which was good), a couple of rice snacks, some curry pastries with muffins. Restrooms are located within the lounge and were very well maintained.
Again, the food offering is not exceptional, but I found it better than in HND.

Power plugs are locarted everywhere across the lounge and the wifi was working well.
Large windows across the lounge allow you to do some nice plane spotting !

It was soon time to board the aircraft for HND, so I stayed only 20 minutes or so in the lounge.

Considering this is a domestic first class lounge, I would rate it as following :
Japan Airlines Diamond First class lounge, Sapporo Domestic terminal.
Buffet area / F&B selection : C+
Seating available : A
« Clean and comfy » : A
Extra amenities : B
Overall ranking : B

The boarding gate for my flight to HND was located just at the lounge exit, and began 20 minutes before departure time. Priority boarding was enforced and 2 jet bridges were in place to make the boarding process faster.

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