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Lounge Review: LIN British Airways Galleries Lounge

Lounge Review: LIN British Airways Galleries Lounge

Old Dec 28, 18, 11:49 am
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Lounge Review: LIN British Airways Galleries Lounge

Lounge Review: LIN British Airways Galleries Lounge

Index to Genius1 Trip Reports

The British Airways Galleries lounge at Milan Linate was one of the first to receive the full Galleries concept around ten years ago. The photos that follow were taken over two visits to the lounge a few days apart in November 2018.

It might seem odd that BA should have such a comparatively large and well-specified lounge at a non-capital city outstation in an era where BA have closed many of their European outstation lounges, but when you realise that BA operates multiple rotations to Heathrow, London City and Stansted airports, the space seems entirely justified.

The lounge is located airside within the small terminal building at gate level, a few steps below the main shopping area. The terminal itself is pretty drab and dated, although there is evidence of refurbishment activity taking place; the whole airport is closing for three months in the summer to have its runway resurfaced, at which point I would expect further terminal refurbishment work to take place.





The entrance to the BA lounge doesn’t immediately scream luxury, but once through the sliding door and past the reception desk, the open plan rectangular space is nicely laid out, although the absence of any windows and thus any natural light or view really detracts from the otherwise pleasant space. Split into two halves by a bar and high-top table seating, the left-hand portion majors on zoned areas whilst the right-hand portion focuses on seating.

Immediately to the right of the reception area is a luggage storage space and news stand, whilst ahead and to the left is the Coffee House and buffet. For an outstation lounge, the food offering is perfectly adequate, with sandwiches, small salad pots, pizza slices, filled croissants, cakes and yogurt all available when I visited in the afternoon; fresh fruit, crisps and nuts were also available at the bar in the centre of the lounge. There were no hot food items available; this is an area where the lounge could improve.











Immediately in front of the buffet are a couple of communal dining tables, quite harshly lit by overhead lights in contrast to the rest of the rather dull lounge (partly due to many of the lamps not being on).



Several armchairs and sofas surround the tables, with individual dining tables available at the rear of the lounge adjacent to the Work and Entertainment Zone. I never understand why lounge designers opt for carpet below dining tables; it’s completely impractical, and this carpet is really showing its age, now beyond the point of simply cleaning.



TVs are available in both the Work and Entertainment Zone, and in a seating cluster near the entrance to the kitchen.

Swinging around to the other half of the lounge, banks of armchairs flank the entirety of the boundary wall, separated at intervals with patterned glass screens; these are a really effective design feature that maintain the feeling of light and space whilst introducing a parcel of privacy. It’s sad to see the overhead lights above the screens no longer functioning (or simply turned off); they would look better lit as originally intended. Incidentally, the similar screens in the lounges at Heathrow are lit internally. Most seating areas feature tables with integrated power and USB sockets, although not all that I tried worked. Wifi throughout the lounge was reasonably quick.











In contrast to many other BA lounges, the Linate lounge’s bar is a back bar rather than island bar, despite being located in the middle of the lounge. There appeared to be a shortage of real glasses when I visited, as on both occasions plastic receptacles were piled high on the bar in addition to the few red and blue glasses.







Both the waiting and reception staff were friendly, with empties being cleared between each flight departure.

Adjacent to the bar are a number of low sofas; as with many of the other furniture items in the lounge, these are bespoke to the Linate lounge and don’t feature in other Galleries lounges. A number of the fabric-upholstered armchairs are clearly showing their ten years of use; BA have recently informed me that some of the furniture in the lounge has been replaced. I haven’t seen it yet but suspect these are pieces from the recently closed Munich lounge.

There are no toilets within the lounge, with the nearest airport-operated facilities being just outside the entrance and to the left.

I hope BA take the opportunity of the three-month closure of the airport in the summer to replace the carpet, improve the lighting and undertake a targeted upgrade of the furniture in the Linate lounge, ideally with Galleries Evolution pieces. These niggles aside, BA’s Linate lounge is a pleasant enough space to pass an hour or two before a flight, and a nice example of how well the original Galleries concept has stood the test of time.

Last edited by Genius1; Dec 28, 18 at 1:24 pm
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Old Dec 28, 18, 12:02 pm
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I have to say what I find rather annoying about this lounge is its location. Not only, as you acknowledge, there is a lack of natural light, but I also dislike the fact that being in the Schengen area means you still have to go through passport control after leaving the lounge for the gate and that can get busy as everyone rushes out when boarding is called.
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Old Dec 28, 18, 12:04 pm
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Thanks for sharing ó great to have a facility like this in whatís otherwise a pretty drab terminal.

With competitive ex-Milan fares and good back to back opportunities off the LCY afternoon turn (4 hours-ish on the ground), this lounge can be particularly useful for TP runs too.

But I ballsed up my last trip by heading through passport control immediately on my back to back and spending 3 hours in the tiny, quite crowded holding area sharing a laptop power port. Watch out folks! 😂
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Old Dec 28, 18, 12:24 pm
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I like the lounge, but in my opinion there is a hygiene issue there with the staff. On two separate occasions I have had words with them as they restock the sandwiches with their bare hands. Two different staff members.

Last edited by Dubh; Dec 28, 18 at 1:14 pm
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Old Dec 29, 18, 8:14 am
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Originally Posted by theultimateflyer View Post
I have to say what I find rather annoying about this lounge is its location. Not only, as you acknowledge, there is a lack of natural light, but I also dislike the fact that being in the Schengen area means you still have to go through passport control after leaving the lounge for the gate and that can get busy as everyone rushes out when boarding is called.
That is indeed annoying, and currently it seems as though some of the passport control desks are closed due to refurbishment. When I departed once there was quite a queue as the officers appeared to be on an intentional go-slow.
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Old Dec 29, 18, 9:07 am
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The worst ones are where the lounge is landside (there are certainly a few in Italy like that), but you forget until you are past security and it is too late!
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Old Dec 30, 18, 12:37 am
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One small point that I appreciated is there are North American standard 120V power outlets available. It was useful for me to charge my phone without needing an adapter.
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Old Dec 30, 18, 2:06 am
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
The worst ones are where the lounge is landside (there are certainly a few in Italy like that), but you forget until you are past security and it is too late!
Yes!! At GOA this is the case although now much better as there is a priority security lane direct from the landside lounge.

As the OP mentioned (and others), I also have a pet hate with lounges that have no natural light. LIN seems particularly dull and gloomy in this respect.
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Old Dec 30, 18, 5:54 am
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Originally Posted by Genius1 View Post
That is indeed annoying, and currently it seems as though some of the passport control desks are closed due to refurbishment. When I departed once there was quite a queue as the officers appeared to be on an intentional go-slow.
I was just through and seems that the refurbishments were to install e-gates which made the process relatively faster today (for EU citizens).
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Old Dec 30, 18, 9:53 am
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Originally Posted by theultimateflyer View Post

I was just through and seems that the refurbishments were to install e-gates which made the process relatively faster today (for EU citizens).
That should be a great help. It's bit or miss some morning's. As someone above mentioned, sometimes it's like they are on a go slow at the desks...I think it's the response time from there system to be fair to them, but it can take 20mins plus
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Old Dec 30, 18, 4:24 pm
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Originally Posted by BOH View Post
Yes!! At GOA this is the case although now much better as there is a priority security lane direct from the landside lounge.

As the OP mentioned (and others), I also have a pet hate with lounges that have no natural light. LIN seems particularly dull and gloomy in this respect.
I have been wondering about this as Iím flying front GOA in a few months. How soon should you leave the lounge before the BA flight? Are flights called or is it up to you?

I assume the priority security lane is quick, but I assume there is a passport check without priority, at some point before the gate too?

Thanks
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Old Dec 30, 18, 5:25 pm
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Originally Posted by lcylocal View Post
but I assume there is a passport check without priority, at some point before the gate too?


Yes, divided into EU and non-EU passport holder lanes.
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Old Dec 31, 18, 2:11 am
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Originally Posted by lcylocal View Post


I have been wondering about this as Iím flying front GOA in a few months. How soon should you leave the lounge before the BA flight? Are flights called or is it up to you?

I assume the priority security lane is quick, but I assume there is a passport check without priority, at some point before the gate too?

Thanks
I fly here about twice a month and the answer to how long to leave the lounge before the BA flight is, "it depends". Getting through security is easy as the exit from the lounge plonks you right at the front of the queue. As for passport checks....that is the "it depends" part and it depends on what other flights are leaving from gate 7/8 around the same time (gate 7 and 8 are those for flights requiring passport checks). The BA flight to LGW leaves at a different time most days and some days this is timed close to other flights leaving 15-20 minutes before or after the BA one at 7/8....so 2 planeloads of pax are trying to get through passport checks.

So if no flight either side of the BA one I leave the lounge about 40 minutes before departure, on days with a closely timed other flight from Gates 7/8 I leave 50-60 minutes before departure. Be aware at GOA they really board promptly, starting about T-45 mins before departure and often complete at T-20 with "last call" of missing pax by names at this point. In the lounge there are no announcements, just a few large monitors with flight status.
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Old Dec 31, 18, 2:13 am
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Originally Posted by Jagboi View Post
Yes, divided into EU and non-EU passport holder lanes.
This is not correct on exiting GOA, there are no separate EU and non-EU booths. Just one queue and each booth handles EU and non-EU pax.

On arrival there are separate EU and non-EU lanes, but not on departure.
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Old Jan 5, 19, 8:02 am
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Originally Posted by theultimateflyer View Post

I was just through and seems that the refurbishments were to install e-gates which made the process relatively faster today (for EU citizens).
That's good news, although presumably only until March
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