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British Airways and American Airlines Chelsea Lounge - JFK Terminal 8

Old Jan 5, 2024, 11:41 am
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British Airways and American Airlines Chelsea Lounge - JFK Terminal 8

Old Dec 3, 2022, 6:32 pm
  #121  
 
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I have a fairly simple taste when it comes to food...so the burger was fine for me. But I agree with you that they need to get this sorted.

All I care about is the Krug though .

On another note, I am friends with a (British) Master of Wine (who initially learned the trade from my wife, who ran the University of Cambridge wine tasting society). I want to get the BA guy's card now and put them in touch. We could all benefit from that! My friend is in the wine/champagne business now (worked as a wine buyer for Sotheby's and now runs his own business, also wrote a great book about wine tasting) and could really advise them well.
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 6:43 pm
  #122  
 
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In the Chelsea now. The Krug has run out, so that didnt last long!

I have to confess that my overall impression is meh. Dont get me wrong, its a perfectly pleasant space, but it obviously needs some time to bed in and for things to be tweaked. Small points, but:

- Lighting feels far too bright (esp when combined with overall light decor). Its not the sort of get ready for bed vibe that I think would be appropriate at 2045.
- Staff a bit all over the place. Generally seem enthusiastic, but there seem to be some real training issues. (Eg I asked the bartender if they had a red Bordeaux. Response: how am I supposed to know?).
- Food mediocre. Had the prawn cocktail and the lamb tagine. (The latter is not really a tagineits lamb served on a bed of couscous).

New check in area very impressive, though. And idea for those with pre-check. Love that.
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 6:53 pm
  #123  
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Originally Posted by Football Fan
What are LPGS?
It's this...
Originally Posted by Football Fan
Live reporting: They do have some Grand Sicle at the bar which is not on the menu. I guess it will have to do.
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 10:03 pm
  #124  
 
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY
As above, group of BA and AA walking around. I spoke with the BA gentleman who gives the tour in the video by Business Traveller.
BA gentleman we talked to appears to be BA's Chief Customer Officer.
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 10:32 pm
  #125  
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Originally Posted by FlyingGames
Currently being served by the lady working 18 hours and honestly she's doing such a great job in all the chaos!

On a plus note, no issue with getting in with my GGL card on a AA TransCon Business
I'll get some small boxes of chocolates in advance of my visit then .... they need encouraging!
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 11:26 pm
  #126  
 
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Originally Posted by Cw novice
Secondly I remember on the BA documentary the station manager at T7. Does he or someone of his ilk still work at JFK. I can't imagine someone of that calibre standing for such poor service.
He was a lovely gentleman whom I was fortunate to meet on a couple of occasions when I was flying LHR-JFK a lot, and as you say had exacting standards.
He now works as a senior manager for WestJet.
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 11:31 pm
  #127  
 
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As someone who is not GGL and only travels F for special occasions, I see my only real way of accessing the Chelsea Lounge will be through the AA Business Plus fare.

Any ideas how this is typically priced? Versus say a fully flexible J class
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Old Dec 3, 2022, 11:46 pm
  #128  
 
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Originally Posted by BillyBleach
As someone who is not GGL and only travels F for special occasions, I see my only real way of accessing the Chelsea Lounge will be through the AA Business Plus fare.

Any ideas how this is typically priced? Versus say a fully flexible J class
It is the new flexible J on AA.
Looks like the premium is about $300-400 when booked far enough in advance with Saturday night stay, so very attainable, but I am not sure worth it for lounge access alone!
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Old Dec 4, 2022, 12:45 am
  #129  
 
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY
Further update!

I have just arrived on my 'scenic' domestic (non-flagship) route and swiftly entered the Chelsea on arrival. So, Chelsea on domestic arrivals it is!

There is a new menu now, on thinner paper. I assume they have run out of everything else.




I'm at the bar on my laptop, will point them out.
Printer paper menu was how FFD was operating in early November - never a good sign.

As someone mentioned above, this lounge is run by two multi-billon pound airlines / a large food vendor that have all known this was coming for months. They should have adequate staffing and supply chain logistics in order from day 1 (maybe day 2 or 3), especially given all of the hype they put into this with the bloggers. Just because I show up at 7 pm shouldnt mean all of the advertised F&B options are depleted or cant be served due to staffing issues.

Running out of food and drink is very similar to legacy FFD where they would run out of Krug (pre-COVID), LPGS and JW Blue or not serve any of them unless specifically referenced.

Hopefully all of this feedback is constructively taken so that the lounge is improved in short order and doesnt fall on deaf ears.


Originally Posted by crazy8534
It is the new flexible J on AA.
Looks like the premium is about $300-400 when booked far enough in advance with Saturday night stay, so very attainable, but I am not sure worth it for lounge access alone!
The $400 per person each way is on point I believe for any flight that does not have flagship F. If you have OWE, the only benefit is the Chelsea lounge. It may make more sense to shell out for one of the Five Star services (I forget which one comes with FFD / presumably Chelsea).
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Old Dec 4, 2022, 3:07 am
  #130  
 
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BAit AAnd switch
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Old Dec 4, 2022, 3:15 am
  #131  
 
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Has the central fire place been installed?
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Old Dec 4, 2022, 4:49 am
  #132  
 
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Originally Posted by flybymonkey
Has the central fire place been installed?
Not yet, no.
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Old Dec 4, 2022, 4:56 am
  #133  
 
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Couple of extra photos.






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Old Dec 4, 2022, 6:14 am
  #134  
 
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It’s incredible just how much the interior designers have managed to make the sofa / soft seating area look like a mediocre hotel lobby rather than anything remotely cosy…
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Old Dec 4, 2022, 6:24 am
  #135  
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Originally Posted by lost_in_translation
It’s incredible just how much the interior designers have managed to make the sofa / soft seating area look like a mediocre hotel lobby rather than anything remotely cosy…
Yes, I think this is where those who designed Flounge LHR/LGW, GF (to some extent), CCR, EDI etc should take a bow. And it's where from the photos at least Chelsea, maybe not Soho, appears to have lost out on the "cosy to relaxing comfortable" space. See also AA's brand new DCA lounge at E concourse, and the Qatar lounges - first glimpse they look modern and well designed, a fortune was spent on them, and yet it is lacking in that sense of relaxation. I guess we're only supposed to be in the lounge for an hour so maybe it doesn't matter in the great scheme of things, but there is some aspect of design which isn't money related but sets the tone.

Qantas International First lounge in SYD would be an example where it works successfully elsewhere, so it's by no means a BA monopoly.
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