Review: Qantas Lounge Hong Kong Airport

Introduction
Cathay Pacific First Class 777-300ER New York JFK To Hong Kong
Qantas Lounge Hong Kong Airport
Dragonair G16 Lounge Hong Kong Airport
SriLankan Business Class A330-200 Hong Kong To Bangkok
SriLankan Business Class A330-200 Bangkok To Colombo
SriLankan Serendib Lounge Colombo Airport
SriLankan Business Class A330-300 Colombo To Male
Beach Palace Hotel / Ui Inn Maldives
Domestic Maldivian Moonimaa Lounge Male Airport
Maldivian Dash 8 Male To Kooddoo And Park Hyatt Boat Transfer
Park Hyatt Maldives Park Villa
Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa
Park Hyatt Maldives Park Water Villa
Park Hyatt Maldives Breakfast & Diamond Cocktails
Park Hyatt Maldives Resort Overview
Park Hyatt Boat Transfer And Maldivian Dash 8 Kooddoo to Male
Leeli Lounge Male Airport
Cathay Pacific Business Class A330-300 Male To Hong Kong
Regal Airport Hotel Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific Business Class 777-300ER Hong Kong To Newark


Having arrived in Hong Kong about 20 minutes early, I had a well over four hour layover before my connection to Bangkok, and then onwards travel to Colombo and Male.

I quickly cleared transit security, where there surprisingly wasn’t a wait at all, much to my delight.

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Hong Kong International Airport terminal

My primary objective for this layover was to check out the new Qantas Lounge Hong Kong. Though having just gotten off an ultra longhaul flight my first priority was a shower, and there’s no better place to do that than at Cathay Pacific’s “The Wing” First Class Lounge. That’s because this lounge has cabanas, which, unlike the ones in British Airways’ London Heathrow Concorde Room, are actually gorgeous. I’d say they’re probably the nicest shower facilities at any lounge in the world.

It was my lucky day, because there was no wait for a cabana, which is rare. It’s worth noting that only a subset of the showers in Cathay Pacific’s “The Wing” First Class Lounge are cabanas, so you have to explicitly request them.

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Cathay Pacific’s First Class Wing cabana

While I love “The Wing,” after a shower it was off to check out the new Qantas Lounge, given that I had heard so many great things about it. Qantas opened this new lounge in 2014, and I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews.

I guess the best way to describe the location of the Qantas Lounge Hong Kong is that it’s at exactly the opposite end of the pier of The Wing.

Qantas-Lounge-Map

If you’re originating in Hong Kong and take the South immigration channel you can turn left and there’s an immediate entrance to The Wing. Meanwhile if you take the North immigration channel and turn right there’s an immediate entrance to the Qantas Lounge.

It’s located above gate 15, so if you’re in the central part of the concourse your best bet is to just go up a level and access the lounge through the upper level walkway.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong entrance

Below is a picture of where the walkway entrance to the lounge is, in the context of the main level of the concourse.

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View from Qantas Lounge Hong Kong entrance

The entrance to the Qantas Lounge Hong Kong is gorgeous, and upon presenting my SriLankan boarding pass I was promptly admitted. It’s worth noting that the Qantas Lounge is a shared first & business class lounge. There’s no separate first class lounge, so obviously the lounge won’t be quite to the level of the Qantas First Class Lounge Sydney.

For what it’s worth, the lounge is open daily from 9:30AM until 11:30PM. When the lounge first opened it was only open in the evenings, so it’s nice to see that they extended the hours.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong entryway

My first reaction upon entering the lounge was “WOW.” I loved everything about it. First of all, the lounge is massive. Massive. Which in a way puzzled me, since I can’t imagine this lounge ever getting close to capacity (well, as long as we keep secret how nice it is). 😉

But beyond that I loved the decor, which is true across the board for Qantas lounges, in my opinion. Qantas gets decor right. It’s sleek, industrial, edgy, and at the same time agreeable. I also love the fact that it’s an open air lounge, so you have great views of the concourse and tarmac.

Anyway, near the entrance is a large seating area, with a variety of seating options. There are long benches with coffee tables, more traditional lounge seating, etc.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Past that is the bar, which is both understated and dazzling.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong bar

Surrounding the bar is a dining area with dozens of tables. There are tables along the edge of the lounge overlooking the concourse, as well as tables more towards the interior of the lounge.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong dining area

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong dining area

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong dining area

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong dining area

The lounge has an emphasis on communal tables as well, which I find interesting. Presumably most people aren’t traveling in groups of a dozen, yet that doesn’t stop Qantas from having several communal tables.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong communal table

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong communal table

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong communal table

Across from the bar and more into the interior of a lounge is a “secluded” seating area, which includes several long benches.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Past the bar and dining area is even more seating. Lots more seating.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

I can’t say enough how impressed I was by the design. I love how the furniture throughout the lounge matches, yet every section is unique in terms of the color scheme/finishes.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Seriously, the amount of seating in this lounge… what the heck?

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Are they trying to shut down every other lounge?

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Why?

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

They must have gotten an amazing deal on rent.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Like, really amazing deal.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

Like really, really amazing deal.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong seating

For an airline which has at most a few flights a day to Hong Kong, the amount of space in this lounge is beyond puzzling.

Anyway, there were also a couple of magazine racks at both ends of the lounge with popular publications.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong magazines

In terms of food, there was a buffet setup towards the center of the lounge, across from the dining area.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet

They had a good selection of self serve wine, soft drinks, etc. There were servers roaming around in the event that you wanted to order another kind of alcoholic drink.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong drink selection

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong wine selection

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong juices

Then there was an espresso machine (with proper Australian terminology, including “long black”).

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong espresso machine

While I’d say the buffet was average in size, the quality was top notch across the board. There wasn’t a single dish which didn’t look appetizing.

The starter options included:

  • Salad of green beans and soft-boiled egg with vinaigrette
  • Grilled squid with Thai mango, coriander, and mint, in sweet chili dressing
  • Potatoes and green peas in horseradish dressing
  • Mesclun salad with palm sugar and red wine vinaigrette

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet

Then they had a handful of salad options:

  • Cherry tomatoes with wild rocket, Spanish onion, and pine nuts, in lemon dressing
  • Grilled king brown mushrooms, barley, thyme, and sherry vinegar
  • Spiced cauliflower and chickpea with raisin and hazelnut
  • Cucumber, radish, celery, and mint
  • Couscous with trio of colored pepper and Spanish onion in honey balsamic dressing
  • Roasted carrot with cumin, pistachio, and garlic yogurt

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet

Then there was a cream of mushroom soup.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet

Then for main courses they had:

  • Farfalle pasta with green asparagus and black olives in rosemary butter
  • Asian fragrant rice
  • Braised pork in chillies
  • Sautéed baby corns with red radish and garlic

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet

Lastly for dessert they had:

  • Lemon tart
  • Chocolate chip macadamia brownie
  • Salted caramel cheesecake
  • Coconut sago with dark palm sugar syrup
  • Seasonal fruit salad

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet

As is the norm in Qantas lounges, the food execution was excellent.

In addition to the main buffet area there was a second self serve bar at the far end of the lounge, which had wine, soft drinks, an espresso machine, etc.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet area

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong espresso machine

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong buffet area

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong wine selection

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong drink selection

The Qantas Lounge also has a handful of shower rooms. While they don’t compare to the ones in The Wing, they’re still very nice, and feature ASPAR toiletries.

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong shower room

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong shower room

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Qantas Lounge Hong Kong shower room toiletries

I had a rather odd interaction when trying to photograph the shower rooms. The shower attendant didn’t really speak English, so I did my best to explain I didn’t actually want to shower, but rather just wanted to take pictures of the shower room. She wasn’t following, so when I opened the door and started snapping pictures she snuck up behind me and gave me the strangest look, as if she thought I was photographing because I had discovered something terrible in the shower room.

The wifi signal in the lounge was fairly strong, so I managed to get some work done for a couple of hours. Then at around 5:15PM I figured I’d quickly pop into the Dragonair G16 Lounge, just to see what’s that like, given that it was a short walk away.

Qantas Lounge Hong Kong bottom line

No wonder people rave about the Qantas Lounge Hong Kong — it’s fantastic. The lounge is massive, the decor is gorgeous, and the food spread was excellent quality. While the Qantas onboard product isn’t my favorite in the world, their lounges consistently blow me away, including the Qantas First Class Lounge Sydney and Qantas First Class Lounge Los Angeles. This is yet another fantastic addition.

Also keep in mind that the Qantas Lounge Hong Kong is a oneworld business class/Sapphire lounge, so virtually any mid-tier elite or business class passenger flying oneworld can access it — you don’t have to be flying Qantas.

How does the Qantas Lounge Hong Kong compare to other lounges in Hong Kong? I’d say it’s one of the two best business class lounges in Hong Kong, along with Cathay Pacific’s “The Bridge” Lounge.

Given that I’m a oneworld Emerald and can access first class lounges, would I visit it again? Absolutely! I’d say I still prefer Cathay Pacific’s “The Wing” First Class Lounge for the shower rooms and the champagne bar. But for just lounging, it’s tough to beat the decor and seclusion of this lounge, given how crowded “The Wing” is nowadays.

If you’ve visited the Qantas Lounge Hong Kong, what was your experience like?

Enjoy this review? Check out hundreds of other reports on airlines, hotels, and airport lounges worldwide!

Comments

  1. qantas international business lounges are generally always that bit larger due to the amount of qantas clubs members that have access

  2. Love this lounge – especially in the early afternoon when it’s deserted (but well stocked/attended anyway). I’m a huge fan of the squid/cucumber/mango salad.

  3. Couple of reasons why it is so big:

    1) Qantas sell lounge memberships which are reasonably popular.
    2) If Jetstar HongKong gets of the ground then QF elites and lounge members will be eligable to enter and presumably Qantas will be pushing lounge and FF membership to local Jetstar flyers.

    It all depends on whether the HongKong government allow Jetstar to get going. If it does then I’d expect Qantas to up flying to HongKong and use Jetstar as a connecting carrier across southern China and South East Asia, as it does in Singapore.

  4. The real question is, why does Qantas need a lounge in Hong Kong? It is a oneworld hub, Cathay’s lounge ain’t terrible neither.

  5. Once again, great report.

    Just a heads up, aside from the dining options you mentioned, they also have on offer dim sum (with the egg tarts you love!) and char siu or Chinese BBQ pork. Not sure what time of they and how to get it though.

  6. I dont know qantas need such a big lounge. Qantas europe flight used to stop in hk but later in sin and now in dxb. Now it has 3 daily flights to hkg only.

  7. Can you access The Wing if transiting from a CX F to a CX J flight if leaving within 12 hours?

  8. @ Zkla — Something I give Qantas credit for is that they like controlling as many aspects of the experience as possible, so offering their own lounges is part of that.

  9. Great review! What about Champagne? Did they have Champagne? If so, which one? Thank you!

  10. The magazine racks show the Air France inflight publication.

    The Quantas lounge is probably also the contracted one for the AF flights.

  11. @Jenelle There is no Champagne – there is Australian sparkling white. There is actually a secret stash (I think it is Veuve), but it is really reserved for VIPs (a case of if you have to ask, you’re not getting any).

    I think this lounge is excellent. Of course the CX lounges may be better (especially the First Class lounges), although now I have no status so I can only get into the First Class lounges with a First Class ticket. If it is more likely I’ll be in Business, then I think this is one of, if not the, best Business Class lounge. For an airport where this is considered a QF outstation, that’s quite notable.

    The lounge staff are also quite attentive and approachable.

    This lounge is also used for BA flights. They are amongst the last flights to leave HKG near midnight, hence the QF lounge stays open for them.

  12. The QF lounge at HKG is far superior to the CX business lounges in my opinion.

    Also, I hope you tried the salted caramel cheesecake! Literally the greatest desert ever…

  13. Should also mention that the bar and bar staff are fantastic. If you like mojitos or similar drinks, ask the bartender next time to fix you the lounge’s signature cocktail, the Qi Qi (or chi chi, pronounced “chee chee” – not sure how they spell it, but anyway).

    They will also fix you a really decent espresso based coffee (flat white, latte, etc.) if you’re on the hunt for decent coffee and the robot in the buffet or drink stations doesn’t quite do it for you.

    In addition to BBQ pork plates (in Chinese, “char siu”) and dim sum, they also serve a plate of the day at the communal round table (or around there). Char siu is usually served around the afternoon, dim sum and the plate of the day is usually served in the early evening. The window of time is rather brief for all of these; whilst the char siu and plate of the day can be ordered, the dim sum trolleys that go around usually have those little bowls snapped up pretty quickly.

    Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum One members are afforded a couple of extra benefits.

  14. The communal dining in Qantas Lounges is quite fun. Most Aussies are happy to strike up a conversation with a total stranger sitting next to them, and enjoy learning where people are headed, where they’ve been, what they’re up to.

    I was on a trip from the US to Oz a few years ago and found myself at the long communal table in the SYD domestic business lounge, with a layover on the way to Perth. The gentleman next to me struck up a conversation, and though I was tired as all get-out, I politely responded that I was headed to Perth and then the Margaret River to see their wine country. Turned out this gentleman had managed vineyards for wineries as large as Rosemount and some small ones as well, and knew about everybody in the Australian wine industry. He picked up his mobile, rang up 3 friends in Margaret River “I’m sitting here in the Qantas lounge with this American who’s headed your way”, and arranged three amazing winery and vineyard visits for me. Wow!!

    I’m like you and most of us Americans – a bit introverted when we travel – but this concept works extremely well for the Australian culture, and I’m determined to take advantage of it the next time I’m in a Qantas lounge. Which will be the HKG lounge…. thanks for the preview!!

  15. I love this lounge! So many nice touches. One small issue is that they don’t have power ports in the dining area.

    One unique feature are the taps that dispense either still or sparking water (seltzer water) on demand!

    I’ve always found that the staff at this lounge know the right balance between pro-active and intrusive when offer service or interacting with pax!

  16. I live in HK and use this lounge all the time. Next time, try visiting the lounge between 7-9pm. That’s the absolute peak for QF departures, and every single one of those many seats will be taken. It’s not too big at all, given the number of Qantas club members.

  17. Hi Lucky,

    Do you know if Qantas sells day pass for any their lounges? I’m flying coach but my Ritz-Chase Card could credit day pass. Thanks.

  18. @ wwk5d — There aren’t really any great ones. The Thai, Singapore, and United ones are all fine. I think the Thai lounge is probably my favorite.

  19. @ Ryan — Good question, I’m not sure. I don’t believe so, but someone please correct me if I’m wrong.

  20. Staff in the lounge were amazing as well when I was there last week. Was there twice when transiting in and out of hk and the staff not only remembered my order of charsiu without the rice but also what my drink preferences were. For a lounge that serves that big a crowd, the level of personalization and quality of service blew me away. Most lounges simply don’t come close and staff often view lounge service as a one off experience. Not so here. Naomi, Stella and the rest of the crew were just such a joy to interact with.

  21. It’s great it looks nice, but F&B, comfort and adequate toilet/shower provision is the most important. Luckily that seems adequately serviced based on your review (although an extra hot meat dish on the buffet would be nice – it’s great these additional temporary food services run at times, but I prefer it not being a timing/location in lounge game).

    Most importantly, it answered a lingering question of my own – The Wing First or Qantas lounge. You assess the Wing First lounge still is best, so I don’t feel too bad now that I’ve skipped the new Qantas lounge (which was an unknown for me) for the (known to me) Wing First lounge in the past. On a longer visit, I might pop my head in for a quick road test.

  22. Sorry Lucky, you got it wrong, they must of had a really, really, really amazing deal on the rent 🙂

  23. Great review Lucky! I will definitely check it out my next transit in HKG.

    Also, no outlets in the dining area is deliberate: I asked about it and Qantas wants people to talk and socialize when they’re drinking/eating in the area. There are also no outlets in the Singapore dining area, which is also a fantastic lounge.

  24. @ keith — Hah, that’s kind of odd to try and tell your customers what they should be doing while eating.

  25. Wow this lounge is impressive! And massive as well!

    In the Qantas lounge in SIN there was a code that allowed us to download many magazines on our iPad for free. Did you see that in the Hong Kong lounge? It’s a nice feature as we can stock up on some reading material for the plane!

  26. Great review Lucky. I checked out this lounge in February flying CX PE using my CX Gold card and the only disappointment was the lack of champagne, as only Aussie sparkling wine is served. The food and service is great though, it’s very quiet in the afternoon before the QF departures in the evening. The staff by the buffet take pride in the food offered and regularly recommend various dishes and ask how your meal is. Certainly an excellent alternative to the CX lounges at HKIA where as a Oneworld FF you are definitely spoilt for choice.

  27. QF also operates a very large lounge at NRT. I was puzzled when I saw it. I figured for a carrier that has at most 2 flights per day (I believe), it would be expensive to operate such a large lounge, especially at its Oneworld partner’s hub, where JL operates 4 (2 F an 2 J) massive flagship lounges. In addition, AA and CX operate two other lounges. But those thoughts aside, it was a very nice lounge.

  28. I think the size has to do with Qantas having their three flights from Hong Kong all leaving within half an hour. While I haven’t been to the new one I remember the old one being packed around 7-8pm at night. On QF metal alone that’s two A330s and a 747 packed with Qantas Club members. I can see it getting pretty hectic.

  29. Dear Ben

    Thank you for your kind review and comments. We are happy that you enjoyed the lounge.

    We put a lot of effort into creating a space that caters for many people in different ways. We thought we might share with your readers a couple of links that explain our concept behind the design of the lounge. It’s not often people get to hear the thought process behind a design and we thought they may find it interesting.

    http://www.sumudesign.com/328306/2177782/interior/the-qantas-hong-kong-lounge

    http://www.sumudesign.com/328316/3915362/publications/the-qantas-hong-kong-lounge

    Yours sincerely

    Felice Carlino
    Director
    SUMU DESIGN

  30. Considering how poor J is on the A330s the fly to HKG, I’m impressed by how nice the lounge appears.

    I flew MEL-HKG in J earlier this year on QF and was pretty underwhelmed by the seat and food, although the flight attendants were pretty good. MEL J lounge was so-so, although I blame that more on the MEL airport setup than the lounge set up itself. Glad to know it’d be such a better experience coming the other way!

  31. This lounge DOES GET CROWDED, especially towards the time closer to the 3 QF flights. After that, you get the BA and AF passengers (they do use that lounge).

    Surprised AA doesn’t use this lounge.

  32. is that the timeframe for the following items:
    1. Spice Temple BBQ Bar
    2. Plate of the Day at the main dining area
    3. Dim Sum Trolley
    relatively narrow? like framed at 5pm – 8:15pm. I’d like to plan the schedule of enjoying the above 3 items first or the get food from the Buffet first.
    Also, is that possible to gain access to the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge at Sunday Evenings (around 7pm) by a Cathay Pacific Business Class Boarding pass?

  33. Do you stock any Kosher food in the Qantas lounge, as we have a 7 hour stop over in the lounge on the way to Oz? If not, how can we order a kosher meal to eat in the lounge?

    Please advise

  34. This is the best airport lounge. Just perfect in every way. Been traveling for 40 years and this one is the top.
    Can’t wait to get back to HK to enjoy it.

  35. Really surprised at glowing comments. This lounge was less than average. As a first class passenger I was appalled there was only one member of staff serving behind the bar, no champagne, no cocktail menu and a severely lacking restaurant. Suggest other reviewers try heathrow’s Concorde lounge to understand what excellent facilities really are.

  36. @ S marshall – Surprise, Lucky hates the Concorde lounge. They offer good food and there are normally a few members of staff behind the bar, so while you weren’t lucky regards the latter, remember that first class or not, you’ve entered a business class facility. If you really want pure first class luxury, I’m pretty sure The Pier First Class Lounge for Cathay Pacific (open to all oneworld first class and oneworld Emerald passengers) would’ve given you a better experience, much superior to the Concorde lounge.

  37. The proximity of the HK Qantas Lounge to the immigration means you can relax as soon as you pass the hassle of customs. The staff is always courteous. One young man stands out particularly. He’s Jason. Amazingly he remembers our surnames and my husband’s choice of meals and my choice of cocktail. We visit the Lounge may be only twice a year. After our meals at the dining table, he would invite us to sit elsewhere in more comfortable sofa seats. When it’s time to board, he’d walk us out just to make sure we are alright. Yes, you guessed right. We are elderly, but we don’t get that in Singapore or Bangkok Lounges! I look forward to using the HK Qantas Lounge next month.

  38. SERIOUSLY!!! This lounge is a complete DISGRACE…If you can travel with Cathay then do..dont risk this. Typical crap buffet…no cooked food for you like in Singapore lounge. The Cathay Lounges have cooked food for you..not a cheap and crusty buffet…I am so annoyed because I read this review and stupidly believed it. DONT BELIEVE THIS GUY!!!!! Typical buffet like you get at any CHEAP hotel. SO disappointed. Better of going to a pay in lounge and paying again ( not really) but fly Cathay and you will get much better food than here.

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