Introduction: New Years In The Maldives, Summer In New Zealand
Review: Etihad Airways Lounge New York JFK
Review: Etihad First Class A380 New York To Abu Dhabi
Review: Etihad Airways Arrivals Lounge Abu Dhabi
Review: Etihad Business Class A340 Abu Dhabi To Male
Review: Returning To The Park Hyatt Maldives
This Is What A $570 Per Person New Year’s Eve Hotel Gala Is Like
Review: Etihad First Class A380 Abu Dhabi To Sydney
Review: Park Hyatt Sydney
Review: Qantas Business Class 737 Sydney To Auckland
Review: Hilton Auckland
Review: Air New Zealand Lounge Auckland
Review: Hilton Queenstown
Review: American First Class 777-300ER Sydney To Los Angeles
By the time we landed we really just wanted to go straight to the hotel and sightsee, since we only had one night in Abu Dhabi (and Ford and Matt both hadn’t been to Abu Dhabi before), but first we wanted to check out the arrivals lounge (it opened in September 2014), which I haven’t yet reviewed.
As we deplaned I first snapped a picture of our gorgeous A380. I think Etihad’s paint scheme is among the best out there.
We arrived at Terminal 3, and followed the signage towards immigration and baggage claim.
There was no queue at immigration, so within about 10 minutes of our arrival we found ourselves at baggage claim.
From there we followed the signage to the Etihad Premium Arrivals Lounge.
That required taking a moving walkway down a further level.
There we finally found the arrivals lounge. There are a few things which make the Etihad Arrivals Lounge Abu Dhabi especially unique:
- It’s the first “real” arrivals lounge operated by a Gulf carrier
- It’s open 24 hours per day (most arrivals lounges have limited hours)
- It’s open to all first & business class passengers (most are limited to longhaul passengers)
Upon entering the lounge we presented our New York boarding passes and were quickly admitted.
We walked down the hallway into the main part of the lounge.
The lounge isn’t big at all, though still wasn’t crowded. I suspect the lounge isn’t actually that popular, given that a vast majority of Etihad passengers are connecting in Abu Dhabi. Furthermore, presumably those terminating in Abu Dhabi would head straight to their destination, rather than linger around the airport longer.
The lounge featured a couple of dozen seats in a uniquely shaped room, which added a bit of privacy.
One area had some TVs built into shelves with some cool art.
There was also a dedicated TV area.
There was a small business center with one iMac.
The lounge had a small buffet with snacks and soft drinks. The last thing I wanted after our flight from New York was more food, so I simply snapped a few pictures.
The buffet consisted of cheese, fresh fruit, sweets, juice, sandwiches, wraps, hummus, etc.
In addition to the cooler with soft drinks, there was also an espresso machine.
The lounge featured 10 fairly nice shower rooms, each with a sink, toilet, and rainforest shower. The staff also offered to steam clothing during a shower, which was a nice feature.
Each shower room had a nice selection of amenities.
In addition to the shower rooms, the lounge had a barber shop. First class passengers receive a complimentary shave, while business class passengers have to pay a nominal fee for the service.
Ford decided to get a wet shave.
After about 20 minutes in the lounge we headed to the Etihad chauffeur desk for our transfer to the Hyatt Capital Gate Abu Dhabi. Ford and I weren’t entitled to a chauffeur, since we were connecting the following day to Male on the same ticket. However, Matt was entitled to one (since this was the termination of his trip), so we drove with him.
We were driven to the hotel in an Audi, and the ride took about 15 minutes.
Etihad Arrivals Lounge Abu Dhabi
Arrivals lounges are a popular offering at some European airports, though aren’t as common in the Middle East. That’s probably because in the Middle East most passengers are connecting, and those not connecting are often arriving at strange hours, where there’s no need to freshen up before heading into the office, as seems to be the intent of these facilities.
Nonetheless I thought the Etihad arrivals lounge was fantastic. It’s a great place to grab a shower or shave before taking your complimentary chauffeur to your destination.
When available, do you typically use an arrivals lounge? If so, under what circumstances?