In late May American debuted their new premium lounges at JFK. Specifically, American opened their newly refurbished Flagship Lounge, which is open to international first & business class passengers, oneworld Emerald & Sapphire members traveling internationally, as well as those traveling nonstop in business class to Los Angeles and San Francisco.
American’s new Flagship Lounge JFK
This lounge represents a nice improvement over the old Flagship Lounge, and a lot more people have access to it as well.
This is only the first renovated Flagship Lounge that American plans on introducing, and as each new lounge opens, the entry requirements for it will change as well. Under the old rules, only international first class passengers and oneworld Emerald members have access, while under the new rules, international business class passengers and oneworld Sapphire members will have access as well.
We know that American plans to open new Flagship Lounges in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, and Philadelphia.
As I wrote about a couple of weeks ago, American’s new Flagship Lounge at O’Hare Airport is supposed to open this month. We now have a more specific date — American’s Flagship Lounge Chicago officially opens to the public tomorrow, Thursday, September 14, 2017.
They had a pre-opening party yesterday. I wasn’t able to make it since I was supposed to be in Europe with my dad, but Hurricane Irma messed that up. Beyond that, though, in general I’d rather review a lounge when it’s open and in operation to see what the real experience is like, rather than just a media event, where you don’t get a real sense of the crowding, service, etc.
With that in mind, I have plans to review the Flagship Lounge Chicago myself soon, though reader Jacob (@jmmccarthy2002) was at the event last night, and kind enough to share some photos. This won’t be a full review, but rather just some pictures and brief commentary. First here are the notes he shared:
- The Flagship Lounge is located in the same area as the H & K Concourse Admirals Club, though it’s on Level 2, while the Admirals Club is on Level 3
- At the front desk you’re given paper cards that act as invitations to the Flagship Lounge, assuming you’re eligible for access
- The lounge has six shower rooms
- There’s a dedicated TV room
- There are tons of power ports, virtually at every seat
- There’s a self serve buffet and extensive drink selection
- The lounge has no Flagship First Dining (given that American doesn’t offer an international first class product out of Chicago), but they have a space where it could be added, should they decide to, at some point
As a reminder, the following passengers have access to Flagship Lounges:
- Passengers traveling in oneworld longhaul international first and business class same day
- Passengers traveling in first class and business class on American’s A321 between New York and Los Angeles/San Francisco
- American Executive Platinum, Platinum Pro, and Platinum members traveling on a longhaul international itinerary, regardless of the class of service
- All non-American AAdvantage oneworld Emerald and Sapphire members traveling on any oneworld flight, even if it’s domestic
Here are the pictures that Jacob shared:
The lounge looks great, and I can’t wait to check it out myself soon! Also, the Flagship Lounges in Los Angeles and Miami should be opening later this year. It’s interesting that Chicago is the second airport to get a new Flagship Lounge, given that it’s not a city out of which American is growing much lately. This could be one of two things — either it’s a competitive response to United’s Polaris Lounge in Chicago, or it’s just a function of the speed of construction and available space for the lounge.
If you want more commentary in the meantime, View from the Wing was at the event last night.
What do you think of the Flagship Lounge Chicago?