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Introduction: PDX Priority Pass Awesomeness
Review: House Spirits Distillery Portland Airport
Review: Capers Cafe Le Bar Portland Airport
Review: Capers Market Portland Airport
Review: Alaska Lounge Portland Airport
Now that I’ve reviewed the three non-conventional Priority Pass “locations” at Portland Airport — House Spirits Distillery, Capers Cafe, and Capers Market — it’s time to review the one “traditional” Priority Pass lounge at the airport, that has been around for a long time. I’m talking about the Alaska Lounge.
The Alaska Lounge PDX is located near gate C5, which is a short walk from the security checkpoint, and accessible airside from all gates, and especially close to House Spirits Distillery and Capers Cafe.
The Alaska Lounge is open daily from 5AM until 11PM.
We visited on a Wednesday afternoon, when the lounge was fairly empty, which seems rare, given how small the lounge. Do note that this lounge often has capacity restraints for Priority Pass members due to crowding. Expect that to be most common in the mornings and on peak travel days, like Mondays, Thursday, and Fridays.
On the plus side, I could have otherwise gotten into the lounge using my American Admirals Club membership, which I have through the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®.
This was my first time in the lounge, and it was smaller than I was expecting for Alaska’s lounge at their hub airport. Inside the lounge and to the right was a small TV area, with a bunch of chairs pushed close together.
Then the picture below shows the entire rest of the lounge. Just past the TV area is the cafe area, which has some small dining tables, as well as some leather chairs along the windows.
Past that is another small seating area with maybe a dozen leather chairs.
Past that is the business center, with about a dozen cubicles.
In the back corner are some more rolling chairs, including a small separate room, which is presumably intended to be a quiet area, or something.
There’s also an industrial printer in this area.
The lounge has decent views of the tarmac.
The food and drink selection was pretty typical for an Alaska Lounge. Along the interior wall was a Coca-Cola soda fountain a Starbucks coffee machine (which is one of my favorite lounge coffee machines), and a couple of canisters with filtered coffee.
There was also a window where alcoholic drinks are available, which are served by the lounge attendants. Choices include house beer and wine, though the lounge has no liquor.
Next to that was a fridge with some cubed cheese, veggies, salad, hummus, and chicken.
Then separating two of the areas of the lounge was a counter with the pancake machine (which wasn’t available at the time — they only turn it on in the mornings), as well as pretzels, cookies, snack mix, etc.
Lastly there was soup, along with chips and salsa.
The bathroom was in the far back corner of the lounge. The mens room had just one stall, which doesn’t really seem sufficient given the size of the lounge.
For what it’s worth, the posted maximum occupancy of the lounge is 95 people.
If you want access to Priority Pass lounges, the following premium credit cards come with memberships:
|Card||# Of Guests Who Get Free Access||Authorized User Access||Cost To Add Authorized User|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||2||Yes||$175 For Up To 3 People, $175 For Each Additional Person Beyond That|
|The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN||2||Yes||$300 Per Person|
|The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card||Unlimited Guests||Yes||$0|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card||2||Yes||$75 Per Person|
Alaska Lounge Portland Airport bottom line
Portland Airport is one of the best airports in the US, and it has a ton of restaurants and other cool concepts, like a distillery, movie theater, and nice-looking spa. Given that this is Alaska’s hub, I found the lounge underwhelming, in terms of the size, decor, etc. I’ll take it a step further — for most people I don’t think this lounge is worth visiting.
It was pretty empty when I visited, but I’ve heard otherwise it gets really crowded. Frankly I found the gate area to be more modern and spacious, and it also had outlets everywhere, with free wifi. So I’d rather have a snack or meal (or even just grab a cup of coffee) at Capers, and then sit somewhere else, because this lounge isn’t great.