China - Hong Kong
Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA)
- Extensive and varied buffet fare
- Tended bar with cocktails and Champagne, plus barista-made coffee
- Lightning-fast Internet
- No cooked-to-order food, such as a noodle bar
- It's two lounges in one: work on one side, relax on the other
Business class passengers and Gold-grade frequent flyers with Cathay Pacific have four lounges to choose from in Hong Kong – five if you count the Qantas lounge – and each space is a little different.
Here at The Bridge, you'll find favourites like The Long Bar and barista-made coffee paired with an in-house bakery for fresh treats and even homemade pizza, depending on when you stop by, so here's what's inside.
Location & Impressions
You'll find The Bridge near gate 35, directly above the first stop of HKIA's passenger train. If you're beginning your journey in Hong Kong, the fastest way here is to board the train after passport control, alight at that stop and take the escalator upstairs, where you'll see the entrance.
If you've previously made use of the American Express Centurion Lounge in Hong Kong, you'll be familiar with this part of the airport as The Bridge is just below:
After taking the escalator downstairs and presenting your boarding pass, here comes a decision: whether to turn left or right at reception, because this lounge is divided into two distinct areas, which could each be a separate lounge.
On the left-hand side, a barista coffee station, shower suites and a business centre...
... while on the right, you'll find the bar and a TV viewing area. Both areas have similar buffet dining, so the choice is almost "turn left if you're working, or turn right if you're relaxing".
Eye-catching artwork greets you on each side...
... and despite the 'work vs. relax' idea, both spaces provide a variety of seating, and offer tarmac views:
This provides plenty of natural light, whether or not you're facing the windows:
The Bridge opens from 5:30am daily, closing just after midnight at 12:30am.
As with all of Cathay Pacific's business class lounges in Hong Kong, the following guests are welcome here:
- Business class and first class passengers of Cathay Pacific, Cathay Dragon, Qantas, and all other Oneworld airlines departing Hong Kong: currently, that's American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian and S7 Airlines.
- Marco Polo Club Gold, Diamond, Diamond Plus and Diamond Invitation guests plus Cathay Pacific Cargo Clan Elite members, also when flying with a Oneworld airline.
- Qantas Gold, Platinum, Platinum One and Chairman's Lounge members travelling with the airlines above, including on flights operated by Qantas, as an alternative to the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge.
- Other Oneworld Sapphire and Oneworld Emerald frequent flyers travelling with a Oneworld airline.
- Marco Polo Club Silver members prior to Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon flights only.
- Air New Zealand Airpoints Gold, Elite and Elite Priority One cardholders prior to Air New Zealand flights, and before Cathay Pacific flights to New Zealand booked under an NZ codeshare flight number.
Cathay Pacific's Green-tiered frequent flyers can also earn lounge passes through The Marco Polo Club, although high-ranking Diamond members (and above) and other Oneworld Emerald frequent flyers (including Qantas Platinum) will likely opt for Cathay's The Wing First Class and The Pier First Class lounges instead.
Given Cathay Pacific has four business class lounges in Hong Kong – the others being The Wing, The Pier and The Deck – the dining facilities are a little different in each lounge, which gives some much-appreciated variety to regular flyers who can choose which to visit on every trip.
For The Bridge, its calling card is an in-house bakery (turn right at reception), where staff serve fresh bread and rolls straight from the oven...
... along with pizza, which proved so popular during my visit that the easiest way to grab a photo was by putting it on my plate – yum.
Down this end of the lounge, you'll also find The Long Bar, with cocktails and mocktails joining the regular staples.
One of the signature drinks you can try here is the Cathay Delight, a non-alcoholic mix of kiwi, coconut milk and mint leaves, which serves as a great morning pick-me-up:
But, don't fret, there's also Champagne: Mumm Cordon Rouge Brut NV. I personally rate this as one of my favourite non-vintage drops, so was pleased to see it on the menu here (ditto the Centurion Lounge upstairs).
The Long Bar also features a small snack station with some tasty treats...
... particularly the samosas, for which I went back for more:
However, if it's a hot drink you seek, you'll need to wander down the very other end of the lounge – or turn left as you arrive – to find The Coffee Loft. Being Hong Kong, I swapped my normal morning latte for a Hong Kong-style milk tea, another favourite on Hong Kong visits.
Otherwise, the buffet set-up is much the same on each side. Among the selections, you'll find pork buns...
... beef sui mai with a choice of sauces...
... vegetables, rice, pasta, and another hot dish...
... and chilled items like mini lunch wraps, cheeses...
... sandwiches and pita breads:
As it'd be impractical to try everything on offer, and not wanting to fill up after breakfast at my hotel before lunch on my upcoming flight, I sampled little bits and pieces as a DIY morning tea, and enjoyed the variety:
Other snacks are also at-hand, and while I don't think "nachos" is the most accurate description of the chips below, you get the idea:
The lounge offers a dedicated dining space if you're sitting down to a proper meal, along with cafe-style tables over near The Coffee Loft...
... and some self-serve drinks here, to save you trekking over to The Long Bar on the opposite side for a simple pour:
While there's no formal table service – generally a staple of first class lounges, as after all, this is a business class space – the staff regularly came through the lounge to take drink orders and offer top-ups, which was a nice touch.
When ordering drinks at the bar and coffee at The Coffee Loft, the bartenders and barista offered to bring them over to my seat when they were ready, which was also appreciated: but were equally up for a chat if you began a conversation.
The only thing missing on the dining front is a dish prepared fresh to order, something Cathay Pacific provides via The Noodle Bar in many of its other business class lounges, including here in Hong Kong.
There are plenty of places where you could set up a laptop – even at The Long Bar to mix business with pleasure – but when there's work to do, I always lean towards the Solus chairs, which serve as a personal workspace:
Here, you're guaranteed a power point (located above the black shelf, out of view), or can activate a reading light if you're working on paper. I also like them because they're comfortable enough to use as a lounge chair when you're simply relaxing, so you don't have to relocate when your work is done.
Otherwise, Hong Kong/UK-style AC power points are available throughout the lounge, generally as part of the cocktail tables between seats, with USB ports offered here too.
Lightning-fast wireless Internet pumped out download speeds of 63Mbps and uploads of 35Mbps on my most recent visit, and with no boarding calls except for the odd delayed flight, the lounge proved a great place to set up and get things done before continuing to my next destination.
There are plenty of places to pass the time here, whether you prefer an 'open and airy' vibe...
... something a little more secluded without as much light...
... or an easy sofa when your stay is brief:
There's a variety of printed reading material available here...
... but the lounge's WiFi connection provides complimentary access to the PressReader app as well, through which you can download magazines and newspapers to your own device to read whenever you please, including on your flight or after you've returned home, and the fast Internet means your downloads will finish long before you leave the lounge:
Nine private shower suites are available too, on the left-hand side not far from The Coffee Loft:
All up, with plenty of natural light, bar and coffee options, a good variety of local and international buffet food and friendly service, I enjoyed my visit to The Bridge, and would use this lounge again if seeking a quiet space to work or relax with a drink, especially when taking a flight departing from the same part of the terminal.
With more time on my hands though, I'd probably head to The Pier business class lounge instead for some freshly-made noodles at The Noodle Bar and a more upmarket atmosphere, following its 2016 refurbishment.
Chris Chamberlin travelled to Hong Kong as a guest of Cathay Pacific.