Inside British Airways' first class Concorde Bar at Singapore Airport

By David Flynn, October 7 2015
Inside British Airways' first class Concorde Bar at Singapore Airport

The Concorde Bar at British Airways' new Singapore lounge is the first in a series of VIP spaces which the airline will open at selected lounges spanning the globe.

Like its Concorde Room namesakes at London Heathrow and New York JFK, the door of the Concorde Bar will swish open only for BA’s first class passengers and top-tier Executive Club frequent flyers holding either a Concorde Room Card or invitation-only black Premier card.

If you’re not on that list, here’s a sneak peek at what’s behind that discreet and rather solid door, located just to the right of the lounge’s reception area.

British Airways’ Singapore Concorde Bar affords seating room for just 41 travellers, compared to the 200+ capacity of the main lounge. 

Read: British Airways opens new Singapore Airport lounge

It also has a decidedly different design aesthetic that’s more akin to a ‘private members club’, including generous use of black Nero marble with European oak flooring.

“It's taking some of the Concorde Room concept from Heathrow and making it more useful for the oversea market” explains Rob Williams, BA's Head of Asia Pacific Sales, who positions the Concorde Bar as “a sanctuary where our first class customers can relaxing before or between flights… an area in which to go and sit quietly and not necessarily be in the larger lounge.”

Read more: British Airways' first class Concorde Room spins off Concorde Bar concept 

The Concorde Bar is more dimly lit compared to the main lounge, which appears could be a clever nod to the late night departure of BA’s flights to London.

Given that the Concorde Bar is nestled within its parent lounge there are no windows, views or natural light – so the Concorde Bar has its own video screens showing the Singapore skyline, in a video loop which reflects the time of day or night.

High flyers can make themselves comfortable in high-backed leather winged chairs, deep sofas or one of seven booths, each of which has its own flat-screen TV.

While meals are the same as in the main lounge there’s a better selection of drinks available from the self-serve bar, which is tastefully framed by blackened oak cabinetry.

This includes a Joseph Perrier NV champagne (there’s no champers served in the main lounge), Johnnie Walker Blue rather than Black, and a Glenlivet 18 scotch instead of the main lounge’s  Glenlivet 15.

British Airways plans to open its next Concorde Bar at the airline’s Dubai lounge.

Also read: Is this British Airways' next Club World business class seat?

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David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Wow, the BA PR machine is really pushing this new feature aren't they?

Yes better grog, but much like the BA First class seats the wow factor rapidly evaporates...

But I suppose not every airline can have the likes of Jennifer Aniston gagging for a shower!

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

02 Nov 2013

Total posts 29

It's "discreet" not "discrete".

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Jun 2014

Total posts 168

  1. individually separate and distinct.
    "speech sounds are produced as a continuous sound signal rather than discrete units"
    synonyms:separate, distinct, individual, detached, unattached, disconnected, discontinuous, disjunct, disjoined
    "speech sounds are produced as a continuous signal rather than discrete units"

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

02 Nov 2013

Total posts 29

I know the difference, thanks. But in this context...

"here’s a sneak peak at what’s behind that discrete and rather solid door"

... the meaning the author is clearly looking for is "discreet", meaning it is unobtrusive rather than seperate.

And while we're here... it's "peek" and not "peak". 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

02 Nov 2013

Total posts 29

And, yes, I just spelled 'separate' wrong!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

15 Sep 2013

Total posts 14

The earlier article about the new bar said "On any shortlist for a Concorde Bar would therefore be lounges without an a la carte dining menu for first class passengers, where flights depart in the evening and are quiet[sic] long."

My bet is on San Francisco next, since it meets all three of these requirements. There is currently a separate First lounge (read:separate room) with sufficient capacity for the two daily flights with First passengers. They'll drop Emerald back into the main lounge and repurpose this space for a Concorde Bar (it already has a bar of sorts).

A sneaky downgrade for Emerald/BA Gold customers, devaluing their loyalty somewhat and saving on the cost of champagne, no doubt.

04 Nov 2012

Total posts 218

Was in the ne SIn Concorde lounge early last month, as luck had it place was empty, one hell of a food & wine selection, excellent seating, all very, very impressve.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Nov 2011

Total posts 186

This lounge looks fantastic, I just can't help but feel that OWE is gradually being downgraded....a few years back OWE had first class lounges in the SE Asian ports, now you generally get thrown in with all of the paid club members and OWS. I guess this is a #firstworld complaint, but it does beg the question why continue plying one world carriers with your business beyond QF Gold etc when you get the same priority boarding, same lounges etc.

I don’t think it is as clear cut as that.

To appreciate this phenomenon, one would need to view each port and the traffic that goes through it independently.

For your main OW hubs (with the exception of DOH), there is still much value to be had from OWE status. The size and scale of OW hubs operation justifies customer differentiation and drives the need to provide real value for OWE, as a method for member airlines to retain customers beyond the mid-tier status (sapphire) level. So in that scenario you have, for example the CX, AA, QF First Lounge offerings from its major home bases.

In secondary ports, given the lack of scale the prerogative to retain margins outweigh the need to preserve the status quo for OWE customers. In this scenario, particularly given the non-hub factor, airlines would be more keen to cut adrift OWE, whilst preserving the First class experience for customer who do matter more (first amongst equals). To use an analogy, these dedicated first class quarters are for those men on the Titanic who forked out money for the life boats, even whilst those other men in non-steerage followed the protocol of the day and allowed women and children on the life boats first. 

In a way, BA is following the example of QR but in a more covert way. BA’s A-list customers, while espousing pluralistic views publicly are less inclined to live a pluralistic life. There will be a riot among members in Australia if Qantas tries to do something like this since the egalitarian principle is more entrenched in the Australian psyche, even if that is not the case in reality. 

BA Gold

01 Apr 2012

Total posts 184

Miles - totally agree with you.  I can see BA closing more of its separate First Class lounges around the network and instead opening a combined lounge with 'Concorde bar'.  A kick in the teeth for BA Golds/OW Emeralds not flying F.  

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