Which lounges can Malaysia Airlines' Business Suites passengers use?

By Chris Chamberlin, December 11 2018
Which lounges can Malaysia Airlines' Business Suites passengers use?

Malaysia Airlines will this week convert its first class lounges to Business Suites lounges and add a Platinum room to its flagship Kuala Lumpur first class lounge, as part of the airline's radical rebranding of its Airbus A350 and A380 First Class as Business Suites.

While the inflight Business Suites experience is essentially the same as first class, the lounges available to Business Suites passengers will vary from airport to airport. Here’s what you need to know ahead of your  Malaysia Airlines Business Suites flight.

Malaysia Airlines Business Suites flights from Kuala Lumpur, London

At Kuala Lumpur and London Heathrow - where Malaysia Airlines operates its own business class and first class lounges – the current First Class Golden Lounges will be rebranded as Business Suites Golden Lounges from December 12 2018.

The name is confusingly similar to that of the Business Class Golden Lounges, but the Business Suites lounges will be reserved for passengers departing on Airbus A350 or Airbus A380 flights in Business Suites (formerly first class) and continue to offer the same à la carte dining, extended wine list and other niceties as before.

The Business Suites lounge will also welcome Oneworld first class passengers departing from the same terminals – such as British Airways, in the case of flights from KL to London – along with Oneworld Emerald frequent flyers such as Malaysia Airlines Enrich Platinum, Qantas Platinum and Cathay Pacific Marco Polo Club Diamond.

AusBT review: Malaysia Airlines first class / Business Suites  lounge, Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia Airlines' Kuala Lumpur Business Suites Golden Lounge will also see its little-known First Class Suite reborn as the Platinum Suite from December 12.

Tucked away at the rear of the KL lounge, this cosy private room has always been confusingly named, and that's going to continue – because despite the Platinum signage, it's not available to Platinum-grade frequent flyers.

The Platinum Suite is exclusively for members of Malaysia Airlines' Enrich Platinum Plus tier – an invitation-only level designed for VIPs.

Those high flyers will enjoy a private lounge-within-a-lounge offering tarmac views and an adjoining private bathroom and shower.

Read: Is Malaysia Airlines Platinum Plus the world's most secret VIP tier?

Malaysia Airlines Business Suites flights from Sydney and elsewhere

In airports where Malaysia Airlines uses the lounges of its alliance partners – such as in Sydney, where Malaysia Airlines passengers use the Qantas lounges – things will work a little differently.

Business Suites passengers will join their business class fellows in the the Qantas business class lounge, with the same rule applying to the likes of Tokyo/Narita airport (where Business Suites passengers use JAL's Sakura Lounge).

This comes about because technically, Business Suites isn’t 'first class': so when fronting up at partner airline lounges, your access will be the same as any other business class passenger.

Of course, Oneworld Emerald frequent flyers can continue to visit Qantas and Oneworld first class lounges prior to all Malaysia Airlines and Oneworld flights, so if your wallet wields a Qantas or Enrich Platinum card – or something even shinier – you’re all set.

Chris Chamberlin

Chris Chamberlin is the Associate Editor of Executive Traveller, and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins not just with a single step, but also a strong latte, a theatre ticket, and later in the day, a good gin and tonic.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Aug 2012

Total posts 126

I don’t think Malaysia Airlines have thought it all through, but time will tell. How many (standard) business class passengers are going to turn up at the lounge precincts in KL and London expecting admittance to the Business Suite lounge, only to be directed to the Golden lounge instead?

jjj
jjj

11 Dec 2018

Total posts 4

What happens to customers already booked/paid/ticketed in First class? Will we still get Sydney Qantas F Lounge?

jjj
jjj

11 Dec 2018

Total posts 4

Spoke to Malaysia Airlines - changes won't apply retrospectively, so if you've made an F booking you will still be eligible for F Lounge access on OW partners.

13 Sep 2016

Total posts 184

I wouldn't put too much faith in MH when it comes to things like this, I get the feeling that what somebody there says and what actually happens can be two very different things.

Exactly and most importantly what everyone seems not to realise is that all ground services including their lounges and call centres are not run by MH but by a provider which has been outsourced. Only the aircraft and the flight crew are true MH operated and so when you get to the lounge, contrary to whatever policies are in place and being implemented by MH the staff will have no clue and they are most incompetent. For example all Oneworld Emerald members are entitled to fast track cards at airports where fast track services are available, for ex Bangkok but unless you fly business you will not be given one, even if you show them the MH magazine where the policy and benefits are clearly stated and even if you insist on speaking to a duty manager the ground staff at the gate will refuse even if they have plenty of spare fast track cards for Bangkok. Try their call centre, they misinform you best of cases and never keep their word or commit to anything they promise you on the phone. Complaining to the customer service centre will not get you any resolution either as all they do is send you a generic response. MH provides services that are appalling and not in line with Oneworld standards or policies, they are worse than a low cost carrier!

Hi 1Worldfreqflyer, just FYI, access to airport fast-track lanes isn't actually a guaranteed perk of Oneworld Emerald: access can vary from one airport to the next and can depend on which airline you're flying and/or any local government regulations.

You can search for a particular airport on the Oneworld website and it'll show you whether a), there's any fast-track facility available, and b), which airline(s) you have to be flying to be able to use it.

For Bangkok, the website shows that only Oneworld Emerald members flying with Cathay Pacific get fast-track, not Malaysia Airlines (or any other Oneworld carrier), so here, the staff were correct to decline the fast-track card.

(Obviously, it'd make the mose sense for this to be consistent across all Oneworld partners, but it's not, and has nothing to do with the "incompetence" of airport staff in this case.)

You are actually wrong and let me clarify. I did state that fast track access or cards are given to eligible passengers at airports where fast track is available. MH did write to me to confirm what is stated on the list of benefits printed in their in-flight magazine, including fast track access both upon arrival and departure in BKK, regardless of class of travel. And you are wrong yet again for all Oneworld carriers offer you a fast track card if you are Emerald upon departure fron or arrival into BKK including Qantas, Cathay Pacific, British Airways and JAL as I have travelled with them far too many times and this has never been an issue. I suggest you reread my comment again and if you are so happy with MH then by all means so be it, but I will no longer choose to support them when what they offer is in disarray and God forbid there is problem with your booking for you will then see how amazing their outsourced call centre is, but of course you must clearly work for MH that you are so defensive. Oneworld on their site clearly states that one of the benefits afforded to Emerald members across the alliance is fast track where the service is available available, like I had originally stated, Bangkok, London, Melbourne and many others, but not where it naturally is not available like Hong Kong or Paris etc. What part of this is so difficult for you to comprehend?!

1Worldfreqflyer: While we invite all users to share their views and experiences, we remind you of AusBT's published Comment Policy, which asks users to refrain from making personal attacks and remarks about others (for example, my comprehension skills aren't in question here, nor does posting a quick reply with factual information linking to an alliance's official website indicate employment by that airline or alliance: merely, an offer of help and explanation where we have the ability (and time) to do so.

As the topic of the article is lounge access for Malaysia Airlines' Business Suites passengers, not fast-track at Bangkok for Oneworld Emerald, we'd ask that any future comments be on-topic to the article and absent of any other personal remarks, or those comments will be edited or deleted, as outlined in the same policy. For further discussion of Oneworld Emerald benefits, you are instead most welcome to create a new discussion in the site's Community area.

16 Dec 2017

Total posts 9

Its so true that for MH, apart from things in the air (which were absolutely amasing per my experience!), everything on ground are just rubbish!!!

Their ground staff couldnt be more care less and their call centre agent often lie or provide inconsistent answers! But the title of most nonsense unit goes to online service team, they dare to send me an apology email with "apologise/ze" in wrong spelling!

16 Dec 2017

Total posts 9

Just wondering do owe members eligible to use the "business suite" lounge upon arrival (as in the good old days)?

As a previous loyal MAS customer for almost 50 years, but one who has not flown with them for 3 years, this is yet another screw up and unnecessary confusion. Doesn't bother

me what they call it, I will not be flying with them. Once they were right "up there" with the worlds best airlines, but no more.


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