Executive Traveller exclusive
Singapore Airlines expects to open its all-new SilverKris First and The Private Room lounges at Changi Terminal 3 in February 2022, as the final stage in a sweeping SGD$50m makeover of its flagship lounges.
Timothy Chua, Singapore Airlines’ vice-president of airport operations, confirmed the February target in an exclusive interview with Executive Traveller, and says that the revised layout of the SilverKris lounge complex will no longer see these premium lounges nested inside the main business lounge.
Under the previous layout, the first class lounge sat at the end of a hallway which cut through the business class lounge, while the entrance to The Private Room was again tucked away in a corner of the first class lounge.
"We've redesigned the whole entry... once you come up the old escalators from before, you'll be welcomed by a new experience" which will see individual entries for the first and business lounge areas.
As part of the extensive overhaul, the new SilverKris business lounge annexes space previously used by the SilverKris First Lounge and The Private Room, while those two lounges are now being built in the footprint of the old SilverKris Business Lounge.
However, moving both lounges further into the SilverKris complex means they won't have natural light or runway views.
"There will not be natural lighting," Chua confirms, although he feels the intelligent use of lighting as part of the design by hospitality specialists Hirsch Bedner Associates will give the lounges a unique ambience.
In addition, Chua feels that first class travellers appreciate "a more private experience."
"The whole concept of the SilverKris development is about making it personal... different groups of passengers have different needs, and so we have designed the lounges to meet the needs of that group of passengers."
Early renderings by Hirsch Bedner Associates show a design which draws heavily from Singapore Airlines' foundations as an Asian luxury brand – and a world away from the previous SilverKris First Class lounge, which has been shuttered since the first wave of Covid hit in April 2020.
HBA's concepts hint at an undeniable look of rich elegance, although more subdued than ostentatious: the dining room of The Private Room would not be out of place in one of Singapore's best Michelin-starred restaurants, perhaps perched atop a six-star hotel.
Executive Traveller understands the lounges will also feature some eye-catching crystal light installations crafted by French luxury brand Lalique, which in 2017 entered into a strategic partnership with Singapore Airlines and already provides branded amenities for first class flyers.
Along with the expanded KrisFlyer Gold Lounge, Chua says "the total lounge increase is about 30%, so what was about 4½ thousand square feet before would become six thousand everything is fully opened in February next year... with passenger capacity about 800+ up to a thousand, depending very much on the social distancing, which is a challenge."