Photos: Japan Airlines' new first class lounge at Tokyo Haneda

By Chris C., September 3 2014
Photos: Japan Airlines' new first class lounge at Tokyo Haneda

Japan Airlines’ newly-revamped first class lounge at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport is now open, giving JAL and Oneworld members – including Qantas frequent flyers – a new haven in the bustling international terminal.

Adding modern hints to traditional Japanese design, the lounge comes decked out with a library, memorabilia gallery and relaxation zone plus a rumpus room, bar and dining area, complete with teppanyaki cooking stations.

And along with the showers is a shoeshine service, so if your lounge time is brief, we’d suggest dropping your shoes off before you shower, and picking them up after you’ve freshened up.

Travellers from Narita Airport – including passengers on Qantas’ daily QF22 flight to Sydney – will have a similar shoeshine service available to them from later this month in the JAL first class lounge.

Marking the relaxation and quiet space is the Red Suite, which interior designer Ryu Kosaka considers a “secret hideaway” from the rest of the lounge.

Inside is the library and gallery space, featuring a number of historical articles such as flight crew bags from the 1950s and cockpit instruments, plus a massage chair for a little relaxation.

There are books, of course, mostly focussed on worldwide travel and culture in both Japanese and English.

Travellers can play chess in the rumpus room – rather, ‘play room’ – along with table football (foosball) after browsing the real flight route maps that cover the walls:

Being a true first class lounge, the bar stocks Laurent-Perrier champagne, served up in Austrian Riedel glassware.

As for your pre-flight dining options: JAL will be serving up pancakes in the mornings, Black Berkshire pork and Japanese black beef hamburgers with ‘JAL Original Sauce’ in the evenings, and regular buffet fare throughout the day.

Travellers can also sample three exclusive and seasonal sakes by Hasegawa Saketen, as they can in the first class lounge at Tokyo’s Narita Airport.

So how do you get into JAL's latest luxe lounge?

On the guest list are JAL’s first class passengers, along with first class flyers of other Oneworld airlines including British Airways and Cathay Pacific – all with one guest in tow.

Qantas Platinum and Platinum One members travelling on a Oneworld airline such as those above can also get past the front door with a guest, but note that Qantas’ Tokyo flights use Narita Airport, not Haneda.

Top-tier Oneworld Emerald members in other loyalty programs such Cathay Pacific Marco Polo Club Diamond, British Airways Executive Club Gold and American Airlines Executive Platinum members can also relax and unwind in JAL’s newest lounge with a guest.

The refreshed first class lounge follows a similar revamp to JAL's business class Sakura Lounges at Haneda Airport earlier this year.

Also read: The Qantas first class lounge: sampling the Spring 2014 menu

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Chris C.

Chris is a a former contributor to Executive Traveller.

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