The all-new Qantas Los Angeles First Lounge is a high-flying haven for travellers on Qantas and Oneworld airlines such as British Airways and Cathay Pacific, both of which run daily services out of LAX.
Designed by Marc Newson, the lounge takes its lead from Newson's work on Qantas' highly-praised Sydney and Melbourne first class lounges but strikes an updated, more contemporary note. (Although unlike its Aussie counterparts, there's no day spa.)
There's a definite local influence, including Californian Knoll furniture and American oak walls.
But there are also cues in some materials (such as Tuscan Carrara marbled floors), colours and patterns which connect the space to the Sydney and Melbourne first class lounges.
“The new lounge is more than triple the size of the previous space, and the design and service is equal to the world’s best five star hotels and restaurants,” said Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce in opening the lounge.
With seating for over 200 travellers plus an a la carte dining room with seasonal menus from Neil Perry's Rockpool Group, this could just be America's best airport lounge.
The Qantas Los Angeles First Lounge includes a 74-seat restaurant with a view to the open-style kitchen.
In addition to seasonal updates the menu will include signature dishes including Black Angus minute steak with chipotle butter and lime; LA-inspired cuisine including Mexican, Korean and Italian dishes; and favourites from the First Lounges in Sydney and Melbourne, such as the Salt and Pepper Squid.
Passengers will also be offered a selection of individually prepared small plates in the lounge and bar area.
A stand-out feature is the dining room's 48 foot-long bar for dining and enjoying cocktails (such as a Mezcal Margarita), premium Australian and Californian wines and champagne.
Passengers travelling in first class will have Qantas hosts meet that at the check-in desk, fast-track them through security (using the airport's staff & crew lane) and also see them off at a dedicated first class boarding lane.
The lounge also sports fast and free WiFi with wireless printing plus two private work suites which travellers can book free of charge, along with seven shower suites featuring Australian Aurora Spa products.
Watch a video on the Qantas First Lounge below:
So who gets into the Qantas Los Angeles frst class lounge?
You'll need to be booked into first class on Qantas, British Airways and Cathay Pacific flights, or be a top-tier Emerald member of any Oneworld airline's frequent flyer program (including Qantas Platinum and Platinum One, BA Executive Club Gold and CX Marco Polo Diamond).
The Qantas Los Angeles First Lounge will help alleviate over-crowding in the adjacent Business Lounge, which has seen some Qantas Club members turned away during busy periods. A 200-seat extension to the business class lounge will follow next year.
David Flynn travelled to Los Angeles as a guest of Qantas.
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