Brisbane is now host to Qantas’ best home-grown international business class lounge, with an all-new 'premium lounge' concept which makes its Sydney and Melbourne counterparts look more than a little dated.
Split across two levels, the new-look Brisbane International Lounge replaces the previously separate business class and first class spaces and adds nearly 30% more space into the bargain.
But while frequent flyers will welcome the larger footprint they’ll be wowed by the lounge’s fresh design, which takes its cues from the Queensland landscape.
It’s an approach already evident in the Singapore and Hong Kong lounges as well as Perth’s domestic Qantas Business Lounge, where a corporate ‘identikit’ approach to lounges is replaced by a decidedly local feel.
In the case of the Brisbane International Lounge this means furniture inspired by a relaxed approach to living in the tropical north, including low-slung lounges and timber café seating.
Even the floor rugs pick up notes reminiscent of the reef, sandbars and waterways of Queensland’s coast and inlets, while the loft-style mezzanine level brings in natural light to enhance the lounge’s airy open feel.
A standout feature is a custom-made glass and light art installation called The Pulse of Our Ancient Land, created by artist Jenna Lee from Brisbane indigenous design agency Gilimbaa.
Visitors to the lounge should take a moment to study the work and ponder the abstract interpretation of the Queensland region as viewed from above, brought to life through glass, watercolour and lights.
The new Brisbane lounge “reflects the natural beauty of the Queensland landscape through natural light, furniture and design, offering a new standard in premium travel from Queensland’s capital,” says Qantas International CEO Gareth Evans.
“Queensland is where it started for Qantas and we are proud to maintain such a strong presence after 95 years of flying.”
That presence will extend to locally-sourced produce for the seasonal menus delivered by Qantas Chef Neil Perry's Rockpool team.
A breakfast nook on the mezzanine level will offer breakfast bowls, bircher muesli and French toast alongside the hot and cold buffet.
The new Quench hydration bar – which the airline says will be rolled out “across future lounge developments” – will provide passengers with some pre-flight hydration through a range of non-alcoholic beverages.
Want something a little stronger? Hit up the tended bar for a barista-pulled Vittoria coffee, a craft beer or a glass of wine.
Travellers wishing to freshen up before their flight can duck into the shower suites stocked with Aurora skincare products.
Brisbane domestic lounges to follow
The Brisbane International Lounge is the first part of a multi-million dollar upgrade to all of Qantas’ Brisbane Airport lounges.
Up next are the trio of Qantas lounges at Brisbane Airport’s domestic terminal, with a new Business Lounge opening in early 2017, followed by a refreshed Qantas Club and the invitation-only Chairman's Lounge.
The Qantas Brisbane International Lounge will open to the public on the morning of Thursday October 20, 2016 for business class travellers, Qantas Gold and Platinum frequent flyers and their OneWorld Sapphire and Emerald equivalents, along with Qantas Club members.
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