Review: Qatar Airways Platinum Frequent Flyer Lounge, Doha

With features galore, this is a space many airlines would gladly term a ‘flagship’ business lounge.

Overall Rating

By Chris Ashton, January 13 2023
Qatar Airways Platinum Frequent Flyer Lounge, Doha
Country

Qatar

City

Doha

Airport

Doha - Hamad International Airport

Alliance

Oneworld

Airline

Qatar Airways

Cabin-class

Business

Notes
The Good
  • À la carte dining
  • Semi-private nap rooms
  • Showers with Diptyque amenities
The Bad
  • No international power outlets
X-Factor
  • Everything you’d expect from a ‘business’ lounge
Location
Dining
Work
Overall

Introduction

Top tier status holders jetting through Doha’s Hamad International Airport have an inviting new home in Qatar Airways’ Platinum Lounge, with semi-private nap rooms and à la carte dining just two of many reasons to visit the spacious hangout.

One of three new frequent flyer lounges at Concourse A, alongside the Gold and Silver – these replace the older and rather underwhelming ‘First’ and ‘Business’ frequent flyer lounges – the Platinum is, as you’d expect, the star of the trio.

Location & Impressions

I visited the Platinum Lounge South (which will soon be complemented by a trio of identical Platinum, Gold and Silver ‘North’ lounges in a seperate airport concourse).

The entrance to the Platinum Lounge South is just past that iconic big yellow teddy bear, on the left hand side of Concourse A near Gate A1 and directly upstairs from the Gold Lounge South. Both lounges share the same reception.

'Lamp Bear', an installation by Swiss artist Urs Fischer, is one of Doha's most recognisable sights.
'Lamp Bear', an installation by Swiss artist Urs Fischer, is one of Doha's most recognisable sights.

Stepping inside, the first area encountered is the dining room, lined with vertical timber slats, grey cabinetry and tiles, and a sleek glass wall. Although perhaps not the grandest reveal, it ticks plenty of boxes, offering an enticing mix of meals and drinks.

Timber and glass flows through the entire lounge.
Timber and glass flows through the entire lounge.

The main lounge, however, certainly lives up to the lofty promises of the word ‘Platinum’.

Set beneath a soaring curved ceiling which sweeps back from the windows like a gentle wave, the vibe is calm and inviting, with a strong emphasis on natural finishes. Planter boxes create clear paths and provide nice pops of greenery.

Subtle lighting in the main lounge enhances its relaxed ambience.
Subtle lighting in the main lounge enhances its relaxed ambience.

Angled towards the runway, the windows of the South lounge enhance the sense of space – and offer a great view to boot. Those vertical timber slats make another triumphant appearance, drawing your eyes upwards to emphasise the room’s impressive height.

Seating up to 140 guests, a mix of lounges, armchairs and a high table in various colours cleverly divide the lounge into zones: relaxation, conversation, or collaboration.

Power outlets are close by for almost every seat.
Power outlets are close by for almost every seat.

A single step up onto a split level brings you to the cosy three-seater bar, brimming with wines, spirit and beers, as well as barista-pulled coffee (huzzah!).

A QR menu details the array of beers, spirits and wines.
A QR menu details the array of beers, spirits and wines.

Nearby settees make a perfect perch for a relaxed drink or two.

Access

Open 24 hours a day, the lounge welcomes Qatar Airways’ Privilege Club Platinum members, as well as Velocity Platinum and Oneworld Emerald frequent flyers and eligible guests. That includes Platinum and Platinum One members of Qantas Frequent Flyer.

Departures/arrivals screens are found in several locations.
Departures/arrivals screens are found in several locations.

Qatar Platinum Lounge Access

Guests are welcome to accompany members into the lounge, with the following entry limits:

  • Two guests for Privilege Club Platinum
  • One guest for Oneworld Emerald
  • One guest for Velocity Platinum

While there’s no paid entry to the Qatar Platinum Lounge, the superior Al Mourjan business lounge invites guests for QAR 350 (AUD$139) when pre-purchased online or QAR 450 (AUD$176) for walk-ins, as does the Oryx Lounge for QAR 200 (AUD$80).

Dining

When hunger calls, simply browse the à la carte menu – placing your order with the ever-present waiter – or sidle up to the buffet to see what the day’s specials are.

My visit sees an array of ready-made appetisers such as roast baby corn and chicken salad, hummus and tabouleh, along with a cheese tomato sandwich and chicken wrap.

Appetisers are mostly the same featured in the Al Mourjan business lounge.
Appetisers are mostly the same featured in the Al Mourjan business lounge.

Over at the hot buffet is a beef goulash, penne pasta with a deliciously spicy arrabbiata sauce – which pairs nicely with the Pepik Pinot Noir, and chicken stuffed with sweet peppers. It’s quite a limited selection, but makes sense given the additional à la carte option.

Qatar Platinum Lounge menu

View the lounge menu here

Accessed via a QR code, the all-day menu runs from your breakfast classics such as scrambled or sunny side up eggs on sourdough, through to a chicken burger with fries and cauliflower saag masala on rice pilaf. Fresh sushi makes for a good lighter option.

Sweet-toothed foodies will be tempted by the coconut passion cake and a tasty berry tart or a molten chocolate lava cake. There are muffins and biscuits too.

Grab a ready-made dessert or order one from the menu.
Grab a ready-made dessert or order one from the menu.

While the dining area has its own drinks fridges, a self-service bar in the heart of the lounge is stocked with the usual suspects of beer, soft drink and wine (a choice of two whites or two reds) plus sparkling water, juice and tea.

There’s also an automated coffee machine (if you don’t fancy waiting for barista coffee, that is).

Beers, wines and soft drinks are in a fridge around the other side.
Beers, wines and soft drinks are in a fridge around the other side.

If you’re after bubbles, simply head over to the main bar or catch the eye of one of the waiters. This evening’s offering is a Philipponnat Champagne Royale Reserve Brut.

Work

Those needing to fire off a few emails (and don’t fancy balancing a notebook on their lap) have two work-ready seating options: an upright table flanked by stools in the centre of the lounge, or quilted pods against the wall of the dining area.

Conveniently, almost every seat in the lounge is within arm’s reach of a power outlet or two. This includes both AC and USB, giving you plenty of opportunity for a quick juice up pre-flight.

The bench has seating for six, while the quilted pods have room for five.
The bench has seating for six, while the quilted pods have room for five.

Unfortunately, they don’t feature a universal plug, so you’ll need a UK or multi plug adapter if you want to avoid the dreaded ‘low battery, shutting down in one minute’ warning. Given my tendency to travel with the kitchen sink, I’m sorted!

The quilted pods have a cocooning feel.
The quilted pods have a cocooning feel.

Rather than featuring its own dedicated Wifi network, the Platinum lounge uses a terminal-wide connection. It’s the same story over at the Al Mourjan business lounge too.

Given the high volume of travellers passing through the Hamad International Airport during my visit (right in the middle of the Qatar 2022 World Cup), speeds are surprisingly good. A brief login sees 44Mbps download, 71Mbps upload.

Relax

Weary travellers wanting a power nap will be delighted by the semi-private sleeping rooms, discreetly tucked away behind a timber and glass door opposite the dining area.

Divided by attractive timber-clad walls (though sadly no doors), each of the five pods features a comfortable leather recliner lounge in a fixed position, flanked by a table with USB and AC outlets.

Rooms are divided by not quite full-height walls.
Rooms are divided by not quite full-height walls.

Aside from a nap, the ability to enjoy a little freshen-up before a flight never goes astray. To that end, the Platinum lounge has well-appointed shower facilities available on a first come, first serve basis. There are two showers for men, one for women, and one shared mobility access shower. 

Diptyque toiletries – the same found on Qatar Airways flights, as well as in the premium amenity kit supplied in Qsuite business class – are conveniently provided.

Verdict

There’s plenty to love in this top-tier hangout, with the welcome inclusion of nap rooms, showers and à la carte dining – essentially what you’d expect from a business class lounge, but in Platinum – setting a new high water mark for frequent flyer lounges.

With comfortable seating, a well-stocked bar and the ability to bring a guest, it’s a space where a couple of hours could easily breeze by before you know it.

The writer travelled as a guest of Qatar Airways.

Jetstar Airways - Qantas Frequent Flyer

24 Aug 2018

Total posts 108

Looking forward to a visit as my travel agent booked us in Q J(lite)l, so no El Mourjan lounge ( this time)

06 Jun 2017

Total posts 46

I'm keen to check out this lounge. I usually fly EY and get access to the amazing Etihad First Class Lounge as a VA Plat, but might book QR next time. 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

25 Jul 2013

Total posts 68

Thanks for this review. Good to see what we are up for as Velocity / Qantas / Qatar Platinums flying Qatar economy... especially as there is not much info provided on the airline websites.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

13 Jan 2023

Total posts 2

I visited the Platinum lounge on my way between Australia and France and return, in October 2022. It was quite pleasant. I had a long stopover so it was nice to shower, eat, drink, recharge - devices and myself - and even check out the quiet room.

The only thing I wasn't keen on was the beef burger on the menu; it was not nice, so my recommendation is go for the local dishes when you're there.

I visited the Platinum lounge in August last year being a QF Platinum flying economy and was initially upset they would not allow me in the El Mourjan lounge since I was a Platinum holder. I was pleasantly surprised how good the lounge was essentially giving probably a better experience than the El Mourjan lounge. My wife and I had nine hours to kill between flights so food, drink and nap area was all excellent.

Having used the El Mourjan lounge many times I still don't understand why Qatar will not let QF platinum holders in if that's what you want to do especially the work area. The down side of the El Mourjan lounge is being miles from the bar given the size of the lounge.

I would be curious on what the gold lounge has to offer given they have now split the lounges (was gold and platinum when I visited)

QF

10 Oct 2012

Total posts 7

I visited the lounge in August'22. The food offering were good. The seating was good, but the showers were (IMO) inadequate for the numbers. Not sure if this was just something that happened on the day or not, but  they were admitting both Gold and Platinum frequent flyers to the one lounge which may have made it busier that normal (maybe the Gold lounge was closed for some reason... ??).  I waited as long as I could on my 2hr 40min transit, but missed out on a shower because the queue was too long...

The only other thing I'd mention is that it's very poorly signposted - you would never find it if you were trying to follow the signs because there aren't any, even at the entrance. I had to ask reception (at concourse level) if I was in the right place before going up the lift to the lounge.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

06 Aug 2017

Total posts 76

There seems to be some disagreement regarding which lounge is better -- the Platinum Lounge or the Al Mourjan Business Lounge. The above review states that the Al Mourjan is "superior" in a throwaway line, but some of the comments seem to contradict that.

I'll have the choice later this year as I'll be flying Qatar Business class but I'm also Velocity Platinum. Which lounge should I use or is it six of one...? 


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