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Qantas Lounge at Heathrow finally opens
Heathrow’s Terminal 3 now boasts one of the best selections of oneworld lounges in the world. In addition to my favourite the Cathay Pacific First and business lounges, American Airlines lounge and of course BA, there is now a Qantas lounge to check out too. If you are departing from Terminal 3 you may want to allow an extra hour to do a lounge crawl! If you need help deciding, you can read my lounge reviews here.
The lounge was due to open earlier this year but yesterday had its official opening after a few days of ‘soft’ opening to the public.
The lounge has a light and modern feel to it and is split over two levels with views of the airfield. It follows the same concept as Qantas’ international lounges in Hong Kong, Singapore, Los Angeles and Brisbane, with the food and interior design taking inspiration from the city it is located in. The interior is inspired by London at twilight with deep greens and rich blues throughout the furniture, while warm-coloured timbers, stone and brass represent the historic architecture of the city.
I love the look of the marble cocktail bar with its brass chandelier on the upper level serving cocktails designed by the Qantas Rockpool Mixologists, as well as Australian and European wine and beer. That will definitely be one of my first stops when visiting the lounge.
If you are a gin fan you will be in for a serious treat with a special gin bar on the ground floor which has both Australian and British gins. It also has an all-day barista service which is presumably to help wake you up with a double espresso after all the gins!
The menus are designed by Rockpool, the famous Sydney restaurant, with a Sofitel service experience.
You can have á la carte service in the dining room with a selection of plates of the day including:
Quintessential British dishes such as ploughman’s platters, pot pies and scones with jam and cream
Australian favourites such as healthy brunch bowls with eggs, avocado and kale, and zucchini and haloumi fritters
The signature salt and pepper squid with green chilli sauce from the Qantas First Lounges – this one of my personal favourites, so give it a try if you are there.
If you want something a bit quicker there are also hot and cold buffets.
If you need to refresh yourself or rehydrate there is a ‘Quench’ hydration station with tisane, fruit infused water, and sparkling water. Then you can have a refreshing shower in one of the 6 shower suites which come with Aurora Spa amenities.
If you need to work there are good business facilities including Wi-Fi, flexible work spaces and workstations.
The Qantas London Lounge is open daily from 8am – 8:30pm to Qantas customers travelling in First and Business and Qantas Platinum One, Platinum and Gold Qantas Frequent Flyers and their guests. It is also open to eligible oneworld Emerald and Sapphire customers, Emirates Skywards Platinum and Gold customers and Qantas Club members and their guests.
Have you visited the Qantas lounge? What did you think?
LEVEL starts in Paris and the end of OpenSkies
IAG’s low cost airline, LEVEL, is to start flying from Paris. They have also announced the end of the previously all business class ‘Open Skies’ flights that BA ran. The Open Skies flights will continue until Summer 2018.
LEVEL will fly from Paris to Montreal, New York, Guadeloupe and Martinique from Paris Orly from July 2018. LEVEL will base two Airbus A330-200 aircraft at Orly, each with 293 economy and 21 premium economy seats.
IAG buys Gatwick slots from failed Monarch
IAG, BA’s parent company, has bought the majority of Monarch’s slots at Gatwick after it went into administration recently. The extra slots mean that it could increase BA’s Gatwick presence by around 28%. Speculation is rife that this may be used for LEVEL to start from Gatwick rather than just expanding BA’s current operation. It will be interesting to see how BA use these slots as they have recently introduced/reintroduced several new routes from Gatwick. The slots could also be used to increase frequencies of flights or move more leisure orientated flights from Heathrow to free up slots there. With other airlines such as Vueling, Iberia and Aer Lingus being part of IAG, the slots could also be used for any of the airlines rather than just BA.