If you're connecting through Singapore Changi Airport's "everyone but Singapore Airlines and Star Alliance" Terminal 1, Cathay Pacific's business class lounge is an undiscovered gem that beats the Qantas/British Airways lounge hands down.
In fact, we reckon that the business class section of Cathay's lounge is actually better than the first class Qantas/BA lounge.
Cathay's lounge is called the Skyview Lounge. After a disappointing experience in the Qantas-British Airways joint business class lounge, I used my oneworld Sapphire (equivalent to Qantas Gold) card to see what Cathay's offering was like.
I'd previously enjoyed the Cathay lounge in London Heathrow's Terminal 3, so was interested to see how the Singapore version measured up.
Location & Impressions
The Skyview lounge is in Terminal 1, up an escalator near gate D30, five to ten minutes' walk from the BA/Qantas lounge, next to the Times bookstore. It's fairly well signed with the usual Singapore lounge logos.
As with every lounge in Singapore, it's before the main security screening, which takes place at your gate. (So no pilfering a bottle of water for the flight.)
You'll probably spot the Fish Spa massage place underneath the lounge first (and if you have a long layover you might want to avail yourself of a backrub or -- my personal favourite for between-flight relaxation -- a footrub).
Once inside, the lounge has two different sections. I call the light and bright open area where you first arrive, with the food and drink servery, the "outdoors" area.
There's also a less-used "indoors" area, quieter but darker, and somewhat hidden away up a flight of stairs on the far left hand side of the lounge, near the showers and bathrooms.
The lounge is furnished in Cathay Pacific's international lounge style: not as chic as its world-class home-town lounges in Hong Kong, but still comfortable.
In particular, I like the Cathay chairs, which are at the right height for relaxing and for using a laptop on your knees.
Power points (with the British/Singaporean three pin square plug sockets) are spaced throughout the lounge -- look for the wooden tables with lamps on.
My preferred spot is the light and bright area directly behind the welcome desk, which has power points, tables and armchairs, yet is blocked off from the rest of the lounge by the wall behind the desk.
Any passenger with either a same-day oneworld airline business class ticket has access to the lounge -- making this a great alternative to the dark and noisy Qantas/British Airways joint lounge in Singapore with its glacial wifi.
Frequent flyers holding a oneworld Sapphire card (Qantas Gold or equivalent) also have access with a same-day oneworld airline ticket in any class. (Jetstar tickets don't count...but it's a grey area as to whether Jetstar flights with a QF codeshare flight number qualify.)
It's also the contract lounge for Air China, Air France/KLM, Bangkok Airways, China Airlines, Delta, Finnair, Garuda Indonesia, Priority Pass, Sri Lankan, Sriwijaya Air, Transaero, Veloce and Wexas.
Cathay's signature dim sum (yum cha) and pork dumplings are on offer throughout the day in steamers in the main food area.
Also on offer are a good range of vegetarian (and carnivore) curry with rice and other "sauced dishes over carbs" like pasta and stews. You'll also find shrinkwrapped sandwiches, pot noodles, soup, fruit, cakes and pastries.
The drink selection includes fairly nondescript wine, but it's drinkable, unlike the Qantas lounge. The NZ Sauvignon Blanc is probably the least offensive of the lot.
Beer (Heineken or Tiger), a Smirnoff/Bacardi/Gordons/Campari sort of spirits range, soft drinks, tea and coffee round out the drinks section.
Overall, the food options are better than even the first class section in the Qantas/BA joint lounge.
The Cathay armchairs are comfortable for working with a laptop, and that's my preferred option if I can snag one near a power point.
Alternatively, you'll find some desks with comfortable lounge chairs in the "indoor" part of the lounge.
There are also some old Windows 95 terminals at the far end, if you're feeling retro.
Wifi speed was okay -- although leaps and bounds ahead of the awful network in the Qantas/BA lounge -- at 4Mbps down and 0.3Mbps up.
Since the armchairs are comfortable, pick a spot you like (out in the bright but noisy main area or inside in the dimmer but quieter indoor section), grab a bite to eat and something to drink and relax.
International magazines and newspapers are available throughout the lounge, and the wifi -- while not really fast enough to pull down a movie from iTunes -- should bring you plenty to read while you wait for your flight.
Showers (somewhat alarmingly marked "Strictly for Shower Only"...) are available and well-signed, with decent water pressure, rain heads and detachable shower wands.
This is one of the better lounges in the "Not Singapore Airlines" terminal 1 at Changi.
I really appreciate the option of either curling up quietly in the "indoor" section or getting some natural light in the afternoon hours between overnight flights in the "outdoor" section overlooking the taxiing aircraft approaching the terminal.
With a decent range of food and wifi that works, it's a step ahead of the other oneworld options in Singapore.