Even with just one flight a day to Dubai, the Emirates lounge in Los Angeles caters solely to the airline's business class and first class travellers, along with its Gold and Platinum Skywards frequent flyers when jetting home or onwards from LAX.
Opened in March 2015 the space takes on Emirates' newer and more contemporary design which Perth-based travellers – particularly those flying from Perth to LA via Dubai – can also now enjoy in their home city thanks to the opening of another all-new Emirates lounge.
Location & Impressions
After checking-in and clearing security at the Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) in Los Angeles, follow the path into the departures area and take a hard left at the first turn: After taking the lift upstairs guests are greeted by staff at a relatively modern reception desk... ... before following the corridor – adorned with destination-appropriate artwork – and entering the lounge proper. Although there are no direct external windows in the lounge there's no shortage of natural light with plenty flowing in through skylights in the terminal ceiling and via the 'indoor' terrace, with Emirates' now-signature Rolex clocks on display:
- Emirates business class and first class passengers bound for Dubai and beyond
- Skywards Gold and Platinum frequent flyers when travelling onwards with Emirates
- Virgin Australia business class, Velocity Platinum and Velocity Gold cardholders prior to Virgin Australia flights to Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, except for VA6 to Brisbane on Saturdays, as this flight leaves earlier in the day when the Emirates lounge is closed, with access provided to the nearby 'Los Angeles International Lounge' instead.
As the Qantas+Emirates partnership doesn't cover the USA, Qantas Gold frequent flyers (and above) on Emirates' Los Angeles-Dubai flights have no access to this lounge, nor do any Qantas passengers travelling to Australia.
You won't find table service here as you would in Emirates' Dubai first class lounges, yet the buffet is quite comprehensive with chilled salads and light bites... ... and more substantial hot dishes including seafood pies, cannelloni, chicken and grilled beef... ... plus vegetables and vegetarian options... ... which combine to deliver a reasonably healthy lunch before Emirates' 3:35pm departure. You'll also spot tarts and sweets for an early dessert and a great selection of cheese and accompaniments... ... which can be enjoyed at dedicated dining tables or more casually throughout the lounge. On the beverage side, Veuve Clicquot Champagne is practically on-tap with staff nearby offering to pour it for us (which was politely declined)... ... plus a range of spirits which can combine to make cocktails... ... joined by beers and various mixers which can also be enjoyed on their own... ... and machine-made coffee for dessert or a pick-me-up, plus the usual teas and snacks. With relatively few passengers using this lounge on a daily basis, we'd love to see the staff offering a seasonal 'dish of the day' to seated travellers in the dining room and the same offer of a beverage to go with their meal.
As Emirates already plates up individual portions of some of the buffet items and has roving staff near the food to offer assistance, this realistically wouldn't be too difficult to implement.
A handy business centre forms the far corner of the lounge with Windows-powered computers at the ready... ... while travellers with the own tech can connect to free WiFi which gave decent speeds of 7.33mbps down and 5.75mbps up during our visit, while recharging their device at AC and USB power points which are practically abundant. Normally these outlets appear in between every two seats providing each traveller with one AC and USB plug, although the AC outlets are particularly close together and may be difficult to use simultaneously by foreign travellers sporting larger cross-country power adaptors.
Many seats in the lounge offer cocktail tables in between – great for relaxing with a nice glass of Champagne – with seats also extending out onto the terrace which overlooks the departure terminal in Los Angeles... ... and along the corridor in the centre of the lounge: Several TV suites make for a great way to pass the time... ... as does a reasonable selection of reading material: Rounding out the lounge is a prayer room and also private shower suites with Timeless Spa amenities: All up, the lounge is certainly on the smaller side – catering to a maximum of 157 guests – but makes great use of the space available and doesn't feel 'boxed-in': particularly thanks to the expansive views from the internal windows and terrace.
Chris Chamberlin was a guest of Emirates.
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