Qantas Hong Kong Lounge ups the ante

Qantas Hong Kong Lounge ups the ante

The new Qantas Hong Kong Lounge is now open, and it's an impressive addition to the Flying Kangaroo's international lounge network.

Read our review of the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge.

Rather than adopt an identikit approach where each lounge looks the same, the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge plays up its location in everything from the decor to the dishes.

The former is contemporary but subtle, to help gives the lounge its own look and feel and "reflect the colour, vibrancy and luxury of Hong Kong", Qantas says of the design crafted by Sumu Design and Caon Studio.

But it's the food which stands front and centre in the new Qantas Hong Kong Lounge, courtesy of Neil Perry's Rockpool Group.

If it's true that Hong Kong is all about eating and shopping, then the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge is perhaps all about eating and flying.

That starts with local-style char siu barbecue pork (actually, think 'BBQ Bar', as seen below) plus dumplings and dim sum served from yum cha trolleys.

Lounge staff will also offer travellers a tray-around with Qantas First lounge favourites such as salt and pepper calamari, while guests in the dining area during the evening peak periods can try a locally influenced plate of the day made to order by in house chefs and accompanied by matching wine.

The lounge also boasts a cocktail bar with views over the terminal and across the airport. 

"We're trying to deliver again what Rockpool and Qantas were able to deliver with Singapore, which was a great lounge experience for all Qantas passengers, but to give that great offering in this new setting" says Alexander Woolley, from Rockpool's dedicated Qantas team.

Woolley tells Australian Business Traveller that "dumplings are ideal" for the Hong Kong lounge.

"They give people something to snack on and also give us a whole window of regionality into Hong Kong and crossover with some of those great sauces and pickles used in Neil Perry's restaurants."

And while the dim sum-laden yum cha trolleys also lend a local vibe, they also work well within the long and narrow space of the new lounge.

The communal dining table is great for socialising with colleagues or fellow travellers.

Of course, the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge has its own well-stocked buffet area, along with a bar and self-serve drinks area.

One reason to keep its Hong Kong travellers well-fed, says Qantas, is so they can get some serious shut-eye on the relatively short flights back to Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

“All of our flights from Hong Kong to Australia are overnight" explains Qantas International CEO, Simon Hickey, "so we know customers will enjoy being able to dine in the lounge before they fly so they can maximise their sleep onboard.”

The new Qantas Hong Kong Lounge has seating for up to 300 travellers with 12 shower suites plus a 'family zone' at the far end of the lounge.

These 'park benches' on either side of green planter boxes provide a unique seating option.

As is the trend with airport lounges and travellers who pack their own laptops and tablets, there's no dedicated 'work zone' with desktop PCs. Instead, the lounge sports plenty of AC power sockets and USB ports plus WiFi printing.

As expected, the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge draws some inspiration from the Qantas Singapore Lounge due to their shared design DNA and parentage through the new Qantas international lounge concept.

Read: Qantas Singapore Lounge – a dash of luxe for Lion City travellers

Also in common with Singapore: first class passengers, Chairman's Lounge and Platinum One frequent flyers are in line for a few extra perks such as free shirt pressing, shoe shine and priority access to showers.

It's all a substantial improvement over the previous Qantas First Lounge (shown below) which occupied the same space on the airport's upper level, not far from Gate 16.

The Qantas Hong Kong Lounge is open to first and business class passengers on Qantas and Oneworld partner airlines (such as BA, Cathay Pacific and Malaysia Airlines); Qantas Frequent Flyer Gold and Platinum cardholders and travellers with equivalent Oneworld Emerald and Sapphire status; and Qantas Club members.

Also on the door list: Emirates Skyward Gold and Platinum members jetting out on a Qantas or Emirates flight.

With the opening of the Qantas Hong Kong Lounge the airline has closed its Qantas Business Lounge located on the airport's lower level.

A spokesperson for Hong Kong Airport would not comment on rumours that this space would be taken over by another airline, telling Australian Business Traveller only that "we will further study the use of the room." 

David Flynn visited Hong Kong as a guest of Qantas.

Follow Australian Business Traveller on twitter: we're @AusBT

David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.
 

43 comments

  • Marky Naidoo

    Naidoov

    17 Mar, 2014 11:31 am

    Looking forward to the review!

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  • moa999

    moa999

    17 Mar, 2014 11:58 am

    Looks good... Assume the current Business Lounge will close around the same time?

    Wonder who will take over this space?

    Potentially Cathay could take it and dump the G16 lounge.

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  • watson374

    watson374

    17 Mar, 2014 12:05 pm

    Or temporarily shut the G16 lounge in order to bring it up to standard?

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  • Alvin Tse

    074061

    29 Mar, 2014 02:46 pm

    I guess the G16 lounge still deserves to be there for nostalgia's sake.

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  • Himeno

    Himeno

    21 Mar, 2014 06:07 pm

    I hope the food at the HKG lounge is better then the food in the SIN lounge.

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  • David Flynn

    David

    21 Mar, 2014 07:49 pm

    I think the food at the Singapore lounge is pretty good, Himeno. The two daily dishes are quite good, the general buffet and desserts are tops. What in particular do you think needs improving there?

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  • TheRealBabushka

    TheRealBabushka

    29 Mar, 2014 05:40 pm

    I concur. Dining and service at the new QF lounge in Singapore is excellent! Good mix of salads, mains and pudding. 

    Himeno, I'm curious to know what about the food at the SIN lounge that displeases you?

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  • watson374

    watson374

    29 Mar, 2014 09:50 pm

    I agree. The SIN lounge has reasonably good food - the portions aren't massive, sure, but when I was last there both the chicken in tomato sauce thingy and pork on rice thingo (they have long, fancy and correct Rockpoolesque names but whatever) were excellent. The bar staff are great, the floor staff are great and the buffet was very good.

    Suffice to say I was dreading my QF 6 boarding call.

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  • cssaus

    cssaus

    29 Mar, 2014 04:08 pm

    Precisely where is the lounge located?

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  • David Flynn

    David

    29 Mar, 2014 06:06 pm

    Here's a set of directions I had in a review of the old First lounge - the shop references may be dated, so allow for that...

    ---- 

    The Qantas lounges at Hong Kong Airport are adjacent to Gate 15, which is mostly used by Qantas, and located close to the airport’s northern security checkpoint (this is the checkpoint at the far right of the arrivals hall upon entry from the Airport Express).

    The Business lounge is downstairs, on level 6, while the First lounge is above on Level 7.

    If you’re entering from the airport’s north gate, turn sharp right once you’re through the checkpoint right and down the corridor.

    If you happen to enter from the south gate the Qantas lounge is only five minutes’ walk away, although the route can be a bit circuitous as you wind your way through through the upper level food court and shops.

    The easy way is when you come through south gate checkpoint, turn right at the Hong Kong Disneyland store and head down the narrow walkway on the left side of the atrium.  You’ll come out into the food court – stick to your right and follow the shops around until you get to Shanghai Tang.

    You’ll spy Giordano off to the left, and the rear of the north checkpoint to the right – the lounge is at the end of the narrow between these.

    ----

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  • Yarki

    Yarki

    29 Mar, 2014 05:31 pm

    I don't understand QF's obsession with tray around service... I don't want to have to stick to my seat in order to get something which looks tasty.  Why don't they just put it out for people to grab when they feel like it?

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  • TheRealBabushka

    TheRealBabushka

    29 Mar, 2014 05:43 pm

    The human connection makes it more special.

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  • Al Glidden

    AlG

    29 Mar, 2014 07:59 pm

    I think it's nice to be able to be sitting down and have a little something 'special' offered to you, you might be at the dining area and not realise that dim sums have just come out, or you might be down near the bar. As TRB says it's a nice human touch too.

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  • JBH

    JBH

    29 Mar, 2014 08:06 pm

    Simple, if you put it all out it gets eaten, keep putting it out and guess what, it costs! Controlling the 'output' costs less. A nice little trick that might make you feel good but in reality it does the opposite.

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  • JBH

    JBH

    29 Mar, 2014 06:32 pm

    Err, what's the hoo-hah with the dim sum?  it's being plugged as something exotic but in reality it a local staple and should be a given in the HK lounge.  Hardly Rockpool inspired.

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  • watson374

    watson374

    29 Mar, 2014 09:51 pm

    It's awesome, that's why.

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  • sagidec

    sagidec

    29 Mar, 2014 07:46 pm

    aaarrrgggghhh....*screaming with excitement*

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  • ciaomucca

    ciaomucca

    30 Mar, 2014 08:22 pm

    Quite likely a dumb question, but with access stated as "The Qantas Hong Kong Lounge is open to business class passengers on Qantas and Oneworld partner flights", does this mean Cathay business passengers can also access the Qantas lounge? Or will they restrict Cathay passengers and send them to the existing Cathay lounges?

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  • watson374

    watson374

    31 Mar, 2014 11:02 am

    With "ideal dumplings", I don't see why not.

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  • Tezza

    Tezza

    30 Mar, 2014 11:06 pm

    Cathay passengers may visit the lounge as Qantas is a Oneword member.  With this new lounge it may give CX passengers a reason to compared to previous lounges.

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  • Flyer00

    Flyer00

    31 Mar, 2014 01:28 pm

    What champagne do they offer in this lounge?

    Cheers :-)

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  • am

    am

    31 Mar, 2014 03:28 pm

    I presume that Qantas passengers flying in First are also welcome ;)

    It looks really good, but I'll have to see it in the flesh before I make my mind up. I wasn't expecting it to be so different to the Singapore Lounge! 

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  • hutch

    hutch

    31 Mar, 2014 03:57 pm

    I like that the QF lounges will have a unique feel - SIN, HKG and LAX. It would be nice to see a couple more new/refurb'd lounges in ports where QF is likely to continue flying - like DFW (a QF/EK lounge perhaps?)

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  • Robert Eden

    reno

    4 Apr, 2014 02:11 am

    How about a completly new Qantas lounge at the Brisbane airport International Terminal,before some the other ports.

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  • Longreach

    Longreach

    4 Apr, 2014 03:00 pm

    As present management has no idea what  the Q in Qantas stands for, there seems little chance of that, Robert.

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  • Robert Eden

    reno

    4 Apr, 2014 03:19 pm

    I agree longreach sad but true.

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  • radiC00l

    radiC00l

    4 Apr, 2014 09:50 am

    Interesting that youDavid like the different design style. In an ausbt article in 2012 I criticised the yet to be confirmed Marc Newson design - saying that they should mix it up and not simply repeat design elements. You then said "The whole point of having a common brand image and design concept is to repeat it throughout various elements of the company, while reinterpreting it in relevance to the setting/scenario." So I guess you and David have changed your minds now?

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  • hutch

    hutch

    4 Apr, 2014 10:19 am

    Too much time on your hands.

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  • radiC00l

    radiC00l

    4 Apr, 2014 10:32 am

    Ironic from one of the site's biggest commentators. 

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  • hutch

    hutch

    4 Apr, 2014 11:14 am

    Mate, I don't remember stating the above (they seem too intelligent to be my words) and I don't know how to go back and check (and don't think it really matters). But assuming I did, I'll give QF credit and say that I now like it.

    But if you have been waiting since 2012 to bring this up..... 

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  • radiC00l

    radiC00l

    4 Apr, 2014 12:02 pm

    Mate, my reply was to @am

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  • am

    am

    4 Apr, 2014 12:47 pm

    Um, what exactly do you think they've done here?

    The design elements are identical to the Singapore Lounge - the patterned tiles, the polished concrete, the reception desks, the furniture etc - just reinterpreted and cosmetically changed for a different setting. 

    You said in response to the very same 2012 article that, "Repeating the exaxct same design elements in different colours is mediocre", so I guess that you must hate this lounge. The only unique design elements here are the cabana style structures, everything else is the same as in Singapore, just quite literally "in different colours". 

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  • David Flynn

    David

    4 Apr, 2014 03:11 pm

    Hi RadiCool: it would seem to me that the Hong Kong and Singapore lounges do share "a common brand image and design concept" which is indeed "reinterpreted in relevance to the setting/scenario", such as each lounge's location. They share a common design DNA which makes them distinctly Qantas - if you showed somebody photos of a half-dozen different lounges and said "Pick the two from the same airline", I'd wager that most people would connect the QF Singapore and QF Hong Kong lounges.

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  • watson374

    watson374

    5 Apr, 2014 10:06 pm

    This has to be the best thread in a while, and I agree - they're 'same same but different' and I like them.

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  • radiC00l

    radiC00l

    7 Apr, 2014 09:54 am

    My original point (re the proposed HK First lounge) was having just a sea of Marc Newson/Poltrona Frau chairs in a new colour was mediocre. All I asked for was for them to mix it up a little - which is exactly what they have done with HK lounge. While there are some similarities to Singapore, there are notable differences. And again in LAX, this will a be a unique lounge. But get your cursors ready and vote me down 

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  • Jono

    Jono

    4 Apr, 2014 02:53 pm

    Not that I don't like what they've done here, but I don't get it.

    So they've spent what must be a seizable chunk of money, on a renovation that will only be experienced by customers who have spent $850 on a Qantas Club membership, $5,500 on a business class ticket, $11,000 on a first class ticket or are top teir OneWorld FF, (which is hard to quantify but I'd suggest the price would be larger then a first class ticket). These are rough figures.

    The type of consumer with $11k to blow on a return ticket, can afford to not be loyal. He could take his $11k to UA or SQ and get a nice lounge too. However, you take an economy customer and give them a good fare and service on popular routes and you'll aquire a new customer, potentially long term.

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  • Robert Eden

    reno

    4 Apr, 2014 03:10 pm

    Jono,

    Qantas club pays for what you get ,Memberships pay.

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  • hutch

    hutch

    4 Apr, 2014 03:28 pm

    Generally speaking, economy passengers are more likely to be price sensitive than premium passengers.

    Additionally, premium passengers are more likely to have fares booked corporately (hence on a contract basis) and be more tied into a frequent flyer program due to status.

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  • crosscourt

    crosscourt

    4 Apr, 2014 04:29 pm

    Doesn't sound like there is a separate section for first class etc as was originally indicated. If not then I hope it does not  get to look like a common mess room that the SIN lounge is.

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  • Phil_Li

    Phil_Li

    4 Apr, 2014 05:06 pm

    Been there last Friday... A bit too bright to me and feels less cozy. I liked the old one.

    At around 7:30 emberassing thing happened: not enough seats for guests! Numerous people standing or waiting for seats...

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  • GAAN

    GAAN

    4 Apr, 2014 07:09 pm

    Any advice on CX First vs this new lounge?  About to travel through to Europe.

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  • am

    am

    4 Apr, 2014 07:20 pm

    Make time for both!

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  • gippsflyer

    gippsflyer

    7 Apr, 2014 01:32 pm

    I'm wondering about this too. I have two HKG trips over the next couple of months, and normally I'd just go straight to the CX The Wing First Lounge (QFF Platinum) but trying to figure out if it's worth changing this habit (I tend to only ever go to one lounge per trip, rather than hop between - too much bother).

    This was easier in SIN, as I knew the BA lounge (was in F on BA) wasn't terribly good, and was quite happy visiting the QF SIN lounge instead (the great cocktail bar was well worth the switch).

    Are there good cocktails served in the new QF HKG lounge as well?

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18 Jul, 2019 09:16 am

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