Qantas opens new-look Melbourne Qantas Club, business class lounge

Qantas opens new-look Melbourne Qantas Club, business class lounge

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce will officially cut the ribbon on the airlines' new Melbourne domestic lounges this Thursday, November 1, marking the end of a year-long upgrade for both the Qantas Club and the Qantas Business Lounge.

That multi-million dollar makeover saw an all-new Qantas Club open at the end of May, with the neighbouring business class lounge debuting in late August – although both remained to some extent a 'work in progress' until this past weekend, when the lounges assumed their final form.

What's new at Melbourne's Qantas Business Lounge

The business class lounge now sports an additional 'wing' next to the bar which effectively mirrors the layout of the lounge on the opposite side of the bar, with an extra two of those circular orange-cushioned lounge pods currently seen in the lounge...

... plus additional banquette seating...

... and more stand-alone seating stretching along the windows facing the tarmac.

This represents an overall boost of some 100 seats – around 20 percent more than the current count – and lifts the Qantas Business Lounge's total capacity to 350, which the airline says is 40% more than the old lounge.

But for business class passengers and Platinum-grade frequent flyers the highlight is be the Asian Spice Bar.

Located beyond the self-serve buffet, the Asian Spice Bar will serve up freshly-made Asian soups, noodles and street food from noon each day, and we're told typical dishes will include

  • beef brisket noodle soup with salted chili and bok choy
  • char sui pork with rice and stir fried choy sum 
  • sichuan eggplant with rice and stir fried gai lan
  • chicken laksa
  • vegetarian wonton noodle soup

The Asian Spice Bar will be Melbourne's take on the 'signature dining concept' of its sibling new-look lounges, with Perth now famous for its pizzas while Brisbane is host to a Mexican Cantina. 

What's new at Melbourne's Qantas Club

The crowded Qantas Club gains some respite by expanding into part of the business lounge's former footprint, with an L-shaped extension wrapping along past the Qantas Club bar and up to the old business lounge's servery.

This will add almost 200 extra seats to Melbourne's Qantas Club for a total capacity of around 530 passengers, or 10% over the previous Qantas Club.

As a result, Qantas has lifted the longstanding guest restrictions during peak hours for Gold-grade frequent flyers and Qantas Club members.

A series of windows into the terminal are also being opened up at a new extension just past the bar in an effort to address what has been a common complaint of Qantas Club members: that the lounge's relocation has seen the views and natural light handed over to the Qantas Business Lounge.

Those windows into the terminal won’t do much for a view but at least they’ll bring some light into the rear section of the Qantas Club.

Up next on Qantas' lounge to-do list is a Cinderella-like transformation of its Sydney International Business Lounge stretching through to late 2019, which will be designed by David Caon and feature a Rockpool 'dining concept'.

Read more: What do you want from Qantas' new Sydney business class lounge?

This will run concurrently with the construction of an all-new Qantas first class lounge at Singapore, which is due to open in late 2019 and take its cues from the Sydney, Melbourne and Los Angeles first class lounges with a cocktail bar, dining room, open kitchen and private shower suites.

Read more: Qantas to open new Singapore first class lounge in 2019

 
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.
 

22 comments

  • Neon

    Neon

    29 Oct, 2018 03:11 pm

    Great article and love the pics. I particularly like the window seats pic :)
    No member give thanks

  • Joe

    Joe

    29 Oct, 2018 03:26 pm

    Unfortunately the business lounge is just as crowded as the old one. I've wondered several minutes before I've found a seat at peak times. Its all too open now and no more separated areas really. Its a much nicer space and updated beautifully however. Food is exactly the same.
    No member give thanks

  • hutch

    hutch

    29 Oct, 2018 05:06 pm

    But isn't that the point... It wasn't completely finished.
    No member give thanks

  • anonymous

    anonymous

    29 Oct, 2018 04:34 pm

    No pics of the Qantas Club extension?
    No member give thanks

  • David Flynn

    David

    29 Oct, 2018 04:39 pm

    Only when we get down there on Thursday for the official opening etc.
    Member who gave thanks

    Monarch

  • airADL

    airADL

    29 Oct, 2018 04:47 pm

    Asian Spice Bar not a sausage sizzle....
    I thought CX had the noodle bars covered.
    No member give thanks

  • Jason Hamilton

    JKH

    29 Oct, 2018 06:03 pm

    I was in the J lounge the other day so perhaps slightly short of improvements being fully operational. Fairly busy and noisy. Buffet had two bowls of butter chicken minus much chicken. Espresso coffees were pretty good.
    Then onto SYD domestic J lounge for another transit - food was a further step down (some lentil thing - just to give pax a good dose of flatus during their next flight), not replenished enough, running out of items, some staff attitude bordering on truculent.
    No member give thanks

  • bcho6044

    bcho6044

    30 Oct, 2018 10:15 pm

    Agree re Sydney domestic J.

    QF reception staff excellent but service staff have always been miserable, rude and displaying attitude. My requests for coffee/food have always been met with displeasure.

    Not the way to treat loyal platinum flyers Qantas. Sort it ASAP.
    No member give thanks

  • Stm Aus

    stmaus

    31 Oct, 2018 03:00 pm

    Haha, yes, great idea feeding lentils to airline passengers just prior to boarding! Thanks Neil.
    No member give thanks

  • eminere

    eminere

    29 Oct, 2018 07:41 pm

    The Asian dishes sound delicious.
    No member give thanks

  • Mrminivee

    Mrminivee

    29 Oct, 2018 10:28 pm

    It looks great, but i'm still confused on the layout change. Is there a floor plan available?
    No member give thanks

  • jubbing

    jubbing

    29 Oct, 2018 10:46 pm

    Looks good - Now onto Melbourne's International Business Lounge :)
    No member give thanks

  • Graham BLAMEX

    BLAMEX

    30 Oct, 2018 09:31 am

    Well done Qantas. This clearly demonstrates how you value you top tier FF. Virgin Australia lounges are a disgrace.
    No member give thanks

  • Stm Aus

    stmaus

    31 Oct, 2018 03:01 pm

    You forgot the /sarc tag.
    No member give thanks

  • Steven

    sdipietr

    31 Oct, 2018 01:38 pm

    The Qantas Club lounge is awful with zero views and crowded desks. And why can't they ever put in more powerpoint. Horrible.
    No member give thanks

  • i8myface

    i8myface

    31 Oct, 2018 01:48 pm

    The colour scheme is horrible. I feel if i enter i will age 40 years. Never seen so many bland colours in one place before...... o.0
    No member give thanks

  • Ma

    Ma

    31 Oct, 2018 01:58 pm

    Would find it difficult to eat a bowl of Wonton noodle soup in this type of sunken seats with small table in front! Why not have some proper tables and seats for the tall and big guys?
    No member give thanks

  • David Flynn

    David

    31 Oct, 2018 04:00 pm

    There's a 'proper' dining area at the buffet and noodle bar, as shown in the pic from before the noodle bar opened.

    No member give thanks

  • Jay

    ausJCP

    31 Oct, 2018 02:20 pm

    The new Qantas Club is pretty grim, it feels like a dark noisy cafeteria. No natural light. No carpet or acoustic baffling. I'm so disappointed to confess I'd rather the old unrenovated lounge with tarmac views!

    Some improvements to the food, but if you've been to the business lounge next door, you'll really feel like the red-headed step-child in the QC.
    No member give thanks

  • rattlerr

    rattlerr

    31 Oct, 2018 03:42 pm

    +1 on Qantas club being grim and crappy for doing any sort of work - For the lack of better word, it looks like a glorified food court.
    No member give thanks

  • Goat Guy

    Goat Guy

    1 Nov, 2018 09:08 am

    The new J Lounge is ordinary compared to say Brisbane or Perth. A big open, noisy space with furniture strewn around, it is as welcoming as an empty hangar.
    No member give thanks

  • eddies

    eddies

    8 Nov, 2018 10:34 pm

    I am in this lounge once a week. To those criticising the staff... perhaps you are those i see treating them like servants. Are you the same ones with your feet on seats?

    I always smile and make sure to thank them for clearing tables etc, and find them all very polite and pleasant. All it takes is a bit of courtesy... they do a thankless job cleaning up after all the entitled egoes that frequent these lounges.
    No member give thanks

Guest

26 Mar, 2019 02:02 pm

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