Qantas passengers now have four Bangkok lounges to choose from

Qantas passengers now have four Bangkok lounges to choose from

Qantas closed its dedicated lounge at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport in late 2015 but with new lounges from Oneworld partners Cathay Pacific and Japan Airlines, along with Qantas' own global alliance partner Emirates, travellers have a surprising amount of choice before waving bye-bye to BKK.

Louis’ Tavern CIP Lounge

The first lounge on our list is one we suggest you skip, unless you're a Qantas Club member – in which case it's the only airport lounge at Bangkok that'll let you through the door.

The Louis’ Tavern CIP Lounge at Concourse G (near gate G2) is the lounge to which Qantas steers all eligible passengers ahead of flight QF24.

That includes business class passengers; Gold, Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers; Qantas Club members, and travellers holding Oneworld Emerald and Sapphire status with any other Oneworld airline.

The Louis’ Tavern CIP Lounge is better than having no lounge access at all, but it's more about function than flair.

At least it has hot meals and showers, the latter of which can be very welcome after a day in Bangkok. 

Cathay Pacific lounge

Also located in Concourse G is a superb little Cathay Pacific lounge. Opened in 2015, it shares the same Ilse Crawford design as Cathay's most recent lounges.

This is where we suggest that Qantas' business class travellers make tracks for, along with Gold, Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers – all of whom have access to the lounge under the terms of the Oneworld alliance to which both Qantas and Cathay Pacific belong.

Cathay Pacific's Bangkok lounge has a great set of dining options, starting with the airline's signature Noodle Bar and its selection of freshly-prepared Asian noodles including wonton noodle soup, Dan Dan noodles, dim sum and pad Thai (plus a separate vegetarian menu).

There's also a cafe-style area with lighter snacks, sandwiches, salads, yoghurt and desserts such as creme caramel and pandan cake.

Finally, the tended bar has a wide selection of cocktails and mocktails.

Japan Airlines lounge

From March 1st 2017 there's another Oneworld lounge available for the consideration of Qantas passengers – this is the revamped Sakura Lounge of Japan Airlines.

Located on the same floor as the other lounges, but down from the intersection of the E, F and G gates, JAL's upgraded lounge –like the Cathay Pacific one – boasts AC and USB power sockets by at every seat.

There's even a smoking area if you need a last pre-flight gasper.

The new menus provided by Japanese restaurant chain NIPPON-TEI include beef curry (below) and Japanese appetisers.

As Japan Airlines is a Oneworld member, the same lounge access rules apply as for Cathay Pacific: Qantas business class as well as Gold, Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers are all entitled to pop into the JAL lounge.

Emirates lounge

Head towards the D gates for the Emirates lounge, which is open to Qantas business class passengers and Gold, Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers as part of the Qantas/Emirates alliance.

(It's not widely known, but the Qantas/Emirates alliance includes frequent flyer access to Emirates lounges across Australia, Europe, Asia, North Africa and the Middle East, when you'e flying either Qantas or Emirates.)

It's a typically Emirates lounge: spacious, an upmarket 'international' design with a good selection of food and wine (including champagne) plus shower suites.

If you've flown to Bangkok and back with Qantas, which of these lounges have you tried and which gets your vote as the best bet for the business traveller?

David Flynn

David Flynn (David)

[email protected] / @djsflynn

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.
 

11 Comments

  • eminere

    eminere

    3 Mar, 2017 08:28 am

    Great lounge hopping opportunities.
    No member give thanks

  • AJW

    AJW

    3 Mar, 2017 03:40 pm

    CX Lounge for me, though the noodle bar was a little bit uninspiring in terms of choice.

    Also many business travelers may not like to hear this, but the lounge was also ok with a couple of little kids (1 and 3) and didn't count them as guest, unlike the EK lounge. And they looked after them very well indeed.

    Though if kids are allowed might try JAL next time for a bit of variety and to test the waters.
    No member give thanks

  • nerdag

    nerdag

    6 Mar, 2017 11:44 pm

    JAL count anybody 2 years and up as a guest like EK. QF and CX are the only OW partners in my experience who don't count kids as guests.
    No member give thanks

  • Peter

    keda

    3 Mar, 2017 03:56 pm

    Travel to Bkk regularly, EK lounge is fine,quality food and Bev,my favourite for sure Is the CX lounge with a great noodle and cocktail bar. Will be going to test out the Sakura lounge next visit
    No member give thanks

  • FriendlyGhost

    FriendlyGhost

    3 Mar, 2017 06:00 pm

    The Louis Tavern lounge was horrid. Terrible food, the air-con didn't work all that well and the whole place just felt very dated. The only reason you would enter the lounge is for the smoking area. I didn't try EK or JAL but the CX lounge didn't have a smoking area. So unless you feel the need for a pre flight smoke best to avoid this lounge. 

    The CX lounge I really enjoyed but during my visit it was very packed. Would love to try the other two options next time I'm out that way. 
    No member give thanks

  • CQ

    MEL Traveller

    4 Mar, 2017 08:05 am

    I travel to Bangkok frequently and typically use the EK lounge (although they aren't particularly welcoming if you are on QF24 instead of EK418 - including no announcement even though it is a codeshare flight with EK). I tried CX but didn't find the range of food particularly inspiring - sounds like I may have hit a bad day. Will definitely give JAL a try next time.
    No member give thanks

  • Matt

    SydneyTravels

    4 Mar, 2017 09:35 am

    I just used the EK lounge for EK418. Showers were tiny, only two of them servicing the entire lounge. Poor quality compared with others I've used
    No member give thanks

  • Keen Poon

    Keen

    4 Mar, 2017 10:36 am

    Compared to qantas and Cathay I always find the food at emirates lounges pretty average.....even at the first lounges
    No member give thanks

  • Happy Trails

    Happy Trails

    4 Mar, 2017 05:58 pm

    A couple of things to bear in mind.

    The old JAL lounge was only open mornings and evenings, so wasn't an option for the Qantas departure. Don't know if the new lounge is any keeps the same hours.

    The EK lounge insists on a Qantas-issued 081 ticket, so if you're on, for example, an AA award ticket - no entry.
    No member give thanks

  • lm1

    lm1

    20 Jun, 2017 07:22 pm

    You're correct for QF24 evening departure.... JAL lounge isn't open until 1800, so CX or EK are the go. Luckily they're very close to each other.
    No member give thanks

  • lm1

    lm1

    20 Jun, 2017 07:24 pm

    Same for a Bangkok airways issued through boarding pass - was knocked back because of this. CX had no problem.
    No member give thanks

  • Heath

    heathcor

    9 Mar, 2017 08:39 am

    I would always go for the Emirates Lounge...  but am tempted to give the Cathay lounge a go after reading this on my next trip in the next month...  
    No member give thanks

  • Charles Lo

    chas

    5 Aug, 2017 03:49 pm

    I have been to the CIP lounge. I think there are two of these. The one I went to didn't have shower and toilet. You need to get out of the lounge to the public area. The food was woeful, dry sandwiches and dim sum that sat in the baie Marie for a long time. Vowed never to go back into CIP lounge. Rather sit outside in a coffee shop. Have also tried Emirates lounge and it was fantastic. Next trip will be to the Cathay Lounge. Sad that Qantas doesn't have a BKK lounge considering it is a popular destination for Aussies.
    No member give thanks

  • AlexTravAddict

    AlexTravAddict

    25 Aug, 2017 11:43 pm

    I just flew on QF24 from Bangkok to Sydney. I spent 60 minutes in the Cathay lounge and then went across to the Emirates lounge for 90 minutes.

    Personally, the Emirates lounge is considerably better on every criterion.

    I’ve used the Cathay Lounge three times, and once you scratch the surface there actually isn’t much going for it. The noodle bar is ok, but I had much tastier soup on the streets of Bangkok for 50THB. The buffet options are limited (particularly by Asian standards). The lounge also played really annoying musak. The seating is seriously uncomfortable (they have quite a few options but they are all designed for tall people and I couldn’t find a seat with good back support – in particular the booth seating they have in front of the noodle bar is shocking). The wifi was very slow (even though the lounge was empty)

     In contrast the food in the Emirates lounge was really delicious (especially the seafood curry). The wines were better quality. Wifi was fast. There was no music or gratuitous noise. There were also much better seating options (both for dinning and relaxing). Both lounges have fantastic staff.

    I’m not a fan of Emirates bling, but I think they have got this lounge just right.

    No member give thanks

Guest

23 Sep, 2017 06:50 am

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