Ample space for business travellers, sweeping tarmac views and a signature ‘home away from home’ feel: three things that the brand new Singapore Airlines SilverKris Lounge at Brisbane Airport brings with it to replace the older – and considerably dated – SilverKris lounge that preceded it.
Gone is that little room down by duty-free: this lounge uses an entirely new space to attract travellers as SQ continues to woo Queensland flyers, including the introduction of fully-flat business class beds on the Brisbane route.
Join Australian Business Traveller as we explore the airline’s newest Australian SilverKris lounge.
Location & Impressions
Singapore Airlines' new lounge significantly trumps that which it replaced, starting with an inviting 'signature screen' at reception: It sets the tone for the entire lounge: slightly modern, somewhat traditional, but overall, a breath of fresh air for Brisbane passengers.
High ceilings are broken up by an innovative 'space frame'… … and made of powder-coated solid steel, you'll also spot glass panels to help focus your gaze. Join that with plenty of natural light flowing in from tarmac-facing windows and you've got a lounge that feels bright, spacious, airy and inviting.
- Business class passengers of Singapore Airlines, Air Canada, Air New Zealand, EVA Air and Thai Airways
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Gold, PPS Club and Solitaire PPS Club before Singapore Airlines and Star Alliance flights
- Other Star Alliance Gold frequent flyers plus United Club and Air Canada Maple Leaf Club members travelling with Star Alliance airlines
- Virgin Australia Velocity Gold and Platinum members prior to all Singapore Airlines flights, and prior to Virgin Australia flights to Los Angeles (VA7 & VA9) only
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Gold cardholders prior to Singapore Airlines flights only
Air New Zealand also operates its own dedicated lounge at Brisbane Airport, which operates a similar guest list for Star Alliance passengers and also welcomes Velocity Gold and Platinum members travelling with Air NZ.
Singapore Airlines had always served up tasty food at its Brisbane Airport lounge, but the previous facility gave passengers nowhere to actually eat it, unless they balanced plates on their laps and hoped for the best.
Jump forward to SQ's new lounge and there's a dedicated dining wing with rows of dining tables, some with two seats (pictured) and others with four... ... while food and drinks are all self-serve from a central buffet area: To keep things fresh and varied, the menu changes from day to day and varies by season. From the selections available during our visit, we particularly enjoyed the satay sticks... ... fish bites with tartare sauce... ... and the Singapore noodles with prawns: If you come across small chicken and leek pies, they're also rather appetising.
Prefer something lighter? A range of wraps, yoghurts, eggs and snacks are also available... ... while you'll find a selection of cheeses over by the espresso machine. Yes, there's no barista here as you'd get in Brisbane's Qantas and Plaza Premium lounges, but the coffee still comes at an acceptable quality for one that's machine-made: In the beverage department, a range of spirits, liqueurs, beers and wines, including Bordeaux reds... ... plus the A by Arras Premium Cuvee (NV) sparkling wine from Tasmania.
But take note: there's no cocktail bartender service here as you'd experience in some of Singapore Airlines' other lounges, nor is there a 'plate of the day' on offer for something fresh served to your table.
Forget crowded communal tables or nursing your laptop on your lap: Singapore Airlines instead provides proper working suites with comfy chairs, desk space and accessible power points… …which allows you to turn and face the desk to really focus on your work, or to swing around and face the lounge proper if you’re browsing on your tablet or smartphone and would prefer the extra privacy.
Nearby, more traditional seats are available – particularly useful for colleagues travelling in groups. This is also where you’ll spot an array of lamps: a signal that both AC and USB power is available for you nearby: There’s also space to work over by the windows as you take in Brisbane Airport’s tarmac views, and again, you’ll find both AC and USB power points conveniently at the ready. WiFi is available throughout the lounge – you’ll find the password at reception or on many of the information stands throughout the space – although the speeds you’ll experience are somewhat limited.
We arrived when the lounge was empty and found download speeds clocking in at 3.01Mbps, uploads reaching 0.52Mbps and ping speeds of 4ms: adequate for basic browsing but without being particularly fast.
Those speeds dropped slightly to 2.68Mbps for downloads and 0.44Mbps for uploads once the lounge started to fill up closer to boarding time, with ping speeds extending to 11ms.
Travelling on your own time? Then kick back in one of the many seats throughout the lounge… … or for something different, look to the central group of chairs, including those with higher backs for added privacy and comfort: You’ll find more of those seats over by the windows in a pair, which you can always rotate to face each other or the windows for extra privacy… … and speaking of privacy, don’t forget about the small room towards the front of the lounge.
While it can be cordoned off as a VIP area when certain passengers are flying through, it usually proves a more secluded space than the lounge proper and offers its own TV for keeping up on the latest news and sporting coverage. Reading material is also available including a range of magazines and newspapers… … while private shower suites are also at the ready to freshen up before your long flight, with towels available from reception. Overall, this is a much improved space compared to Singapore Airlines’ previous Brisbane lounge, bringing with it an entirely new look and feel, a proper dining room and extra seating for business class passengers and eligible frequent flyers to ‘ease the squeeze’ during peak times.
While the WiFi proved on the slower side compared to what you might expect at your home or office, we were still able to send and receive emails in a timely fashion and browse the Web without much delay, but note that other tasks like downloading magazines or movies for your flight do take considerably longer than elsewhere.
We also enjoyed the privacy of that room near reception which most travellers seemingly forget about, and the array of power points found throughout the entire lounge, including by the dining tables to charge your gadget as you eat.
All that’s missing: true Champagne and either cooked-to-order dishes or even a ‘plate of the day’ as you’d find in many business class lounges across the globe.
But even so, Singapore Airlines is certainly upping its game in Brisbane, with fully-flat business class beds – the same as you’d find on SQ’s flagship Airbus A380s – also winging their way to the Queensland capital by October’s end.
Chris Chamberlin was travelling as a guest of Singapore Airlines
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