Best Airport Lounges in the World for 2016

Sally McMullen 20 May 2015

These luxury international airport lounges will make you wish your next flight is delayed.

Hectic airport environments are usually the last thing you need when preparing for, or recovering from, a long flight. Airport lounges allow you to trade the uncomfortable chairs and disgruntled crowds for luxury and comfort. So if you’re planning on spending your next holiday in style (or at least daydreaming about it), here’s our list of the world’s best airport lounges to get you started.

1. Qantas Lounge, Sydney and LAX Airports

Qantas-lounge3Industry leader TheDesignAir recently dubbed Qantas’ first class Sydney lounges as the best in the world. With spa treatments (including a 50-minute massage), a top-notch restaurant and a panorama view of Sydney airport, the Sydney lounge offers the perfect airport oasis for first and business class passengers. The LAX Qantas lounge is following in it’s sister Sydney’s footsteps, with a recent refurbishment increasing the capacity of the lounge by three-fold to cope with demand. Fitted with new work stations stocked with Apple iMacs, a new family zone and pop-up acoustic performances from Aussie musician Ben Lee, it might be worth the ticket upgrade.

2. The American Express Centurion Lounge, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport

The-American-Express-Centurion-Lounge,-Dallas-Fort-Worth-International-AirportThe American Express Centurion Lounge is one of the world’s only airport lounges that are independent from any airline. Instead, $50 day passes are available to any American Express cardholder. With additional locations in New York and Las Vegas, the Dallas lounge features a five-star chef, free spa treatments and luxurious shower rooms. We could think of worse ways to spend your connecting time after that 16-hour leg from Sydney to Dallas.

3. British Airways Concorde Room, London Heathrow Airport

British-Airways-Concorde-Room,-London-Heathrow-AirportForget air travel, you’ll think you’ve accidentally stumbled into a time machine when you step into the British Airways Concorde Room. Decorated with crystal chandeliers and classic black and white photographs, the Concorde Room is (sadly) only available to first-class passengers. The lounge also boasts private booths with full waiter service, secluded cabanas equipped with day beds, and an exclusive business suite.

4. Lufthansa First Class Terminal, Frankfurt Airport

Lufthansa-First-Class-Terminal,-Frankfurt-Airport
Secured by passport control and security checkpoints, you certainly won’t be mixing with the rabble at the Lufthansa First Class terminal in Frankfurt. Complete with private sleeping rooms, bathrooms and cigar rooms, the Lufthansa lounge will make you feel right at home (especially if your home is a modern mansion equipped with chefs and a library). If you thought that was indulgent, wait until you see the luxury German cars that deliver you and your first class friends from the terminal to the airport.

5. Turkish Airlines CIP Lounge, Ataturk International Airport

Turkish-Airlines-CIP-Lounge,-Ataturk-International-AirportIf lounging around and getting pampered before your flight isn’t your forte, perhaps the Turkish Airlines CIP Lounge is more up your alley. Decked out with a pool table, shelves of reading material, a music room equipped with a theatre screen, carrera racing car tracks, a golf simulator and La-Z-Boy-style chairs, this lounge makes for a more relaxed vibe than some of the fancier exclusive lounges. Topped off with private relaxation rooms and a giant play room for kids, the CIP lounge has plenty to keep everyone occupied before their next flight.

6. Virgin Atlantic Clubhouses, JFK International Airport

Virgin-Atlantic-Clubhouses,-JFK-International-Airport

With another lounge also located at Heathrow Airport, these clubhouses are available to Upper Class or Flying Club members and boast a combination of classy and cool amenities. If you’re after the five-star treatment, complimentary spa services, beauty salons and delectable dining are yours for the taking. For those who need a little more to keep them occupied, the retro video games and movie multi-screenings in the ‘The Den’ at Heathrow airport could be the perfect way to unleash your inner gamer or film buff before boarding your flight.

7. GVK Lounge, Mumbai Airport

GVK-Lounge,-Mumbai-Airport

Unlike many of its exclusive luxury lounge competitors, the GVK lounge in Mumbai is open to the public through a pay-per-use scheme. Divided into first, premium and business class sections, the GVK lounge hosts an array of services including private relaxation rooms, spa treatments, a library, a buffet, and beverages to quench all thirsts from the fresh juice bar to the whiskey lounge. Decorated in opulent golden hues and lighting, the interior design alone will make you feel first class (even if you’re only flying economy).

8. Qatar Airways Al Mourjan Lounge, Dohar Airport

Qatar-Airways-Al-Mourjan-Lounge,-Dohar-Airport

The Al Mourjan lounge probably has more in common with a five-star hotel than your regular airport. Lined with marble floors, designer furniture and intricate embellishments, the spacious Al Mourjan lounge is available to Qatar Elite Fliers only. Although the Al Mourjan offers your standard luxury services (including showers, private work spaces and multiple dining options), the cherry on top would have to be the Formula 1 simulators.

9. Traveller Lounge, Heathrow Airport

No.-1-Traveller-Lounge,-Heathrow-Airport-(2)

Hallelujah! You can add the No.1 Traveller Lounge to your growing list of open-to-the-public luxury lounges. Accessible through online bookings, entry is £30 per adult, £15 per child (aged two - 11) and free for infants. Boasting similar features to many of the exclusive lounges, the No.1 Traveller Lounge offers a complimentary fully tended bar, restaurant-style meals, free and unlimited WiFi, showers and a spa. There’s even a cinema, tv and games room and a separate family room to keep you and the little ones entertained. Not bad for a public luxury lounge!

If you can’t find any of your local airports on our list, you could also try one of the many Apple and Android apps, such as LoungeBuddy or PriorityPass, to search for luxury lounges near you. Within no time those long lines, crowded waiting areas and subpar meals will be a thing of the past.

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