Improvements Coming To Alaska Lounges

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Alaska Airlines operates lounges in Anchorage, Los Angeles, New York JFK, Portland, and Seattle.

While I wouldn’t say Alaska Lounges are great, I do appreciate that the airline gives paid first class passengers lounge access, even on domestic itineraries (this includes whether you’re paying cash or with miles — only those who upgrade don’t get lounge access).

Historically Priority Pass members have also had access to Alaska Lounges, though the lounges in Seattle were recently removed from the program, due to capacity issues. Priority Pass members continue to have access to other Alaska Lounges, pending availability.

Personally I access Alaska Lounges using the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®. The card comes with an Admirals Club membership, and you can use Alaska Lounges when you’re flying Alaska or American.

Improvements coming to Alaska Lounges

Alaska Airlines has just announced some updates to their lounge locations in Anchorage, Los Angeles, Portland, and Seattle. Since their New York JFK lounge only recently opened, it already features these things.

Alaska says they’re adding “refreshed designs and amenities” in their lounges, including the following:

  • A refreshed look and feel featuring new comfortable furniture, warm finishes and a welcoming vibe;
  • Barista stations so that you can get your custom-crafted Starbucks® espresso beverages or loose-leaf Teavana® tea just the way you like them from an Alaska Lounge Barista; and
  • Meals for purchase, starting at just $8. You can buy fresh, filling, high-quality and affordable food to enjoy in the lounges or take to-go.

New flagship Alaska Lounge coming in 2019

In addition to their existing locations at SeaTac, Alaska Airlines has revealed more details about their new flagship lounge, which is under construction and due to open in the first half of 2019.

The lounge will be over 15,800 square feet. The airline has released the following renderings of the new lounge:

My take

I love that Alaska is adding barista-made drinks. Machine cappuccinos just aren’t the same as those made with the human touch, so I’m thrilled to see that, and it’s something I wish more airlines would offer in their lounges.

I also generally like the concept of higher quality food for purchase, assuming it doesn’t come at the expense of the existing free selection. While I don’t think Alaska is intending to cut anything here, I’ve heard airlines say a million times before “due to the popularity of X, we’re cutting Y.” For what it’s worth, the food they’re showing for purchase looks pretty decent, not that renderings are typically an accurate representation of what you get (I’m sure American’s “lobster roll” didn’t look like this in renderings either). 😉

SeaTac Airport has grown so much the past several years, and the airport in general has a shortage of lounge space. This huge new Alaska Lounge will be a great addition. Who knows, maybe eventually Alaska’s Seattle locations will even be added back to Priority Pass.

(Tip of the hat to Doctor Of Credit)

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Comments

  1. As a long time AS flyer ( mm) I can tell you all this comes none too soon. ALL of the legacy lounges have been dumps and have been for years. AS has gone through a couple of senior staff overseeing their lounges which has added to this mess. Through the years I have come to know many of the staff in various locations and they all have shared the frustrations of us travelers on the small cramped rooms, shoddy furnishings and lackluster offerings. If one looks at the new lounge opened at SEATAC ( the old Admirals Club) the furniture is shot already from people putting their shoes on the fabrics and tables!
    Personally I was a member for 15 years two years ago I let my membership go it was too painful to walk into a lounge standing room only and dirty. So I use my PP when I can. I am generally in F as it is.

    Yes any improvements will be welcomed.

  2. Haha “tending availability.” That LAX lounge hasn’t been available for Priority Pass customers in years. I’ve given up.

  3. I would assume once the new N lounge opens they will shut down the D lounge for refurb as that desperately needs it. Once everything is back open, maybe they will consider taking Priority Pass again??

  4. I would rather have a machine. Do not like to constantly ask someone for more coffee. Also, really do not like having to purchase food. That is the purpose of a club. Even United has upped its game here.

  5. @Froody: Yes, Alaska partners with Cathay Pacific’s SFO lounge, which is an excellent lounge in the International Terminal (Concourse A). Unfortunately, almost all of the pre-merger Virgin America flights still operate from Terminal 2, and I don’t believe the terminals are connected post-security.

  6. I agree with Nevsky. there will be a line for the made to order drink, and I do not like to have to pay for food considering I am paying to get into the lounge.

  7. Alaska has offered made-to-order food for purchase for several years at LAX and never changed their free food selection. I doubt they will eliminate free food now.

  8. The LAX lounge has a pancake machine, so that’s something unique for LA airport lounges. I’ve used Diners Club and so far haven’t been turned away, but I have an Admirals Club card too and I didn’t know they were still partners. They do put up the Priority Pass not accepted sign frequently due to “overcrowding” but who knows what’s really going on with their relationship. Ive seen others just walk by and shrugg.

  9. For those who don’t want to deal with a barista they have a machine at the jfk lounge. It’s also great because they have different varieties of espresso and teas and do a wider range of drinks. Hell I’d say it’s the best coffee you can get at JFK.

    The Jfk lounge is a good step forward for Alaska lounges, especially considering the deplorable state of the rest of the British Airwats terminal.

  10. Wow, what a POS airline. I had hopes that the acquisition of VX would lead to AS growing up with regard to network and service. Unfortunately, it seems they just did it to devour the additional routes and them remove them from competition… As for the lounges, what’s the point if you’re going to charge for the food? And as for my coffee, I’ll fetch it myself, thank you.

  11. As an Alaska 75K, I have been repeatedly told by Alaska Lounge staff at locations accepting Priority Pass (not Seattle) to ask even if the “No Priority Pass” sign is up. It seems that their front desk staff are encouraged to make exceptions to Gold/75K flyers who have PP and aren’t lounge members.

  12. The PDX lounge is small and often crowded. They keep promising an expansion beyond the always-planned “we’re taking the conference room out” plan. SEA has what, 3x lounges? PDX has one. Looking forward to expansion and continued PP access at PDX.

  13. So either their marketing is working or you’ve written this to promote credit card: both of these are downgrades. Paid meals? And apparently you don’t realize that Starbucks uses automated machines to produce their coffee drinks? Just because somebody stands behind them doesn’t make them Barrista made

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