A Centurion Lounge Is Finally Coming To LAX

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One of the best perks of The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN is access to Centurion Lounges. These lounges are for the most part significantly better than what’s offered by US airlines, as the lounges have complimentary cocktails, hot food, and a couple of them even have spas.

As of now Amex’s US Centurion Lounge locations include DallasHoustonLas VegasMiamiNew York LaGuardiaPhiladelphiaSan Francisco, and Seattle. American Express has already formally announced that a Centurion Lounge will be opening at New York JFK (specifically, in Terminal 4) in early 2019. A Denver lounge is in process as well.

There have been rumors about a potential Centurion Lounge at LAX for years now, bolstered by extra advertising at the airport and other “subtle” hints — like a pop-up seating area in the Tom Bradley International Terminal. Neither American Express nor the airport has ever formally confirmed the rumors.

Official plans seem to be coming together, however, as at the most recent meeting of the Los Angeles World Airport Authority Board of Commissioners, a resolution was approved for a “brand partnership” which includes “Premier Passenger Lounge Space Lease”.

Based on the filing, here’s what we know so far:

Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX

More details are available in the report to the commission — My favorite part is this note about the proposed alternatives should they not grant the lease to Amex:

LAWA has unsuccessfully attempted to lease this lounge space to airlines for many years. American Express wanted a Centurion lounge at LAX and were offered this space. Not approving the Consent to Sponsorship will leave LAWA with vacant lounge space.

Not leasing the vacant lounge space would defer annual revenue to LAWA in the amount of approximately $2,800,000.

There are still some other administrative hoops to jump through, including formal approval by the City Attorney, but those are generally more formalities. Typically it takes about a year for these lounges to be built, so if the other needed approvals and construction happen smoothly, I imagine the Centurion Lounge would be open by 2019.

Still, this is a cool development for LAX. There’s certainly plenty of space in TBIT, and the central location will make this lounge accessible to more travelers than if it were tucked away in T6 or T7.

Are you excited at the prospect of a new Centurion Lounge in Los Angeles?

(h/t @BrianSumers)

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  1. @Pauls98 Terminals 4 to 8 are connected airside to TBIT. Terminals 1 to 3 are not, but you can use any same day boarding get pass to enter any terminal at LAX. Assuming rules don’t change, you’ll have access but you’d need to plan to have enough time to get thru security.

  2. @Pauls98 Delta runs an airside bus between TBIT and terminals 2 and 3. So it’s really just terminal 1 that won’t have an airside connection of any type.

  3. @Pauls98 in addition to the connectors mentioned by DavidW, a Delta shuttle bus connects TBIT with terminals 2 and 3 airside–it can be used by any passenger and is reasonably fast with great frequency. It’s worth noting though that this shuttle arrives and departs from the TBIT bus gates (AKA Costco) which are a fairly long walk from the centrally located lounge spaces.

  4. Can’t imagine where this would be. Maybe somewhere near the current lounges? Any Amex lounge is always a nice addition. Sees like between LAX and DEN they aren making some solid expansion.

  5. I’m guessing this is mostly for domestic US travellers because I have never been to a good centurion lounge. Granted I’ve only been to major American airports, but I’d almost rather sit in a deserted gate than go to one of those lounges.

  6. @Pauls98 — DavidW has it right, and I linked to a post above that shows maps for how to get between terminals. But you can go between all terminals at LAX with a same-day boarding pass regardless.

  7. @ Marsh — That’s my guess. Maybe someone will chime in with some inside knowledge, but I’m wondering if there’s space by the Etihad lounge, for example.

  8. So are we going to have to wait until after the ORD T2 rebuild to get a Centurion Lounge there?

    Or could they use the old AA FL space at the end of K?

  9. Hopefully, ORD, EWR and ATL will get one soon. That would cover all of the major first tier airports as well as some secondary ones.

  10. @Jeremy, @AGB, @Tiffany You guys are why I love this blog in addition to all the content. Thanks for the help!

  11. I mostly fly United, so trekking over to TBIT is going to suck. If I’m flying international I would have First or Business access to lounges, plus Priority Pass lounges. So why do I need Centurion in the middle of that?

  12. I know OMAAT doesn’t have a lot of love for United, but this will be much more inconvenient for United passengers than for AA/oneworld and Delta/Skyteam passengers. I hope the ORD Centurion Lounge is built in Terminal 1. Otherwise United fliers will be penalized again.

  13. ORD is a gaping hole in the Centurion network. I can’t imagine ATL getting one—too much overlap with Delta.

  14. I’m with Donald. If a reader here is at TBIT, odds are that someone already gave them some lounge access. That said, I cant think of any more sensible places to put it, not sure there are any given LAX layout.

    While everything said above is basically accurate, seems a little rose colored. IF I was in either T4 or T5, AND I had a REALLY long wait on my hands, I might consider walking over. But otherwise forget about it. Double that, if you’re with family or have anything to schlepp.

    So not complaining, there probably is no perfect answer, but meh. Useless to United flyers.

  15. As part of the new midfield concourse – and I’d be interested which lounges will open there, since I understand there will be room for at least 4 – there will be a gateway extension airside adjoining the great hall of the tom Bradley terminal which will include access to the pedestrian tunnels , retail and yet more lounge space

  16. @icarus

    I wonder if it makes sense for a Centurion lounge to go in the midfield international concourse though? It seems like it would be too remote for a large portion of their potential clientele.

  17. Isn’t there space under the star alliance lounge?

    Also agree ORD really needs one.

    With LAX, most people can get in somewhere (including the *A lounge for all UA gold and up members) and the Alaska and Korean lounges with priority pass.

  18. I’m deciding between AmEx Platinum, Citi Prestige, and Hilton Aspire. This helps push me toward the Platinum. If they only allowed 2 people into Delta lounges when flying Delta, then I’d be a lock.

  19. Completely useless to any elite who has Gold whatever status on any alliance as they can already use the nice *A OW and skyteam lounges not to mention that priority pass already covers TBIT. Completely useless to the United and Southwest passengers that need it the most.
    Not that I care as I don’t do Amex.

  20. As an Alaska flyer whose home airport is LAX, this isn’t exactly the most convenient location for me, but one thing that occurred to me when I saw this news is that if you only have carry-on luggage and have Precheck and/or Clear and are flying out of Terminals 6 or 7, then it may make sense to just walk back outside, walk along the sidewalk on the loop, and then go through security again. Especially if you have both, this could potentially be less of a hassle than navigating the airside connections all the way from TBIT to Terminal 6 (I’ve never walked all the way from TBIT to Terminals 6/7 but based on walking between 5 and 6 I think I’d choose just going back outside).

    It would definitely be foolish to get Clear *just* for this reason, but I’ve been really on the fence about letting it renew and I think this potentially tips me over the line into keeping it.

  21. P.S. Next time I take a redeye to the east coast maybe I should give myself some extra time to go through security at TBIT and then walk over to Terminal 6 airside to see how inconvenient the walk actually is.

  22. And the busiest airport in the United States and Western Hemisphere is where? Atlanta!

    No centurion lounge for us
    No International Star Alliance lounge for us
    No Qatar Lounge
    No Emirates lounge (or flights for that matter)
    No BA First or Terraces lounge for us
    No Virgin clubhouse here
    No Air France First services either
    No LH or Korean Air First lounge for us either

    Just polystyrene plates and Delta Hummus

    And the highest premium tickets from any airport in the country!

    How about running some articles on why there is no competition for Delta in the busiest airport in the land of free trade?

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