Last September I wrote about how the Emirates Lounge JFK was closing for a renovation. The lounge closed on September 1, 2017, and was supposed to reopen in “early 2018.” It’s my understanding that they were initially planning on reopening in February.
They were closing the lounge so that they could refresh it, which is good news overall. Emirates has changed their lounge decor over the years, so it makes sense that they’d want JFK to have a nice lounge, given that it’s one of their most important markets in the world.
Emirates Lounge Los Angeles (new style decor)
Emirates Lounge Colombo (old style decor)
Unfortunately this renovation didn’t quite go as planned, as the lounge has now been closed for nearly 11 months. It’s my understanding that it’s not the refurbishment as such that took so long, but rather that they’ve had issues getting the permits they need to reopen the lounge.
What makes this so ridiculous is that Emirates didn’t have a replacement lounge for passengers. Terminal 4 doesn’t have that many lounges, and no other lounge could accommodate the number of daily premium passengers that Emirates has, given that they have three A380s per day (which is down from the four daily A380 flights that they used to have). The only contract lounge in the terminal is the Wingtips Lounge, and that lounge is already usually at capacity.
So Emirates has been offering premium passengers at the airport meal vouchers that can be redeemed in the terminal. Business class passengers received a $40 meal voucher, while first class passengers received a $55 meal voucher. While that’s better than nothing, it’s not a replacement for a proper lounge.
There’s finally an update when it comes to the lounge reopening. The Emirates Lounge JFK will be reopening tomorrow, Monday, July 23, 2018. The lounge is expected to open a few hours before the 11:20AM departure of EK204, so all premium passengers that day should have access to the lounge.
I’ll be very curious to see what this lounge look like. My guess is that it’ll look virtually identical to all of Emirates’ other new style lounges. Too bad it took nearly a year for them to complete this renovation…