Review: Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport

Filed Under: Airport Lounge Reviews, Trip Reports
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We used the Grand Lounge Elite at Mexico City Airport Terminal 1 twice within a week, both before our flight to Santiago, and before our flight back to the US on the way back.

The Grand Lounge Elite can be accessed by Priority Pass members, and there are two locations in Terminal 1 — one is just past the security checkpoint, and the other one is near gate 19, just a short walk away (the second lounge seems to be referred to as “Lounge 19”). Both lounges are open 24/7. The number of Priority Pass members has increased greatly the past couple of years, since now there are quite a few credit cards with lounge access, so there are now plenty of options to help you gain access.

As a reminder, the following are some of the popular premium US credit cards that come with Priority Pass memberships (along with their respective guesting privileges):

Card# Of Guests Who Get Free AccessAuthorized User AccessCost To Add Authorized User
The Platinum Card® from American Express2Yes$175 For Up To 3 People, $175 For Each Additional Person Beyond That (Rates & Fees)
The Business Platinum® Card from American Express 2Yes$300 Per Person (Rates & Fees)
Chase Sapphire Reserve®2Yes$75 Per Person
Citi Prestige® Credit Card2Yes$50 Per Person. ($75 Per Person for Cardmember Anniversary dates after September 1, 2019)
Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card2No$0
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card2No$0

The first time I visited the lounge there was a guy with an earpiece standing outside the entrance, and the rope was “closed,” as if it was a hot nightclub that can only be accessed with Priority Pass cards. Go figure that wasn’t the case when I returned the next time around, so I wasn’t able to get a picture of that.


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport exterior


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport exterior

Once our Priority Pass cards were scanned we were handed over to one of the servers in the lounge, who helped us choose seats. The lounge isn’t huge. When you enter the lounge the main seating area is to the right. I’ll let the pictures mostly speak for themselves.


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport seating


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport seating


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport seating


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport seating

At the far end of the lounge were some semi-private relaxation areas with a chair and a reclining seat, though they were all marked as reserved.


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport seating


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport relaxation areas

The same is true of a section in the back of the lounge.


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport seating

On the opposite end of the lounge was some more seating, as well as the bar.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX seating


Grand Lounge Elite MEX bar

The part of the lounge that really impressed was the service. The lounge had over a dozen attendants, and all of them had earpieces and were assigned certain guests. I’ve never received such attentive and well intentioned service in a contract lounge. Upon settling in we were offered hand sanitizing wipes.


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City hand wipes

We were also asked if we wanted anything to drink. We both ordered sparkling waters, and I ordered a cappuccino. The sparkling water was more like soda water.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX drinks

The cappuccino, however, was exceptional, and even had what I believe was foam art on top of it.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX cappuccino

Our server also presented us with a food menu. It’s not often you get a proper (complimentary) menu in a contract lounge. The menu read as follows:

I also checked out the lounge’s self service buffet, which looked significantly less appealing, by comparison.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet


Grand Lounge Elite MEX buffet

Then there was a coffee bar, which presumably is where my excellent cappuccino was made.


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport bar


Grand Lounge Elite Mexico City Airport espresso machine

The other bar had an extensive selection of liquor, and also some bottles of wine marked as “reserved.”


Grand Lounge Elite MEX wine

Ford and I decided to order a pasta arrabbiata to share. It was served on one of those lap trays, which I found sort of funny, especially as the server just thrust it onto Ford’s lap without much warning.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX pasta


Ford modeling the pasta holder thing

The pasta was excellent, to my surprise.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX pasta

I had read on Priority Pass’ website that this lounge offers complimentary shoe shine, hand & foot massage, and manicures, so I decided to ask about the availability of that. One of the staff members made an appointment for me to get a massage, and said they’d get me when they were ready. Sure enough, about 45 minutes later I was fetched and escorted to the other Priority Pass lounge, located just a short distance away.


Grand Lounge Elite other location

There I was invited to sit down in a private room, my seat was reclined, and I was given a fantastic 15 minute hand massage. This isn’t the greatest massage you’ll ever get, but I did really enjoy it, and it’s especially tough to beat a free massage!


Grand Lounge Elite spa treatment

What stood out to me most in this lounge is how friendly and well intentioned everyone was. Our server constantly checked on us, and it’s clear everyone took great pride in what they were doing. There was even a full time bathroom attendant who handed over towels and opened the door (I don’t generally like bathroom attendants, but it does show their effort in this case). Or for example, take a look at how many amenities they had in the bathroom, which you almost never see.


Grand Lounge Elite MEX bathroom

When you’re done relaxing in the lounge you can request a ride to the gate in a golf cart, if you so desire, which is also a cool touch.


Grand Lounge Elite golf cart

Grand Lounge Elite MEX bottom line

This isn’t physically the most beautiful lounge, and the buffet itself wasn’t exactly great. However, there’s something I loved about this lounge, as it just seemed so well intentioned. For one, it’s the first Priority Pass lounge I’ve been to that offers complimentary a la carte dining, complimentary massages, and complimentary shoe shines. But more than that, it just seemed like everyone took pride in what they did in this lounge. This would definitely be my go to lounge in Terminal 1.

The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: The Business Platinum® Card from American Express (Rates & Fees), and The Platinum Card® from American Express (Rates & Fees).

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Comments
  1. Why no mention of the wifi in this lounge? You always mention that wifi is one of the most important lounge features, but it’s so bad that it’s pretty much unusable in this lounge.

  2. It bothers me a bit that you call this and its sister (Lounge 19) ” the Priority Pass lounge”… This two are first and foremost KLM/Airfrance/Skyteam lounges, and secondly Visa Lounges (need a mexican-issued Platinum or Infinite credit card to access)… Priority Pass was the last addition and, as any other lounge they offer access to, they dont “run” it… so i wouldn’t call them a Priority Pass lounge (moreover considering that there are over 7 Priority Pass accesible lounges at MEX)

  3. BTW… the reserved section is precisely for KLM/Airfrance First/Business class fliers and mexican-issued Visa infinite cards…
    You missed the shower… i’ve used it after red-eyes from the bay area… and yes, the internet is terrible… better use the infinitummovil with iPass.

  4. Did you tip the masseuse? Just curious. Seems like you should, just as you should tip the waiters at Timberline Steaks & Grille at the Denver airport (I did).

  5. Yes the staff in that lounge is so friendly and helpful. I have been there many times have always been met by nice staff. In general the people of Mexico City are very hospitable and proud of their city. I also like the Centurion lounge outside of security.

  6. (Might as well repost this here, since coincidentally, I posted it TODAY on your other, IDENTICAL review, calling it your “favorite Priority Pass Lounge”.)

    Oh, wow.
    Lucky, I cannot BELIEVE that you’d review this lounge positively. It’s GARBAGE.
    Haha just goes to show how SOME tacky americans will be so easily won over by people in third-world countries’ waiting on you hand and foot (to the point of being obnoxious, and smothering), BECAUSE THEY WANT YOUR MONEY.
    Try NOT tipping (enough), and you’ll see how these people stop being “so attentive”. Haha
    Seriously, dude. Wise up.

    Absolute GARBAGE lounges, these two.

  7. Looks OK I guess but I really don’t want that much personal attention when I’m trying to work or relax in an airport lounge. The AA lounge at MEX seems nicer based on your review.
    Oh and the menu is odd. Usually I don’t think of the meal between 11am and 1pm as “Brunch” but maybe that’s just me.

  8. @Ramon “You missed the shower… i’ve used it after red-eyes from the bay area”

    How do you get into the lounge when there’s no sterile transit anymore? I’m always directed down a long series of dank corridors to immigration without any lounges along the way.

  9. #DanimMCI “Usually I don’t think of the meal between 11am and 1pm as “Brunch” but maybe that’s just me.”

    Lunch doesn’t exist in Mexico. Breakfast (desayuno) is in the morning, dinner (comida) is at two in the afternoon, and supper (cena) is optional at night. If you add in a meal at noon, you have to make up a name for it and ‘brunch’ is as good as any.

  10. T-Mobile US customers don’t have to worry about Wi-Fi in Mexico, as long as they keep to 5 GB.

    Also, it is disappointing to hear a bunch of bad feedback from users of this lounge and then get a glowing review. Kind of undermines Ben’s credibility.

  11. Lounge 19 was a wonderful experience for us! Attentive staff, great food (didn’t try pasta which looks anemic to me), massage (Yes! Tip them!) and there is no pressure to tip although the best feature, I agree, was attentive staff.
    For weary travelers with delayed flight those reclining lounge chairs, massage, really good food and drink felt like heaven! This is my favorite lounge so far. They are only in Mexico.

  12. In the lounge now.
    And I agree with Lucky.
    For a contract lounge it’s amazing.
    The service is incredible

  13. I have a 7 hour stop over . Can I stay in the lounge the whole time. Or do I have to leave a certain amount of time? I’m traveling on my own so would prefer to be in a lounge.

  14. $30 for 3 hours. After that you have to pay another $30 for the next 3 hours and so on and so forth…

    Might as well pay $59 for American Airlines lounge and not have to worry about them calling your name and then going up to the front to pay for another 3 hours… Just saying

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