Review: Icare Lounge Paris Orly Airport

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I got to Paris Orly Airport at around 12PM, plenty early for my 2:30PM La Compagnie flight to Newark.

La Compagnie Check-In Paris Orly

I initially struggled to find La Compagnie’s check-in counter. Orly Airport has four check-in “sections” (I don’t think they’re actually necessarily all separate terminals or concourses) — 1, 2, 3, and 4.

I followed the signage in the direction of Orly 4, which is where the departures monitor said La Compagnie’s check-in is located.

Paris Orly Airport

I got thrown off by some of the signs, so ended up in the main check-in hall…

Paris Orly Airport check-in hall

But then I had to go down to the arrivals level and walk outside to Orly 4…

Walking to Orly 4 check-in

Orly 4 check-in

…which definitely isn’t as nice as the other check-in area, though still isn’t bad.

Orly 4 check-in hall

I had to go to the counter because I wasn’t able to check-in online, which seems to be a common complaint with La Compagnie.

I easily found La Compagnie’s counter, which was desk 43. There were about a dozen people in line, and when I approached a security officer asked me the typical questions you get prior to flying to the US about whether I packed my bags, what the purpose of my trip was, etc.

La Compagnie check-in Paris Orly Airport

At this point she told me I could actually skip the line because I only had hand baggage. As it turns out, there are three check-in counters, and one of them is for people with hand luggage only. There’s not a separate queue, though, so it really does look like you’re cutting.

Within a couple of minutes I was issued my boarding pass, and was informed I could use the Icare Lounge.

Security and immigration were a breeze, and as a La Compagnie passenger I had access to the fast track lanes. I can’t even being to describe the difference between Orly and Charles de Gaulle when it comes to the ease of the experience.

Icare Lounge Pairs Orly Location

The Icare Lounge is located airside in the international (non-Schengen) departures area, by the “F” gates. Once I passed security and immigration I followed the signage in the direction of lounges. There are several lounges in the terminal (including from Corsair and Royal Air Maroc), and I just kept walking until I got to the Icare Lounge, which was the last one in the terminal.

Paris Orly Airport terminal

Paris Orly Airport terminal

In order to enter the lounge you have to push a buzzer, and then the door is unlocked. I’ve never understood why some lounges bother with the buzzer system. It’s one thing if it’s a super-exclusive lounge that only a very small number of people use every day, but that wasn’t the case here.

Salon Icare Paris Orly Airport entrance

Icare Lounge Paris Orly Hours

The Icare Lounge is open daily from 6AM until 9:30PM, so that covers virtually all departures at the airport.

How To Access The Icare Lounge Paris Orly

Several airlines, including La Compagnie, use the Icare Lounge as their contract lounge at the airport. In addition to that, the lounge belongs to Priority Pass, so eligible members have access as well.

Icare Lounge Paris Orly Review

Upon entering the lounge I was informed that boarding would be called for the La Compagnie flight. The lounge was nicer and quieter than I was expecting, though the choice of purple for all the accents sure is… a choice.

The Icare Lounge is kind of in an L-shape, as there’s one long room, and then it turns 90 degrees to the left in the back. When you enter the lounge there’s plenty of seating on both sides.

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

Then further in is even more seating. It seems most people choose to just sit near the entrance, so the back of the lounge was significantly quieter.

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

The lounge mostly just had “traditional” leather lounge chairs, though there was also some high-top seating near the buffet.

Icare Lounge Paris Orly seating

While the lounge has exterior views, you’re just looking out over the roof of the terminal, so unfortunately don’t expect much as far as plane spotting goes.

Icare Lounge Paris Orly view

The main buffet is by the entrance, and has a modest selection. There’s beer, soda, and a coffee machine, as well as a pancake machine, like you’ll find in Alaska Lounges.

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

Then the food spread consisted of cold cuts, cheese, yogurt, sandwiches, hardboiled eggs, and a couple of types of salad, as well as a selection of bread.

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

There were also some juices, a very limited selection of wine, and some basic self serve liquor.

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

Icare Lounge drinks Paris Orly

There was a second buffet station in the back of the lounge with a coffee machine, a fridge, and some packaged snacks.

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

Icare Lounge buffet Paris Orly

The Wi-Fi in the lounge was fast and free, and I spent a bit over an hour working in the lounge.

My La Compagnie flight was supposed to board at 2PM, so at around 1:40PM I headed to the departure gate. This terminal at Orly Airport is beautiful, and it was so quiet as well.

Paris Orly Airport terminal

Paris Orly Airport terminal

The La Compagnie flight was departing from gate F33, about a five minute walk from the lounge, at the very end of the terminal.

Paris Orly Airport terminal

I think I really lucked out, because we left from an actual gate, while most reports I’ve heard suggest that La Compagnie often leaves from a remote stand at Orly Airport.

Boarding started right on-time at 2PM.

Salon Icare Orly Bottom Line

Salon Icare isn’t worth arriving early for, but the lounge and whole ground experience exceeded my expectations. Security and immigration were a breeze, the terminal was beautiful, and the lounge wasn’t crowded at all.

I could see myself seeking out flights from Orly rather than Charles de Gaulle in the future… maybe I just got really lucky.

If you’ve visited the Icare Lounge and/or Orly Airport, what was your experience like?

  1. Interesting, Icare means Icarus in French, maybe not the most auspicious mythological figure to invoke before a flight…

  2. I remembered when you reviewed the ICARE in CDG (before another 757 La Compagnie) flight, it was terrible.

  3. I had a very different check-in experience (perhaps on a different day) —crowded to the point of not being able to physically get to their (small) check in section, crowded to the point of not being able to sit down in that lounge. Ended up going to the gate to plane spot, which is nice given the number of boutique long haul carriers at ory.

  4. I don’t know if it is still there, but what I like most about flying La Compagnie from ORY is that right across from the boarding area for Gate 43, there is a white, grand piano that anyone can play at will…I always play and several passengers usually come up and thank me after I have finished. I think ORY is the only airport that I have been to with a piano, though AMS’ Station Centraal also has one. For me, it is a great and rare “amenity.”

  5. Ben,

    The fact that you couldn’t check in online isn’t the fault of the airline.

    As part of its efforts to Make America Safe Again :), the U.S. Department of Homeland Security ordered all airlines to disable the mobile check-in and boarding pass functionalities for all flights headed to the United States. This is precisely so that you can be asked those famous three questions before getting to the gate.

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