Over the past couple of years we’ve seen several airport restaurants and bars in the US join Priority Pass. The concept is that at some airports Priority Pass has a tough time striking a deal with a major lounge due to crowding issues, so when that’s not possible, they instead work with a restaurant.
My assumption is that Priority Pass pays a fixed amount for each guest who enters a lounge, so instead Priority Pass is just paying these restaurants a fixed amount, and then you can spend some dollar amount at that restaurant (typically $28-30). So far in the US, non-traditional Priority Pass locations include:
- House Spirits Distillery Portland Airport
- Capers Cafe Le Bar Portland Airport
- Capers Market Portland Airport
- Timberline Steaks & Grille Denver Airport
- Corona Beach House Miami Airport
- The Pasta House St. Louis Airport
- Kentucky Ale Taproom Lexington Airport
- Bobby Van’s Steakhouse New York JFK Airport
- Bar Symon Cleveland Airport
While Priority Pass already has three lounges and one restaurant at Miami Airport, they’ve just added two more restaurants. At both of these restaurants, Priority Pass members can receive $28 worth of food and drinks for free. Furthermore, both restaurants require an outbound boarding pass for same day travel.
The first restaurant is Viena, located landside in Concourse E, and open daily from 11AM until 12AM. Here’s the menu for the restaurant, and here’s how the restaurant is described:
Viena features a farm-to-table concept featuring European and Brazilian cuisine including salt cod fritters, Brazilian cheese bread, and the Caipirinha, Brazil’s national cocktail. A variety of meat, fish and pasta dishes, as well as salads, sandwiches and wood-fired flatbreads, are also available.
The second restaurant is Air Margaritaville, also located landside in Concourse E, which is open from 6AM until 11PM. Here’s the menu for the restauarant, and here’s how this restaurant is described:
Air Margaritaville delivers the carefree, laid-back tropical lifestyle pursued by people all around the globe. Enjoy island-inspired food and beverages such as Coconut Shrimp, Volcano Nachos, house-made margaritas, and frozen boat drinks.
Concourse E is primarily used by some international airlines. While not all terminals are connected airside, these two restaurants are located before security, so any passenger traveling through Miami Airport should be able to visit them. Of course this is ideal if you’re originating in Miami, while if you’re connecting you’d need to leave security and then reclear in order to use these.
Based on the menus, my first pick would be Viena, followed by Air Margaritaville, though there’s nothing stopping you from visiting both.
Note that while Corona Beach House in the D Concourse automatically adds an 18% gratuity to your total that you can pay with Priority Pass, these two restaurants don’t seem to, based on the Priority Pass website. Personally I think it’s appropriate to add a cash gratuity if dining here, since paying with Priority Pass is just another form of payment as far as they’re concerned.
As a reminder, the following are some of the popular credit cards that come with Priority Pass memberships (I’ve also listed the respective guesting privileges as of now):
|Card||# Of Guests Who Get Free Access||Authorized User Access||Cost To Add Authorized User|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||2||Yes||$175 For Up To 3 People, $175 For Each Additional Person Beyond That|
|The Business Platinum® Card from American Express||2||Yes||$300 Per Person|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card||2||Yes||$75 Per Person|
I find this to be an especially interesting addition to the Priority Pass network. Typically when Priority Pass has added restaurants in the US, it has been due to a specific need, and due to them not being able to strike a deal with a lounge. In this case there were already four Priority Pass locations at the airport, though technically none in Concourse E. The restaurants are landside, so you can visit them no matter which airline you’re flying. However, you’ll want to leave plenty of time to potentially switch terminals and also to go through security.
Viena Restaurant looks especially good to me for an airport restaurant.
Is anyone planning on checking out either of these new Priority Pass restaurant at Miami Airport?
(Tip of the hat to Doctor Of Credit)