American Airlines recently revealed that it will be introducing a new design template for its Admirals Club airport lounges, which will be used for all lounges going forward. The first lounge with the new design has opened today, so let’s go over all the details of this new era for Admirals Clubs. I’m really impressed.
American Admirals Club redesign details
American Airlines is significantly altering the design of its Admirals Club lounges going forward. Obviously it will take a long time until this is rolled out to all clubs, but as clubs are renovated, you can expect that they’ll all feature this updated design.
Here’s how the new design of the lounges is described:
When customers step inside, they will be welcomed by signature brand elements and references from local landscapes and landmarks that tell the story of each city and create a sense of place. Wellness will uniquely shine through selective design elements that set a tone of calm and familiarity. Sustainability is also built into the new design in intentional ways, such as branded elements made of renewable American walnut in every lounge.
So, what should we actually expect from these lounges? Below are some real pictures of the new Admirals Club at DCA.
New-style Admirals Club DCA opens
The new Admirals Club design is debuting today (October 25, 2022), with the opening of the new Admirals Club at Washington National Airport (DCA). Specifically, the lounge in Terminal 2 Concourse E features the new design. It’s located on the Mezzanine level, near gate E46, and is open daily from 5AM until 10:30PM.
You can expect that the next airports to get redesigned Admirals Clubs will be Newark Airport (EWR), Austin Airport (AUS), and Denver Airport (DEN). However, we don’t have an exact timeline for when these lounges will open.
As always, the best way to access American Admirals Clubs is with the $450 annual fee Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® (review). The card not only offers an Admirals Club membership for the primary cardmember, but also offers Admirals Club access for up to 10 authorized users, which you can add to the card at no cost.
My take on the new Admirals Club look
Now that we have the first real pictures of the new Admirals Club design, I have to admit that I’m really impressed and pleasantly surprised — the lounge looks cozy and high-end. I love the wood, dark tones, and fireplaces, and I also like the booths and different seating options. This looks like a massive improvement over the old Admirals Club design (as a point of comparison, below is what other Admirals Clubs look like).
Now, I do have one major concern about the new design — how well will it age? The interior looks beautiful, but as I look at almost every element, I just can’t help but wonder how it’ll look in a couple of years. From the carpet staining, to the wood chipping, to the seating fabrics getting scratched and discolored, one has to wonder…
Yes, previously Admirals Clubs looked a bit like glorified (very nice) hospital waiting rooms, but at least they aged pretty well, since there wasn’t much that could be damaged.
While the hard product is impressive, the catch is that Admirals Clubs don’t have an amazing soft product. The food & drinks generally aren’t that great — I’d love to see an investment there. While Delta Sky Clubs are a step up in terms of that, Delta’s lounges also have much bigger crowding issues, with eligible guests regularly having to wait a long time. American doesn’t have that issue nearly as often.
American Airlines Admirals Clubs are getting a redesign. This is debuting as of today at Washington National Airport, with the opening of a new club. We can expect that a lot more Admirals Clubs will feature these interiors over the coming years, as they undergo refreshes.
Based on the pictures so far, I’m really impressed by the design, and look forward to checking out the refreshed Admirals Club myself.
What do you make of the American Admirals Club redesign concept?