Review: Oman Air First Lounge Muscat Airport (MCT)

Review: Oman Air First Lounge Muscat Airport (MCT)

NAME: Oman Air First Lounge
Airport: MCT
DATE: January 2024
REVIEW RATING:
BEN SAYS: The Oman Air First Lounge is strange but awesome. It's unjustifiably large, and has great food and drinks, personalized service, nap rooms, and more.
8

During my downgraded adventure to Oman, I had a roughly seven hour layover at Muscat Airport. I was arriving from Milan in Oman Air’s 787 business class, and flying to Frankfurt in Oman Air’s A330 business class.

I spent my layover in both the Oman Air Business Lounge and Oman Air First Lounge, and in this installment I’ll be reviewing the latter. The reason I had access to this lounge is because I was supposed to fly to Frankfurt in first class, but was downgraded due to an aircraft swap. In light of this, I was still granted access to the Oman Air First Lounge.

Okay, I’ve gotta be honest, the Oman Air First Lounge Muscat utterly fascinates me. It makes absolutely no sense in any way. This is a big lounge for the airline with one of the world’s smallest first class footprints. I don’t understand why Oman Air has such a big first class lounge, but I had the entire thing to myself for my whole visit.

This is a fantastic lounge, in all honesty, with personalized service, chef prepared meals, and more. Let’s get into the review.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat location

Once in the departures area, the Oman Air Lounge is located in the central area of the terminal, right by all the duty free shopping. You’ll need to go up a level to the fifth floor, as the departures level of the terminal is on the fourth floor. Then you’ll see a circular walkway where you can access the Aerotel, the Primeclass Lounge, and the Oman Air Lounge.

Upper level of Muscat Airport
Oman Air Lounge Muscat exterior
Oman Air Lounge Muscat exterior

The lounge entrance covers both sections of the lounge, so if you have access to the first class section, you’ll be escorted there, as the door is hidden, and is right behind reception.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat hours

The Oman Air First Lounge Muscat is open 24/7, reflecting that Gulf airports have flights all hours of the day and night. Though to be honest, no matter what time of day you’re in this lounge, you’ll find it to be empty.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat entry requirements

The Oman Air First Lounge is exclusively open to passengers traveling in Oman Air first class. This consists of a very small fleet:

  • Oman Air has two Boeing 787-9s each with eight first class seats, which consistently fly to London (LHR), and also sometimes serve other destinations, like Bangkok (BKK)
  • Oman Air has two Airbus A330-300s with six first class seats, which sometimes fly to Frankfurt (FRA) and Kuala Lumpur (KUL); however, the airline often doesn’t even assign these planes to routes where it sells first class

Honestly, it makes no economic sense for Oman Air to offer first class, as the airline sells so few first class seats, even on its London route. As mentioned above, I was in the lounge for around six hours (including just prior to the London flight), and there wasn’t a single other passenger.

One interesting consideration is that Oman Air is expected to join the oneworld alliance soon. In theory, oneworld lounge access policies allow oneworld Emerald members to access first class lounges. However, lounges can choose to be excluded from this arrangement, so we’ll see what Oman Air does.

In terms of utilizing space efficiently, it seems to me like Oman Air should let oneworld Emerald members into its first class lounge. Then again, when the airline doesn’t even allow its own top tier elites into this lounge, perhaps it’s not such a slam dunk.

Oman Air Lounge Muscat entrance

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat layout & seating

The Oman Air First Lounge Muscat is quite large. By my count, the lounge has over 75 seats, and I can’t imagine this lounge ever gets more than a dozen passengers (and that would probably be the lounge’s absolute record crowding level, as usually there is just one or two people in here, at most).

Anyway, as you enter the lounge, you’ll find a variety of seating arrangements, typically with four or so chairs surrounding a coffee table. The decor is blingy, though I also appreciate the attention to detail in the design, as it really is a beautiful space. Like, I wouldn’t want to decorate my home this way, but I think it’s a good reflection of Omani design.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating

Personally I’d recommend sitting deeper in the lounge, where you’ll find a lot more natural light, thanks to the floor-to-ceiling windows. This area of the lounge has the beautiful bar with six stools, four dining tables, and then rows of seats arranged in rows, facing one another.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bar area
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bar area
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bar area
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat dining area

The back corner of the lounge also has a living room-style area, plus some a workstation with an iMac.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat seating
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat workstation

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat food & drinks

The Oman Air First Lounge Muscat has extremely customized service, with quite a few food and drink options. The second I arrived in the lounge, I was welcomed by Charlotte, the lovely host who would be taking care of me. She was the only person who was working in the lounge, but then again, I was the only passenger, so I’d say a 1:1 staff to passenger ratio seems acceptable. 😉

As soon as I settled in, Charlotte presented me with the menu.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat menu

She also brought me a tray of snacks, with all kinds of nuts, dried fruit, dates, and chocolates.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat snacks

To kick off my stay in the lounge, she prepared me a beautiful cappuccino, which even had the Oman Air logo stenciled onto it with cinnamon.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat cappuccino

A few minutes later, the chef appeared to welcome me, introduce the dining concept, and to tell me that he’d be happy to prepare a meal whenever. Below is a look at the breakfast and all-day dining menu.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat breakfast menu
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat all day dining menu

Then below you can find the drink list, including champagne, red and white wine, beer, spirits, soft drinks, coffee, and more.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat drink list

I decided to eat later during my visit, at around lunchtime. To start, I ordered the mezze with hummus, shanklish, moutabal, fried labneh balls, and tropical fruit salsa, though I asked for it without the lamb kibbeh.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat starter

For my main course, I ordered the chargrilled salmon with balsamic star anise reduction, with mashed parmesan potatoes, sautéed spinach, bell peppers, and carrots. I would have ordered the king prawn machboos, except that’s exactly the dish I had on my previous flight.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat main course

Lastly, for dessert I had the chocolate and mango sorbet, with berries.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat dessert

The level of personalization was great, and Charlotte and the chef were both so friendly. I’d say the food was good but not amazing, as I didn’t think the food was much better than on the plane.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bathrooms & showers

The Oman Air First Lounge Muscat has bathrooms and showers, located in the back of the lounge, near the bar area. The bathroom area consisted of two sinks and three bathroom stalls.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bathroom
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bathroom
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat toilet

The bathrooms felt super luxe, and even had Amouage amenities. They were also meticulously clean, but you’d kind of expect that, given that there was no one else using the bathroom.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat bathroom toiletries

On top of that, the lounge has a single shower suite, with a sink, a toilet, and a walk-in shower.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat shower suite
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat shower suite
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat shower suite toiletries

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat nap room

The Oman Air First Lounge has two nap rooms, named Muscat and Salalah.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat nap rooms

These are private rooms, though unfortunately aren’t proper bedrooms. They each feature a daybed with an ottoman and a TV, plus a drink and snack basket.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat nap room
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat nap room
Oman Air First Lounge Muscat nap room

This is a nice facility if you’re looking to get some rest, though it’s not necessarily the most comfortable sleeping setup in the world, should you have a longer layover.

Oman Air First Lounge Muscat spa

The Oman Air Lounge Muscat has a Shangri-La Spa. This can be accessed through the business class lounge, as there’s a staircase from that lounge leading up to the spa. First class passengers are entitled to a complimentary 15-minute spa treatment.

I wish I could have taken advantage of this, though unfortunately the spa was closed for “maintenance” during my visit, so I wasn’t able to check it out.

Oman Air Lounge Muscat Shangri-La Spa

Bottom line

The Oman Air First Lounge Muscat is a comfortable, exclusive facility. The lounge is huge (given how few people have access to it), and has a nice bar and dining area, nap rooms, personalized service, a large selection of drinks, and a la carte dining.

The economics of this lounge — or of Oman Air first class overall, for that matter — make no sense. But still, visiting this lounge is such a treat. What other first class lounge anywhere in the world can you visit for six hours, and have all to yourself?

What do you make of the Oman Air First Lounge Muscat?

Conversations (8)
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  1. Muhammad Khurram Alam Guest

    Many many thanks for the newsletter it is good to know Oman Air is expected to join One World Alliance soon. It is a big achievement Oman get feedback through digital media platform people share their experiences and ideas as well. Infact, Oman Muscat is a beautiful country when i look inside the airport a well decorated interior and exterior every space is utilise intelligently a true reflection of Omani Culture Traditions which shows cuisine...

    Many many thanks for the newsletter it is good to know Oman Air is expected to join One World Alliance soon. It is a big achievement Oman get feedback through digital media platform people share their experiences and ideas as well. Infact, Oman Muscat is a beautiful country when i look inside the airport a well decorated interior and exterior every space is utilise intelligently a true reflection of Omani Culture Traditions which shows cuisine and warm welcome of their guest or passenger in Oman. It also reflects Oman believe the value of team building relationship when we get success it is because of great human potential a collaboration to achieve common objective It is a team who make us proud for the benefit of the people to serve better day by day with the help of training development of human resource advance technology in the passenger plane addition of newly built plane to connect more countries around the world.

    Best Regards
    Khurram

  2. Omar Guest

    the highland park 25 yrs is the stand out drink in this lounge which retails for around 1000 usd.

  3. griffinpaul Member

    Spa was closed in December 2022 when I was last there. Is it ever open? Every review in the last few years has had the spa closed...

  4. Willem Guest

    Spa was closed for my April 2023 visit too

  5. Julia Guest

    Those chips in the nap room are just a cheap and low quality brand...but, since they are Omani, I guess it makes sense to offer them.

  6. cbchicago Guest

    I am sure there are invited guest that use the club that may not be flying "first class". I see VIPs at the clubs in DCA and LAX that are invited at the airlines discretion.

  7. John Guest

    I thought the OneWorld agreement was that lounges could only opt to be excluded if the airline offered an alternative “first class” lounge?

  8. Abidjan Gold

    Wow, impressive from start to finish. Look forward to visiting.

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The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Willem Guest

Spa was closed for my April 2023 visit too

1
Muhammad Khurram Alam Guest

Many many thanks for the newsletter it is good to know Oman Air is expected to join One World Alliance soon. It is a big achievement Oman get feedback through digital media platform people share their experiences and ideas as well. Infact, Oman Muscat is a beautiful country when i look inside the airport a well decorated interior and exterior every space is utilise intelligently a true reflection of Omani Culture Traditions which shows cuisine and warm welcome of their guest or passenger in Oman. It also reflects Oman believe the value of team building relationship when we get success it is because of great human potential a collaboration to achieve common objective It is a team who make us proud for the benefit of the people to serve better day by day with the help of training development of human resource advance technology in the passenger plane addition of newly built plane to connect more countries around the world. Best Regards Khurram

0
Omar Guest

the highland park 25 yrs is the stand out drink in this lounge which retails for around 1000 usd.

0
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