Qantas announces A$100m in lounge upgrades

LinkedIn +

Qantas will invest A$100m (US$68m) in its lounge upgrade program which includes the construction of a First Lounge at London’s Heathrow Airport, as well as an update to five existing international and domestic lounges.

The A$100m (US$68m) investment will be phased over three years and has been included in the group’s existing capital expenditure forecast. According to the company, this is the single biggest investment in the Qantas lounge network in more than a decade and comes as the airline expands its domestic and international routes and starts to take delivery of next-generation aircraft.

Subject to agreement with Heathrow Airport and UK regulators, the London First Lounge is expected to feature direct access to boarding gates, sweeping views of the airfield, a focus on well-being features and an “unrivaled dining experience”. It is expected to open in late 2025, in line with the first Project Sunrise flights direct to Sydney. The First Lounge will operate alongside the current International Lounge, which will become a dedicated International Business Lounge. It will be the fifth destination to offer a Qantas First Lounge, alongside Los Angeles, Melbourne, Singapore and the original Marc Newson-designed First Lounge in Sydney.

The existing lounges that will be upgraded include: the Hong Kong International Lounge; the Hobart Qantas Club in Australia; the International Business Lounge in Sydney, Australia; the International Business Lounge in Melbourne, Australia; and the Broome Regional Lounge in Broome, Australia. The Qantas Hong Kong International Lounge will be reopened after its closure during the Covid-19 pandemic. It is to undergo a refresh, with the improved lounge opening in April 2023. The yum cha trolley will also return.

The proposed redevelopment of the existing Qantas Business Class Lounge at Melbourne International Airport features an expanded footprint that will increase capacity by up to 30% to accommodate future passenger growth. The project will also include a full internal refresh and a new signature food and beverage concept. This work will be carried out in stages from late 2023, with the stage one opening targeted for mid-2024.

The redevelopment of the existing Business Class Lounge at Sydney International Airport (as previously announced but paused due to the Covid-19 pandemic) is pending confirmation from Sydney Airport, due to the airport’s terminal upgrade plans. The proposal for a full redesign and rebuild from scratch would increase capacity by 40% to more than 600 seats. Additionally, a new signature food and beverage offering will be implemented. Work on this project is estimated to commence in early 2024 with completion of stage one estimated by early 2025.

The company also intends to relocate the Hobart Qantas Club to larger premises in line with the overall terminal redevelopment. This move is intended to create a 50% increase in capacity from 96 to approximately 150 seats. Furthermore, Qantas has plans to construct a new Broome Regional Lounge to open in 2024, which will double the capacity of the existing lounge from 49 to approximately 100 seats, following demand from premium leisure travelers to the destination.

Alan Joyce, CEO of Qantas Group, said, “The faster-than-expected recovery in travel demand meant the airline could accelerate investment in its award-winning lounge network. Being back in profit means we’re back to making long-term investments for our customers. That started with the major aircraft order we announced last year and now we’re building on that with a major investment in our lounges. Millions of people a year visit our lounges and they are typically our frequent flyers who travel with us the most, so anything we do to improve them is a way of saying thank you to our most loyal customers.

“We have three new and upgraded lounge spaces due to open this year and the pipeline we’re announcing today will take us through to 2025. London is one of the most important destinations on our network and it’s the perfect location for a First Lounge, especially with our direct Project Sunrise flights on the way. Heathrow is one of the world’s busiest airports so we’re very pleased to be working with them to secure a great space in the terminal for an additional lounge.”

For more major updates on the lounge sector of the passenger terminal industry, click here.

Share this story:

About Author

, assistant editor

As the latest addition to the UKi Media & Events team, Elizabeth combines research skills from her English degree with a keen interest in the meteorological and transportation industries. Having taken the lead in student and startup publications, she has gained experience in editing online and print titles on a wide variety of topics. In her role as Assistant Editor, Elizabeth creates new and topical content on the pioneering technologies in transportation, logistics and meteorology.

Comments are closed.