Qantas lounge London Heathrow Fab or drab?
London Heathrow is one of the world’s busiest airports. In Europe, it certainly is the place to connect to destinations across the globe. When you’re flying long haul from either East or West to Europe, chances are you’ll be connecting in London Heathrow. The Qantas lounge London Heathrow (terminals 1, 2 and 3) is just one of a selection, jostling for your attention. Other top airlines will be Emirates, Singapore Airlines and of course British Airways.
- Lower floor
- Upper Floor
- Food (Neil Perry Menu)
- Bathroom Facilities
- Final Thoughts
There is no separate lounge for first class customers at the Qantas lounge London Heathrow. Sorry, you have to slum it with the business class passengers. Life can be hard sometimes!
Qantas Lounge London Heathrow overview
The Qantas lounge can get very busy! On two separate visits there was hardly any sitting room on the upper level and the Australian rugby team were taking up space on another! It was very difficult to relax and the level of noise was quite high, with families with young children adding to the din.
The lounge seemed to be serving all the passengers on the A380 London to Singapore flight, because the lounge emptied out pretty swiftly half an hour before take off for the evening 20:40 scheduled 13 hour flight.
Meant to reflect a private members club, the Qantas London lounge Heathrow has a mix of Australian and British accents on the furniture, fixtures and fittings. Yes, there is carpet, a very English floor covering. It’s meant to add a cosy touch, but, personally we prefer the hard stuff, like wood and stone. Thankfully there is parquet and other smooth surfaces to walk across!
You might notice some similarities between the Singapore, Hong Kong and Brisbane business class lounges. The large amount of marble used for the bar areas seems to be a Qantas accent. The seating is a mix of stylish padded chairs that almost look like armchairs, dining chairs, bar stools and sofas. There are some real armchairs too.
If you have an earlier flight there is some natural light, coming through the windows. The plane spotting is very good from the red leather seats.
It’s hard to see out of the windows at night, but at least there is natural light in the London lounge. There are tarmac views from both levels of the lounge.
There is a separate restaurant dining area with booth like seating and waiter service. Quieter areas for lone travellers face the tarmac on the lower floor. However, as it was dark there was no plane spotting to be had.
Eligibility Qantas London Lounge Heathrow
Qantas is part of the One World Alliance which means you will get access to this lounge if you’re a top tier frequent flyer with airlines such as American Airlines, Emirates, Qatar, Japan Airlines, Malaysian and Cathay Pacific.
If you hold a QF ticket you cannot use the Emirates Lounge which would be our preference, even though Emirates are part of the One World Alliance. Sorry Qantas, although we love you, Emirates is just a step above in the food and beverage quality in our experiences in Kuala Lumpur, Melbourne and Dubai.
So how will the Qantas business lounge Heathrow stack up against its rivals? Read on to find out! There is no time limit in the lounge, but the annoying thing about any lounge is that you’re not allowed to check in for your flight until 3 hours before the flight leaves. Luckily, the check in queue for non economy is always shorter!
Lower floor Qantas London lounge Heathrow
The Qantas business lounge Heathrow has two floors. A dedicated gin bar on the lower floor and a general dining and relaxing area that comes with another bar on the upper floor. On the lower floor, you can also eat your a la carte food options at the bar itself on stools.
On the lower floor of the Qantas Lounge London Heathrow you can sit around the bar and eat the a la carte food or you can sit at tables which encircle (well rectangle, but that’s not a word to en-rectangle!) the bar. There are also padded long bench seats which face the bar where you eat your ordered food in comfort at the right table height level.
If you’re lucky, you can opt to sit on a padded restaurant chair on the lower floor.
Upper floor Qantas lounge London Heathrow
The upper floor is where it can get really crowded. After eating your a la carte meal you may want to try and stretch out upstairs. There is another bar here too so you don’t have to go back downstairs!
The help yourself drinks bar has the wine and soft drinks on the upper level. For cocktails and mocktails, you have to order at the bar.
There is also flavoured water and Dilmah teas. Or, your own tisane in a cute tea pot!
The upper floor has the help yourself selection of food. Reasonably well presented for the side options. It’s always very hard to make the hot dishes look great in those silver keep warm vessels that all lounges and 5 star hotels use. You know the ones where you lift up the glass lid to take a better look at the food, even though you can see it through the transparent lid!
There is a small strip of an area on the upper floor where you can conduct business. We spotted a printer and socket points with chairs. Unfortunately, the lounge was so busy some people had to use this area to put their food and drinks!
Qantas Lounge London Heathrow Drinks Menu
The food and beverages have sometimes been disappointing in Qantas lounges, but only because we are comparing it to their rivals. The wines were about nine pounds in quality per bottle, whereas the wine in an Emirates lounge will start at fifteen pounds per bottle.
The drinks menus outside of wine was good with a nice selection of cocktails and gins. However the non alcoholic cocktails are plain and boring. The bar tender pictured put his finger in the glass to stop the foam forming on the top! Had he not heard of basic hygiene? He also seemed a little irritated as the demand for service was high and he was on his own.
There were a couple of private rooms which had a door you could close off. These rooms were mainly being used by families.
The dinner menu
We are happy to report that the western food is much better than we have previously experienced in Melbourne and Sydney international business class lounges. It was good to experience the dinner food, since we usually have early flights and only get the breakfast menu. The service was swift to get the food but to get the staff’s attention involved a lot of smiling and trying to get eye contact due to the number of people using the lounge in the evening.
Roast chicken, Lancashire hot pot and salt and pepper squid were on the dinner menu. As is the current trend, something from the land and something from the sea. The vegetable dishes sounded equally enticing with roasted cauliflower or a tomato, basil and mozzarella salad on offer.
The squid whilst good could have been crispier. The presentation was good.
To do justice to the review it is only fair that we eat different meals and sample as many dishes as we can. Here is the Lancashire hot pot lamb which is basically a meat stew. Served with mint sauce and a rocket and pear salad which was very refreshing!
The washroom and shower facilities
It’s time for the anticipated bathroom pictures. Named the Refresh space it contains products from the Liptiya range which are in the business class amenity kits.
The shower area at the Qantas London lounge Heathrow was too small. There were only 10 showers. We got in early and did not have to queue. By 7pm queues were forming outside the showers. Not exactly a relaxing experience, knowing people are waiting for you to finish your ablutions. In Europe, everything is smaller and more condensed into a smaller space – the same must be true of Qantas lounges.
The space is mostly white. The mirror is quite funky and unique. Pictured below is the common bathroom, not the individual shower room.
Our thoughts on this London lounge are generally positive. We like the extensive menu options. The layout of the London Heathrow lounge is quite unique being on 2 floors. The cleanliness and funky design of the bathrooms impressed. Even though there wasn’t much natural light and the run way views were limited, at least there were some. The gin bar and the inventive cocktails are amazing. We wish the wine selection were just a notch higher. Overall though of course it’s way better to spend three hours in the Qantas London lounge at Heathrow than outside with the masses.
Have you been to the Qantas lounge at London Heathrow? Do you agree with our assessment? Let us know!