Sunday, September 12, 2010

Flagship Lounge at Los Angeles International

Boarding passes, key card to Flagship Lounge and card for wi-fi access.
I wasn't sure but it was true. Even though I redeemed miles for a first class ticket to London, admission to the Flagship Lounge was still offered to me.

"open sesame" to the Flagship Lounge
The airline lounge for American Airlines is called the Admirals Club which is used by members of the club or for flyers who are holding a first/business class ticket, have purchased one-day memberships or are guests of members. But now the floorspace above the American terminal gates at LAX that was devoted to the one club is now split in two. Half of it is now devoted to the Flagship Lounge exclusive to flyers holding a first class ticket on international flights or domestic flights with three class of service.

Part of the 'tranquil' Flagship Lounge floor.
So I check-in and I'm given a key card and at this point I had no idea where to use this key card. I walked through the club which at this point of day was busy and crowded with in-transit flyers. I had to ask a club attendant what do I do with this. She said " enter these doors" and she guided me to these two glass sliding doors, placed the key card in the wall slot and like saying "open sesame" the doors opened to a different world.

Starting off with some simple bites.
Unlike the Admiral's Club, in the Flagship Lounge all the perks are complimentary and the atmosphere is best described as tranquil. The biggest perk is probably the complimentary buffet complete with china and silverware and food offerings that changes through the day and complimentary Wi-Fi.

But for me the best perk was the complimentary flow of drinks. There was no bartender or server. Everything was self-serve. There were three fridge doors filled with all sorts of drinks (alcholohic, non-alcoholic and water) and a bar with multiple choices of potent wines and spirits. I have to admit I was loading up my carry-on with bottles of Evian water. Not to sound poor but bottled water is one of the first things I need upon arrival at the hotel and a dollar saved in London can be better used elsewhere.

Since my flight was not leaving until 7pm, I had a good four hours to enjoy the luxury of this benefit and by the time of my flight I had packed five plastic bottles of Evian in my bag. Hope they don't leak.

I've heard stories that if celebrities are lurking in the airport, the Flagship Lounge is likely where they may be found. They will remain stories as I did not see any celebrity in the lounge.

Click here to learn more about the Flagship Lounge or here about the Admiral's Club.

The buffet, dining area and fridges with drinks.
The self-serve bar.


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