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Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5 – official photos and the official entry rules

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EDIT: This article was published in 2015. Our 2021 review of the Club Aspire lounge at Heathrow Airport Terminal 5 is here.

Today is the official opening of the Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5.  Yesterday evening I was sent some official photographs by Priority Pass which you can see below.  I have also reproduced the official press release.

You can buy entry tickets via the Aspire website.

Aspire Lounge Heathrow Terminal 5 Priority Pass


The access rules are as we expected:

Priority Pass IS accepted.  This is great news if you have an American Express Platinum charge card as this comes with two Priority Pass cards, each of which admits two people for FREE.  If you don’t have an Amex Platinum, take a look at my other article today which shows how to buy a Priority Pass for half price – although, with that deal, you still pay £15 per visit on top.

Lounge Club is NOT accepted – this is a blow to Amex Gold cardholders as they receive two free passes each year for any Lounge Club lounge.

Airport Angel is NOT accepted

Cash prices are £40 on the door and £35 if you book in advance

Note that NOT all food and drink will be free.  There will be a charge for champagne and premium wines as well as for premium food dishes.  All drinks are served from a bar – it is not self-service.  The showers and spa will also incur an additional charge.

Aspire Lounge Heathrow Terminal 5 Priority Pass

The official press release:

London (4th August 2015): Collinson Group, owners of Priority Pass, and Swissport, the world’s largest aviation services provider, today announced the opening of the first independent, shared use lounge at London Heathrow Terminal 5.

‘Aspire, the Lounge and Spa at LHR T5’ will be jointly owned and operated by Swissport and Airport Lounge Development (ALD), Collinson Group’s lounge operating arm. Located at Gate A18 in Terminal 5, it will be the first lounge open to all travellers in one of the world’s busiest airport terminals.

Priority Pass members will have access to the lounge as part of their membership. Travellers without membership can enjoy three hours in ‘Aspire, the Lounge and Spa at LHR T5’ for £35 when booked in advance at or for £40 at reception on the day subject to availability. The lounge is open from 5am until 11pm daily.

Aspire Lounge Heathrow Terminal 5 Priority Pass

Errol McGlothan, General Manager EMEA, Collinson Group said: “Aspire, the Lounge and Spa at LHR T5 has been designed to meet the exacting needs of the millions of travellers who travel through the terminal every year. Using insights gained from frequent travellers, we are confident that we’ve delivered the most compelling destination lounge where travellers can relax and refresh ahead of their next journey. Developed in partnership with Swissport, we are delighted to offer travellers access to an independent lounge at Heathrow Terminal 5 for the first time.”

Stephen Wilkinson, Property Director, Heathrow said: “We are delighted to announce that as of today, we now have independent lounges in each of our terminals. Our team works tirelessly to ensure our customers receive the very best service when they fly and we’re delighted that Aspire, The Lounge and Spa at LHR T5, at Terminal 5 will enhance this service from today.”

Shaun Weston, Travel Services Director, Swissport commented: “Since launching in 2012, the Aspire brand of airport lounges has grown in popularity and now covers many global destinations. The opening of ‘Aspire, the Lounge and Spa at LHR T5’ is a significant step for Swissport, giving us a presence in one of the world’s leading airport terminals. We look forward to combining our operational expertise with Collinson Group’s reach amongst travellers, to deliver a world class facility.”

Aspire Lounge Heathrow Terminal 5 Priority Pass

The 4,000 sq ft lounge space is dominated by soaring windows on two sides giving guests dramatic runway views. An extensive British-inspired seasonal food and drink menu has been created which includes a wide range of complimentary as well as premium (chargeable) options, changing throughout the day. Guests can also enjoy a unique opportunity to sample Spey Whisky, draught beer and a selection of wines on a complimentary basis or choose to pay for carefully selected ‘Wine Flights’, an innovative way to taste a variety of wines from different regions.

A highlight of the lounge is the ‘Bliss Spa at Aspire’ which is the award-winning beauty company’s first location in an airport. The specially designed travel spa menu includes a range of facials, manicures and pedicures available as refreshing 20 minute express, or luxurious 40 minute appointments guaranteed to deliver amazing results in a fun, positive environment.

This includes an express version of the famous Bliss Spa Oxygen Blast facial, a 40 minute complexion reviver for bright, glowing skin and the Hot Cream Manicure for perfect nails. & magazines, refreshments and beverages.

To help guests relax before or during a long trip, state-of-the-art ‘rest pods’ let guests  recline back on specially engineered, reclining loungers, watch television and recharge in private so that they are rejuvenated for the journey ahead.

Travellers on business will have access to connected work spaces with complimentary high speed WiFi, charging posts and designated quiet zones to make the most productive use of their time.”

If you are planning to visit the Aspire lounge and do not have a Priority Pass, your best option is to book in advance and guarantee admission via the Aspire website here.

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (August 2021)

As a reminder, here are the three options to get FREE airport lounge access via a credit or charge card:

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express comes with two free Priority Pass cards, one for you and one for a supplementary cardholder. Each card admits two so a family of four gets in free. You get access to all 1,300 lounges in the Priority Pass network – search it here

You also get access to Plaza Premium, Delta and Eurostar lounges. The card has a sign-up bonus of 30,000 points.  Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply here.

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for the first year. It comes with a Priority Pass card loaded with two free visits to any Priority Pass lounge – see the list here

Additional lounge visits are charged at £20.  You get two more free visits for every year you keep the card.  

There is no annual fee for Amex Gold in Year 1 and a 20,000 points sign-up bonus.  Full details are in our American Express Preferred Rewards Gold review here.

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard

A huge bonus, but only available to HSBC Premier clients Read our full review

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard gets you get a free LoungeKey card, allowing you access to the LoungeKey network.  Guests are charged at £20 although it may be cheaper to pay £60 for a supplementary credit card for your partner.

The card has a fee of £195 and there are strict financial requirements to become a HSBC Premier customer.  Full details are in my HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard review.

PS. You can find all of HfP’s UK airport lounge reviews – and we’ve been to most of them – indexed here.

Comments (58)

  • General Mayhem says:

    Thanks Rob. Having dropped out of silver recently this is very good news.

    A small word of caution – my last two trips via gatwick South I have been turned away from the no 1 traveller lounge because they were too full.

    • Nick says:

      This happened to my wife yesterday also. Can’t help but feel that when that happens the lounge should at least five out a coupon or something to use in the restaurants and cafes in the airport so you can grab A cup of coffee or whatever

      • Rob says:

        You can pay £5 via the No 1 Traveller website to reserve a place, even when using Priority Pass.

        • Andy says:

          Is it worth reserving a place in a lounge that is almost at capacity? I’m not a frequent lounge user but I can’t help but feel if a lounge is full it wouldn’t be a very pleasant experience.

    • Martin says:

      Like wise us at Edinburgh recently, they said they had too many advance bookings to accept PP

  • Paul says:

    Great to see some badly needed competition for BA mediocre offerings. Will use it in Thursday but can’t help thinking they have over blown the hyperbole. Soaring windows are a feature of T5 and hardly exclusive. And the costs are outrageous. £40 and it doesn’t cover a shower or a glass of champagne! Not that many Woolf ever pay that and with just 40 seats I think we can expect to see lots of people being turned away.

    • james says:

      I read on flyertalk that the capacity was 80. Still not enough mind.

    • Rob says:

      I will be there about noon – look for the bloke with the 7-year old girl. May be a brief visit as she will want to watch YouTube on the Galleries computers!

  • Al says:

    It is a shame that this replaces the great little coffee shop that was here before. I suppose the tranquility (way better than the lounges) was inevitably going to be its downfall in T5 where revenue rules.

  • Rick says:

    My understanding is that CPP have stopped the Airport Angel product.

    • Rob says:

      Didn’t know that, no-one mentioned it. Thanks.

      • Rick says:

        I don’t think Barclays know this either. Or, call me cynical, maybe they do… 🙂

        • cheekychappie says:

          True enough about CPP stopping AA, but the question now is: what will Barclays replace it with? I imagine it will not close until about May next year due to running down current obligations.

          • cheekychappie says:

            Strange – looking at their Facebook site you wouldn’t guess that the service is being discontinued.

            Plus they still seem to allow people to join them direct.

            And Barclays certainly don’t mention it’s stopping.

            Yet CPP have definitely informed the markets they’re withdrawing AA. I guess they could sell it on but it doesn’t seem to be very profitable. More than a 12-18 month wind-down would be bizarre.

            I reckon you still have plenty of opportunity to get 6 lounge visits for under £15 all in over the next year. (Or free. Nod, wink 🙂 )

      • Marco says:

        The Bidvest Premier Lounge at the King Shaka Airport in Durban informed us during a holiday last month in South Africa that they no longer accepted Airport Angel cards… the manager let us in a favour. Perhaps other readers who have recently tried using their AA cards in business lounges could relate their own experiences?

        • cheekychappie says:

          Wouldn’t surprise me if AA started not renewing lounge contracts as & when they come up for renewal. Particularly contracts for less-used lounges as regards their membership. Eg bearing in mind current contractual obligations (for example with Barclays) they will probably keep UK lounge contracts going for 18 months or so as it all winds down – but far-flung lounges might get eliminated as options on the scheme much earlier.

          My best guess (having slept onit!) is that unless they manage to sell AA to another operator, all membership will cease on 31 Dec 2016.

          BTW T3 No1 Traveller was fine for AA entry a couple of weeks ago 🙂

    • Colin JE says:

      Interesting, where did you see that please?

  • Sideysid says:

    Im flying from T5 next week, was hoping the lounge would be open to Lounge Club and Airport Angel (which I have both) so looks like its a no go then as paying £40 p/p for a family of 3 for an hour or so isn’t good value for me. Any other options for me?

  • David says:

    The no 1 lounge in Gatwick is always turning people away.

  • The_Real_A says:

    Does anyone know what the food offering will be?

  • David says:

    Where can I see that the Platinum Amex Priority Pass card allows a free guest. The FAQs on PP says there is a fee for guests.

    • Rob says:

      Trust us! You get a card and your first supplementary Platinum cardholder gets a card. Each card admits the holder and one guest for free.

      You cannot, on the Priority Pass website, buy a card which works exactly the same way (ie free for holder and a guest).

      • IslandDweller says:

        Don’t think that’s correct. Yes primary and first additional cardholder on platinum scheme get a PP card each, which covers free entry for those two individuals. But any further guests are charged at £15 a visit

        • Rob says:

          No, that is not how it works. EACH card can bring in a guest for free.

          It even says on the Amex Plat application site “including access to Priority Pass™ lounges for you and a guest.”

          • EvilGazebo says:

            Confusion may be related to type of Amex Plat: Personal gets holder plus guest per cardholder. Small Biz card only gets holder

        • Alan says:

          Sorry, you’re wrong. The £15 fee for the first guest on each PP card (ie 1xmain and 1xadditional cardholder) are definitely 100% covered by Amex – you do not pay. This is the big perk of PP via Amex Plat and was one of the major selling points from Amex when they increased the annual fee by 50% a couple of years ago!

          • James says:

            Indeed. I’ve guested people a few times with my amex plat PP and never been charged.

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