Review of the impressive Malaysia Airlines lounge in Heathrow T4

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There is my review of the Malaysia Airlines lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4.

You can find full details of Malaysia Airlines Golden Lounges on this page of their website.

This is part of our series of reviews of airport lounges across the UK. You see all of the reviews here.

As far as I can tell, I have visited every lounge in Terminals 2, 3 and 5 at Heathrow.  There are still a couple of hold-outs in Terminal 4, however.  I have now ticked Malaysia Airlines off the list and will be visiting the Gulf Air lounge in May.  I will only be missing the King David Lounge in Terminal 4, but as El Al is not in an alliance I can’t see a way of penetrating that one unless the manager Plaza Premium gives me a tour.  Whether I would then get a certificate from the airport remains to be seen!

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

Inside the Malaysia Airlines lounge at Heathrow

I visited the Malaysia Airlines lounge after my tour of the new A350-900 aircraft which I covered here.  It was very quiet by this point, as most passengers had already moved down to the gate.

I walked in with absolutely no prior knowledge of the space whatsoever.  Unlike most lounges, I had never read a review of this one and I had never heard any feedback from anyone who had used it.  What I found therefore came as a very pleasant surprise.

There are two key things you should know about the Malaysia Airlines lounge:

it has some of the most amazing views of any lounge at Heathrow – because it was built as a tiny extension to Terminal 4, and does not use an existing space, the airline was able to get wrap-around floor-to-ceiling glass walls on one side.  You can even see Windsor Castle on the horizon. 

it has a dedicated First Class / Business Suite area with restaurant-style dining which can also be accessed by British Airways Gold card holders and oneworld Emerald equivalents

This means, for clarity, that if you are flying on Qatar Airways from Terminal 4 at a time when the Malaysia Airlines lounge is open (the times are listed below) then you could use the Malaysia Airlines lounge instead.  British Airways Gold members would have access to the First Class area.  There are no other oneworld airlines flying from Terminal 4 (I think).

The Business Class / British Airways Silver / oneworld Sapphire area

When I arrived breakfast was still out.  The seating was broken down into a number of areas.  You have a dining area:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

and the main seating area:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

These pictures don’t really give you a proper feel, however, because the huge glass windows give a sense of light and space you don’t really pick up.  Looking one way you see the Jet, Gulf and Saudia aircraft:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

whilst the Malaysia Airlines A350 is off to the left:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

This gives you a good impression of how much you can see:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

This nondescript circular space:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

is actually a small kids playroom.  This is one reason why you might want to choose the Malaysia Airlines lounge over the Qatar Airways facility.

Here was the breakfast buffet on the Business Class side:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

Hot options included nasi lemak, chicken sambal, mee goreng, chicken sausage, plain omelettes, beans, mushrooms and lyonnaise potatoes.  There are also cold options:

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

As it is always a bug-bear of mine, I should mention that there was a small but suitably upmarket selection of newspapers and magazines.

There is also a bar in the lounge which I didn’t photograph.

The Business Suite (First Class) / British Airways Gold / oneworld Emerald area

The Malaysia Airlines lounge team was very proud to stress their catering credentials.  Long-term readers will know that I have always said that the Qatar Airways lounge in Terminal 4 has the best food in Heathrow.  According to the Malaysia team, however, Qatar Airways has recently switched caterers and much of the food in its lounge is no longer cooked fresh.  Malaysia Airlines still cooks all of its lounge food on the premises.

This is the dining area.  Remember that there are only FOUR Business Suite seats on the aircraft, so I doubt it gets busy.  The only other people here would be oneworld Emerald / BA Gold card holders.

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

The hot buffet options at breakfast include chicken curry puffs, sweet potato curry puffs, vegetable spring rolls, vegetable samosas, paratha and dal curry.

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

I’m not sure what a la carte options are also available at breakfast.  I did pick up the evening menu, where the ‘cooked to order’ options were:

  • fish and chips with mushy peas and tartare sauce
  • mee goreng
  • oxtail stew
  • vegetarian tempura

with vegetarian spring rolls as an appetiser and chocolate fondant or bubur pulut hitam for dessert.

Once you’ve finished dining, you can retire to this slightly eclectic First Class corner or go back into the main area to enjoy the views.

Review Malaysia Airlines lounge at London Heathrow airport

Conclusion

Given that Malaysia Airlines has just two flights per day out of Heathrow, and with only a relatively small Business Class cabin, I was impressed by what I saw in its Heathrow lounge.

I haven’t tried the a la carte food (I did try the buffet, which was good) and I have no idea how busy it gets, but I doubt anyone would be disappointed by a visit here.

If you are flying on Qatar Airways and want to try the Malaysia Airlines lounge, it opens four hours before the departure of the two MH flights.  This means around 7am for the 11am flight and then again around 5.35pm for the 9.35pm flight.

Thanks to the Malaysia Airlines team for my tour.   You can learn more about Malaysia Airlines lounges on their website here.

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Comments

  1. Hingeless says:

    The Qatar business lounge in T4 is like an F lounge, so any point in leaving that to go to the Malaysian lounge other than to have a look around?

    • Duh – so you can tick off another lounge at LHR that you’ve been to! 🙂 Sounds like this is the place to go if travelling Y on QR as a OWE (that’s a very specific combination).

      We were in the F lounge, or whatever MH call it, in KL and it was lovely. Staff were great, food excellent and didn’t feel out of place with a 18month old. I’ve maybe earned more Tps from MH this year than BA and find them consistently very good.

      • Hingeless says:

        Who flies qatar economy if the read this blog !!!

        • Of course people who read HfP fly Y on Qatar. For example my company’s travel policy excludes business class travel to the Middle East.

        • The majority of readers fly economy, FYI.

        • Regus Escapeee says:

          Regus staff travel policy was all staff travel Y regardless of length. That included from London to one of the back offices in the Philippines.

        • Shoestring says:

          @Regus Escapeee – that’s even more rubbish! 🙂

          My last policy was 4hrs dividing line between Economy & Business, which is probably partly why my mindset is that it’s simply not worth the extra (if it’s your own money) to fly Business in Europe. If you need 2x 32kg checked luggage – that’s different! (on points, though).

        • Saying this with a straight face, I’m perpetually amazed and humbled by the good grace and dignity the vast majority of passengers in economy conduct themselves when faced with a long haul flight.

          On walking to the gate you see people well prepared and kitted out for a long flight with those neck braces, extra clothing and water. Most don’t join the premium gate line claiming ignorance, most don’t take premium cabin overhead cabin space on the way to their cabin and most don’t hang outside the executive lounge trying to blag entrance. And after a long haul flight they wait patiently and modestly behind the FA who blocks their exit whilst premium cabins disembark. You can see in their eyes as you pass them bye they’ve probably been sitting in the same seat, awake and cramped since you last saw them 11hrs ago. Kudos to those who regularly do it. Really.

        • Shoestring says:

          There’s no such thing as ‘premium cabin overhead [storage] space’. All the overhead lockers on a plane are available to all the passengers, full stop. Choose any that you see fit.

        • (For now) I don´t have any issues flying long haul economy – I have managed to sleep comfortably and with no back-pain in a standard economy seat, as long as I have a window seat. Now, I prepare myself – It´s not that bad. After all, the majority of human beings travel economy.

    • Prins Polo says:

      I think you can’t use the QR lounge if you’re OWE but flying QR economy, so I think this is when the MH lounge potentially can come in handy.

      Funny to see Jet Airways outside the window in one of the pictures. Looks like they’re going through some serious difficulties now, with approx 80 of their 120 aircraft grounded and a lot of routes suspended. Seems LHR from DEL and BOM is still running.

    • The staff are too in your face at the Qatar lounge, felt like I was being stalked. Otherwise a great lounge.

  2. “Slightly eclectic”… That’s being very diplomatic! It looks like it was furnished by someone with a garage sale fetish. 🙂

    That seating arrangement in the round also seems very awkward; it couldn’t be less private. As does the area where all the chairs are in rows – so pax will have clamber over each other to use the middle seats.

    Food sounds excellent though as do views.

  3. kt1974 says:

    I’ve used this lounge a few times and I really like the Emerald/first side (more so than the QR lounge, which is itself exceptional). The food and service is far better than QR, and indeed even MH’s Emerald/Plat lounge in KL. The only caution is that the business side can be a zoo if the MH flight is busy – eg around school holidays

  4. I’ve just got off a MH flight from KUL to HAN. Very impressed with MH regional J product – better than CX in my view, crew were lovely. The Regional lounge at KUL was very good too – knocks spots off BA Galleries at LHR.

  5. Catalan says:

    O/T slightly. Can a BAEC Silver Card holder use the Cathay T3 lounge if flying BA economy?

  6. I’ve visited the business suite before and have to say that their a la carte food was really impressive. I’m surprised that they have been under the radar.

  7. Jimbob says:

    Now I know where my nan’s old chairs ended up

  8. ZumodeNaranja says:

    Thanjs Rob, looking forward to trying out the T4 MH lounge when I fly them in October.

    I was in the QR lounge on Thursday and was unfortunately very underwhelmed by the slow service and mediocre food…

  9. O/T : What is the lounge recommendation from T3 (VIrgin) departures with Amex Plat (walk-in please).

  10. The King David lounge in T4 is nice but v basic compared to their lounge at TLV

  11. TrollBasher says:

    Are there any J class sweet spots ex EU via LHR for choosing MH ?

    I’ve never been able to find any for my trips down under.

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