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British Airways unveils its new New York JFK business class lounge

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If you have flown through New York JFK in the last week you may have been one of the first people to see the new British Airways Club lounge which has just been unveiled.

It is the culmination of a £52 million investment that included the refurbishment and expansion of the First Class lounge and the Concorde Room last Autumn as well as improvements to check-in areas and other general amenities.

The Club lounge at JFK is the third, after Rome and Aberdeen (reviewed here), to have the new “contemporary and luxurious” design theme that is slowly being rolled out across the network.

Note that British Airways seems to have dropped the ‘Galleries’ branding.  It is just called the ‘Club lounge’ rather than ‘Galleries Club’.

Click on any picture to enlarge.

British Airways new Business Class lounge New York JFK

The lounge is 22,000 square feet.  It is only slightly smaller than Delta’s flagship SkyClub in Terminal 4 at JFK and significantly larger than the 13,000 square foot lounge that Cathay Pacific has at Heathrow Terminal 3.  BA has calculated that 16,500 customers per week will be eligible for access, including those flying Iberia and on some Qatar Airways flights, so it has to be big.

British Airways new Business Class lounge New York JFK

From the looks of things, one of the key improvements appears to be additional connectivity in terms of available plug sockets.

There’s also a new entertainment room with what sounds like Playstations, a re-opened Elemis Spa, the brasserie-style dining room for pre-flight dining (Club World passengers only, no status card holders) and a BrewDog craft beer room (three different beers on tap) to celebrate the new custom-brewed Speedbird 100 beer that is now available on flights.  A granite-topped Scottish-themed Quaiche bar is available with an “experienced bartender” at peak times.

British Airways new Business Class lounge New York JFK bar

Rob will be reviewing the lounge on his next trip to New York in June.  BA did invite us over to take a look last week but Bank Holiday parenting duties called.  Here are some photos that a reader, Alex, sent in:

British Airways new Business Class lounge New York JFK
and

British Airways new Business Class lounge New York JFK

Whilst the new lounge is certainly an improvement on what was there before, general online feedback so far is that it lacks the flair of the new lounges in Rome and Aberdeen – although neither of those is on anything like this scale – or Gatwick South, which used a different design team. 

We’ll let you know once we’ve seen it in the flesh.  However good it turns out to be, it will have a very short life following the decision to move in with American Airlines in Terminal 8 in 2022.


Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (June 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 (51)

  • EmmaB says:

    We used this lounge yesterday. It’s a bit soulless and somehow feels quite temporary. Even though we were in Y a staff member showed us in to the dining room and told her colleague manning the door that it was OK (we didn’t ask – indeed, we told her we knew we weren’t allowed in).

    The food in the dining room was a bit random – some nice fish and a range of veggies, chicken curry, and some varieties of bao. There’s a salad bar and you can order about 3 things from a menu (including the fake meat burger).

    Overall the lounge was incredibly hot. The Brewdog area looked like they’d given up partway through setting it up (there are some shelves with some empty cans on plus taps to pour your own beer, and that’s sort of it).

    Overall a bit underwhelming and could have been any airline’s space – there was very little personality to it at all

  • S says:

    hi

    what options do you recommend for lounges departing from Las Vegas on BA?

    • Andrew says:

      I generally find the One World website helpful for deciphering which lounges are going to be best to use for a certain flight. The site shows the terminal the lounges are in, the opening times and any restrictions for access for certain airlines. But if it says “open to any One World airline” is in the terminal you’re departing from and open at the times you’re going to be there then give it a go and visit a few until you find a good one.

      • Andrew says:

        And a quick search shows the only lounge option is The Club at LAS – which seems to be some sort of third party lounge available for BA and Latam. There’s no AA facility at LAS.

      • David says:

        The Flyertalk BA lounge database threads are even better than the oneworld site…

  • KirtjE says:

    OT: I have Emirates Skywards miles expiring in June (about 30,000 of them) and don’t intend to fly with Emirates in the near future. What is the best way of using/transferring them?

    • Rob says:

      Heathrow shopping vouchers, easyJet flights, hotel credit or (if it comes up again) Queen’s Club tennis VIP tickets.

      • KirtjE says:

        30,000 Skywards points is about £100 in Heathrow Rewards vouchers. Think that is probably the best option now Emirates High Street has closed. Thanks Rob.

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