Review: Qantas First Class Lounge in Sydney

The international Qantas First Lounge in Sydney is Qantas’ flagship and arguably most popular lounge. With breathtaking views over not only the airport, but also the Sydney skyline, this lounge offers restaurant-style dining and even complimentary spa treatments. Although the lounge is starting to show its age a little bit, and it can get crowded during very busy periods, this lounge remains a key reason that many frequent flyers aspire to maintain Platinum status with Qantas.

Lounge Details

Airline Qantas
Airport Sydney (SYD), Australia
Terminal Terminal 1 (International)
Location Up the escalators after duty-free, near gate 10
Opening hours Daily from 5am until 10pm
Star rating 5 stars out of 5

Seating

There are plenty of comfortable lounge chairs throughout the lounge, many with great runway views.

At the far end of the lounge is a small business centre where you can get some work done. There are also a couple of meeting rooms, which are relatively private, and a small library.

If you’d like something to eat, take a seat at the restaurant where table service is provided.

Qantas First Lounge dining area
Qantas First Lounge dining area

Lounge Food, Drinks & Service

The friendly service begins before you even enter the lounge! If you’re lucky, Nestor will be there to greet you at the entrance to the lounge. You’ll then walk past the rainforest tapestry and up the escalator, where you’ll see the lounge’s iconic flight departures board.

Dining at the Qantas First Lounge is like eating at a fancy restaurant – except that there are no prices on the menu! From the dining area, you can order a wide variety of food and drinks from the a-la-carte menu, including several different varieties of champagne, and the quality is generally very good. Breakfast is served daily until 11am, and a seasonal all-day dining menu is available from 11am until the lounge closes.

Here’s an example of a breakfast menu at the Qantas First Class Lounge in Sydney:

Qantas First Lounge breakfast menu
Qantas First Lounge breakfast menu

This is what the omelette looks like…

Breakfast omelette in the Sydney First Lounge

…and the Eggs Benedict…

Eggs Benedict in the Sydney First Lounge

Here is an example of the all-day dining menu:

Qantas First Lounge all day dining menu
Qantas First Lounge all day dining menu

Although the menus rotate every quarter, some things remain staples. A firm favourite among AFF members is the salt and pepper squid with green chilli dipping sauce and aioli. This is available year-round, not only from the Sydney lounge, but also at Qantas’ other First Lounges in Melbourne, Los Angeles and Singapore. The salt and pepper squid is so beloved that there is even a Qantas Salt & Pepper Squid appreciation thread on the AFF forum!

The lounge staff are generally friendly and eager to make your experience an enjoyable one. For example, Princess Fiona was recently presented with this birthday cake after informing the staff she was celebrating a special day:

Qantas First Lounge birthday cake

Qantas First Lounge menus are posted and discussed in this Australian Frequent Flyer thread: Current F Lounge Menu (SYD/MEL)

Lounge Facilities

This lounge has all of the usual facilities you would expect, including well-appointed bathrooms and showers.

There is also an Aurora Spa, which provides complimentary 20-minute massage and facial treatments.

Spa treatment room in the Qantas First Lounge
Spa treatment room in the Qantas First Lounge

Here is the spa treatment menu:

Aurora Spa treatment menu

Unfortunately, appointment times for the spa fill up quickly. If you are travelling in First Class, you may be offered an appointment when the First Host calls you the day before your flight. Otherwise, you can enquire about an appointment time when you arrive at the lounge. If you’re travelling at a time that’s not very busy, such as in the afternoon, you may get lucky.

In general, our members find that there is a higher chance of a spa appointment being available at the Melbourne Qantas First Lounge than in Sydney. There is a discussion about this on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: Question QF First Lounge – Spa treatment (non)-availability!?

Lounge Access

The Qantas First Lounge in Sydney is open to:

  • Passengers travelling in First Class with Qantas or another Oneworld airline
  • Qantas Platinum & Platinum One frequent flyers travelling on any international Qantas, Jetstar or Oneworld airline flight in any class of travel
  • Oneworld Emerald frequent flyers travelling on any international flight with a Oneworld airline in any class of travel.

If you have Qantas Platinum or Platinum One status, you can also use the lounge if you’re travelling on the domestic leg of an international Qantas or Jetstar tag flight departing from the international terminal.

Qantas Business Class passengers, Qantas Gold and Oneworld Sapphire members must do the walk of shame past the First Lounge to the Qantas international Business Lounge, which unfortunately isn’t anywhere near as nice but will be refurbished soon.

Qantas Sydney First Class Lounge
5

Final thoughts

With fine dining, great service and even a spa, the Qantas First Lounge in Sydney provides a relaxing and luxurious start to any international journey. It would have to be up there with some of the world’s best airport lounges.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]

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