After a year of construction work, Qantas has officially opened its brand new domestic Business Lounge at Melbourne Airport. The Qantas Melbourne Business Lounge in the domestic Terminal 1 is not only larger than its predecessor, but it also now comes with an Asian spice bar.
Part of the new lounge has already been open for a few months. But the final section of the refurbished lounge was finally completed last week.
Melbourne’s Qantas domestic Business Lounge now has seating for 350 Business Class passengers, as well as Qantas Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers (and their guests). This represents a 40% capacity increase on the previous space, and frequent flyers have noticed the difference. AFF members say they no longer need to fight for a seat during peak hours.
In the J lounge now it is peak hour and no trouble getting seat. I think it is quite nice.
The highlight of the new Qantas Melbourne Business Lounge is the Asian spice bar. Open daily from 12pm, it serves a range of signature dishes on a rotating menu such as laksa, wonton noodle soup and char siu pork. There is also a cocktail hour during the evening. So far, the spice bar has proven to be very popular.
I must say the complete J lounge looks so much better now. Modern open space, plenty more seating so it doesn’t feel crowded anymore and freshly made laksa for lunch, yum!
There have been some minor criticisms of the new lounge. The self-service coffee machines and soft-drink dispensers have been “enhanced”, meaning patrons must now queue up for almost all drinks. AFF members have also noticed a lack of toilets. During busy periods the toilet queues are now so long, in fact, that it may be quicker to use the toilets inside the shower rooms.
One flaw I’ve already noticed with the lounge, in the men’s bathroom there’s only 3 sit down toilets, on a Monday morning it means there’s a lot of people queueing for a toilet (and one of the lounge staff actually went in and told people to go to the shower suites and use them there) which is pretty poor (there used to be around 5 in the old J lounge)
I cannot believe the toilet only has 3 cubicles though, there was a line waiting when I initially went. I ended up getting out and come back later when the crowd left.
Melbourne’s recently-refurbished Qantas Club, which is available to Gold frequent flyers and Qantas Club members, has also had a capacity increase with 10% more seating. However, a change in location means the Qantas Club no longer has those wonderful tarmac and runway views. These views are now reserved for the Business Lounge.
Have you visited the new Qantas Melbourne Business Lounge? Let us know what you think on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: MEL Dom. lounges refurb Completed October 2018