Evaluation: Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong

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Hong Kong has a few of my favourite top quality lounges on the earth, particularly the Cathay Pacific Pier First Class Lounge.

Nevertheless, my first cease at Hong Kong Airpot was a Plaza Premium Lounge that I needed to pay to entry. Why on earth would I try this?!

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong Evaluation

Plaza Premium operates lounges world wide, although final 12 months they determined to do one thing slightly modern in Hong Kong.

They opened the Plaza Premium First Lounge, which is basically meant to be a considerably extra premium model of their present lounges. It’s an attention-grabbing idea for Plaza Premium to embrace, on condition that they’ve traditionally been so constant of their product providing.

I’d word that additionally they have a Plaza Premium First Lounge in Kuala Lumpur, although it’s my understanding that it’s not practically as good.

I didn’t know what precisely to anticipate from this lounge, although I used to be pleasantly stunned.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Location

The Plaza Premium First Lounge is situated in Terminal 1 at HKIA, on Degree 6 close to Gate 1. When you clear security and immigration, simply take the escalator down a degree and switch left, and it is best to see the doorway to the Plaza Premium First Lounge.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong exterior

Close by there’s a “customary” Plaza Premium Lounge as properly, and this isn’t the place you need to go should you’re on the lookout for the Plaza Premium First Lounge. In case you’re going through that lounge, flip left and stroll about 100 ft, and also you’ll see the doorway to the Plaza Premium First Lounge.

Plaza Premium Lounge Hong Kong exterior

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hours

The Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong is open 24/7, making it one of many solely lounges at HKIA that’s open all night time.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Entry Necessities

The Plaza Premium First Lounge is accessible to these with a Precedence Move membership or with The Platinum Card® from American Categorical (assessment) or The Enterprise Platinum® Card from American Categorical (assessment).

Be aware that both manner there’s a 250 HKD (~32 USD) co-pay per particular person to make use of the lounge, and every go to might be for as much as three hours.

In case you’re a member of Plaza Premium’s Good Traveller loyalty program, you can even redeem four,000 factors for a free go to right here, or can redeem 1,500 factors to “improve” from a typical Plaza Premium Lounge to this one.

After I first discovered that Plaza Premium was introducing lounges with co-pays I used to be actually skeptical, although after my go to I’ve very totally different emotions.

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Lastly, it’s price noting that some airways use this for his or her premium passengers.

For instance, Finnair and Qatar Airways use this lounge for his or her enterprise class passengers. That’s attention-grabbing, given the variety of oneworld lounges on the airport, and it additionally reveals a big funding on their half (as a result of presumably they’re paying a premium for this).

Past that, Lufthansa and SWISS additionally use this lounge for his or her top quality passengers and HON Circle members, whereas Virgin Atlantic makes use of the lounge for his or her Higher Class passengers.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Structure & Seating

The Plaza Premium First Lounge is elegant, a big step up over different Plaza Premium places, for my part. The lounge is about 815 sq. meters, so slightly below 9,000 sq. ft, and may accommodate as much as 250 friends.

For one, after I entered the lounge one of many hosts gave me a tour, which they appear to do with each visitor who enters.

The bar space is correct inside the doorway to the lounge, and is fairly. The lounge appears to have fairly a couple of partnership/sponsorship agreements, as you’ll see primarily based on the quantity of branding all through the lounge.

Plaza Premium First Lounge bar

Plaza Premium First Lounge bar

There’s loads of seating across the bar, together with high-top seating, eating tables with chairs, benches, and extra.

Plaza Premium First Lounge seating

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong seating

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong seating

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong seating

Previous that’s the major a part of the lounge, which has extra conventional lounge seating, with rows of seats going through each other.

Plaza Premium First Lounge seating

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong seating

There are additionally some cozy couches.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong seating

Within the again left nook of the lounge was a protracted “U” formed sales space, and there’s even a small nap space there with some “curved” daybeds. One in all them was occupied, so I didn’t need to take an image, however personally I wouldn’t need to sleep there for an prolonged time period.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong seating

Then within the again proper of the lounge was the eating space, which had each a menu and buffet.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong restaurant

Plaza Premium First Lounge Hong Kong restaurant

Throughout I believed the lounge was stunning. Two different notes:

The lounge does lack pure gentle, which is a draw back, however I’m guessing this was the one area they may make work
The lounge was actually empty; I used to be right here for about three hours, and at no level had been there greater than a dozen individuals (and more often than not considerably fewer individuals than that)

Plaza Premium First Lounge Restaurant Eating

The Plaza Premium First Lounge has a 24/7 restaurant, known as “Primo.” This consists of each a buffet and an a la carte eating choice. I had a meal at round 6AM. There’s a bunch within the restaurant space who seats you while you arrive.

The breakfast buffet that was arrange was fairly good.

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Plaza Premium First Lounge buffet

Once more, there’s fairly a little bit of branding within the lounge. 😉

Plaza Premium First Lounge buffet

Plaza Premium First Lounge buffet

Plaza Premium First Lounge buffet

Plaza Premium First Lounge buffet

The eating space additionally has a drink station, so when you can serve your self, the servers may even get you drinks. For any water fanatics, they’ve San Pellegrino and Acqua Panna, which is kind of premium so far as water goes.

Plaza Premium First Lounge drink station

A second after having a seat a server requested what I wished to drink. I used to be glad to listen to they’d iced espresso, so I ordered that.

Plaza Premium First Lounge iced espresso

They’ve the identical menu within the lounge all day, together with each breakfast and daytime choices. The menu learn as follows (friends can choose one dish):

It’d sound loopy, however my physique clock was manner off, so I made a decision to order a burger. Yep, this was my first time ever having an iced espresso and a burger collectively.

Why did I order the burger? As a result of I used to be intrigued by it — it’s a “past meat burger” with candy potato fries, so it’s really vegetarian. I’m not often a burger man, nevertheless it was actually good.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Bar

There are some issues that make the Plaza Premium First Lounge bar attention-grabbing.

For one, I used to be delighted to see that they’d barista made drinks, and the Lavazza cappuccino I had was distinctive.

Plaza Premium First Lounge espresso machine

Plaza Premium First Lounge cappuccino

The bar had a protracted listing of complimentary drinks. Listed here are their signature cocktails:

And right here’s the remainder of the complimentary drink listing:

The bar additionally had some tasty-looking desserts in a show case, served by the bartender.

Plaza Premium First Lounge desserts

Past that, there was a collection of alcohol out there for buy, together with whisky flights, premium wine, and extra.

Plaza Premium First Lounge liquor

Plaza Premium First Lounge liquor

Right here’s a part of that menu:

Plaza Premium First Lounge Showers

The Plaza Premium First Lounge has showers, situated simply inside the doorway to the lounge and to the precise.

Plaza Premium First Lounge showers

I made an appointment for a bathe round 6:30AM. The bathe rooms are actually nice — they’re spacious and really feel high-end.

Plaza Premium First Lounge bathe room

Plaza Premium First Lounge bathe room

Plaza Premium First Lounge bathe room

Toiletries had been from Elemis, and had been in reusable containers.

Plaza Premium First Lounge bathe room

On prime of that there have been a number of facilities out there on demand.

Plaza Premium First Lounge bathe room

Plaza Premium First Lounge Therapeutic massage

The Plaza Premium Lounge affords complimentary 10 minute stress level massages. This service is obtainable beginning at 7AM day by day, so I made an appointment for 7:15AM (which was the primary out there appointment).

Plaza Premium First Lounge therapeutic massage

There’s a separate therapeutic massage room that has two therapeutic massage chairs, although just one particular person was working after I had my remedy. The therapeutic massage was no frills however wonderful — I had the you-know-what beat out of my again for 10 minutes, and that’s precisely what I wanted.

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My one suggestions right here is that the masseuses use a stopwatch, and on the finish of the 10 minute therapeutic massage it beeps actually loudly. You’d assume they may attempt to create a bit extra of a soothing ambiance and never have that occur, by simply keeping track of a clock or timer.

Plaza Premium First Lounge therapeutic massage

I Love This Lounge, However Don’t Get The Economics

When the idea for this lounge was launched I used to be skeptical. I figured it was a slippery slope, and in the event that they began charging co-pays for Precedence Move lounge visits, simply how far will it go? May we begin to see co-pays for normal lounges?

After visiting this lounge I take that again. This lounge is so a lot better than every other Plaza Premium or contract lounge I’ve been to. It’s in a totally totally different league, and is on par with some worldwide top quality lounges.

Between the good decor, a la carte eating, massages, and total quiet ambiance, I completely love this lounge.

That being mentioned, I actually don’t get the economics?

I’d estimate that the co-pay barely greater than doubles the income that Plaza Premium will get per customer:

I believe they’re paid 25 USD or so (give or take) per go to by way of Precedence Move, Amex, and so on.)
Then the 250 HKD co-pay barely greater than doubles that

They’d have to have practically half as many friends in the identical area, give or take, to make this worthwhile. That’s purely accounting for the true property, and never accounting for the distinction related to friends in any other case (meals, drinks, staffing, and so on. — I’m unsure how all of that works, given all of the branding within the lounge).

A part of what made this lounge so unbelievable was how quiet it was. Possibly I used to be simply there over a non-peak interval, however each assessment I’ve learn of this lounge suggests it’s constantly empty.

They have to be dropping important quantities of cash with this idea, as a lot as I like it? Had been they anticipating extra individuals to be keen to pay the premium, or what am I lacking in the case of the economics of it?

It’s one factor if this lounge was simply a few months previous, nevertheless it has been round for about 18 months now.

Plaza Premium First Lounge Backside Line

The Plaza Premium First Lounge is phenomenal, in a league of its personal in the case of contract/third occasion lounges.

Typically I feel “upgrading” to this lounge expertise may very well be properly price it, given how a lot better that is than most different lounges.

That being mentioned, in my explicit state of affairs I’d have a tough time justifying visiting once more. Why? As a result of I get entry to Cathay Pacific’s spectacular top quality lounges in Hong Kong because of my oneworld Emerald standing every time I’m flying a oneworld airline.

If that weren’t the case, I’d go to once more in a heartbeat, although.

What do you make of the Plaza Premium First idea?

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