Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) has many terminal changes of late. Mostly due to Delta moving into Terminals 2 and 3, necessitating the airlines based there moving elsewhere within the complex. Terminals 5 and 6 are now the catch-all terminals for non-hub airlines without a home elsewhere. One of these is Air Canada, which was in T2, and now flies from T6. I was working in Los Angeles recently, and needed to fly from there to Calgary, so I had the opportunity to visit the new Maple Leaf Lounge that recently opened in Terminal 6.
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounges are typically among the better lounges for ‘domestic’ flying for an North American airline, although as the US Big 3 have improved their lounge offerings, the Maple Leaf Lounges aren’t as special anymore. They are still nice enough, and I find them on par with most typical Admirals Clubs and United Clubs, usually with better fresh food options. I haven’t visited a Delta Sky Club recently enough to draw a comparison.
Where is the new Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge at LAX?
With Air Canada’s move from T2, they opened a new lounge in LAX Terminal 6. James has previously reviewed the Maple Leaf Lounge in Terminal 2. The lounge is on the 4th floor, above the departure level, and across the way from the Alaska Lounge. With this move, the Maple Leaf Lounge is smaller than before, although there are expansion plans. This loss of capacity also led to loss of access using Priority Pass. Now this lounge is accessible to flyers in Air Canada Business Class, and those who hold Star Alliance Gold status with a flight departing LAX. Thanks to my Lifetime Gold status with United, I can access Star Gold lounges on international flights. In this case, Canada fits that description, unlike when flying American which doesn’t allow status based lounge access on most North American flights.
What does the Maple Leaf Lounge offer?
All Maple Leaf Lounges I’ve visited have free self-serve drinks. This lounge was no exception, although the only beer options are Bud Light and Guinness cans. In most lounges I’ve visited in Canada, beers are on draft. It looks like the draft beer lines are in place, but are not hooked up yet here. Additionally, wine is available, and a small selection of liquor. There is a selection of teas, and a Lavazza espresso machine.
Food wise, there are some nibbles, including pretzels and cookies, and some apples. There is also a larger food station with soup, tortilla chips, salsa and assorted salads. On the day I visited, there was edamame plus a rice salad with vegetables and feta cheese. Not enough to make a meal, but sufficient for snacking before a flight.
The lounge areas are fine, with an assortment of seating options. There is a small work area with computers near the
bath washrooms. With various tables and chairs nearest the food stations, and then assorted lounge chairs and couches around the rest of the lounge provide various seating options. There are a few flight monitors showing Air Canada flights, and several TVs. When I visited, only the Calgary flight was departing for a few hours, and already the lounge was relatively full. During my visit it was easy to find a seat. Though most areas were at least partially occupied, hence my limited photos, as I didn’t want to intrude on people’s privacy while lounging.
Can I visit this lounge if I’m flying United in Terminal 7/8?
Yes, LAX now allows flyers with a valid boarding pass to clear security in any terminal. Plus, it is now possible to stay airside from Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) to T8 with a combination of tunnels and upper level walkways. Angelino James has covered LAX terminal changes in detail before.
In my case, I cleared security in Terminal 6, and with Air Canada having PreCheck, this process was quick, with a wait of under 2 minutes. I was early enough that I had decided to check out the Star Alliance lounge in TBIT, so that required a walk through the tunnels connecting T6-T5-T4. From there, I walked to TBIT. This lounge is excellent, and intended for longhaul trips, but it is a bit of a hike to get there from Terminal 6. I had a few hours before my flight, so I wanted to check it out. I doubt I’d make the walk to TBIT normally, but I had time,
Final thoughts on the new Maple Leaf Lounge at LAX
The new lounge is a bit small, but given the frequency of Air Canada flights from LAX, I doubt this will be too much of an issue most times, especially when the lounge is open at full capacity. The much larger United Club in Terminal 7 is also an option, although maybe just for variety, I like Air Canada’s lounges, and this lounge space is nice and fresh.
Have you visited this new lounge? Any thoughts?