Etihad Airways First Class Lounge opened on May 30th in Terminal 3 in the Abu Dhabi airport. The expansive new lounge is for Etihad’s First class passengers, guests of the Residence on the A380, and certain Elite members from Etihad and Etihad partner airlines frequent flyer program who are departing, not connecting in Abu Dhabi. I visited the Etihad Airways First Class Lounge and Spa just days after the lounge open and thought the best way to share it with you was via video. Check out the video below of myself experiencing most of the lounge amenities.
As you can see in the video of the Etihad First Class Lounge, it offers plenty of space to stretch out and relax, and has unique features such as a small gym with cardio equipment, a Spa, a barber, a full service restaurant, a mini buffet, a TV room, a rest and relaxation room, a smoking room, and a separate cigar lounge. All of this with expansive airport views from the main sections of the lounge & bar area.
Stefan is pouring his magic at the Showcase bar
Mixed spiced nuts served to guests at the bar
Etihad offers a free Etihad Nanny in the First Class Lounge to help entertain children and to provide free babysitting. In addition, children are offered an extensive play area within their own private room in the lounge. This provides a safe play area while parents partake in libations at the bar.
For those seeking a religious outlet, there’s a prayer room for the religious types (see video).
Service in the lounge was impeccable with inflight crew members actually doing three month ground rotations providing services to first class guest. The staff was very excited for every aspect of the new lounge and could not wait to show them off. Often times more staff members were present than passengers in the new Etihad first class lounge!
Dining area & Dining room bar
Sleeping Room below & relaxation wall above
Everything in the lounge is complimentary for guests including food, alcohol and cigars. Etihad does not cut any corners when it comes to food and beverages as wine spotted in the lounge ranges from $25-$125 a bottle and top end alcohol that costs even more, including Chivas Regal 25, Royal Salute 21, and Hennessy Paradis to name just a few of the high end selections that I sampled! The only extra or add on fees for the lounge are the spa and barber services. First class guests can only choose between one or the other for free. Therefore if you have a massage, than an express haircut or shave will cost you extra, or vice versa. This is slightly ridiculous, as Etihad will pour you a $40 glass of Champagne in the First Class Lounge, but charge you $30 for a 15 minute massage. I know there is more labor involved in the massage than the drink, but this does not make sense to me.
Chivas Regal 25, Royal Salute 21, & Hennessy Paradis (Above)
Lounge seatting area – each black end table has power and two USB ports
While you work out, they will iron your clothing for you, so they are fresh after you shower!
The new lounge is a huge improvement to the Premium Lounge at Abu Dhabi and is a retreat from the terminal below. Etihad First Class Lounge offers unique features, but could definitely improve in a few small areas when they open their new terminal in 2017-2018. The lounge needs a dedicated rest/sleeping room as the current room is comfortable but it is open to the bar. I could easily see the bar getting loud making sleep impossible. A minor tweak to the design would improve the lounge significantly, but again overall this new lounge is absolutely fantastic and is worth the extra time there! Honesty, I spent nearly 9 hours there and I didn’t want to board my flight when it was time!
Travel Pro tip: If you want the Etihad First Class Lounge to yourself, visit between 2:30pm and 4pm as the staff reports the lounge is empty between flight banks nearly everyday!
For more photos check out Matt’s full photo review.