Just like in the States, all international flights to Sao Paulo International Airport (GRU) arrive into a dedicated arrival hall where all passengers are required to go through customs and immigration. Once you clear through customs, you will then be allowed to check-in for your connecting flight. There are four departure terminals and unfortunately, none of them are connected airside. The terminals are connected landside and you can either walk to them or take a shuttle bus.
The majority of Star Alliance flights arrive and depart from terminal 3. In terminal 3, there are two Priority Pass Lounges that you can use: the Star Alliance Lounge and the Executive VIP Lounge. The Star Alliance Lounge is only open from 12:00 PM to 3:00 AM daily and access is limited between the hours of 5:00 PM and 9:00 PM, Thursdays through Saturday. If you’re here earlier than 12:00 PM, then you can use the Executive VIP Lounge which is open from 7:00 AM to 12:00 PM.
Priority Pass members are only allowed a maximum of 5 guests here and access is restricted to international departures only. The lounge is located upstairs directly after passport and security control. Once you clear through passport control, make your immediately left, go upstairs and follow the signs towards “VIP Lounges.” The lounge is also open to Lounge Club members and business class customers on AeroMexico, Avianca and Ethiopian Airlines.
For a contract lounge, this place is actually pretty nice. The main seating area of the lounge is one long, open room. There is a row of tables along the wall and low armchairs grouped in clusters of six that create small, defined spaces. There are two enclosed TV rooms and a family room for travelers with kids. There are no day rooms or other dedicated places to lay down but you can make due with the sofas located in the TV rooms.
The lounge is nicely decorated in light colors and the bank of windows allow in plenty of light to make the small lounge feel bright and airy. If you need to get some work done, you can use the dining tables along the windows or the small business center located in the center of lounge. The business center is just a small room with divided desks. Nothing special.
Password protected WiFi is provided and there are plenty of electrical outlets located throughout the lounge. However, they are not universal outlets and you will need a travel adaptor for your devices. A shower is available but I think you have to pay to use it.
Food-wise, there’s a food station located up front with a small selection of sweet and savory pastries and desserts. There are also some sandwiches, salads and fruit cups. Cans of sodas, juices and sealed water cups are located throughout the lounge. For alcohol, there’s a tiny selection of spirits and a couple bottles of wine.
Overall, this is a nice lounge (for a contract lounge) and is a good place to kill a couple of hours before your flight. The food was not filling but decent and the place was quiet, clean and not crowded at all during the time of my visit (10:00 AM). The lounge attendants did a great job busing the tables and replenishing food. It beats the chaos of finding food and waiting in the terminal with everyone else.
This review is part of my trip to Brazil. The other reviews in this series include:
- Copa Airlines Economy Class, Los Angeles to Sao Paulo
- Crown Plaza Panama City
- Executive VIP Lounge at Sao Paulo