Describing itself on its website as ‘an oasis of tranquillity’, the SkyTeam Sydney lounge at Sydney Airport certainly has a plush feel, with well-sprung carpets, plenty of chairs to sink into and oodles of space.
In fact, at 8,400 square feet, it’s significantly bigger than its neighbour, the well-known American Express lounge, accessible to selected cardholders.
Despite operating a popular domestic lounge at Sydney Airport, Virgin Australia has resisted calls for an international lounge of its own and instead relies on its partners to deliver hospitality to those travelling overseas.
Owned by the SkyTeam alliance – the parent company for the likes of Korean Air, Delta and China Eastern – it’s one of a handful of lounges you’ll be sent to if you’re flying Virgin Australia out of Sydney International (with the other options including the Air New Zealand lounge for flights across the Tasman, or Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer lounge if you’re heading to Fiji or Bali).
As Platinum status holders with Velocity and on an outward flight to Apia, Samoa, we were recently able to take full advantage of this modern and inviting space.
Tucked away from the bustling shopping precinct of the Departures Hall in Pier B at Sydney International Airport, you carry on past the American Express Lounge before arriving at the entrance to the SkyTeam lounge.
After passing through the frosted doors and being greeted warmly by reception staff, we descend the escalators and are greeted by a bright, sleek space, where tasteful orange leather couches mingle with the verdant greenery of a ‘living wall’, a nice modern touch.
The lounge is divided neatly into working and dining areas, with the latter offering comfy chairs that overlook the bustling tarmac below. You’ll find each chair has its own charging point for electronic devices, meaning you can charge your device hassle-free whilst you enjoy a glass of wine or simply relax ahead of your flight.
Arriving at dinner time on a Friday evening, the SkyTeam Sydney lounge food selection was varied, with chilli con carne or pasta carbonara available as a main dish plus fresh salads and sides, and a selection of miniature desserts to finish. As with most lounges, there’s also a decent snack offering, with fresh fruit and cookies available for on-the-go eating.
Sadly, no Champagne is on offer. However, over in the sleek and sophisticated self-service bar area, you’ll find a selection of alcohol, including premium label spirits and wines from around the world (we sampled a special release Cabernet Sauvignon the night we visited).
Not champagne: A range of still wines are available at the self-service bar
As an avid reader, my eyes always light up when I see the complimentary magazines on offer, and the SkyTeam Sydney lounge did not disappoint with a selection of contemporary magazines including Luxury Traveller, Vacations and Travel and Cyclist, which my other half was pretty happy about.
There’s also access to computers and a printer, and of course, access to Wifi to ensure you stay connected ahead of your flight. For those looking to switch off, a shower room offers total relaxation ahead of a long flight.
Who can access the SkyTeam Sydney lounge?
Along with Velocity Gold and Platinum members and those travelling in Virgin Australia Business Class, the SkyTeam Sydney lounge caters for First and Business Class SkyTeam passengers and SkyTeam Elite Plus members.
Those without elite status or a premium cabin ticket should not fear though, as the SkyTeam lounge was rated the best-value for entry price at Sydney Airport, by Censuswide. A visit to the lounge costs $77 for a two-hour stay, or passengers can take advantage of a longer five-hour stay with a $132 investment.
SkyTeam Sydney lounge opening hours
Opening hours vary by season, but generally, doors open three hours before the first flight departs, and close at 10.00pm.
While SkyTeam operates one of the lesser-known airport lounges at Sydney International, we certainly benefited from its quiet and peaceful vibe. If you’re after somewhere modern to rest, eat and drink before you take off, the SkyTeam lounge delivers relaxation and quality in spades. Be sure to check it out.