American Airlines new temporary Premium Lounge at DFW is open!

Temporary.  Temporary.  Temporary,

Ok I ran out of font styles but hopefully you get the point.  American Airlines has opened a temporary Premium Lounge in DFW’s Terminal D while the Admiral’s Club is being renovated and a Flagship Lounge (along with Flagship First Dining!) is added.  The closing of the Terminal D Admirals Club coincided with the opening of the new refreshed Terminal A Admirals Club, which I reviewed earlier this week.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

Why the temporary Premium Lounge?

American has a number of flights departing from DFW’s Terminal D which have Flagship First Class on the 777-300ER jet (to London, Hong Kong, and Sao Paulo I believe).  Closing the Admirals Club means there’s nowhere for American premium customers to go before their flight and the club will be closed for quite some time, therefore American decided to open a temporary Premium Lounge for premium customers.

Ok fine I promise I understand it’s temporary so let’s get on with it, where is the Premium Lounge?

The lounge is located in Terminal D at DFW, across from gate D36.  There’s lots of signage showing you the way.

Who gets access to the Premium Lounge?

First things first: this is not an Admirals Club, so you will not be able to access the lounge solely via a club membership or credit card.

The access policy for the Premium Lounge is the same as the American Flagship Lounges located at ORD, JFK, LAX, and MIA: First Class and Business Class on an international flight or any cabin on an international flight for holders of Executive Platinum, Platinum Pro, and Platinum status with American (along with Emerald or Sapphire equivalent Oneworld status).

Ok so how is the lounge?

Well, it’s temporary.  Actually, you know what?  I think it’s great.  It’s not the nicest thing in the world and will appear a bit dated to most but the sheer fact is that American didn’t have to do anything in Terminal D while the Club was being renovated and they found a way to provide a service for their customers.  I’m harder on American than most and even my cold black heart can appreciate what they’ve done in getting this lounge up and running.

Enough words, let’s see some pictures

Fine, fine, geez.

The entryway to the lounge features a huge reminder that this lounge is temporary while something bigger and better is built.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

When you enter the lounge there will be some friendly customer service reps to your right to assist with flights, seats, upgrade requests, and reaccommodations (if necessary).

The lounge is long and narrow and surprisingly large.  Very similar to the Qantas Lounge in Hong Kong, it kind of just keeps going!

american airlines premium lounge DFW

american airlines premium lounge DFW

As you walk into the lounge you’ll see an assortment of furniture, it looked to me like a mix of pre-existing furniture from the transit lounge which used to be here and old furniture from the Terminal A and Terminal D Admirals Clubs.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

american airlines premium lounge DFW

american airlines premium lounge DFW

There are a few areas accessible through a door which are meant to be quiet rooms.  The beloved Eames chairs from the Admirals Clubs are in one of these rooms.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

Is there food?

Yep!  The food is a slight level above the Admirals Club offering and many of you will recognize some of the serving platters from the former Flagship Dining Room in the Terminal D Admirals Club.

They had a few snack stations around the lounge as well as a Make Your Own Ramen area.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

What about drinks?

Yep, you bet.  There was at least one espresso machine (there may have been another, I can’t remember).

american airlines premium lounge DFW

The rest of the drinks were served from a bar area manned by a friendly attendant.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

One of the things you’ll notice is there isn’t any booze quite yet.  As soon as the liquor license is secured there will be booze I’m sure.

american airlines premium lounge DFW

Ok so what are your thoughts?

The main thing when evaluating the Premium Lounge is perspective.  Is this lounge great?  No.  Is it good?  Yes.  Is it a dang sight better than nothing?  Absolutely.

Opinions about this lounge will probably be split right down the middle but one thing is clear: American is crushing the domestic lounge game right now, as I’ve said plenty of times.  I look at this Premium Lounge as American making an investment in the premium customers they so covet and wanting them to have as good of an experience as possible in their flagship terminal before their flagship service on their premium jets.  It’s not perfect by any means but it is perfectly functional for a visit.

What about the Centurion Lounge, how does it compare?

The American Express Centurion Lounge in Terminal D has become a solid mainstay in my DFW Airport routine and I do not expect that to change any time soon.  I find their food to be wonderful and the drinks are excellent.  But then again I pay $550 a year for the Amex Platinum Card to be able to access it and there are times when it gets severely crowded.  The Premium Lounge has one thing the Centurion Lounge cannot touch: space.  In multitudes.  It’s an 18000 square foot facility with capacity for 376 guests.   If you have access to the Centurion Lounge I would choose it over the Premium Lounge, provided there is space for you and your party.

I’m still kind of on the fence and don’t want to like this very much, what can you tell me?

I don’t think that’s a bad opinion by any means, I think in this case you need to look at what the lounge represents instead of just what it is.  American has proven to its customers that they can create a phenomenal lounge experience and we know that is coming in 2019.  This is a stopgap measure and it’s a better one than what many other airlines would offer.

 

What do you think?  Tell me in the comments below!

12 Comments

  1. Any idea how long the Admirals Club will be closed?

    Reply
    • Based only on the signage I’ve seen the new Flagship Lounge will open in 2019, no official word on when.

      Reply
  2. The only positive thing about this lounge is the size – you will find an uncrowded place to sit with a power outlet and space to relax. That’s the good news. The bad news is the toilet facilities are grossly undersized, the food selection that I saw was not very good and all served on disposable plates with my drink served in a coach class plastic cup. Are they serious?

    Reply
  3. If you’re wondering they are now serving premium alcohol in the temporary premium lounge.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the update!

      Reply
  4. Thanks for the update! I was hoping it would be finished by August, 2018. 🙁 We have found the Centurion Lounge to be overly crowded also when we go. If you start your travels at DFW Terminal D, the Grand Hyatt has a great restaurant (before you go through security so not good for connecting through DFW) that is always quiet and very comfortable with great food and beverages. Of course, the food isn’t free but it does make for a nice kick-off to your travels if starting at DFW.

    Reply
    • It’s kind of funny to me how we’ve come full circle to paying for a better experience (like you mentioned at the Grand Hyatt) versus the free experiences that just don’t match up anymore.

      Reply
  5. I am sorry but you will loose your reputation with this article. This lounge is horrendous. I couldn’t spend more than 5 minutes there. The admirals remaining on the other terminals have a little more dignity than this temporary old room.

    Reply
    • I get it, this isn’t a good lounge, but it is SOMETHING, that was the only point I was trying to make. Especially with the Centurion Lounge at DFW closing for a couple of weeks soon I think people will appreciate it a bit more.

      Reply
  6. I would just add that international first and business class travelers have access to Admirals Clubs (https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/clubs/admirals-club-access.jsp). While I appreciate that AA made the effort to provide this lounge, if you don’t like this premium lounge in D, the other Admirals Clubs in terminals A, B, and C are just a short tram ride away (inside security).

    Reply
    • The bartender Dorsey is really cool and friendly..lounges not too shabby either

      Reply
  7. I am ConciergeKey with AA and thus get to access this lounge even when traveling domestically. I had a long stopover last month in DFW and checked it out. You hit the nail on the head about the big difference between the AA Premium Lounge and the Centurion Lounge — it’s the size. Booze is slightly better in the Centurion Lounge, as is food — emphasis on “slightly” for both. But the Centurion Lounge is always packed, and the Premium Lounge definitely is far quieter and more relaxing.

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 

Get the latest updates daily!

You have Successfully Subscribed!