Picture report: good lounge, better lounge, Qatar Al Safwa First Class Lounge- absolutely amazing
Long time ago, as the new Hamad International Airport was scheduled to open, Qatar announced there will be a lot of Lounges, plenty of options for (especially Qatar’s) Premium traveller. But the problems began and Qatar rescheduled again and again the opening date. The „old“ first class Lounge (now open for Oneworld Emeralds with a guest, –> Review) was too small and not „Qatar style“. The Al Mourjan Lounge is one of the biggest business class Lounge in the world, but this could be so crowded, especially in the middle of the night, if the most flights are ready for departure.
Few weeks ago, Qatar announced, the new Al Safwa FirstClass Lounge is open and now ready to host Qatar First Class Guests, and only this passengers. No (oneworld or Qatar) status will let you go in the lounge, only a FirstClass Ticket will be eligible to enter this amazing place. But keep in mind, if you flying business Class into Doha and traveling forward to a short haul destination like Abu Dhabi, Male, Dubai, Muscat or more, you will be good to go. The short haul flight will be operated as FirstClass (there is no business Class, only Eco and First, sometimes with a longhaul equipped aircraft, even on an 1hr flight)
But sorry for waiting, lets start with more pictures now. You will enter the Lounge via the escalators directly from the main area (with the big yellow bear). After leaving the escalator the area looks completely different to the rest of the airport. I was greeted by a really friendly guy, he explained that Qatar is so „happy to invite me to the lounge“ and happy thats now finally open.
He also offered a private cabana, it is something like a hotel room. There a more than 12 private rooms, you could stay there as long as you want and use your own bathroom, shower, bedroom with a comfortable hotel style bed.
Especially if you have more time, it is really comfortable. I stored my luggage there, got the key card and was able to enjoying the lounge, the Spa, restaurants and more. Every time I wanna have more privacy or a little nap, I could use my private room.
I’m thinking, this is one of the most impressive lounge I’ve been in. After enter the main door, felt like in an separate terminal. I really like this minimalistic and pure design.
On the left side, an impressive bar offers drinks, snacks and cocktails of course, followed by the restaurants with plenty of tables around, some of them with a little more privacy like a separee. In the main area, very comfortable chairs with little walls between the next seat let you relax, work or have a phone call and do not will disturbing other passenger.
But if you like (or have to) work, feel free to visit the business center with large and really nice desks, Apple Mac Computers, printers and more. Behind the wall, it is like a private office, perfect for an airport meeting with an important client.
Sometimes you are feeling not hungry enough to go to the restaurant, but a little snack would be fine? Visit the little café on the other end. With a „plane view“, I enjoyed freshly prepared sandwiches, salad and sushi there.
After a shower in my room, I decided to looking around and explore the rest of the Lounge. There also is a family area. Bigger rooms, sofas and chairs and big TV screens like your living room at home, offers watching movies or TV with family and friends. If you traveling with kids, they will be happy in this lounge. In there own area are a lot of things to do. Playstation, Xbox, kicker, games or toys, all that helps to burn time and enjoying the stay in the lounge, til your next flight is ready for boarding.
reader question: Could I enter the lounge, If I came in (for ex. from Dubai) in FirstClass and flying forward in BusinessClass (maybe there is no FirstClass)
answer (lounge staff, November 2015):
No, you have to use the business class lounge. We will made an exception, if you came in from a longhaul (> 5 Std) First Class Flight (for ex. Bangkok or London on the A380 —> Review QR First) and traveling forward to any destinations, we don’t offer First Class to. (all destination with A330, 350, B777, B787 etc)
For Pictures of the food and the SPA, pls. follow this Link to Ben’s Blogpost.