airport lounge

New: JetBlue’s outdoor lounge at JFK T5 – with dog walk

A good week for fans of airport lounges.

Seatac_Lounge

Courtesy American Express

On Tuesday, June 30, American Express opened The Centurion Studio at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, the sixth lounge the company has opened in airports across the country. (The others are in Miami, Las Vegas, San Francisco, New York’s Laguardia and Dallas/Fort Worth International).

You must have certain credit cards to gain entry to SEA’s Centurion Studio and the other lounges in the American Express system, but all screened passengers will be welcome at the outdoor lounge JetBue is opening today up on the roof of Terminal 5 at John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Called, appropriately enough, T5 Rooftop, the space is designed by Gensler and is open to all passengers who have cleared security. Promised: views of Manhattan and the adjacent TWA Terminal – and the first airside, post-security, rooftop dog walk.

I’ll be venturing out there as soon as it opens today – but in the meantime, here are some snaps shared in advance by JetBlue.

1_JetBlue © Paul Rivera

© Paul Rivera,

3_JetBlue © Paul Rivera

© Paul Rivera

Turkish Airlines’ classy lounge at Istanbul Airport

I haven’t had a chance – yet – to fly on Turkish Airlines or visit Istanbul Atatürk Airport, but this renovated and expanded airport lounge makes me want to plan a trip there now.

Located in the International Departures section of the airport and capable of accommodating more that 2,000 passengers daily, the lounge has private relaxation rooms, showers, a playroom, private infant rooms, a billiard lounge, a library, and a business center.

The lounge is accessible to Turkish Airlines’ business class passengers, Miles&Smiles Elite, Elite Plus card holders and Star Alliance Gold membership card holders.

Checking my wallet for the right card now…

The lounge seems enticing, but keep in mind that Turkish Airlines also offer free tours of Istanbul to anyone with a layover of a least six hours.

Baklava, anyone?

BWI gets an airport lounge with variable pricing

The first Airspace Lounge opens today, May 7, 2011 on Concourse D at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport.

It’s the first in what may be a line of new all-access airport lounges around the country.

Memberships will be available; daily passes will start at $17.50.

Included will be food, snacks, coffee, tea, soft drinks, wireless internet, plenty of power outlets and the use of MacBooks and Windows PCs. Drinks from the bar will be extra.

That all sounds pretty straightforward.

But here’s an interesting twist: while the basic rate for a day pass will be $17.50,  the price of the pass “will rise from time to time to prevent overcrowding.”

“A customer who spends $17.50 and walks into an overcrowded lounge that is more chaotic than the concourse would probably not return to an Airspace Lounge; we want to prevent that from happening,” said Anthony Tangorra, chief executive officer of Airspace Lounge.

Rather than simply turn people away, the price of a day pass will fluctuate, increasing up to perhaps $40 during busy periods.

“Our day pass price will be on prominent display via LCD signage outside of the lounge,” said Tangorra.