On Monday, I toured American Airlines’ Flagship Check-In at LAX for a CNBC post that was published yesterday. It’s a very nice and exclusive benefit for Concierge Key members, international first class fliers on American (or any oneworld carrier) and those flying first from LAX to JFK or Miami on American’s three cabin birds. And you can buy your way in if you purchase Five Star Service.
The main thing that struck me was the lack of branding. Besides the two kiosks, there was nothing else inside to promote American. I suppose it’s a personal preference, but I would have liked to see AA’s eagle somewhere. At least they won’t have to make any changes once American’s new livery and image is announced. More photos of Flagship Check-In beyond the single one below can be found on my CNBC post.
For a video tour of Flagship Check-In at LAX, check out AAdvantage Geek’s post from yesterday.
As it so happened, I was flying American on Monday, so after clearing PreCheck at the top of the elevator from Flagship Check-In, American’s managing director at LAX escorted me to the Flagship Lounge. I’ve been in the Admirals Club several times and I always wondered what the Flagship side was like.
First, here are the specs from American’s Los Angeles Airport fact sheet:
- Hours of operation: 5:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. daily
- 5,464 square feel
- Seating capacity: 92
- Private showers: 3 (one handicap accessible)
- Total number of TVs: 2
- Total number of telephones: 9
- Bose music stations with headsets
- Complimentary Wi-Fi
- Business center with four work stations, two of which have HP PCs
- PrinterOn capability allowing guests to submit print jobs via email or webpage uploads from any location and retrieve them in the lounge
A reception desk is immediately to the right as you pass through the frosted doors operated by a keycard. Flight display monitors are on the opposing wall. It’s basically a long rectangular room with several seating areas, a self-serve buffet and bar, business center, restrooms and showers. And just like the Admirals Club side, the tarmac views are spectacular.
- Sliced and whole fruit
- Gourmet cheese platter
- Assorted crackers
- Assorted chips
- Granola bars
- Turkey sandwiches
- Pecan-bourbon turkey breasts
- Baby potatoes
- Roasted tomato and pepper jack salad
- Soup Du Jour (chicken noodle during my visit)
- Assorted desserts
I enjoyed a sandwich, soup and cheesecake initially… and then went back for more cheesecake. I threw some salad on my plate, too, figuring a little green would offset the three mini-slices of cheesecake.
It’s a nice lounge – equivalent to a small business class offering overseas. But I wasn’t blown away by it. United’s International First lounges in LAX and San Francisco definitely top it, in my opinion.
Have you been inside? What’s your impression?