Lounge Review: Alaska Airlines’ Renovated Lounge at LAX

Mid last year Alaska Airlines opened its new Flagship Lounge in the North Satellite Building of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. This new lounge definitely upped Alaska’s lounge game by a lot. If there is any way you have some time and are eligible to access an Alaska Lounge, make the detour and visit the one in the North Satellite. Alaska also announced that it will renovate its other lounges and build new once like the one at San Francisco International Airport, which is scheduled to open in 2020.

On my recent trip, I got a chance to swing by the Alaska Lounge at LAX. I have been to this lounge quite a few times but only when flying Alaska out of LAX. The terminals and connections between terminals at LAX are just to spread out and I want to maximize my time in the lounge. Unfortunately, I haven’t been to this lounge for quite a while now and was pleasantly surprised when I re-visited the newly renovated lounge.

Location

The Alaska Lounge is located in Terminal 6 after security. Follow the signs towards Gate 64 and from there look for the Alaska Lounge sign next to an elevator. The elevator is located between gates 64A and 64B. Take the elevator up one floor to the mezzanine level. As mentioned earlier, I usually only use this lounge when actually flying out of this terminal. Most of my flights are on Alaska or American and when flying American, I have easy access to the Korean Airlines Lounge (via PriorityPass) inside the Tom Bradley International Terminal. The KAL lounge is probably the most amazing lounge at LAX because of it’s amazing views from the balcony.

Hours of Operation

As of January 25, 2020, the Alaska Lounge at LAX will be open daily from 5 a.m. until 11 p.m. Before that, the lounge opened 30 minutes earlier at 4:30 a.m. instead of  5:00 a.m. now.

The opening hours give you a pretty good coverage of Alaska Airlines flight leaving Los Angeles.

Access

  • Alaska Lounge Membership
  • Admirals Club Members
  • Day Pass (50% Discount if paid with Alaska Airlines Visa Signature credit card)
  • First Class Ticket (Paid or Award): Passengers upgraded to First Class, (booked in U class of service) whether complimentary, paid, or using miles do not have complimentary access to the Alaska Lounge.

Visit the Alaska Website for up to date access rules.

  • Priority Pass: Compared to the Alaska Lounges at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, this lounge can also be accessed with a Priority Pass membership. With Priority Pass your access is restricted to a maximum of three hours prior to departure.

Alaska Lounge Terminal 6 Los Angeles International Airport

Right after leaving the elevator you are in front of the Alaska Lounge check-in counter.  Show your boarding pass and I.D. and you are good to go. Check-in is quick and simple, but there can be a line during peak times. The lounge itself can get crowded as well during peak hours and Alaska might restrict access to the lounge. Usually the first once to experience restrictions are passengers using Priority Pass to enter the lounge. Just try and see if you can get in and if not ask what the wait time would be and check back later.

Alaska Lounge Check-In Counter

The lounge footprint hasn’t changed after the renovation but it feels more open and larger thanks to the new arrangement and placement of seats and tables. Thanks to the large floor-to-ceiling windows along the front, the lounge gets a lot of light and gives the lounge a bright and welcoming feeling. From the windows, you also get an expansive view of the tarmac. Unfortunately, I arrived early in the morning when it was still dark outside.

Seating along the window


View from the Lounge. The plane I will take to Seattle.

Along the walls are comfortable couches. The big white whales feel blunt and certainly missing something. I would recommend some nice Alaska Airlines related photos, which I am more than happy to suppy. 😉 At the far end of the lounge, these couches come with added dining tables and chairs as well as more free-standing dining tables. This used to be where the business center was, which I kinda miss a little bit. It was still the right move to remove it in a lounge with such a small footprint.

New dinning area. This used to be where the business center was.

Most of the main seating area consists of high-top seating and cube lounge chairs, as I call them. If you have been to the lounge before, you probably noticed the absence fo the family room. This one was also removed, just like the business center, to make room for more seats.

One of the biggest advantages compared to the old lounge are the power outlets. Almost every seat and chair has access to a power outlet. They can be underneath the table, at the side fo the seat or on the floor railing along the windows. This is a huge plus, especially if you are spending more time here to get some work done or just want to charge up to watch some in-flight entertainment on your device. By the way, the lounge WiFi was fast and reliable throughout my stay, as it has been on previous visits before.

The Alaska Lounge offers some light snacks throughout the day, which are changing accordingly with the time of the day. In the morning you get served a breakfast spread which includes fruits, oatmeal, bagels, hard-boiled eggs, and of course the pancake “printer”. There is a Starbucks coffee machine at the buffet which brews a variety of coffee and there is also a soda dispenser close by.

At the bar, you can choose from complimentary local beers on draft, house spirits, and cocktails as well as West Coast wines. The staff/barista at the bar can also prepare freshly made espresso beverages and loose-leaf teas for you.

Additionally to the complimentary buffet offerings, you can choose a meal from a made-to-order list in the lounge. Order a rice bowl, omelet or panini for a small extra charge. The list also includes premium alcoholic drinks.

Conclusion

I want to be honest, this lounge is definitely an improvement compared to the old lounge. Even tho some elements like the business center or family room are missing, overall it’s an upgrade for most of us. I really love Alaska’s new lounge style. One downside is the missing showers as I got so accustomed to them. But considering the size of the lounge, they really made the best out of the available space. Now you can expect at least to get a seat somewhere and be able to charge your device. Thanks, Alaska to this nice upgrade.

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