S-Gates, Seattle Tacoma Airport, Washington
This is my review of the BA lounge in Seattle’s Tacoma Airport, at S-Gates.
S-Gates is the international terminal at Seattle, with the likes of BA, American, Turkish Airlines and Delta offering international flights.
Unfortunately this is not a very happy review, as I explain below – but in essence this (aside from The Club) is the only lounge at S-Gates, and access was refused at first, because I was traveling with American Airlines.
The lounge offers a First Lounge, which I’ve added to this review.
The lounge is open daily from 14:00 to 19:30, albeit that the flight from Seattle to Heathrow is actually at 21:00 – and Hudson News isn’t exactly dinner……or cheap!
How to Get There
After taking the S-Gates train to S-Gates, it’s up the escalators to the concourse.
After that, you’ll see some elevators (or, if you prefer stairs). You’ll then see the corridor to the lounge on front of you.
This is the first problem with this lounge. According to the OneWorld website, access is granted for ANY airline on the OneWorld alliance either with Emerald or Sapphire status – or passengers traveling in First or Business Class. Aside from these relatively open conditions, the OneWorld website lists British Airways, American Airlines, FinnAir and Qatar Airways as being specifically eligible.
However, when I arrived around 18:00 to catch my 21:00 American Airlines flight to London, I was told that I wasn’t allowed in!
The lounge was entirely empty, with plenty of seats available – but the ‘manager’ said “no”. AA’s approved lounge is apparently the Alaska Airlines Lounge at N-Gates, which is 3 trains away! To that end the lounge were turning away a 777-200’s worth of paying Business Class passengers!
Anyway………I won’t say how………but I did get in. But for anyone not as persistent as me – here is a map explaining how difficult the journey from S-Gates to N-Gates is!
Layout – Business Class/Terraces Lounge
I think it’s safe to say that this lounge is small. In fact, it’s tiny. Within the Business Class side of the lounge there is a small variety of casual, high table and poseur table seating. That’s about it!
If you are minded to do some work, there is a bookshelf with a small printer in the corner.
Layout – First Lounge
If you happen to be traveling in First – or you’re a OneWorld Emerald Member, you’re in for a treat! You have access to the First Lounge!!
What could be behind those frosted doors, I hear you cry?
A broom cupboard, with some seating in it!
In a slight step up to the Business Class lounge, there is a desk for working – which has been shoved in the corner, like a naughty child in detention.
Food & Drinks
Drinks – Business Lounge
Drinks in the business lounge are self-service with soft drinks in fridges, and a coffee machine.
If you want something stronger…….there is always the bar!
No, seriously that is the bar!
Drinks – First Lounge
Soft drinks in the First Lounge are also self-service.
Slightly differently to the Business Lounge, anything stronger than what’s in the fridges is supplied via scanning a QR code – and a server comes with your order.
Food – Business Lounge
There is a QR code on the tables in the Business Lounge, though I’m not sure what (if any) the difference is between the First and Business Lounge’s offerings.
There was a small variety of self-serve crisps, salad, soup and sandwiches. It may be possible to get more via the QR code, but I am not 100% sure.
Food – First Lounge
The food in the First Lounge you can order via QR code. There are a few options there, and also self-service sandwiches, salad and other bits.
The Wifi worked for me, and was fairly good during my visit.
There is a single shower; which is why I was upset on being refused entry, as N-Gates do not have showers.
The shower was one of these fancy ones made Hansgrohe, a slightly reduced version to the one in the Brussels Airlines lounge!
I found the shower very hot indeed, and there were amenities already in the bathroom.
Dealing with ‘management’ and the fact they were happy to turn away a 777-200’s worth of Business Class passengers to a lounge 3 trains away, a 30 minute trip, which has no showers, no hot food – before a 10hr transatlantic flight – should put this lounge to shame. Whatever the issues are between BA and American, it shouldn’t affect passengers who have paid good money; they need to get them resolved quickly. I would have more sympathy if it was a non-OneWorld airline – but American is in OneWorld, as are BA – passenger comfort could (and should) have been put first, and any contracting issues resolved retrospectively.
The lounge itself it poor, but no worse (maybe slightly better) than BA’s offering in Chicago’s Terminal 5, the shower was however good!