From the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney, I walked back to Circular Quay station and purchased a $16.50 train ticket to Sydney’s Domestic Terminal. Less than 30 minutes later, I was walking through security in Sydney. Couldn’t have been any easier. And that extra time worked to my advantage: I had a lounge to check out.
The Sydney T3 Qantas Domestic Business Lounge is available to guests holding First or Business Class tickets on any domestic Qantas flight, or those who are connecting from International First or Business Class on Qantas. But because Qantas is part of the Oneworld alliance, customers who are Emerald Oneworld members can also use this lounge. Platinum Frequent Fliers can are also welcome.
I’ve had Star Alliance status for two years now, and am finally beginning to build up my Oneworld status. While frequent-flier status has its perks, in my opinion none are more important than lounge access, which makes all the difference in the world. I enjoy the lounges so much that I actually arrived at the airport just after 7a.m. for a 10a.m. flight in order to maximise my time in my first Qantas lounge, have a bite to eat, and get some work done.
The lounge is attractive, with blonde slatted wood wall treatments and offset navy-blue and beige furniture. Light globes hang from the ceiling and a massive wall of windows runs the length of the room and overlooks the tarmac and gates below, where a steady stream of Qantas Boeing 737 and 767 aircraft have been coming and going all morning.
The Qantas Business Lounge has a few things going for it that really help to set it apart from some of the other domestic lounges I’ve been in across Canada and the United States.
The most important for the road warrior is, obviously, private shower rooms, which are in abundance here and are frequently overlooked in many domestic airport terminals. But the other truly cool feature is an actual barista that can whip you up a cappuccino, latte, or just a “long black.” Like the Shangri-La that I just left this morning, they also have Australian Dimah Tea, three different kinds of fruit juice, and hot and cold breakfast offerings that even included freshly-made pancakes.
That the lounge includes complimentary Wi-Fi internet access isn’t perhaps that surprising. That it also offers Apple computer workstations and wired internet connections is. The lounge offers meeting rooms, and Qantas will even dryclean your clothes if you’re departing from and returning to Sydney or Melbourne when you leave your car with the airline’s Valet Parking service.
Because I’m a cruise nut through and through, you can understand my excitement at finding localised Cunard and Royal Caribbean brochures on the magazine rack, along with P&O Australia’s complete 2014-2015 brochure. Brownie points, Qantas. Brownie points.
Is it worth buying a business class ticket for? I’m not sure about that – but it is most definitely worth maximizing your frequent-flier status for. Sydney’s T3 is a very nice terminal, but it’s infinitely nicer up here in the Qantas Domestic Business Lounge.
Sydney’s T3 is also home to a Qantas Club Lounge located between Gates 4 and 5. It’s open to members of the Qantas Club, First and Business Class passengers, and Oneworld members who have Emerald or Sapphire frequent-flier status.
Our Live Voyage Report from Silversea’s adventurous Silver Discoverer continues tomorrow, as we fly with Qantas to Broome to embark the Silver Discoverer. Be sure to follow along on twitter by following @deckchairblog or the hashtag #LiveVoyageReport.