Recently I visited the Al Safwa First Class Lounge in Doha, Qatar, which has taken Qatar Airways quite a while to build. Was it worth the wait? Is it the best First Class Lounge out there?
What the best airline First Class Lounge is, is a topic of debate. I haven’t visited all of them, so can’t give a definitive answer. The Qantas First Class Lounge in Sydney, for example, is supposed to be great. But I personally haven’t been there yet. I have been to the Air France La Premiere First Class Lounge at Paris CDG (click for my video review), and that’s a pretty good lounge – I’ll use that for comparison. This is my short analysis:
Qatar’s Al Safwa First Class Lounge at Doha’s Hamad airport offers free day-rooms with en-suite bathrooms – that’s a pretty sweet amenity. The food is also pretty good, though not as good as Air France’s. Spa treatments are not free. They’re even pretty expensive. And, if you can’t get a day-room it’s difficult to get a free shower in Al Safwa. You could use the ones in the spa, but you’d have to get a treatment.
Top tip: there is a shower (1) near the family-rooms that you can use. It’s free, but there can be a bit of a wait, as it’s the only shower outside of the spa and the day-rooms.
Which lounge do I prefer for a long lay-over? I guess it depends… The day-room amenity is a big trump card for Al Safwa. If I can get one of those, then I would prefer to stay there. But, if I couldn’t… I would rather stay at the Air France La Premiere Lounge. For all its space and grandure, the Al Safwa lounge is missing… something.
How did I end up at the Al Safwa Lounge? Well, I got some GOL Smiles award miles on the cheap a while ago, and their partner award-chart has a sweet spot for a few of Qatar’s routes. So, I was lucky to pass through Doha twice, just after the Al Safwa lounge had re-opened. The first time I was there from late in the morning until early in the evening, the second time is was there around breakfast-time. So I was there long enough to have a good look at the place, and try a fair amount of food and drink – the Krug and Billecart-Salmon were nice 🙂
Please, check out my video about the lounge – either in the embedded player above, or click here for the video on YouTube ( which I would recommend).
Have you visited the Al Safwa Lounge? What did you think? Please leave a comment!