Having extensive operations out of New York JFK, American Airlines operates a Flagship Lounge – as well as an Admirals Club and a Flagship First Dining restaurant – at terminal 8, its home at the airport.
Prior to catching a Cathay Pacific flight to Hong Kong, I had a chance to briefly visit the lounge.
Continue reading the review below to see what you can expect if you visit the American Airlines Flagship Lounge at New York JFK airport.
Location, Opening Hours & Access
American Airlines Flagship Lounge at New York JFK airport is located right past security at Terminal 8. It’s located above the main departures level and can be easily accessed using a well-marked elevator.
The lounge is open from 4AM until 12:30AM everyday.
Business and first class passengers traveling on American Airlines’ international flights (excluding those to other North American destinations) and select domestic transcontinental flights can enter the lounge.
American Airlines defines North America as Mexico (except Mexico City), Bermuda, the Bahamas and the Caribbean. As for the domestic flights, only passengers on three-class non-stop flights to Los Angeles and San Francisco are eligible for access.
Besides that, business and first class passengers traveling on American Airlines’ oneworld partners including Cathay Pacific, LATAM, Qantas, Qatar Airways, and Royal Jordanian are welcome in the lounge.
International first class passengers can also invite one guest to visit with them.
As for status holders, AAdvantage Executive Platinum, Platinum Pro, and PlatinumExpand members traveling on international flights (excluding those to other North American destinations) in any class can access the lounge together with one guest.
ConciergeKey holders can access the lounge even when traveling on domestic flights with their immediate family or up to two guests.
Finally, oneworld Emerald and Sapphire status holders – except for those that hold the status through AAdvantage – can enter the lounge before any oneworld airline operated flight, whether domestic or international. They can invite up to one guest to visit with them.
After presenting my Cathay Pacific boarding pass at the reception desk, I received an invitation to Flagship First Dining – an invitation-only facility in the lounge – and was directed towards a hallway leading into the Flagship Lounge.
The hallway featured some seats on one side and panels with a photo of New York City skyline and Manhattan Bridge on the other.
At the end of the hallway, there was a seating area with what I found to be a slightly weird layout. There were ten sofa chairs in a large circle around a table with four additional chairs.
To the left of that area, there was a pair of customer service desks with a large photo of Brooklyn Bridge decorating the wall behind them.
Along the wall, there were a luggage storage area, a quiet room, and a phone room where one could take calls without disturbing other passengers. I appreciated the last of those features since it’s something that not many lounges (except for those in Japan where it’s a standard feature) offer.
As for the quiet room, it featured some leather chairs with and without ottomans, as well as sofa chairs with high backs.
Each of the seats provided easy access to power.
Back in the main part of the lounge, on the other side of the wall separating the seating area described earlier from the rest of the lounge, there was a counter with coffee, tea, and some snacks.
Next to that, there was a seating area with about a dozen tables for two and three.
Continuing to the right, towards the lounge’s windows, there was a dining area with a large counter with high-top chairs and a couple of counters with the buffet spread.
The central part of the lounge was taken up by some more seating including sofa chairs, counters, and tables with benches and chairs.
There was also a wine counter. That said, there didn’t seem to be any wine there – perhaps because I visited early in the morning.
Along the inner wall as well as in the very back of the lounge, there were some more sofa chairs. While some of those were arranged in rows, others were facing TVs. This area also featured a rack with some magazines and newspapers.
Finally, there were a few semi-private booths, each designed to fit one person. Those seemed like the perfect option within the lounge for getting some work done.
While the lounge also featured shower rooms, I didn’t check them out.
One last thing worth noting is that the lounge offered some great apron views, and that there was plenty of seating along the windows from which to enjoy them.
Food and Drinks
The food and drinks available in the American Airlines Flagship Lounge at JFK was spread across a couple of different areas. That said, most of the food – other than some lighter snacks – and drinks could be found in the main buffet area.
At the time of my visit, the breakfast selection was offered. Some of the lighter items included cereals, yogurts, toasts, muffins, and pastries.
There were also some cold cuts and cut fruits, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausages, and potatoes.
Finally, roasted red pepper and smoked gouda bisque was available as well.
Cold soft drinks included water, soda from a Coca-Cola Freestyle dispenser, and some canned and bottled juices and soda.
Hot drinks included a wide variety of coffee beverages from a coffee machine and a selection of teas.
As for alcoholic drinks, only canned and bottled beer of several brands was available at the time of my visit. However, later in the day, wine and liquor is offered in the lounge as well.
In addition to all of the above, there was also the Flagship First Dining a la carte restaurant. However, I will talk about that in a separate article.
American Airlines Flagship Lounge New York JFK Summary
I didn’t spend much time in this lounge and went to the Flagship First Dining “lounge within lounge” instead. However, if I had some extra time – or if I didn’t have access to the restaurant – I wouldn’t have minded spending a couple of hours working in the Flagship Lounge.
There was a good selection of soft drinks to choose from, the food looked decent, and – at least at the time of my visit – there were plenty of open seats.