Contributed by Hirofumi Suda
At Mumbai airport, there are no airline-operated lounges. Instead, all eligible passengers are directed to airport operated GVK Lounges.
There are two of those in the international departures area of terminal 2 where I was departing from – “West Wing” and “East Wing.” While checking-in for my flight to Singapore, I got an invitation to the GVK Lounge East Wing.
Before continuing, just two quick notes:
- The offerings in the two lounges are more or less the same, except for the fact that the West Wing lounge has a dedicated section for first class passengers.
- The photos used in this review are a mix of photos taken during two visits, one in April and the other in May 2018.
Are you interested in trying business or first class for the price of economy?
If so, you might want to check out Four Ways to Try Business Class Without Breaking the Bank - a free guide that I put together detailing some of the ways I was able to do so - and experiment with some of the methods mentioned in it.
Location, Opening Hours & Access
Mumbai airport’s GVK Lounge (International – East Wing) is open 24 hours a day, and can be found after security and immigration, near gate 45.
It can be accessed by business and first class passengers, as well as to status holders traveling on selected international flights. It cannot be accessed with Priority Pass, although there are three other lounges in the terminal that belong to the network.
After entering the lounge, I headed straight to the spa reception desk to book a complimentary foot massage as the waiting time can get up to an hour or so long when the lounge is busy.
More about the spa service later on, though. First, let’s take a quick look around the fairly spacious lounge.
There was a variety of seating, ranging from a typical dining set-up near the lounge’s buffet area through seats along a counter all the way to a variety of sofas, suited for both individual travelers and groups of travelers.
The seating arrangement offered a fair amount of privacy thanks to the layout as well as partitions between some of the seating areas. Also, except for the dining area, (Indian) power sockets were conveniently located next to each seat.
Besides the above, there was also a sports bar with a large TV – perfect for those who don’t know the rules of cricket, but want to learn the basics!
Finally, there was a small business center with a printer and two iMacs.
As for the spa service I mentioned in the beginning, all passengers eligible for access to the lounge are also eligible for a free treatment. First class passengers can enjoy a 30-minute full-body massage in a private room while all other passengers can get a 15-minute foot massage.
The foot massage started with cleaning of feet in a bowl of warm water, and the massage itself used oil that was wiped off at the end of the session.
Showers were available near the massage area as well.
Food and Drinks
As for drinks, a variety of soft drinks as well as liquor, beer, and wine could be had at the staffed bar. I had a glass of Jacob’s Creek, a sparkling wine from Australia. Moet & Chandon Brut Imperial was offered for first class passengers.
Separately from the above, there were also self-service drink stations with canned soda, bottled water, tea, etc.
Some of the soft drinks served in the lounge are quite premium – the water is a regionally bottled volcanic mineral water, and generally (although during my visit they were out of stock) a wide selection of Raw Pressery cold pressed juice. The tea offered is made by Basilur Tea, a Sri Lankan brand.
Knowing that my upcoming Singapore Airlines flight would feature a full meal right after take-off, I decided to control myself and only have light meal in the lounge. However, the buffet itself was of a fairly high quality and comparable to a decent hotel breakfast.
Cold options included cut fruits, yogurts, pastries and cakes, as well as a variety of sandwiches.
Hot options included Cajun potato wedges, Indian lentil nuggets, and baked beans and olive oil tossed mushrooms among others. There were also hot Indian breakfast options including a staffed counter serving dosa – South Indian sour crepe.
GVK Lounge (International – East Wing) Mumbai Summary
This is by far one of my most favorite contract lounges from the ones that I’ve visited in India and around the world. With the good selection of drinks and food, friendly staff, and the free 15-minute massage, the lounge is always a pleasure to visit.