Review: JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview at Tokyo Haneda Airport

Besides a pair of domestic business class lounges, JAL also operates a pair of business class lounges for its international passengers at Tokyo Haneda airport. In fact, the airline is currently in the process of refurbishing the latter. More specifically, it’s now working on the lounge in the central part of Haneda’s international terminal.

The other one – the JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview – was reopened at the end of October 2019. As I had a chance to visit the lounge last month, below is a review showing what it’s like inside.

Review: JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview at Tokyo Haneda Airport
As its name suggests, the JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview offered excellent views of aircraft.

Location, Opening Hours & Access

While the main lounge which will be reopened in March 2020 is located right after security, across from gate 112, the Skyview Lounge is located a bit further to the left, just past gate 114. It’s located in the same area as the excellent Cathay Pacific Lounge as well as a number of other lounges.

The lounge can be found on the fifth floor.

Tokyo Haneda Airport International Lounges
The JAL lounge was located in the same area as Cathay Pacific and some other lounges.

The Sakura Lounge Skyview is open every day from 6AM until 2:45AM.

Of course, the lounge can be accessed by JAL’s business and first class passengers. Interestingly, though, it can also be accessed by the airline’s premium economy – and even full-fare regular economy class – passengers.

JAL Mileage Bank Sapphire and Diamond members as well as JAL Global Club members – as well as other oneworld programs’ elite status holders – departing on oneworld flights can access the lounge regardless of their class of travel.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Reception
Entrance.

Lounge Tour

Besides a reception desk staffed by friendly but professional attendants, the lobby area also featured a cloak with luggage lockers. The entrance led into the central part of the lounge.

Roughly speaking, it consisted of two main parts – a lounging area to the left of the entrance and a dining area to the right.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Cloak
Cloak.

The main part of the lounging area was the “SKY Lounge” which was essentially a large open space with a lot of seating and a pair of drink stations.

While it offered excellent views of the apron, the seating was not that comfortable, consisting of simple chairs in sets of two and four as well as row of tables for one along the windows.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Seating
SKY Lounge.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Seating
Drink stations and seating in the SKY Lounge area.

Next to the above was a more comfortable seating area with some lounging chairs and large leather sofa chairs.

This area was a bit more colorful and while the chairs were mostly arranged in rows, the space was divided into smaller areas by wooden walls and shielded from the aisles by drink stations and magazine racks, providing some sense of privacy.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Seating
Sofa chairs.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Chairs
Lounging chairs.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Seating Area
A smaller seating area.

In the very back, there was also a darker lounging area that felt more upscale than the rest of the lounge.

It featured a large counter with drinks and some snacks as well as seating in the form of a communal table with chairs as well as more than a dozen sofa chairs arranged in sets of four in the middle of the area and in a single row along one of the walls.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Bar
Counter with power outlets.
Seating in the Skyview Lounge at Haneda
Seating in the “darker” lounging area.

As mentioned above, the other side of the JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview was made up of the dining area.

The central feature of that was a buffet spread across two kitchen islands and a counter. I’ll talk more about the contents of the buffet in the next section of this review.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Buffet
Buffet counters.

As for the seating in the dining area, it consisted of a counter with counter-height chairs along the windows, four or five communal tables each seating ten people, as well as about three dozen tables for two.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Dining Area with a View of Haneda
Counter along the windows.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Dining Area
Communal tables.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Dining Area
Dining tables next to the buffet.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Buffet
More dining tables.

Separately from all the seating, the lounge was also equipped with my favorite feature of all Japanese lounges – phone booths.

Those certainly help make the lounge visit a more pleasant experience for everyone – for those that need to make phone calls as well as for those that don’t need to listen to those calls (i.e. everyone except for the caller).

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Phone Booths
Phone booths.

While the lounge wasn’t equipped with showers, guests could use the showers at TIAT Lounge Annex which was next door to the Sakura Lounge Skyview.

Food and Drinks

Drinks could be found at the multiple drink stations spread throughout the lounge. While each of them had roughly the same selection of soft drinks, alcohol could only be found at those in the dining area and in the “darker lounging area.”

Soft drinks included soda from a dispenser as well as bottled tonic water and Perrier. There were also juices – including JAL’s signature Sky Time kiwi drink – and other still drinks in pitchers.

Hot drinks included a selection of coffee from coffee machines as well as selection of Steuarts Ceylon teas.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Drinks
Soda and coffee.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Tea
Tea.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Juices
Juices and water.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Drinks
Pocari Sweat, tonic water, and Perrier.

As for alcoholic drinks, there were the – for Japanese lounges – obligatory automated draft beer dispensers.

There was also a selection of sake and wine including Laurent-Perrier La Cuvee Brut champange. About twelve kinds of liquor were offered.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Beer
Suntory and Kirin beer dispensers.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Wine and Sake
Wine and sake.

Some snacks including Kit Kat chocolate bars and rice crackers could be found at the drink stations outside of the dining area. Other than that, all of the food in the lounge was spread across the buffet counters in the dining area.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Snacks
Snacks.

Lighter items included some salads, steamed chicken, spring rolls, and wraps. There were also a selection of Maison Kayser bread and pastries, taiyaki, mushrooms, and sushi.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Salad
Salad bar.
Wraps
Wraps.
JAL Sakura Lounge Maison Kayser Bread
Bread and pastries
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Sushi
Mushrooms and sushi.

There were also shrimp bisque, potato soup, miso soup, and udon noodles. Beef curry – JAL Lounges’ signature dish – was available as well.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Soups
Soups.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Udon Noodles
Udon.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Curry Rice
JAL’s signature curry.

Other mains included pork dumplings, blue cheese cream penne, and tandoori chicken.

Dumplings
Dumplings.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Hot Meal
Blue cheese cream penne.
Tandoori Chicken
Tandoori chicken.

Desserts included cut fruits, mochi, and mousse cakes.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Fruits
Fruits.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Dessert
Japanese desserts.
JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Cakes
Cakes.

JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview Haneda Summary

Overall, the JAL Sakura Lounge Skyview offered a decent place to relax before a flight. It was bright, offered a lot of seating, it was empty during my visit (although I believe it can get crowded during the rush hour), and the food and drinks selection was on par with what one would expect.

That said, rather than visiting this lounge again, I would opt for a visit to the Cathay Pacific Lounge the next time since that one offers a cozier atmosphere and better seating, the same great apron views as the Skyview Lounge, and a staffed bar and an a la carte dining menu.

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