With three days of spotting at snowy Sapporo New Chitose airport over, it was time to head back home. Since I flew back onboard JAL’s Class J just like on my flight to Sapporo, I will not be reviewing the return flight. However, below, I will take a look at JAL Sakura Lounge – the airline’s business class lounge at Sapporo airport.
After dropping my bags at the dedicated JAL Global Club (and oneworld Sapphire and Emerald) check-in desk, I passed through the dedicated (and deserted) security lane. The JAL Sakura Lounge can be found airside, a couple of steps to the right of the security check.
The entrance to the lounge was shared with the first class JAL Diamond Premier Lounge, and right past the entrance there was a set of escalators leading to the second floor where the reception and the actual lounge(s) were located.
As JAL puts it on its website, “going up to the lounge by escalator, calligraphic art by Ms. Sisyu, a famous Japanese calligraphy artist, welcomes you.” Besides the calligraphic art, the area where the escalator led also included a smoking room and the reception.
Just past the reception, there were luggage lockers, as well as phone booths which can be found in nearly all Japanese lounges (and which help keep the actual lounge a quiet and relaxing place).
Each of the phone booths was decorated with a wall art which showed how much thought has been put into the little details when it came to the design of the lounge.
Then, there was a hallway where the restrooms could be found, and finally there was the main part of the lounge.
The right half of the lounge included a buffet area (with mostly just drinks, but more on that later). Besides the buffet counter, there was also a communal counter in the center and another counter along the lounge’s windows.
Separately, there was another seating area with another counter along the window, as well as some tables, benches, and chairs.
The other half of the lounge included some more seating, as well as a copy & fax corner.
Finally, in several places throughout the lounge, there were flight information display screens (something useful that many lounges don’t have enough of), reading materials, and various decorative elements.
Food and Drinks Selection
The only “food” in the lounge were rice crackers and candies.
As for drinks, there was a soft drink dispenser, as well as tomato juice and milk in pitchers. Then, there was a coffee machine and a small selection of teas.
Finally, there were automated beer dispensers that Japanese lounges are well known for. In fact, there were four types of beer to choose from. And, there was also Nikka Whisky.
JAL Sakura Lounge Sapporo New Chitose Summary
If there is one thing I like about JAL’s domestic lounges, its their decor. At the same time, though, that is about all that can be said about them – and this lounge was no exception.
While the seating was comfortable, and the lounge would provide for a decent working environment if that is something you are looking for, there was nothing to speak about in terms of refreshments.
But, then again, that is the case with all Japanese domestic lounges.