Qantas runs two business class lounges at its main base, Sydney airport. One of them can be found in terminal 3 and is accessible to domestic passengers, and the other one – for international passengers – is located in terminal 1.
Between my flights from Tokyo and to Christchurch, I had a chance to – besides spending some time in Sydney itself – visit the Qantas International Business Lounge, so here’s the review.
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
The Qantas International Business Lounge at Sydney airport is located in terminal 1, after security. It’s located on the third floor of the terminal, one floor above the main departures floor, and can be accessed by a set of escalators and an elevator. It’s located next to Qantas’ first class lounge.
It can be accessed by passengers traveling in Qantas and other oneworld members’ business and first class, as well as to oneworld Sapphire and Emerald status holders traveling in any class on oneworld flights.
The lounge is open every day from 5AM until the time of Qantas’ last departure of the day.
After entering the lounge, there was a reception area which, besides the reception desk, also featured a couple of lounging chairs around a coffee table and a panel where children could take their photos pretending to be pilots.
The lounge itself was long and fairly narrow, with the long side facing the apron. The entrance and reception area was located roughly in the middle of the lounge, more towards its right side.
Just past the reception, there was a seating area with rows of cloth-covered chairs and coffee tables. There was also a long bar counter with wine and snacks. And, there was a gelato & sorbet station – something that I haven’t seen in any other lounge before – but more on that in the “Food and Drinks” section of this review.
Turning left at the bar, there was one of the lounge’s two buffet areas surrounded by seating areas with both sofa chairs and dining tables. There was also a (what seemed to be like) a staffed coffee counter, although it was out of operation during my visit.
The restrooms, as well as some flight information displays and reading materials could be found here as well.
Finally, at the very left of the lounge, there was a large seating area with a TV and a “typical lounge seating configuration.” In other words, there were rows of sofa chairs and some lounging chairs with ottomans.
Going back to the bar, and walking towards the other end of the lounge, there was some more seating and the second buffet area. The seating included counters along the windows – some of which were equipped with iMacs – as well as counter-height tables with stools and some more sofa chairs along one of the wall.
Food and Drinks
All the beverages and food in the lounge was split across three locations – the two buffet areas and the bar area.
Starting with the bar area, there were some snacks and wine available.
And, my favorite feature of the Qantas International Business Lounge in Sydney – the gelato & sorbet station – could be found here as well. While I’m not sure if (or how often) they change the flavors, during my visit the following were available: hazelnut, mint, cookie & cream, wildberry, lemon, and strawberry.
Drinks that could be found in the two buffet areas included a selection of sodas, orange and apple juices, tea and coffee, a selection of both bottled beer and beer on tap, and a selection of about fifteen kinds of liquor.
Moving on to the food, the lighter items included bread, apples, a salad bar, pancakes, some desserts, and cheese.
Separate from that, there were two kinds of rice, a chicken dish, and some kind of soup.
Qantas International Business Lounge Sydney Summary
The one feature that made the Qantas International Business Lounge in Sydney stand out above the other lounges I’ve visited so far was – as mentioned earlier in the article – the gelato & sorbet station.
Other than that, the lounge was mediocre, though. While there was plenty of seating in the form of sofa chairs and dining tables, I would have appreciated a dedicated space with some sort of workspaces – ideally cubicles like some other lounges offer.
By the same token, the food selection was nothing to rave about either. I especially found it disappointing that there was essentially only one hot meal option available. At the same time, the drink selection in the lounge was decent.
Overall, while I would not arrive at the lounge early unless I had to, I would certainly stop by my next time in Sydney for the gelato!
Related Articles & Useful Links
- Qantas 737-800 economy class review
- Qantas 747-400 economy class review
- Priority Pass (unlimited lounge access)
- Lounge Pass (single-use lounge passes)