Seattle is home to Alaska Air and it serves as its main hub with excellent connections throughout the West Coast and Hawaii. We happened to route back through Seattle after a father-daughter trip to Disneyland.
I haven’t blogged about this or other domestic flights because they are simply not noteworthy … in fact the only thing I think when I fly domestic is “this is only slightly better than the last awful domestic flight I was on” … US and Canadian airlines really need to step up their game but I digress.
If you recall, I had the opportunity to test drive the American Express Centurion Studio in Seattle and I didn’t come away impressed. I was actually going to give them another try but after thinking about it on the plane ride over, I thought I would give the Alaska Airlines Boardroom a shot instead and I’m sure glad I did.
First, the lounge is right before Gate D1, and was strategically located near the C terminal from which we were to fly out of so that was a positive to begin with. The AMEX Studio was in Terminal B so it was further away.
While I fly in coach for domestic travel, I don’t like to give up my lounge access and if you recall, I hate paying out of pocket for benefits I can get for free. As part of my American Express Platinum included privileges, I have unlimited access to Priority Pass lounges, of which the Alaska Airlines Boardroom is one.
When entering the lounge, you are greeted with the front desk and an open high ceiling feel to the lounge.
The lounge has an upstairs and a downstairs and plenty of room to handle a lot of guests. I found that there were plenty of seats available and lots of different working options which was quite nice. In fact, as I write this, I have the tarmac just beyond the view of my laptop screen.
You might not be able to tell from the picture above but I went straight up Inception on you.
In terms of the different between the upstairs and the downstairs area, there are few differences, slightly different food options and a full fledged automatic Starbucks barista machine downstairs. The thing is actually pretty cool. I brewed a nice cup of hot chocolate for my daughter.
The upstairs area features the bar complete with a full time bartender. As I’m not a huge drinker and I am travelling with my daughter, I did not partake.
The only slight against this lounge was the lack of food choices. Downstairs there was chicken dumpling soup and upstairs there was a bean soup. While you also had crackers, veggies and dip and some salad, the choices were slim, though they did make up for it as the soup was delicious. Not enough to fill you up for your flight but not horrible either.
I don’t know if you picked up on the dark wood theme but it’s prevalent throughout the lounge and while I’m not a huge fan of the look, it does lend itself quite nicely to an executive feel.
As I had mentioned previously, there are quite a few seating options available and for those that love to look at the tarmac, the views are spectacular. I am currently passively watching a bunch of 20-somethings load bags onto a 737 while writing this blog post … I don’t know if it gets much better. If you notice, there are plugins a plenty. In fact I believe that every single seat and every single working area has access to at least one plug in, both AC and USB.
Meanwhile, my daughter, who is very well travelled, is quietly watching a show on Netflix as the wifi here is adequate enough to support it.
And what lounge isn’t complete without its own boarding pass printer … though I’m not sure how useful it is as the lounge is after security …
While it’s not the best lounge I have ever visited, the Alaska Air Boardroom is pretty damn good.
A couple of things that would really make this lounge better include more food options and showers but the quiet and decorum displayed but the people in the lounge makes it a good choice in my books. If I transit the Seattle Tacoma Airport in the future, I will choose the Boardroom as my lounge of choice … at least until the AMEX Centurion Studio expands and becomes a full fledged lounge with more room.