Lounge review: British Airways Concorde Bar, Dubai International

British Airways Concorde Bar Dubai Concourse D

Background

I was on the morning BA flight (BA108 from Dubai International Terminal 1 to London). This departs at 1005. I got to the airport early at around 0745 because I wanted to see the new(ish) BA lounge, including the Concorde Bar.

It’s a few years since I last flew back from Dubai with BA (though I’ve flown through many times with Emirates since then).

BA uses Terminal 1, Concourse D, which means taking the shuttle train out there which can add a little time to an airport that gets very busy. This isn’t a problem for this departure, though (at 1005) since the airport is quieter at this time.

The Concorde Bar opened in February – you can read the original news piece below

British Airways unveils new lounges at Dubai

There are several photos in that piece, but what I realise now reading it, is that most of the pictures are of the lounge outside (the business class lounge).

Dubai Terminal 1, Concourse D

Where is it?

On the upper level of this concourse. To reach it directly, turn left after going through security and you’ll see a giant McDonalds sign. Head for that, up the escalator and you are there. If you turn right towards the matching KFC sign you have to walk past all the other lounges accessed from this upper level (Lufthansa, Skyteam etc…)

BA Dubai Lounge-entrance

First impressions

The business class lounge is very smart, has a lovely design, but is small. In fact, walking into the main lounge (you can see some photos of it in the news piece I mentioned above) I imagined I was already in the Concorde Bar for a moment.

Instead, towards the rear of the lounge and accessed by a pass card (like a hotel key card) is the door to the Concorde Bar. The lady at reception keeps hold of your boarding pass to stop you wandering off with it.

Concorde-Bar-invitation-car

Neither of the lounges have toilets / washrooms. These are back outside and round the corner, and are small and crowded.

British Airways to open second Concorde Bar in Dubai

Both lounges have only internal windows which look back down to the concourse.

British Airways' prestigious new lounge at Dubai International Airport

On entering, there are two booths to the right (with plugs under the table if you want to change devices). There is a flatscreen TV on the wall, and then along the far side of the room is the drinks and buffet food area.

Concorde -Bar-Dubai-booths

Food and drink

Although the buffet is help yourself, at all times there was an attendant ready to help (and standing there attentively), so for drinks I gave him something to do by requesting coffee and water, while for the food I helped myself.

Concorde-bar-Dubai-dining

There is a long table where you can sit, which at one end has the wine choice. At all times there is an attendant to serve you, though if you like you can always serve yourself.

I spent about 90 minutes in the lounge (the flight was slightly delayed boarding because of early morning fog delaying the incoming flight). During that time I used my laptop at one of the booth tables, and at its busiest the Concorde Bar (which I keep calling the Concorde Room, partly because of the Heathrow Concorde Room, and partly because this place is not a bar) had a maximum of six people in it. This was in contrast to the lounge area outside, which was quite busy. I imagine in the evenings it gets very busy indeed.

A view from the windows of the room looking back at the dining area. The door to the left of the TV screen is the food preparation area.

I’d heard the lounge (and the Concorde Bar) is open 24 hours a day, and although there must be periods when it is very quiet between flights, that does seem to be the case. I did ask the question, but my question was misunderstood since they thought I was asking if I could stay for 24 hours. It’s a nice lounge, but in my experience, even the most palatial begin to pale after around eight hours.

Concorde-Bar-chairs-Dubai

For this morning flight, obviously the food offering was breakfast – hot and cold options. Outside in the main lounge there is a toaster but here we were offered the choice of toast and they went off and made it (maybe in the other lounge).

It was too early to drink but there was a wide range of spirits on offer, though only a few on display (more in the main lounge).

British AIrways Dubai Lounge COncorde Room Spirits selection

British Airways Dubai Lounge Concorde Bar Spirits selection

Compared with the other lounge, it is quieter, though it wouldn’t take many in here to fill it up.

I’d read somewhere that the champagne was Taittinger, but on my visit it was Henriot, and when I asked if it was always Henriot, I was told it was.

British AIrways WIne-selection

Verdict

At this time of the day, the Concorde Bar was a quiet haven where I could have some breakfast and get on with some work. Both lounges have the new design, artwork on the walls and attentive staff. The lounge isn’t large, but whether it is large enough depends on the time of day and how business and first class passengers, and card holders are on the flight.

ba.com


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