Virgin Australia recently opened the final phase of its Melbourne Airport lounge after a major revamp which increased the lounge capacity to 604 seats, making it the airline’s largest lounge in Australia.
The 6-month lounge transformation project doubled the space of the lounge and added new features including a Wine Bar and an Espresso Bar.
Features of the 13,000 square foot lounge include –
- All day-dining and barista service;
- Two meeting rooms;
- A Wine Bar, offering a premium selection of wine and beers;
- An Espresso Bar;
- Business services including complimentary WiFi Internet access, power outlets, workstations and printers;
- Entertainment options including newspapers, magazines and 10 high-definition televisions featuring FOXTEL and free-to-air programming.
Virgin Australia also launched its Premium Valet service at Melbourne domestic airport. The service allows guests to drop off their cars seamlessly before catching their flights. The airline also offers this service at the Sydney and Brisbane airports.
In July, the airline plans to introduce its first ‘Premium Exit,’ an expedited security screening point located within the Melbourne lounge that will allow guests to save time by proceeding straight to their departure gate from the lounge.
Virgin Australia has been upgrading its lounge network to better compete with rival Qantas which has a far more extensive lounge network. Virgin opened its latest new lounge in Cairns in November last year. Another new lounge was slated to open at Hobart, Tasmania later in 2014.
Virgin Australia currently has lounges at 9 Australian airports – Adelaide, Brisbane, Cairns, Canberra, Gold Coast, Mackay, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. All of Virgin’s lounges are located in each airport’s domestic terminal. International travelers flying in premium economy or business class on a Virgin Australia code-share flight with Delta Airlines are able to use Delta’s Lounges. For flights between Australia and New Zealand, Virgin’s premium passengers have access to Air New Zealand’s international lounges.
Amenities in Virgin Australia’s domestic lounges include a selection of premium wines and beers after 11 am, all-day barista coffee and snacks, a specially designed buffet, free WiFi Internet access, showers and change rooms.
Passengers flying on domestic flights with Virgin Australia, who aren’t enrolled in its Lounge Membership program or are not flying in business class, can purchase single-use entry passes at the lounge reception area for AU$65.00 (about US $52), payable only by credit-card.