The Best Showers in Any Airport and Pretty Good Free Food, Too!

After arriving in Hong Kong from Kuala Lumpur in Cathay Pacific’s business class, I had about 3 hours in The Wing first class before my flight to New York.

Previous trip report installments

I visited Cathay Pacific’s new, premier first lounge lounge — a recently renovated first class side of The Wing in Hong Kong earlier in the year.

Here’s what it used to be like from 2010, 2011, and 2012.

With the renovation I found fantastically improved ‘cabanas’ (the best airport shower rooms around) and an improved restaurant, though I wasn’t impressed by breakfast. And I also found the lounge still too-crowded, but with some hidden more peaceful spots.

The lounge gets crowded as a function of its access rules — though a first class lounge, it isn’t limited to first class passengers. Any top tier elite member of a oneworld frequent flyer program may access the lounge when departing Hong Kong regardless of their class of service.

I was looking forward to a return visit to this lounge, because I’d have a longer layover so would be able to actually make use of (and not just take a peek at) a cabana, and I’d be able to sample afternoon meals in the restaurant that I hoped would be better than breakfast. I was not disappointed.

The lounge is open, looking out over the terminal, and it’s stylishly appointed.

The highlight of the lounge is definitely the Cabanas. Those are shower rooms which are large and private, a great place to relax and refresh.

I’ve showered in airports all over the world, and these are the best.

I included plenty more detail and photos of the lounge in the report from my last visit a few months prior.

After freshening up I went to the dining room. That space has been expanded, it has a more spacious feel (whereas the previous dining room felt a bit claustrophobic, was a fairly non-descript room).

There’s both a buffet and an a la carte menu.


    (Click to enlarge.)

I placed an order and then visited the buffet.

After about 10 minutes my entree arrived.

Three-plus hours passes quickly here. It’s not my all-time favorite lounge. I’d take the Lufthansa First Class Terminal in Frankfurt and Thai Airways first class lounge and spa in Bangkok over this in a heartbeat. It would be truly great if it wasn’t so crowded. On the other hand I appreciate that as an American AAdvantage Executive Platinum (100,000 mile flyer) I can use this lounge even if flying business or economy. So, tradeoffs.

About 40 minutes before departure I decided to head out to my New York flight, which was showing on-time.

The high end shops on the way to the gate.. so very Hong Kong. This one was touting that they would pour you free cocktails.


About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community Milepoint.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. was here last week and the lounge was very hot due to open space- the ac unit is controlled by airport. I then switched to Qantas new lounge and had the same issue , maybe be even worse. Can’t imagine how the staffs have to work in there whole day. Finally feel better when I went to the Bridge. The view is not as great as the previous two but at least the ac is strong give it is a more closed space so Catahy can lower temperature as needed.

  2. I agree! Cabanas combine the day room & showers of LH FCT. But I like the bar/food better @ FCT. Has anyone used the CX arrivals lounge @ HKG? In a couple weeks I’ll be arriving around 2:30 pm on CX 1st from LAX. I’m traveling light & would like to shower then visit the sitting Budda b4 heading to IC Hong Kong. Travel on.

  3. just a matter of aesthetic but i would put the JAL J lounge private showers at NRT way ahead of the Wing cabanas. i prefer the stone and wood combo and dim lighting to the brightness of these.

  4. @BillNDC The arrival lounge is nice, albeit small. It’s a bit hidden, but walk toward Terminal 2 and it’s behind the convenience store. Once they confirmed your credentials/invitation (I think only FC and OW Emerald members are allowed), a porter will take and store your luggage while you enjoy the lounge. There are 3 or 5 showers (never 4), 2 computer workstations, and about 14 seats. There’s also a buffet of fried noodles, dimsum, toasts, and pastries. There is also an espresso machine for coffee drinks, along with fresh squeeze orange juice and other juices.

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