First Look Inside American’s New First Class Dining Room in Dallas

On Wednesday I detailed Everything You Need to Know About American’s New Flagship Dining Room in Dallas.

It’s inside the Admirals Club in Terminal D, and it had its soft opening yesterday (it officially opens on Tuesday November 3).

Flagship Dining will be available to anyone that would otherwise have access to a Flagship Lounge, American’s international first class lounges. That means same day oneworld international first class passengers, American Executive Platinums flying international same day regardless of class of service, and oneworld Emeralds flying the alliance same day even if they are flying American Airlines domestic flights.

For 21 months after British Airways folded british midland into their operation I was a BA Gold. That meant I could use American’s Flagship Lounges when flying American. I no longer have this status, and will have to wait several months it seems until my next international trip that connects through Dallas to see the place in person.

Hans Mast visited yesterday in the morning on the lounge’s first day of opening, and graciously shared his photos. He was visiting on arrival as an Executive Platinum just having flown international in from Tokyo.

Yesterday I mentioned that some people were being proactively invited to use the space during its soft opening, prior to November 3. Hans relayed that he asked at check-in for an invite and the lounge agents happily obliged.

Here’s the paper invitation to show at the door, and the drink chits that the lounge provides to eligible customers (who already received those prior to the opening of Flagship Dining).

It’s a nicely adorned space, and Hans was impressed by three waiters for a mostly empty room. He also shares that they were requesting feedback and seemed proud of the new offering.

At breakfast the options appear modest, though better than what’s offered complimentary to Admirals Club guests.

The drink display is nice, and it’s great to see Taittinger champagne even in the morning.

Here are the meal service hours:

  • Breakfast: 8:30-11am
  • Lunch: 11am-2pm
  • Tea: 2-4pm
  • Dinner: 4-9:30pm

I’d definitely rather visit in the afternoon for rotating hot appetizers along the lines of those I previewed back in June (specific items will vary).

It will be interesting to see how busy it gets during peak times, since it will be open to all of American’s Executive Platinums flying international same day as well as the top tier elites of American’s oneworld partner airlines.

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, 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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  1. Not that I ever would pay for long haul F, but if I were to do so, I would be appalled that this purports to be a “special” dining experience commensurate with the fare I paid.

    If AA cannot bring themselves to have real furniture and table linens, along with some cooked to order items, being honest enough to tell their high revenue passengers that the Admirals Club is all they have to offer is better than telling them that THIS is a first class experience.

  2. I think it’s definitely a step in the right direction. I’m not saying it’s a LH FCT upgrade, but i like seeing the post-merged company making improvements. I think most people, including myself, were worried we’d see a million cuts under Parker. But they have shown that they will spend some money and make efforts to compete and up their game a bit.

    Maybe the bar is set low to begin with, but i’ll take it.

  3. Can EXPs get drink chits when traveling domestically or only internationally? Is there a fare class requirement?

  4. I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings at AA but, honestly, it looks like a company canteen or a conference break-out room. I realize it’s viewed as a big step up but if you can’t do a proper high-end/First Dining don’t waste the time, money and effort on something like this. Maybe it looks better in real life than in the pictures…

  5. I’m looking forward to visiting this new area on Nov. 2 and 6. It should be a great improvement. Regarding the policy on drinks, I assume a drink chit will be required for only premium liquor brands. Is that correct? Also, will the number of chits be limited to two?

  6. It’s like watching a toddler learning to walk. In objective terms it is a fail, but you just want to go “Awww goooooooodddd” because they are trying and it is cute.

  7. @john – yes, chits for premium drinks only and you get the same chits you would have gotten before so there’s not unlimited free drinks here [the way you get in a flagship lounge]

  8. @Eric American Executive Platinums do not get drink chits when traveling domestically. oneworld emerald members of other airlines do get drink chits when traveling domestically in the US.

  9. AA continues to reinforce my decision to abandon their program for international carriers some time ago. While my employer doesn’t pay for First, BA and LH’s business lounges are leaps ahead of this ‘first’ experience.

    Given AAs recent profitability and margin, in combination with the $8-10K ticket price, they should just handout gift certs for some of the nicer restaurants on the concourse.

  10. I’d rather have the Centurion Club in D at DFW – I don’t have to be EXP or fly on American to access it!

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