United Club London Heathrow

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After our Delta One flight landed at London Heathrow, we disembarked, passed through immigration, and collected our luggage to proceed to LHR Terminal 2. This is the terminal were Austrian Airlines flies in and out of (as well as the majority of Star Alliance airlines). Within Europe we would be taking three flights before returning to the U.S. – Austrian Airlines London to Vienna and then Vienna to Copenhagen, and SAS Airlines Copenhagen to Frankfurt. The SAS flight was a part of our United/Lufthansa redemption coming home. The Austrian Airlines LHR-VIE-CPH segments worked best for our itinerary, and they were all paid coach. I’ve had a United Club membership for years and decided to use it to visit the United Club at London Heathrow Terminal 2. Check in with Austrian was smooth and after a little bit of walking we found ourselves at the entrance to the United Club.

Introduction: Study Abroad in Copenhagen
Review: American Express Centurion Studio Seattle
Review: Delta One International Business Class Seattle to London
Review: United Club London Heathrow
Review: Austrian Airlines European Coach London to Vienna to Copenhagen
Review: Park Hyatt Vienna
Review: Copenhagen Admiral Hotel
Review: SAS Business Lounge Copenhagen
Review: SAS Intra-European Business Copenhagen to Frankfurt
Review: Lufthansa Senator Lounge – Frankfurt
Review: Lufthansa International Business Frankfurt to Seattle
Review: Alaska Airlines Lounge North Satellite Seattle

 

lhr-terCheck-in at Austrian Airlines, London Heathrow

united-entranceEntrance to United Club

The reception area has a small illuminated desk were the associates work (can’t believe I didn’t take a picture of it). To the right is the United Global First Lounge, to the left/straight forward is the United Club. The architect used long graceful curves and arches throughout the interior design. As you enter to your right is a tall deep curved wall with entrances to bathrooms, showers, quite business spaces and such. To your left is the rest of the lounge, which is huge. There are multiple open areas for relaxing, eating, drinking or working. The area to the left is framed by floor to ceiling glass windows which introduce a lot of daylight and brightness to the space.

curvered-walkJust coming in past reception

open-seating-03Typical of the space, bright, modern and open

open-seating-r2Echoing the curved wall on entrance, the ceiling curves along and over a curved bench of seats

open-area-001Second open area along the glass windows

This was my first visit to this United Club and the lounge is beautiful. It is much more than I was expecting, and is certainly the nicest United Club I have visited. The main seating area is laid out into two long areas; a space next to the windows and a space sandwiched in the middle. The length of windows is intersected with a gorgeous bar in the center. This area next to the windows is outlined by a long curve that defines the space; on one side is the open seating and bar; on the other is the middle seating section. The boundary is defined by a low seating bar that is also curved. The design is sophisticated and attractive.

open-spaceLow bar defining both spaces

long-low-barAnother angle showing the transition between both areas

looking-inView from next to the bar

The middle area is divide into five sections. The center three areas are open seating separated by blue glass panels. The designers also used tree branches to create the feeling of distinct spaces. It’s effective and looks great. The three areas are bookended by a library TV room on one end; and the main dining space of the other. The bookend spaces are circular in shape and United has used the curved walls for storage, display, and serving locations.

curvesTo the left is the middle of the lounge

hi-table-areaThere are two of these large high communal tables.

hi-tablesThat back wall is the outside of the library

trees-another-angleOpen seating in the forest

middle-areaAnother angle – blue panel glass in the background

windowsWindow looking outside with lots of reflection

The back of the lounge (curved wall on entering) is where the business center, washrooms and shower facilities are located. The lavatories are individual rooms with a small bench, sink and commode. It is very private and well done. The finishes are top notch and it’s nice to have a place to change and freshen up without having to check into a shower suite. On that note the shower suites look fantastic. They’re large, well appointed, and the staff is equipped with any personal hygiene amenity you may have left at home when leaving for your travels.

displayBack wall of flights displayed for Terminal 2

phone-room-signThe phone rooms are small individual spaces for privacy while working.

short-hallHall into business center

work-cubby-entranceLooking into work space

bath-hallHall into lavatories

bathroom-sinkSink in washroom

commodeCommode

shower-suite-hall-2Circular hall for shower suites

shower-suiteShower suite – beautiful finishes

shower-suite-sinkShower suite sink

shower-suite-angle-2View of shower in suite

I had mentioned the middle section is bookend by two circular rooms; the far circular room is a library of sorts. The space is open with tables for reading and working. One of the walls has a comprehensive display of literature and current periodicals. There is also a news television with the volume turned low. On the outside of this room the outside wall is set up for beverages and small snacks. It is well designed.

circular-tv-roomDoorway into “library” (my term)

tv-roomOne half of the room with beverages on outside wall visible

tv-room-2News TV

periodicalsPeriodicals

quiet-cornerCorner next to circular room

circular-shelvesOutside wall

The other circular room close to the entrance is a dining space with sideboards displaying the daily food offerings. The outside walls have small circular benches that are built-ins. Inside the buffet is available. Offerings include salads, fruit, cheese, finger sandwiches, hot mains and sides, and beverages. Next to this area is a dining room with tables and chairs to enjoy your meal. It’s about as nice a meal room as I’ve seen in a business class lounge (the LAX Star Alliance lounge is on par).

dining-areaDining room looking into serving room

beverage-in-food-areaBeverages

food-03Salad fixings

food-02Salads

food-01Fruit, cheese and sandwiches

food-04Hot mains and sides

food-05More mains and sides

beverage-areaJuice and teas

caffineCaffeine

prep-areaAdders for tea and coffee

capachinoMachine cappuccino

The centerpiece of this space is the lounge bar. The United Club boasts the longest bar at Heathrow, and the one in this club is gorgeous. Its location is in the center along the back wall of windows. It has a curved marble mid-section that bulges proudly out mimicking the architecture of the space. The materials and finishes are top shelve, and all the drinks are included with entry – no charging you for “premium” spirits. From the layout, to the design, to the glassware, to the service – the bar in this club is beautiful.

bar-areaLooking back towards entry and along the bar space

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From the pendants above, to the glowing base, to the shaded windows, this bar is gleaming and bright

bar-006Back corner looking into the lounge

bar-shotCircular marble mid section

bar-detailsLittle touches

bar-main-sectionFramed with pendants, bottles and chairs

bottle-close-upSolid selection

adult-beverageSpecial travel Manhattan for yours truly

bar-003Another last photo

In Summary

The United Club at the Queens Terminal at Heathrow is brilliant. From the beautiful well laid out space, to the luxurious shower suites, to its large size, and the grand offering of food and beverages there is a lot here to like. The architecture is stunning. I had not done any research on this club prior to our visit, and I selected it solely on the access my full United Club membership would allow for my family regardless of what carrier our flight was scheduled with. What a find.

As far as business lounges at Heathrow go, I love the Virgin Atlantic Club and always try to visit when I can. After visiting this United Club, I feel the same way – if not better. That’s saying a lot.


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