Our SAS flight was early in the morning at 7:05am, so we arrived to the Copenhagen airport by 4:30am. We were booked into intra-European business class, which for SAS means an upfront economy seat with the middle seat blocked. It also meant we could fortunately use the business class check-in counter. Even this early in the morning, that line was long and slow, and I noticed the economy line was worse. It took us 40 minutes to wait in line and then check in. The attitude by the SAS associates was cold and apathetic.
Introduction: Study Abroad in Copenhagen
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We cleared security and then proceeded to the lounge entrance. The airport at Copenhagen is a little confusing and SAS doesn’t seem to help much in this regard. We eventually found the lounge and its entrance. SAS has two different lounges in this airport. The bottom lounge is the “main” SAS Business Lounge and the top is the SAS Gold Lounge. When I researched the two different options both lounges are very similar. The top Gold Lounge is for Star Gold Alliance members, whereas the bottom Business SAS Lounge is for ticketed business class passengers. Apparently, the SAS Gold Lounge has improved liquor choices and a couple other upgrades.
The front of the SAS Lounges are big and bright, and the signage makes them look like a retail establishment. After walking through the front door, the Business Lounge is to the left (where we went) and upstairs is the Gold Lounge. The access is through automated turnstyles. There is an associate available if help is needed. Walking into the bottom main lounge there are high ceilings and open views of the upstairs Gold lounge. There is also a customer service desk and a small children’s room.
Just past customer service is the main space of the lounge. To the left is the dining area and to the right is the larger open seating area.
The dining space has a lot going on, but it is well laid out and the design makes the experience enjoyable. Food and beverages are displayed in long sideboard type tables and included breads, cereals, oatmeal, yogurt, cold cuts and such for breakfast items. There is enough here for a basic breakfast, but nothing beyond that. Hot coffee, teas, soda machine, still/sparkling water and adult beverages were all included for the morning fare. The beverage counter has legions of glassware all cleaned and lined up for display. The visual effect is impressive.
You can have your meal in the dining area or on one of the long or round tables (as well as the rest of the lounge). The dining area has oversized large table lamps with live growing potted herbs at the base. The lighting quality is good and they are a signature design piece used in numerous SAS lounges. There are also small tables and wall sofas on the side wall that offer a less prominent location to dine.
Around the entire eating area are designer wall displays made up of shelves and daily affirmations written with messages such as “Refresh” and “Recharge”. The shelves have glassware, bottles of wine, pasta bags and herb pots. They look retail, or even high end retail – and this isn’t a slight. It’s well done, and add elements of visual interest into a public space. Considering that lounges are intended to be a respite from the airport jungle, the displays are well thought out.
The main seating area is large and sectioned off. It looks like a furniture warehouse with multiple living room area’s set up for display. I’m wasn’t sure if I liked it or not as it doesn’t seem very private. Of course, the space is large enough you probably don’t need sectioned off areas for privacy. The entire area is sectioned off with half walls and then arranged as mini living rooms. In the middle, there is a coffee table surrounded by an arrangement of different chairs. There are white glass shaded lamps and pendants that appear to be from Ikea. Against the half-walls are literature displays with magazines and periodicals.
In the back lounge, there is another seating area with window views. Located between the main lounge and this back-area seating is a walled off pass through section with a business center, storage areas (including old phone stations), and bathrooms. The design of this mid-section looks dated, but it has also been mostly modernized to try and bring it up to date. Lots of pine wood and brushed aluminum is used in a northern European design.
The rest rooms were clean and had private commode rooms. I never really figured out what the views out back were of. I’m thinking it is some area of the airport that also had large format advertising. The back rooms were quiet and separated from the busy portion of the lounge and with all the natural daylight it was a nice location to relax before our next flight.
The SAS Business Lounge was an average European lounge. If this lounge were in the United States it would be a little above average. Similar to a better Delta Sky Club (but not on par with the great club in Seattle). The food offering while not extensive or gourmet, was good and high quality. The drink selection will have what you want. WiFi was solid and if you wanted to get some work done the SAS Lounge has nice work areas to choose from.
There was plenty of room for guests and the furniture was comfortable. The design style is Scandinavian, but it also felt retail in some ways. The open seating area is a little strange. Even so it also works, and the SAS Lounge does what it’s meant to do – be a relaxing space to enjoy before your flight.