How do you make a compelling case for an independent airport lounge when the host terminal is widely considered one of the nicest in the country? It is a challenge, to be sure, but one that Airspace took on with their latest facility inside JetBlue‘s flagship terminal 5 (a/ka T5) at JFK airport. And, as company president Anthony Tangorra explains, "What’s interesting about this [terminal] is that it is awesome, so we had to set the bar even higher here."
The lounge opens with a soft launch today and it looks like they’ve hit that mark.
Access to the lounge is provided for Aer Lingus business class passengers, Gold Circle elites traveling to Ireland, American Express Platinum & Centurion Card holders and anyone else willing to pay the $25-35 access fee. Each guest receives a $10 credit for use at the bar; Aer Lingus customers have a larger array of complimentary offerings. The full menu is available at the Airspace website.
So, how do you compete with the array of food offerings available in T5? Airspace is aiming at the quality proposition. Tangorra compares the $25 entry fee to the options in the food court and notes that the incremental cost isn’t very high, while the difference in the food is.
For just $10 more you’re getting fed better, higher quality food…. For the items on the menu there is no better quality food in this terminal.
For the business customer there are additional benefits from the Airspace Lounge. Beyond the business center (including a small conference room and print/scan services) the lounge offers up something T5 generally lacks: quiet space. T5 is fun, but it is decidedly not a quiet terminal. Tangorra hopes that Airspace can provide refuge for the "conference call on a layover" crowd:
It’ll be hushed quiet in here….[Y]ou can actually spread out on a full table, plug in, space to work, space to relax, get work done.
And you can do all that with a cold beer, too.