December 17, 2017

Etihad Arrivals Lounge Abu Dhabi Review

I visited the Etihad Arrivals Lounge in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates in mid-June.  I landed in Abu Dhabi on a business class flight with Etihad Airways from Dusseldorf Germany.  Access to the Arrivals lounge in Abu Dhabi is free when flying Business Class on Etihad.

Details:

Etihad Airways Arrival Lounge
Location: Abu Dhabi International Airport, Terminal 1
Hours: 24 hours
Access: Open to customers traveling in business and first class or Etihad Guest Platinum members
How I accessed: Business class ticket with Etihad

Fast Track 

Etihad-Fast-Track
Sign to the Fast Track Immigration Service

I landed in Abu Dhabi at around 8pm after a 6 ½ hour flight from Dusseldorf.  One of the benefits of flying in business class is access to the Abu Dhabi Fast Track Immigration Service.  Prior to landing in Abu Dhabi, I was given a fast track card.  The fast track card allows you to bypass the general immigration line at the Abu Dhabi airport.

Abu-Dhabi-Passport-Line
Line at the regular immigration entrance

Depending on what time and day of the week you land, this express service can save you anywhere from an hour to two hours.  I landed in the evening, so I probably avoided one of the peak times.  Even though it was the evening, the immigration line was still long and would have taken at least 30 or 40 minutes.  With the fast track card, I made it through immigration in about 5 minutes.

Location

Arrivals-Lounge-sign
Etihad Arrivals Lounge

The Etihad Arrivals Lounge is located after customs in Terminal 1 of the Abu Dhabi International Airport.  The lounge is intended to provide customers with a comfortable place to relax and freshen up after a long flight. Some of the main amenities in the lounge include: an international buffet, business center, comfortable seating with plenty of TVs, shower facilities, and a free wet shave by trained barbers.

The lounge was easy to find.  I picked up my bag from the luggage carousel and followed the signs to the lounge.   The entrance to the lounge is hard to miss.  The Arrivals Lounge is clearly marked in distinctive gold letters across a dark wood paneled entrance.

Customer Service

Etihad-Arrivals-Lounge-Check-in-Desk
Etihad Arrivals Lounge Check-in Desk

After checking into the lounge, the agent at the desk confirmed the Etihad Chauffeur service to the Hyatt Capital Gate.  She also booked the Chauffeur service on the return trip from the Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi to the Abu Dhabi airport for my flight to Sydney on the Etihad First Apartments.  Overall the customer service was really excellent and the agents were more than happy to take care of any logistical issues.

Layout

The lounge has a compact rectangular layout.  A small corridor past the check-in desk opens into a large open leather seating area with large TV’s and airline information screens.  On your left hand side is a buffet area with a wide selection of snacks, deserts, coffee, and drinks.

Etihad-Lounge-Entrance
Etihad Arrivals Lounge Main Entrance Corridor
Etihad-Lounge-Sofas2
Main Lounge Seating Area
Etihad-Lounge-Sofas
Sofas in back corner
Etihad-Lounge-Sofas1
Sofas in the smaller corner lounge area

Etihad-Lounge-TV

Etihad-Lounge-Main-Seating-Area
Main Lounge Seating

Etihad-Lounge-Main-Seating-Area1

Etihad-Lounge-Tea
Tea
Etihad-Lounge-Snacks1
Lounge Snacks
Etihad-Lounge-Snacks
Lounge Snacks
Etihad-Lounge-Refreshments
Lounge Drinks
Etihad-Lounge-Coffee
Coffee machine

On your right hand side is another corridor that leads to a check-in desk for the complementary wet shave and shower facility.  There are a few cubes with computer terminals and printers in the space just prior to where the shaving facility is setup.

Showers

The Arrivals Lounge includes 10 individual shower units.  Each shower unit has a full range of complimentary bath amenities.  Customers have the option of dropping off clothes to be pressed and steamed.  The free steaming service takes 10 minutes and is particularly beneficial for customers that have to attend business meetings prior to checking into their hotels.

Etihad-Lounge-Shower-Entrance
Entrance to the Lounge Showers

Shave 

Customers in the Arrivals Lounge are offered one free complementary wet shave from a barber.  I used the complimentary wet shave service while I was in the lounge.  The service was relaxing and professional.  Very similar to what you would expect at a high end barber shop in a major city.

Etihad-Shave-Sign
Etihad Shave Service in the Lounge
Etihad-Lounge-Shave2
Etihad Shave Service Area

Pros

Excellent customer service.
Plenty of comfortable seating.
Complementary wet shave, steam press, and shoe shine.
Access to shower facilities with complimentary bath amenities.
Lounge is open 24 hours a day.

Cons

Lounge access limited to customers arriving in Abu Dhabi that are traveling in business or first class or have Etihad platinum status.

Final Thoughts

I was very impressed with the Arrivals lounge.  The customer service was excellent, there was plenty of light snack and drink options, and the lounge had plenty of comfortable seating.  The Arrivals Lounge was easily one of the best airport lounges that I’ve experienced to date.

However, I expect the Etihad First Class Lounge to be even more impressive than the Etihad Arrivals Lounge.  Access to the Etihad First Class Lounge & Spa is included with my first class flight on Etihad’s First Apartments to Sydney Australia.

About First Class Travel Guide 127 Articles

Travel enthusiast that spent years flying in the back of planes and staying at cheaper hotels in order to save a little money. After learning how to leverage airline and hotel loyalty programs, I’ve developed an interest in luxury travel and write about my experiences with it.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*