Review: Amex Centurion Lounge at London Heathrow
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London Heathrow Airport
London Heathrow Airport is one of the busiest airports in Europe. It has 4 operational passenger terminals. The airport is the primary hub for British Airways and Virgin Atlantic but almost every European airline flies to London. Some of them fly multiple times in a day because London is a popular transfer point for passengers and cargo. With the majority of passengers having a flight transfer at Heathrow Airport, there is a huge demand for high-quality airport lounges.
London has 5 other airports. Be aware of which airport you are connecting to!
There are almost 20 lounges at London Heathrow Airport. Some of these lounges are exclusive only for airlines and their alliance customers. That means, you need a status card of an airline's loyalty program or you must be travelling with a First class or Business class ticket.
Heathrow Airport has also third-party lounges which are meant for the members of lounge programs and walk-in customers. Priority Pass is perhaps the most well-known global lounge program. For example, American Express Platinum members get a complimentary Priority Pass membership but you can purchase a membership with money too.
In addition to Priority Pass lounges, American Express Platinum cardholders can also visit Plaza Premium Lounges and American Express Centurion Lounge free of charge. Both lounges exist at Heathrow Airport. We had a few hours layover before flying to Helsinki so visiting a lounge was a natural choice. This time we decided to give a chance to American Express Centurion Lounge in Terminal 3. Our expectations were high since American Express is a premium brand.
American Express Centurion Lounge
American Express Centurion Lounge is in Terminal 3, Area A. The lounge is after the security check on the airside in the main dining and shopping area. It is one floor above the main floor and easily accessible by stairs or lifts. Thanks to the clear signs leading to the lounge, finding its location is easy.
If you are just connecting at Heathrow Airport, you need to pass the security check after landing and then head to the main area of Terminal 3. Even though there are airside connections between the terminals, we recommend visiting American Express Centurion Lounge only if you are flying out from Terminal 3. Moving to another terminal after a lounge visit could take much time and make the lounge visit stressful. You don't want to miss your flight. The other terminals has good lounge options too, like Club Aspire Lounge in Terminal 5.
Who Can Visit?
American Express Centurion Lounge welcomes travellers holding an active American Express Platinum, American Express Platinum Business or American Express Centurion card. Other American Express Platinum branded cards are also accepted. The cardholder may take up to 2 guests with him/her. It is impossible to access the lounge by paying an entrance fee at the reception. Also, lounge membership cards are not accepted by Centurion Lounge because it is meant exclusively for premium American Express customers.
You can't visit American Express Centurion Lounge with lounge membership cards.
A lounge visit to American Express Centurion Lounge is complimentary for the cardholder and usually, the cardholder can bring 1-2 guests also for a free lounge visit. The exact terms vary depending on the card issuer. We recommend confirming the access rules from your American Express card issuer. You can't access the lounge by paying an entrance fee.
Our Visit to Centurion Lounge
We arrived from a long flight from Hong Kong to London Heathrow Airport at 5:30 am. It was early morning and the airport was slowly getting busy. Because our next flight to Helsinki was departing also from Terminal 3, we had a perfect chance to visit American Express Centurion Lounge. We also needed some rest after the long flight. Thus, this lounge visit was not only a luxury but was almost necessary.
We followed the signs to Terminal 3. Even though we had also arrived at Terminal 3, there was still a long walk after deboarding from the previous flight. On the way, we had also to clear a security check.
Finally, we arrived at the main area of Terminal 3. It was still peaceful there since it was early morning. Almost immediately, we saw American Express Centurion Lounge sign and took the lift to the second floor of the terminal.
The lounge looked stylish outside. At the visually appealing reception, there were two friendly members of staff. Moss mounted on the wall, which is a nod to London's Hyde Park, gave us a fresh impression. The reception area was not only a desk but was a piece of art, too.
A lounge visit to Centurion Lounge is a complimentary service for all American Express Premium cardholders including two guests of the cardholder. We cleared the formalities with the reception staff, got a Wi-Fi password and after a minute, we were in.
The friendliness of the reception staff made an immediate great impression on the lounge. Since we arrived early in the morning at the lounge, it was still half empty. Still, the lounge was well-staffed. . For example, the clearing of tables was done quickly. The kitchen staff ensured all the time that there was enough food on the buffet table. The cleanliness of the toilet was also continuously paid attention to by the staff while the bartenders were always visible at the bar.
The facilities were nicely decorated with British art and everything was in perfect condition. The lounge had a grey-brown colour theme with crystal lightning but the colours were used sparingly which gave an impression of a premium area. This is the Amex style.
The lounge did not have windows or natural light. To be honest, we did not even notice the lacking windows because the whole lounge had great decorations and there were many artificial lights. However, if you a looking for a nice runway view, this lounge can't offer it.
The lounge was divided into many areas. The biggest main room had a bar, warm buffet and tables for eating. Next to it, there was another big room that was meant for relaxation. In addition, the lounge had a mixed work and relaxation space with two phone booths just next to the reception and a smaller and cosier relaxation area next to the main dining room. All the areas had many UK power sockets so charging your devices won't be a challenge. Sometimes, adapters are necessary. Some of the rooms were equipped with TVs displaying current news. You can easily check the status of your flight from the flight information screens in the lounge.
There was also a reserved area which requires contacting the reception staff for reservation.
Food and Drinks
The food selection in Centurion Lounge was decent. It's a buffet style and there was a lot of variety. It is known that American Express Centurion lounges serve warm foods. During our visit, London Centurion Lounge was serving a nice selection of small plates of mains and desserts. Warm foods included pork sausage, grilled back bacon, cannellini beans with basil, grilled aubergine with different spices, herb-sauteed potatoes, cheese and tomato omelettes and Shakshuka. Also, there were freshly baked bread and croissants, porridge, squark, cereal, fruits, and many lots of sweet and savoury treats. Guests of Centurion Lounge can enjoy a hot breakfast starting at 6 AM. For lounge visitors arriving just before lunchtime, a generous buffet lunch and dinner are served from 11:30 onwards.
Drinks could be ordered from the manned bar. Because it was still early morning, we were not in the mood of enjoying cocktails. However, the bar's selection appeared versatile and it would have been a pleasant experience to try the bar's services. Despite not tying their alcoholic beverages, the atmosphere at the bar and the bartender's presence all the time made a good impression.
Fruit juices and immune booster shots were available from the juice station of the lounge. Also, tea and coffee could be taken as a self-service.
The lounge had free and reliable wifi. A reliable internet connection is an essential service because not everyone has a mobile data connection but many travellers still want to work in the lounge. We connected our laptop to the lounge's wifi to do some work. The network connection was fast and stable.
Toilets and Showers
Centurion Lounge has toilets which were properly maintained. We noticed how the staff were continuously ensuring that it is kept clean all the time. Aside from being clean, the toilets also have stylish designs.
Centurion Lounge has two showers. Because we only had time for a 1-hour stay, we didn't have enough time to use it. Since the lounge had such a good food selection, we wanted to spend all the available time tasting the lounge's food and drinks.
Centurion Lounge by American Express in London Heathrow (LHR) is a non-airline lounge. Usually, the lounges maintained by ground service companies are typically not as good as airline lounges. However, Centurion Lounge at Heathrow Airport makes an exception. Since this lounge is exclusively meant for American Express customers, it doesn't get easily crowded and the service level is much better than many airline lounges. Based on our lounge visit, the service and personal attention we've got in Centurion Lounge are significantly higher than most airline lounges we have visited.
The lounge was clean and the interior is well-designed. The food and drink selection was great. In addition to this, there is a full bar. There was ample seating regardless of the purpose of your lounge visit - working, relaxation and or dining. There were lots of outlets to charge up and a well-working wifi in the lounge. These together with nice customer service and attentive staff make Centurion Lounge a perfect place to spend the layover.
- Where is American Express Centurion Lounge at London Heathrow Airport?
- The lounge is in Terminal 3, Area A, which is a floor above the terminal's main floor.
- Who can visit Centurion Lounge?
- American Express Platinum cardholders and their guests are welcome to Centurion Lounge.
- Can I take a guest with me to Centurion Lounge?
- Yes, you can. Check the exact terms from your card issuer.
- Does Centurion Lounge accept Priority Pass?
- No, it does not.
- Is there free wifi in the lounge?
- Yes, they have fast and stable wifi.
- Is there hot food in the lounge?
- Yes, there are different food options also for vegans or vegetarians.
- Are there alcoholic drinks in the lounge?
- Yes. Centurion Lounge has a manned full bar.
- Are there power sockets in the lounge?
- Yes, many of them. But they are UK sockets.
- Can you work easily in the lounge?
- Yes, there are premises for working too.
- What is the decoration like in the lounge?
- The lounge has a brown-grey colour theme with crystal lightning and British art.
- Is there a flight information screen in the lounge?
- Yes, there are a few of them.
If you hold an American Express Platinum card and you are flying out from Terminal 3 of Heathrow Airport, you must visit Centurion Lounge. It is one of the best lounges at Heathrow and maybe the best one which Amex cardholders can visit in the airport. Our check-in was efficiently carried out by two welcoming female staff. Upon entering the lounge, while it is not overly large, it is well laid out and spacious. The lounge has all the services you need with nice customer service.
The food selection in the lounge was quite impressive with plenty to choose from both hot and cold. We particularly like that each of the food items was properly labelled. There were lots of tables and seating including the seemingly mini booths suitable for solo travellers. As the lounge is exclusive for Amex Card holders, you'll be impressed with how calm and quiet it is.
Centurion Lounge is centrally located in Terminal 3 of Heathrow Airport so you can access your gate in 15 minutes after a lounge visit. Following your flight status is accessible from the flight information screen in the lounge. Recharging your devices is easy with plenty of outlets not forgetting their fast wifi. If you need to freshen up, you can avail of the shower facilities and very clean toilets. We will visit it again if we happen to have a flight connection at Terminal 3 of Heathrow Airport .
Have you been to Centurion Lounge at London Heathrow? Comment below what you liked the most in this lounge.