Chase’s interesting new JFK lounge is now open

Chase is on a roll, and they’re not slowing down anytime soon. Just a week ago, the issuer opened the doors of its newest crown jewel, a stunning two-story Sapphire Lounge by The Club at New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA). And now, Chase is back (on the other side of Queens) with more welcome news for New Yorkers and travelers passing through one of the busiest airports nationwide, John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). The Sapphire Lounge at JFK officially opened its doors to travelers on Tuesday, breathing new life into the former Etihad Lounge that was vacant for much of the pandemic. And while Chase’s JFK lounge might not be as iconic as the space in LaGuardia, there’s still lots to love.

The new Sapphire Lounge by The Club is located in JFK’s Terminal 4, which is home to Delta Air Lines, Virgin Atlantic, Singapore Airlines, and a slew of other international carriers. After passing through security, stay on the upper level of the terminal and turn left. The new Chase Lounge is located right next to the American Express Centurion Lounge at JFK. The space is nearly impossible to miss, just make sure you don’t take the escalator down to the departures level after clearing security.

The new Chase lounge at JFK is open daily from 5 a.m. until 11 p.m. Access to the lounge is a bit different than other Chase lounges in the portfolio. This lounge occupies the space of the former Etihad Lounge at JFK, which has been closed since the beginning of the pandemic. Chase and Etihad Airways are jointly operating this “new” lounge, and as part of that, the access rules are a bit more generous than those of other Sapphire Lounge by The Club locations.

Primary and authorized cardmembers with the Chase Sapphire Reserve can enter the lounge for free, and they can bring up to two guests. Note that you’ll need to have the complimentary Priority Pass associated with the card to enter the lounge. Additional guests beyond the initial allotment will be charged at $27 per person. The same access policy applies to those with the J.P. Morgan Reserve card or the Ritz-Carlton Credit Card, though the latter card includes unlimited guest access. Even if you don’t have one of these cards, you might still be able to enter the Sapphire Lounge. Travelers with only a Priority Pass membership (from any other premium credit card) can visit one Chase Sapphire Lounge per calendar year and purchase additional entries for themselves and guests for $75 per person.

In addition to the aforementioned cards, select Etihad travelers can also visit the lounge before their flight to Abu Dhabi. This includes those flying in business or first class on Etihad-operated flights, as well as the airline’s Gold and Platinum elite members.

Chase’s JFK lounge might not be as opulent as the outpost in LaGuardia, but it still packs a mighty punch. After entering the lounge, you’ll quickly realize you’ve stepped into a Sapphire Lounge. From the color palette to the trees lining the hallways, Chase’s design motifs are clearly on display. The reception desk gives way to the main lounge area, with a bar at the center and seating areas spread all around it. There are a variety of dining tables, couches, and individual recliners right next to the bar. To the right of the bar, you’ll find another smaller seating area partitioned off with some trees and room dividers. And just opposite the bar, there’s a narrow hallway that’s been turned into another seating space. There are a handful of two-top tables and recliners here. The rest of the lounge is comprised of a dining area with a variety of table- and booth-style seats, as well as another relaxation area with some individual recliners and sofas in the corner of the space. Here, you’ll even find two open-style workstations. While the JFK outpost might look like the other Sapphire Lounges, this one is definitely on the smaller side, measuring 7,600 square feet. The maximum occupancy numbers have not been shared, but given the number of eligible Etihad flyers passing through the lounge each day, combined with Sapphire Reserve cardholders, the space might operate on a waitlist throughout the day.

A key component of every Sapphire Lounge is a long list of amenities, such as a facial bar and massage chairs. This outpost is lighter on the amenities, but it still checks the boxes for everything you’d expect for a top-tier airport lounge. There are two reflection rooms near the back of the lounge, which are available on a first-come, first-served basis and double as prayer rooms. The lounge also has three shower suites, one designated as all-gender, and one for men and one for women, located in the restroom area. The restrooms feature snazzy vanity areas and are stocked with Apotheke amenities. Other amenities include fast and free Wi-Fi, power outlets, USB-A and USB-C ports at nearly every seat, and incredible airside views.

One area where the Sapphire Lounge excels is with the food and beverage offerings. There’s a buffet area right next to the dining tables, featuring an assortment of hot and cold plates. Many of the dishes are halal, and kosher food choices are available on request. Aside from the buffet, you can order several signature dishes, such as the Sapphire burger or lamb meatballs, via an online a la carte menu. Each table has a QR code to scan to open the lounge hub, where you can order food and drinks and even reserve a shower suite.

Overall, the new Sapphire Lounge at JFK is a welcome addition to the airport’s offerings. With its convenient location, generous access policies, and top-notch amenities, it’s sure to be a hit among travelers. Whether you’re a Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholder, an Etihad flyer, or simply have a Priority Pass membership, be sure to check out this new lounge on your next visit to JFK.

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