The Premium Lounge at Terminal 4 will be the airline’s first dedicated facility for First and Business Class passengers outside its Doha hub. The carrier currently operates the award-winning Premium Terminal at Doha International Airport, exclusively for use by passengers travelling in First or Business Class.
The opening marks the start of another busy year for the carrier, with the launch of new routes, as well as additional capacity on the London Heathrow – Doha route, being stepped up from four to five flights a day, effective March 25.
Following a landmark year in 2011, which saw Qatar Airways introduce 15 new destinations to its network and win the coveted Skytrax Airline of the Year Award, the airline’s new Heathrow lounge is set to become the benchmark for international airport lounges.
Designed to resemble a boutique hotel or private member’s club rather than a conventional airport lounge, the new Qatar Airways Premium Lounge at Heathrow has been created to provide the ultimate in luxury and Five-Star service.
Qatar Airways recruited lounge staff from Five Star hotels and restaurants to work in the theatre-style Global Brasserie kitchen and innovative Delicatessen.
The lounge also includes private shower facilities, with heated floors and mirrors, hotel-style towels and luxury brand toiletries and amenities.
Business and leisure travellers can stay connected with free Wi-Fi throughout the lounge, discreet power sockets at every seat and a business centre that includes PCs and printers.
Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said that the new lounge reflected the importance of extending the airline’s award-winning service beyond the signature Premium Terminal in Doha.
“London has long been one of our best-performing routes, so Heathrow was an obvious choice for our first Premium Lounge outside Doha,” he said.
“With the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games taking place this summer, the international spotlight will be on the British capital and we look forward to the increase in capacity and welcoming more premium travellers on our high demand services to London.
“The lounge is the latest development in our expanding global network and will enable both loyal customers and those travelling with us for the first time, to take full advantage of the high levels of service we provide.”
Qatar Airways Country Manager UK & Ireland Richard Oliver added: “The new lounge could not have come at a better time, with the soon to be launched fifth daily flight from Heathrow and the introduction of several exciting new business and leisure destinations in recent months, including Chongqing, Kolkata, as well as the upcoming destinations of Perth, Kigali and Zanzibar.
“We are pleased to be able to offer our First and Business Class passengers the chance to experience our award-winning 5-Star product and service on the ground, even before they board their flight.”
During 2012, Qatar Airways will launch flights to nine new destinations: Baku (Azerbaijan), Tbilisi (Georgia), Kigali (Rwanda), Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Helsinki (Finland), Zagreb (Croatia), Mombasa (Kenya), Zanzibar (Tanzania) and Perth (Australia).
Qatar Airways currently operates scheduled flights to 110 destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America with a modern fleet of 104 aircraft.
Qatar Airways has orders worth over US$ 50 billion for more than 250 aircraft, including Boeing 787s, 777s, Airbus A350s, A380s and A320 Family of aircraft. The rapid expansion of Qatar Airways prompted the State of Qatar to embark on one of its biggest projects – the construction of a brand new international airport in Doha, which is scheduled to open in 2012.