Cathay Pacific First Lounge, Heathrow T3

One of the highest rated lounges at Heathrow is the recently refurbished Cathay Pacific Lounge in Terminal 3. Whilst I am yet to visit the business class side, I have paid the first side a few visits now, so figured I’d offer my thoughts. 

After a years refurbishment, the lounge re-opened in 2017. Whilst the previous incarnation of the lounge was perfectly sufficient, the refurbished lounge took on the concept of the latest Cathay Pacific Pier Lounge in Hong Kong.

Cathay Pacific Lounge 2015
The previous Cathay Pacific First Lounge, as seen in 2015
The previous Cathay Pacific Lounge as seen in 2015
The previous Cathay Pacific First Lounge, as seen in 2015

Note that the pictures featured here aren’t from one particular visit – they are a collection from all of my prior visits. As such, some areas may not be photographed. And that is also why it’s daylight in some, and night time in others.

Entry to the lounge is via a lift in zone C of the lounge complex. As I found out the hard way just before my first visit, it opens a little later than the BA lounge at 05:30. Although this is still earlier than the Qantas lounge that doesn’t open until 08:00.

Once on the first floor, as soon as you exit the lift you’ll see the reception area where you’ll have your boarding pass scanned.

Entry Requirements for the First Class Lounge
  • Cathay Pacific First Class Ticket or
  • OneWorld First Class Ticket or
  • OneWorld Emerald card
Entry Requirements for the Business Class Lounge
  • Cathay Pacific Business Class Ticket or
  • OneWorld Business Class Ticket or
  • OneWorld Sapphire card

The staff have always been pretty good at directing me to the correct lounge. In the case of the First lounge, it’s more or less behind the reception desk next to the lifts. If you carry on down the hallway, you’ll reach the business lounge and the shared washrooms.

The Lounge

As you enter the lounge itself, you’ll pass a small area that offers coffee, snacks and a fridge with self serve drinks and chilled small plates.

Cathay Pacific Lounge Pantry
Cathay Pacific Lounge Pantry
Cathay Pacific Lounge Pantry

Beyond this is the main lounge area. One major down side of this lounge is that when there is a Cathay Pacific flight due to depart, it can get very busy. To the point where finding a seat can be a struggle. At other times though, it is virtually empty.

Cathay Pacific Lounge
Cathay Pacific Lounge
Cathay Pacific Lounge
Cathay Pacific Lounge

As this lounge is above the gate area, it offers unobstructed views over part of the Terminal 3 apron and runway 27L/09R. The lounge designers took advantage of this by placing reclining chairs along the windows.

Cathay Pacific Lounge
Cathay Pacific Lounge
Cathay Pacific Lounge
Cathay Pacific Lounge

As you head further into the lounge, there’s a small self serve bar area consisting of multiple champagnes, wines, beers and soft drinks. Also featured is Carlsberg beer on tap.

Bar Area
Bar Area

The biggest feature of the lounge is the restaurant area. Running more or less the full length of the lounge it offers great quality a la carte dining from a menu that rotates on a fairly regular basis.

Cathay Pacific Lounge Restaurant
Cathay Pacific Lounge Restaurant
Cathay Pacific Lounge Restaurant
Cathay Pacific Lounge Restaurant
Cathay Pacific Lounge Restaurant
Cathay Pacific Lounge Restaurant

Also provided in the lounge is reasonably fast WiFi, access to complimentary eMagazines via PressReader and also the more analogue variety of reading material provided by a magazine/newspaper stand at the far end of the lounge.

Verdict

A pretty solid lounge when not busy. When it is busy though, it can be a different story. Whilst not the biggest lounge in the world, it gets the job done.

The quality of the food in the restaurant area is some of the better lounge food I’ve had. The frequent menu changes mean that you’re unlikely to run out of options. One thing I will note though is that the breakfast isn’t the strongest out of the OneWorld lounge options in T3. Later in the day though, the lunch and dinner options are far stronger.

The views across the airport are pretty good, although the nearby Emirates lounge definitely beats it in this regard.

Champagne

More Info

https://www.cathaypacific.com/cx/en_GB/travel-information/flying-with-us/all-lounges/london-lhr/cathay-pacific-lounge.html

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