Must-read Earlier Installments:
- Singapore, Cathay, and Qantas First Class.. Some of the Best Meals of My Life, and a Tour of Hyatts in Bangkok, Singapore, and Sydney
- Inside the New Oneworld Lounge at LAX’s Tom Bradley International Terminal
- Cathay Pacific First Class, Los Angeles – Hong Kong
- Cathay Pacific “The Wing” First Class Lounge, Hong Kong
- Cathay Pacific Business Class, Hong Kong – Bangkok
- Grand Hyatt Bangkok: Suite, Club Lounge, and Facilities
- Thai Molecular Gastronomy at Sra Bua in Bangkok
- Getting Custom Tailored Suits Made in Bangkok at Empire Tailors
- Nahm at the Metropolitan: the Best Thai Food in Thailand?
- Thailand’s Iron Chef Cooks Ancient Recipes in a Deserted Top Notch Restaurant
- Eating The Best Local Thai Dishes in the Bangrak Neighborhood of Bangkok
- Louis Tavern CIP Lounge and Cathay Pacific Business Class, Bangkok-Singapore
- Grand Hyatt Singapore
- Eating and Entertainment Like a Singapore Local
Singapore Airlines flies out of both terminal 2 and terminal 3, with most operations and all of the long haul flying out of the newer terminal 3.
The terminal 3 dropoff for first class check-in is just before the driveway of the main terminal. You veer left on the road, and there’s a separate entrance before the terminal that’s dedicated to Singapore Airlines first class.
There you’ll be met by an agent and porters to assist with luggage.
You’ll be invited inside to a desk to get checked-in and have your checked bags tagged. They give you an invitation card for The Private Room lounge, although you don’t need it as your first class boarding pass gets you in.
Out the back door of the first class check-in area you’re in the main terminal. The door is directly aligned with the priority departing immigration queue, so there’s not much walking and no wait.
Just past immigration is the escalator up to the Singapore Airlines lounge.
Upon entering the lounge, and once identified as a Private Room guest, you’ll be escorted through the maze of the business class and then first class lounges to the Private Room entrance.
The Private Room is for Singapore’s own first class passengers. First class passengers of other airlines can use the first class lounge.
Once inside you find a spot. I find the Private Room to be not all that impressive, actually. There’s plenty of seating and I’ve never seen it crowded. The furniture itself creates the ‘areas’ because it’s mostly just one large room, with separate restrooms and a separate dining room.
The furniture itself isn’t especially comfortable, though it isn’t uncomfortable.
The restrooms are very similar to those in both the first and business lounges.
There are servers who will bring you menus and food to your seats, or you can take a meal in the dining area.
The dining room also features a modest buffet.
When I attended the delivery at Boeing of Singapore’s first ‘new cabin’ 777, one of the Singapore Airlines executives shared with me that the original concept of the lounge had no food menus. They wanted to provide ‘whatever you wish’ based on available ingredients, but they found that this didn’t go over well with guests. People need some guidance and ideas in order to make the experience comfortable.
But given the concept of the lounge you can still request whatever you wish and they will try to accommodate — though they do have a menu. Click each page to enlarge:
I’ve found that the dishes are all fine, with quality ingredients, but I’d rather have each dish someone else in Singapore rather than at the airport — even at the airport in The Private Room. (Airports will always be constrained with what they can do with food, although the unique setup of the First Class Terminal in Frankfurt somewhat mitigates against these constraints.)
The Private Room also has a computers and a few private rooms in the back, although they’re dark and I don’t find them especially appealing.
There’s talk of redoing the Private Room but I haven’t heard firm details or timing. It’s a good lounge, especially the cook to order food options and that it’s never crowded. But I wouldn’t arrive at the airport sufficiently early to plan to spend several hours there.
Just before heading out of the lounge I ran into some blog readers and we chatted for a bit. Fortunately I wasn’t leaving from an especially far gate. It doesn’t take as long to head from the lounge even to the farthest gates as the airport signage suggests, in my experience, but there’s certainly walking and unless you’re late or physically need assistance you’re not likely to have a golf cart take you there. There’s no lounge to gate escort service offered standard.
- You can join the 40,000+ people who see these deals and analysis every day — sign up to receive posts by email (just one e-mail per day) or subscribe to the RSS feed. It’s free. You can also follow me on Twitter for the latest deals. Don’t miss out!
Actually, Singapore Airlines uses Terminal 2 (mainly for the shorter haul regional flights) and 3 (longer haul flights) at Changi. They do not use Terminal 1.
Yes of course, have flown out of there many times ! 🙂
I agree with your assessment, Gary. I visited it a couple of months ago on two separate occasions. The priority security and immigration is amazing (BA and LHR really could learn from this!), but I was a bit underwhelmed by the lounge itself, in particular the buffet was pretty small.
My second visit was at breakfast time and it was pretty busy – all tables were taken and although the food was decent it took quite a while to arrive.
I liked the telephone rooms although wish the passenger speaking loudly on his phone (enough that you could hear him across the whole lounge!) had made use of them.
I didn’t quite see why they made such a fuss of taking your BP away to write down details, etc as they didn’t seem to personally tell guests to board, everyone seemed to just be using the screens.
Of course for personal service you couldn’t beat being the single passenger in Suites as I had on my SIN-AKL flight after that breakfast 😀
@ Gary — Are guests allowed in the Private Room? I am planning a trip for next year with two passengers in F and one in biz, so I was wondering if our business class friend would be allowed to join us. I’m guessing that the answers is no.
@Gene I believe not, though you could guest into the F lounge
@ Gary — Thanks. I guess our friend will be banished to the F lounge by himself. 🙂