What’s Really Going On At The Charlotte Admirals Club

The main Admirals Club in Charlotte is closed for renovations. Some travelers had hopes this would mean improving the club, still in US Airways-style, but it doesn’t. American – which has been somewhat cagey about the work that’s happening – says the updates which will take several months are about bringing the space up to fire code. Here are permitting details for what renovations will actually be taking place.

There wasn’t enough club lounge space in Charlotte to begin with and the airport which has only one other Admirals Club was desperately in need of another two.

With only the smaller B concourse club available for passengers to spend time in while waiting for flights, it’s become overrun. There’s frequently a line to get in even during off-peak times.

Charlotte has a crowded Centurion lounge and two Minute Suites at the airport. Priority Pass cards provide an hour in a minute suites, a place with peace and quiet that promotes you can take your mask off while you’re inside. I recommend pre-booking a space through their app to maximize chances of availability. There’s a The Club coming. This is all space American Airlines could have had for more clubs if they’d been willing to invest.

So what are they really investing in for the main Charlotte club? According to permitting there’s going to be a ‘restroom refresh’ that involves,

demolition and renovation of 2 gang toilet rooms…includ[ing] demolition, millwork, doors, drywall, tile, acoustical ceilings, painting, toilet partitions and accessories, repalcement of plumbing fixtures, relocation of HVAC diffusers/grilles and electrical.

In addition carpeting will be replaced throughout the club.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I visited the Admiral Lounge at Charlotte last month and walked in, then out. It was crowded a d no doubt an overrated experience. No desire to return.

  2. Come on, dude… at LEAST spellcheck your Headline
    Your constant typos and grammar errors sadly deflect from a lot of good information ypu have to share.

    Give your readers a little respect ❤️

  3. And standing corrected for the “ypu” that my own spellcheck didn’t catch… we can all be humble with our mistakes! I don’t have proofreader either!

  4. Gary – agree with main points but would like to state, as someone that lives in Charlotte and flies out of CLT a lot, I have NEVER had a wait at the Charlotte Centurion Lounge (unlike Denver where I had a 30 minute wait last Sunday). Also, it was constructed as one of the larger Centurion Lounges and I have never seen it crowded as you indicated in the article. There is rarely a line to get food and the longest I have waited for a drink at the bar is maybe 2 people in front of me. BTW, I have been there all hours from early morning to late afternoon throughout the week so feel my experience if probably a little broader than yours.

    That being said – I dropped my Citibank AA Executive card when I retired (3 years ago) since I wouldn’t be traveling on business as much and knew a Centurion Lounge was coming to CLT. I frankly haven’t missed the Admirals Club. I haven’t tried United’s club but Delta’s are, as a rule, much better than the Admiral’s Club (except Flagship Lounges which I can get if I fly international business/first regardless of whether I have an Admirals Club membership). Also, obviously the Centurion Lounge is better and, while the “Club” lounges aren’t as good as even Escape, I fully expect it to be a better option than the Admirals Club, especially for those in Terminal A. At least it has more food than Admiral’s Clubs and also all the booze if free versus the limited free selection in the Admiral’s Club.

  5. The main Admirals Club at CLT has arguably the worst restrooms I’ve seen in an AC. No privacy. It’s essentially what you would get from the restrooms in the terminal except for perhaps more frequent cleaning.

  6. Gary, it’s never safe to take your mask off. Even if you think it’s safe for you, you don’t know the risk profile of other people and you could easily be a carrier and end up unwittingly murdering a lounge full of people by spreading the COVID virus. There’s still a lot we don’t know about this virus and we have to stay on side of caution.

    People are dying everyday and so many people I keep hearing are travelling for non-essential trips, some people are even going on vacation to see family! Can you imagine the danger?

    Please use your blog to promote a culture of masking and safety. Thank-you.

  7. ACs were already a joke, but are getting even worse. I had to cash out some expiring Business Extra points in November and got a few day passes. Since then, I’ve been turned away at MIA (three times), AUS (twice), and JFK so far. Not once have I been allowed access. The passes are literally worthless, and I’ll get nothing in return when they expire.

  8. To Stephen W: Are you sarcastic or serious? I just flew to San Francisco and they no longer require wearing masks indoor if you are fully vaccinated.
    But coming back to the topic: AA club closure is just another reason to avoid CLT if you can. I tried just that by connected through JFK to SFO just to get another proof what an operation disaster AA is today. Commuter AA flight operated by Republic was 3 hrs late. They cannot turn around E175 in less than 1 hr. First they forgot to put enough fuel. Then the pilot pulled up from a gate in a wrong way – so we parked for another 15 min so he will do this the right way. The transcon was also delayed by ca. 1 hr for other minor reasons…

  9. To Stephen W: Please stop posting and turn off the TV.

    The CLT C/D restrooms were showing their age and really needed a refreshing, so this is huge.
    It’s obnoxious that AA hasn’t released this info, and it has to be uncovered by investigative reporting via digging up permits.

  10. Yes, it’s annoying to be displaced. Yes, it’s annoying that no major improvements are being done other than the bathrooms. But… as a user of that bathroom, I look forward to the update. And if the sprinklers also get up to code, then all the merrier. Capital projects like this almost always wind up costing more and going over budget. I can only imagine the added burden of doing this inside an airport. It would have to have been done eventually. So, 2022 or 2030, it was going to annoy someone. I’m ok with getting it over with even if I am displaced for 6 months.

  11. Stephen W: Gary was talking about minute suites, not a lounge. Your in a room alone for an hour (with priority pass). You leave. They clean it. Someone else goes in. Rinse & repeat. It’s very nice after a red eye while connecting. But yeah… CLT is a horror show in many regards. I try to avoid it whenever possible.

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