Lounge closed: The Korean Air KAL Lounge at Seoul Incheon airport Concourse A has closed permanently. Customers are invited to use the new KAL Lounge near gate 28.
The Korean Air KAL Lounge at Seoul Incheon airport Concourse A is one of the many lounges that the airline operates at its main hub. The club serves premium passengers of numerous foreign airlines. Priority Pass members flying on a SkyTeam airline are also welcome.
Korean Air KAL Lounge ICN design
The entrance sets the tone. The place is bright. And white. The long angled window wall lets plenty of light in, and reveals stunning views of the tarmac and parked aircraft. But the décor is the most striking feature, with white walls, white furniture, neon light, bold lines and a plastic feel accentuate the overall brightness of the space. The lightly colored seats and partitions, hardwood floors and wooden ceiling provide a glimmer of a contrast with the dominating white tones. We struggle to determine whether the ensemble feels modern or sterile, but it makes an impression either way.
We can’t get over how uncomfortable some of the furniture is — most seats are as rigid as stone benches. And the more comfortable chairs are so close together that patrons may play footsie with their neighbors.
However, while first impressions may be mixed, the facility certainly offers a wide array of enjoyable features. Steps and partitions carve out the large into a variety of smaller areas. An isolated TV lounge offers much more comfortable seating in a secluded environment, and we’re happy to finally see a setup that prevents sound from bleeding into the rest of the lounge. A few seats nested behind a partition give a reprieve from light to travelers looking for a nap. Laptop users will enjoy both counter-style seating by the windows and the separate business center, which both offer convenient universal power outlets. And, a unique lounge feature at Seoul Incheon, smokers benefit from a smoking room.
The arrangement, while efficient, feels a bit disconcerting at a first glance – signs are posted to help patrons find their way through the maze-like facility.
Korean Air KAL Lounge ICN amenities
The buffet is located by the entrance and the selection varies throughout the day. Outside meal times, options are pretty limited, with snacks, chips, green salad, cheese, and surprisingly, breakfast items such as cereal and pastries all day. At meal times however, a few hot entrees are available including fried rice and soup. A large selection of soft drinks including numerous Korean brands, is on display, however alcoholic beverages are limited to the basics – two bottles of wine and a couple of spirits. We wouldn’t recommend showing up early for a meal; Priority Pass members may however enjoy a more complete dining experience at one of the SkyHub lounges in the main concourse.
Patrons will find both large unisex bathroom stalls as well as well-appointed shower suites, although their industrial design doesn’t feel luxurious. Indeed, the design of the bathroom area is as bold as the rest of the décor, just with black as the dominant color, with black tile from the floor to the ceiling.
Korean Air KAL Lounge ICN bottom line
Overall, the Korean Air KAL Lounge at Seoul Incheon Concourse A is a quiet and spacious lounge, with plenty of natural light, splendid views of the tarmac, and a wide range of amenities. Ultimately, the bold and somewhat sterile design is what will make or break the experience for many travelers, and it’s a matter of taste. The facility is convenient for business travelers, but perhaps less attractive for couples or groups who seek a comfortable and social seating environment. Priority Pass members may head across the hallway to the Asiana Business Class lounge for a posher environment, at the expense of natural light.
Note: do not attempt to use this lounge if you are not departing from Concourse A as you will not be able to go back to the main terminal without staff assistance and an escort.