Primeclass Lounge – IST International

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Primeclass Lounge - Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

Primeclass Lounge – Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

The primeclass Lounge at Istanbul Ataturk airport International Terminal is an independent club run by TAV, a major Turkish airport services provider, which operates a burgeoning network of airport lounges worldwide. The club welcomes premium and elite passengers of several airlines, in addition to members of several popular airport lounge access programs, such as Priority Pass.

The primeclass lounge is located below the food court – make a right after going through security, walk all the way, then take the escalator down.

Primeclass Lounge design

The primeclass Lounge is a bit of an oddball, design wise – a mix of traditional and borderline old fashioned, with modern touches and an abundance of brutally reflective surfaces and materials, such as marble, white tile and mirrors. Perhaps the designers wanted to mitigate the subterranean location, which deprives patrons of windows and daylight. The space is certainly well lit, though the ambiance, especially in the main seating area, stops short of being relaxing and inviting.

Primeclass Lounge - Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

Primeclass Lounge – Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

To the left when entering is a classy area with sparse seating, a fireplace, and a dining space with a small buffet. The room has a traditional vibe, with marble and wood panels. In the same area are two conference rooms, with glass walls – a rather odd design, which obliterates the privacy of the occupants.

Opposite the dining area is the main seating area, where the bar and the larger buffets are located. It tends to be significantly busier, and the hardwood floors are worn out, while the metallic surfaces along the televisions and on the ceiling seem to implicitly encourage passenger turnover. Power outlets are available in every seat.

When we visited, the lounge was littered with dirty cups and plates – and there is empirical evidence that this wasn’t an exception. The staff was virtually invisible, and the club neglected. The lack of service certainly left a poor impression on us.

Primeclass Lounge amenities

Primeclass Lounge - Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

Primeclass Lounge – Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

The primeclass Lounge boasts a wide array of amenities.

The food selection includes a variety of snacks, hot entrees with a focus on Turkish fare, and desserts. Several espresso machines are located throughout the lounge, along with a selection of juices and soft drinks. Alcoholic beverages are available at no charge from the bar. Again, when we visited the service was lacking, and the buffet was not replenished on a regular basis.

Decked in fine marble, the bathrooms and showers are gorgeous. The bathrooms are spacious, individual unisex stalls. The shower rooms are definitely on the small side, but elegant and functional. Unfortunately, both the bathrooms and showers were dirty when we visited, and the stock of towels was depleted. Based on our experience, we’d think twice before showering at the primeclass lounge.

Primeclass Lounge - Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

Primeclass Lounge – Istanbul (IST) International Terminal

A small family rooms offers kids a colorful retreat with a variety of toys and video games.

A few work cubicles are available. As pointed out above, the lounge also includes two well-appointed conference rooms, with comfortable seating, a wall-mounted monitor, and indoor plants – the lack of privacy just happens to be a major flaw.

Other amenities include a selection of newspapers and magazines, as well as, naturally, complimentary Wi-Fi.

 

 

Primeclass Lounge bottom line

The primeclass Lounge at Istanbul Ataturk airport International Terminal has a lot of potential. With ample real estate, a solid array of amenities including work cubicles, conference rooms, showers and a family room, the primeclass lounge is one of the better appointed clubs at the airport. Passengers will enjoy a solid food and beverage selection, as well as a comfortable place to sit, even though the design isn’t especially appealing in our opinion.

However, there is a significant issue with overall upkeep and maintenance. It is not acceptable for a bathroom to be dirty at a premium lounge, or for dirty cups and plates to linger on tables long after patrons leave.

The much smaller Comfort Lounge and HSBC Lounges, two stories above the primeclass Lounge, while far less impressive in terms of amenities, have significantly higher maintenance standards, and are also available to Priority Pass and Lounge Club members.

The pluses
  • The food and beverage selection.
  • The shower suites.
The minuses
  • The lack of windows and daylight.
  • The sloppy service and lack of housekeeping.
  • The overall lack of maintenance.
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