Turkish Airlines International CIP lounge, Istanbul
BACKGROUND This is the main Turkish Airlines lounge at Istanbul Ataturk Airport, the other one is in the arrival area. Worldwide, Turkish Airlines has lounges in airports in Moscow, Washington DC and Nairobi.
WHERE IS IT? It is in the departure terminal of Istanbul Ataturk Airport.
WHO CAN ACCESS IT?
Turkish Airlines’ business class passengers, Miles&Smiles Elite and Elite Plus members travelling economy class, and Star Alliance Gold and Turkish Airlines Corporate Club members. Suite rooms at the lounge are available to Turkish Airlines business class passengers and Elite Plus members on connecting international flights with durations exceeding eight hours and a connection time from four to seven hours.
WHAT’S IT LIKE? It has a young chic vibe to it. Once checked in at the reception, automated doors open towards a snooker table surrounded by bookshelves and leather sofa chairs. To the right is the selfhelp luggage holding area where bags are stored in transparent plastic boxes with back lighting — secured with an electronic lock that is reset each time you empty the “box”. Next to it is another cordoned o area, dimly lit with recliner chairs facing a movie screen. The popcorn machine here is a nice touch to the cinematic experience.
The massive lounge is spread across two levels. The first level is mostly populated with dining tables, lounge seating, live cooking stations and buet spreads. The fresh Turkish bread counter usually has the longest line — the dough is kneaded and rolled in front of you and served fresh out of the oven. Kiosks providing a passcode for the wifi are intermittently placed all around the lounge. A long desk with iMacs are available for use too. Should you require assistance, an information desk is available for guests.
On the lower level, there are video games, a golf simulator, a Scalextric track through some of Istanbul’s areas, and additional buet with restaurant-style and lounge seating. Plug points are generously placed on the floor beside most areas.
Other lounge services include massage therapy rooms and suite rooms. Expect a long wait time for the suites during rush hours — sometime more than an hour.
VERDICT This lounge ensures long transit times aren’t a drab, with plenty of entertainment, relaxation and F&B options. Neha Gupta Kapoor
The Turkish Airlines International CIP lounge o ers services such as massage therapy rooms and suite rooms