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TravelThe Club unveils gorgeous new San Francisco lounge

The Club unveils gorgeous new San Francisco lounge


San Francisco’s newest airport terminal is getting its first Priority Pass-accessible lounge.

On Tuesday, Airport Dimensions unveiled a new The Club location that will open in San Francisco International Airport (SFO)’s Harvey Milk Terminal 1.

The space, which measures over 12,000 square feet and has room for 249 travelers, is The Club’s largest and most opulent location to date.

In advance of the opening, Nancy Knipp, the president of Airport Dimensions, the company responsible for The Club network, spilled the beans exclusively with TPG about what travelers can expect from this LEED Gold-certified facility.

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“I think we have really raised the bar on this one with what I would call authenticity and localization, really embracing the Northern California spirit of the lounge,” she said.

Read on for all the details of what The Club is calling its “signature location.”

The Club at SFO location and access

The Club at SFO opens on June 26 in the airport’s Harvey Milk Terminal 1. It will be open daily from 4 a.m. to 11 p.m.

In terms of access, travelers with a Priority Pass will be able to enter the lounge for free. The same is true for flyers who hold a LoungeKey membership. (Both Priority Pass and LoungeKey are owned by The Club’s parent company, The Collinson Group.)

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For most TPG readers, Priority Pass will likely be the preferred access method. After all, many of our top recommended credit cards include a Priority Pass membership.

CORGAN

The late June opening couldn’t be timed better, given that many of the existing Priority Pass options at SFO are restaurants, which will no longer be covered by some of the most popular Chase credit cards as of July 1.

Knipp said The Club is also in conversations with potential airline partners “coming from the Asia market” to provide complimentary access to select premium passengers, but nothing has been confirmed yet.

CORGAN

The outpost will also sell day passes online and in person. The cost of a day pass is unknown; we will update this story with details once they become available.

The Club at SFO layout and design

Though existing The Club locations might not be known for their design, this location could change that reputation.

Based on the pictures alone, The Club at SFO is hands down the best location in the entire portfolio of 20 U.S. lounges.

CORGAN

“Travelers are really going to feel like they’ve stepped out of the airport and they’ve gone into somewhere in Northern California,” explained Knipp.

The Club partnered with Corgan on the lounge design, which is rooted in the outdoors and draws inspiration from a redwood forest.

For instance, a tree canopy ceiling is designed to give the illusion of sunlight filtering through leaves. We’ll have to visit ourselves to conclusively say how it looks, but based on the pictures, this is a night-and-day difference from other The Club outposts.

CORGAN

Locally curated artwork lines the halls of the lounge. There’s even a wall mural in the dining area depicting a panoramic view of a redwood forest.

The Club at SFO dining

The Club is partnering with Santa Rosa-based Foley Family Wines to help curate the dining experience — in terms of both what you eat and drink.

In a nod to the region, the lounge will exclusively serve wines from Northern California, and the food options will feature locally sourced ingredients.

CORGAN

Menus weren’t available before the opening, unfortunately.

Notably (and perhaps regrettably), The Club won’t feature a grab-and-go station such as you’d find in other popular airport lounges like the Capital One Lounge.

CORGAN

As for why, Knipp explained that “the balance you’ve got to find there for a company like Airport Dimensions is not being in a situation where you’re competing with the concessionaires in the terminal.”

The Club at SFO amenities

This lounge also excels in terms of the amenities on offer.

For one, the lounge features a first-of-its-kind microclimate fireplace that we haven’t seen in any other airport. The temperature-controlled space is designed to invoke a campfire by using water vapor and special lighting.

CORGAN

The lounge also features dedicated relaxation and productivity zones, with special seating styles designed for these spaces.

Also on offer: a shower suite, available on a first-come, first-served basis.

CORGAN

Finally, with wellness being a big part of the Northern California lifestyle, The Club boasts two fitness mirrors (with workout equipment) to help you get in a quick sweat when you’re on the go.

CORGAN

There are also three luminescence rooms equipped with adjustable color temperature lighting to promote wellness.

CORGAN

And there’s even a relaxation room for those who prefer to unwind in solitude.

Of course, the lounge also provides all the basics, with power outlets, USB ports and Wi-Fi available throughout the space.

The Club at SFO bottom line

The Club at SFO is undoubtedly the most ambitious location this network has introduced. With a gorgeous design, extensive food and beverage options and a long list of amenities, this space will likely become popular with travelers passing through SFO.

That could lead to overcrowding during peak hours, especially considering how many travelers passing through San Francisco have Priority Pass-eligible credit cards.

To manage overcrowding, Knipp said the lounge will debut a new QR code-based waitlist system that will hold your place in line. You’ll need to physically visit the lounge to scan the QR code, though.

“It’s something that we’ve implemented in our U.K. lounges, and it’s been really well received, and it manages that process so much better and gives the guests a lot more flexibility for getting into the lounge,” explained Knipp.

Hopefully, overcrowding won’t be a concern all the time, because this is likely going to be a space worth visiting.

After all, Knipp said it best: “It’s a lounge like no other, certainly in San Francisco. And I think it’s one of the top in America as well.”

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