Review: CI SFO Lounge

The big day has finally come! I’ll be flying Asiana business class from SFO-MNL (via ICN) and returning on Korean Air MNL-SFO (via ICN). I did some research before this trip and came to understand while both Korean airlines have excellent on-board products, their ground services aren’t so great. With that said, man oh man were my expectations fulfilled of lackluster ground product.

Asiana doesn’t have their own lounge in SFO and they contract the China Airlines lounge. The whole situation is a bit confusing to me. Asiana departs from International Terminal A while all the other Star Alliance partners leave from International Terminal G. The G side has a United Club, EVA Lounge, and Singapore Airlines Lounge, and is connected air side to Terminal 3 with a Centurion Lounge. Meanwhile Asiana is stuck on the A side with the Skyteam clan.

24 hours ahead of time I completed Asiana mobile check in and printed my boarding pass. It was never mentioned to me that I have lounge access or which lounge to go to. Maybe its different if you check in at the counter. I went through security and turned left where all the airline lounges are.

The Air France KLM lounge is on the main level which is a Priority Pass lounge. I proceeded upstairs for the China Airlines lounge. Upon exiting the elevator there were signs for Asiana

I was quickly checked in and was told I’d be departing out of gate A7. I then walked into the lounge which has a small first class room. However, Asiana doesn’t fly first class on this route so it wasn’t  in use. The rest of the lounge is just one open room and looks like its from the 90’s.

The only power outlets were around the walls and those seats were all taken already. The rest of the room was just tables and chairs in a dense configuration.

There was self serve soft drinks which is always a plus. I hate waiting in line at a bar just to get a soda. Additionally, there was a very underwhelming buffet spread. There was Cup of Noodles, some weird pre-made sandwiches and fruit.

The lounge did have somewhat of a view of the airport which was nice and filled the lounge with natural light.

Survey Says

I knew the Korean airlines aren’t known for their ground services, but now  I also know that China Airlines isn’t known for their ground services. Overall it was nice to have a self serve drinks and a quiet place to sit. However, I would say this club isn’t any better than domestic US airline clubs.