With my award ticket, I left an open jaw from Hong Kong to Taipei because I wanted to do a stopover in Beijing. I booked my flight from Taipei to Hong Kong using British Avios in order to try out Cathay’s regional business class product…and of course to check out their lounge in Taipei. Cathay has a decently sized operation in Taipei with flights to South Korea, Japan, and of course Hong Kong, and I was hoping that they would have a nice lounge to match.
This trip report/review is part of a series. See also:
- Part 1: British Airways Galleries Lounge Washington-Dulles
- Part 2: Lufthansa Senator/Business Lounges Washington-Dulles
- Part 3: United Global First Lounge Washington-Dulles…”Are You a Spy?”
- Part 4: United Global First Washington-Dulles to Tokyo-Narita
- Part 5: ANA Business Class Tokyo to Taipei
The lounge wasn’t difficult to find since it was located where all the other airline lounges were, but Cathay’s was the first of them down a narrow hallway. The entrance was unmistakeable Cathay, with the white marble walls and check-in counter. As I was walking in, the receptionist was on the phone, and immediately told the person on the other line to hold so he could greet me.
Along the first hallway was a small seating area, as well as work stations with four iMacs. Only one person was occupying the small seating space, which gave the the illusion that the lounge was not very busy.
…and boy was I wrong. The hallway led to a much larger seating area which had couches and a long bar with food stations. This area was much, much more crowded, and I eventually settled for a bar seat. In terms of view, the windows were relatively tiny and there wasn’t much to see outside the window. Frankly, I don’t think any of the windows look out to the tarmac.
There was a small corner with a self-service buffet including both Western and Chinese hot and cold selections.
There was a limited variety of alcohol which where all self service. Also available was a standard selection of juices and sodas.
What I really liked was the noodle bar at the other end of the lounge. I think it was something that caters really well to travelers who transit through Taipei. With five different kinds of noodles which were all made to order.
I ordered the spicy beef noodles and was given a buzzer as it was being prepared. It took around three minutes and the presentation was about as nice as something that’s served on a tray could be. I made myself a rum and coke to go with it.
Overall, Cathay has a pretty nice set up in Taipei. Sure, it was quite crowded and the food/drinks were limited in variety, but remember they are only servicing regional locations from TPE.