Review: Al Mourjan Business Lounge Doha International Airport

Introduction: The Long Road to Boston
Review: Malindo Air Economy Boeing 737-800 Singapore to Kuala Lumpur to Colombo
Review: Plaza Premium Lounge in KLIA
Review: Araliya Lounge Colombo Bandaranaike Airport
Review: Qatar Airways A340 Business Class Colombo to Doha
Review: Al Mourjan Business Lounge Doha International Airport
Review: Qatar Airways A350 Business Class Doha to Boston

Arriving at Doha’s new-ish Hamad International Airport, one is struck by how everything looks so futuristic and high-tech – such a contrast to Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport from which I’d just departed.

One simply cannot miss the giant 23-foot bronze-cast teddy bear in the airport’s atrium. Quite a fun, irreverent piece of art, and perhaps a statement on how such a rich, modern nation like Qatar can rise out of the barren desert – had me thinking about the incongruity of it all.

DSC06303
Giant teddy bear in Hamad International Airport, Doha

There are several business and first class lounges scattered throughout the airport, some of which catering to passengers traveling on other airlines or oneworld alliance partners. I think passengers traveling on Qatar Airways business class would have access to these lounges as well, but I had no time to check them out.

DSC06306
So many lounges, so little time
DSC06305
Nah, I only have eyes for Al Mourjan

After some research, I had my sights on Al Mourjan Business Lounge, which together with the fabled Al Safwa First Class Lounge, ranks amongst the best airport lounges in the world.

DSC06307
Al Mourjan Business Lounge, I hear you calling out to me

Finally found the entrance after checking with the information desk.

A lounge attendant was checking boarding passes at the bottom of the long escalator, and he quickly whisked me up to the Al Mourjan lounge after verifying that I was traveling on Qatar Airways business class.

DSC06308
Stairway to heaven?

I noticed that he notified his colleagues up at the lounge about my impending arrival, and one of them was already waiting for me at the top of the escalators to welcome me to the lounge.

You are first greeted by a long futuristic-looking reception desk, reminiscent of a spaceship (?) where several attendants were busy welcoming lounge guests. The lounge was fairly busy at this time of the day in the morning.

DSC06309
Futuristic-looking reception desk at Al Mourjan Business Lounge

I made my way into the lounge, and took some time to read the map and directions for navigating the lounge. The lounge is spread over two levels, and is so large you need a map to know your way around it!

DSC06310
You need a map to navigate the Al Mourjan Business Lounge

If you turn right at the reception, you will be greeted by the large reflective water feature. It’s quite an impressive sight, and the use of water, lights and a reflecting pool instantly relaxes wearied travelers, especially when you remember we are in the middle of the desert.

DSC06311
Impressive water feature in Al Mourjan Business Lounge

The spiral staircase next to the water feature leads you to the second level of the lounge, but I did not have time to explore it this time round.

DSC06314
Spiral staircase to level two of the Al Mourjan Business Lounge

Seating and lounging options are aplenty in the lounge, and a variety of seats are spread out across different zones.

DSC06315
Seating options at Al Mourjan Business Lounge

The seats are fairly private, and some of them even offer what looks like personal tablets for checking airport and flight info.

DSC06326
Seats with personal tablets

Local and international titles were available for browsing.

DSC06325
Reading materials in Al Mourjan Business Lounge

Bars offering water, soft drinks, coffee and tea were available at both ends of the lounge, and one simply had to request for your drink of choice from the server.

DSC06323
Coffee, tea or me?

I was all tired, sweaty and sticky by this point in the trip, so my first mission was to get a shower in the lounge.

Unfortunately all the shower cubicles were full at this time, and I was directed to the other showers located within the “quiet area” of the lounge.

I had some trouble understanding the shower attendant and couldn’t find these showers at first, but finally realized it was located deep inside the lounge, past the restaurant at the first level and within the “quiet area”, after he assigned an attendant to personally bring me there.

I showed the attendants my boarding pass, and waited for about 5 minutes while they got my shower room ready.

DSC06318
Showers at Al Mourjan Business Lounge

There were some rest pods located within the “quiet area”, and each one offered a large flat-screen TV and several lounge chairs – this would make a good rest area for long layovers.

DSC06319
Resting pod in the quiet area

The shower rooms here are HUGE – theres a mirror, washbasin, toilet and shower divided into individual cubicles, and a sitting area for dressing up.

DSC06320
Mirror and washbasin in the shower room

I took my time to brush my teeth, sit on the throne and enjoy a long, hot shower. The water pressure here was good, and I really enjoyed the overhead shower. Toiletries are RITUALS-branded and were of a good quality.

DSC06321
Toilet in Al Mourjan Business Lounge shower room
DSC06322
Good water pressure and RITUALS-branded toiletries

The restaurant on level one of the lounge had some buffet items laid out, which looked to be mostly salads, sandwiches and finger food. I did not have time to sample any food here, and quickly made my way to the boarding gate.

DSC06317
Restaurant at level one of Al Mourjan Business Lounge

This must have been the best airport lounge I’ve been to – I didn’t even have time to finish walking through the entire lounge. There were so many staff on duty that each guest can be assured personalized service, and help is never too far away. Also, the number of dining, entertainment and refreshment options in the lounge puts so many other airlines to shame. One wonders when SQ would deign to create a lounge experience that is on par with what Qatar is offering at Hamad International.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s