At Frankfurt Airport (FRA), Lufthansa provides a dedicated First Class Terminal for Lufthansa and SWISS passengers flying in first class (or top tier ‘HON Circle’ in its frequent flyer program, Miles & More, departing on Lufthansa, SWISS or Austrian Airlines). This ‘terminal’ offering makes it attractive to change planes in Frankfurt, so long as there) is enough time between flights to enjoy the exclusive facilities.
Upon arrival at FRA, connecting passengers have to make their own way to the First Class Terminal (FCT for short), which is located about 200 metres walk from the main departures level. There are many resources available online to provide directions if required. If you’re attempting to find it and still unsure, the signage on the outside of the building is also a giveaway.
Once inside, you are greeted by an attendant who escorts you through the private security check-point and takes your passport to look after immigration formalities on your behalf. This private security check-point is a huge value add, as it makes it almost pleasant to be screened by security – no small feat.
One nice touch is that the staff member who greets you on arrival is the same who will escort you to you your car transfer to the plane (unless you are there too long and there is a shift change… not that we would know anything about that). No danger of missing your flight here!
The lounge itself is furnished in the same manner as Lufthansa’s first class lounges within the main terminal, however the setting of a separate terminal makes the FCT far more private by comparison. The facilities in the FCT however remain the same as the first class lounges within the main terminal and include seating areas, an exceptionally well stocked bar, an à la carte dining area, cigar lounge, sleeping rooms and shower areas (some complete with bathtubs).
We find the seating in the FCT’s lounge areas to be well spaced and comfortable, though the view of a bus depot leaves a lot to be desired.
For this visit, we decided that a glass of Bollinger Special Cuvée would suit for a morning drink. However, the selection available at the bar did not make this decision easy.
After fixing ourselves a drink, we passed by the cigar lounge. On this occasion it was decided that cigars were not required, but photos were. Some excellent smooth jazz was playing in the cigar lounge, adding to the ambiance. A self serve bar is also available in the cigar lounge, so it was not far to go to get a top-up.
After some more champagne, the lunch service started – with a new menu offering being served. There is also a buffet available, the contents of which vary slightly between services.
Preferring to order off the menu and with the Wiener Schnitzel having a good reputation, lunch was calling. With only two staff members looking after the dining area it was a little hard at first to get their attention, but once the food was ordered it arrived with little delay.
The schnitzel did not disappoint, being an excellent piece of veal – lightly crumbed.
After lunch and with only two hours until our flight to Ghana’s capital, a visit to the shower rooms was next on the list. Passing by the sleeping rooms we could see how someone with a long layover could make themselves comfortable.
The shower rooms themselves are spacious but generally unremarkable. An attendant will show you to your shower room and even sew those pesky loose threads for you while you’re showering.
One of the most sought after items from the FCT comes if you decide to have a bath. Lufthansa offer ducks as a souvenir that are also sometimes themed to match a season or event. In this way, they are a collectible and one enthusiast even has a webpage devoted to the various ducks Lufthansa has offered over the years.
We got the (rather creepy looking) Christmas duck. (It is not necessary to actually have a bath, the very nice staff members are happy to offer the ducks up to those who ask).
In case you were wondering, we got bored of our original champagne and moved on to Johnnie Walker Blue Label.
On a previous visit to the FCT there was a vast array of sweets available but on this occasion Lufthansa had instead opted for an immaculate display of HARIBO gummy bears arranged by colour (how very German). It’s safe to say that several of these were consumed during this visit.
After a relaxing stay, our FCT host advised us the plane was ready to receive First Class passengers and that the car transfer was now available. A very pleasant ride in a Porsche Cayenne rounded off another comfortable visit to the Lufthansa First Class Terminal.
The FCT is exclusive by design, which adds up to an excellent lounge experience.
Only first class passengers traveling on Lufthansa and SWISS are permitted in (along with one guest traveling on the same flight, per the access rules), along with top tier ‘HON Circle’ members traveling on Lufthansa Group airlines.
First class passengers of other Star Alliance carriers are not permitted into the FCT – and not just for the practical reason that there are no arrangements to chauffeur passengers to other airlines’ planes. The Lufthansa first class lounges in the terminal also do not welcome passengers flying airlines outside the Lufthansa Group, irrespective of class of service or HON Circle status (subject to a limited exception for members of United’s invitation-only Global Services program flying United’s Global First class).
We would guess that by making connecting passengers make their own way to the FCT, Lufthansa are also attempting to encourage connecting passengers to use the First Class Lounges within the regular passenger terminals. It is worth noting that passengers connecting to or from Lufthansa or SWISS first class can use the FCT, provided they are departing FRA is on a Lufthansa Group airline.