Qantas opened a renovated and expanded Qantas Club in Darwin on 30 September 2014. When we visited, we were impressed by the size of the lounge. While the lounge was furnished in a similar manner to other Qantas Club domestic lounges, it certainly feels ‘fresher’. Perhaps that is because, in contrast to most other state capital cities, there is no separate Qantas Business Lounge here.
In a welcome move, renovations more than doubled the size of the lounge to provide seating for 350 passengers. This was needed given that the previous iteration of the lounge was often standing room only during peak periods.
Located adjacent to the recently opened Virgin Australia lounge, the Qantas Club is at the far end of the departure terminal in Darwin.
Inside, passengers are greeted by a gleaming reception desk.
Of note is that this lounge is exempt from Qantas’ new footwear policy (or as the airline refers to it ‘the closer application of its minimum smart casual dress guidelines’ for lounges).
The seating area in the corner of the lounge reception looks nice, but presumably isn’t designed to actually be sat in.
Inside guests encounter a familiar Qantas colour scheme and seating design, though the lounge does feel a little more modern that Qantas Club offerings at other domestic ports. Thankfully, unlike its new international lounges in Singapore and Hong Kong, Qantas hasn’t tried to bring a distinctly Darwin feel to the lounge.
The lounge offers a large amount of seating along the windows, however few of these locations have power points available (as far as we could see during our visit). This feels like a somewhat of an oversight given the preponderance of personal devices in seemingly perpetual urgent need of recharge.
The lounge opens up to a bar stool / table set up with familiar long white desks. These, thankfully, have ample power sockets available.
The bar provides familiar Qantas Club fare with a selection of four Australian beers on tap, along with wine and basic spirits. During our visit, there was a long wait at the bar before being served.
Adjacent to the bar is a small buffet selection, offering a selection of cold and hot food. The standard sandwich toaster and pancake machine can be seen at the far end of this photo.
A small but ample selection of food was available during our lunchtime visit.
In some areas the seating is quite tightly packed together, which means the only logical place to put carry on luggage is on the other chair (thereby haling seating capacity).
The seating is varied slightly as you continue through the lounge, again similar to Qantas’ layout at other ports.
There is also a ‘Family Zone’ for kids.
Qantas’ upgrade to its Darwin lounge was long overdue. It almost seems like the lounge has been designed to cater for more passengers than actually required, which is refreshing given how crowded Qantas Club lounges can be during peak times.