After an awesome weekend in New York City, it was time to fly back to Seattle. We booked a ~$200 fare on Alaska Airlines from Seattle to New York and flew into JFK while flying out of Newark. We took an uber from our Sheraton hotel to Newark which cost ~$45.. which isn’t too bad for New York.
Newark airport isn’t the best as some gates aren’t connected airside which means some lounges are located landside, such as this one (the only Priority Pass lounge at Newark). The Art & Lounge is located in Terminal B before security between the B2 and B3 areas. The lounge is open from 09:00 – 22:30 from Sunday to Friday and from 13:30 – 23:30 on Saturdays.
The lounge isn’t just a Priority Pass lounge, but rather a few airlines’ premium passengers also have access. Additionally, you can buy a day pass for $35. Diners Club members also have access.
We were quickly welcomed in the lounge by a friendly agent. My AMEX Platinum Card includes a Priority Pass membership, which is how we accessed the lounge.
The lounge features the following amenities:
- Soft beverages
- Air conditioning
- Flight Information Monitor
The main downside is the lack of natural light, however the vibrant colours and decorations somewhat enhanced the overall atmosphere. The lounge was virtually empty when we were there and therefore we were able to relax a bit and work before our flight.
Plenty of seating areas span throughout the lounge and they consist of sofas, lounge chairs, relaxing chairs, restaurant-style seating, etc. A sleeping room is also available, though it was being remodelled when we were there. I like that the lounge has plenty of seating and each seating area has something different – a TV, library, business centre, snacks/drinks, etc.
Catalogues and other journals were located near the back area of the lounge next to the “library”.. I’m more than 99% sure all of the books were fake… A large projector featured the news and several other monitors in the lounge had flight information.
The food/drink area as well as the bar are located in the very back of the lounge, further away from the main seating areas. A restaurant-style seating area is available near the food area for convenience. The bar is somewhat self-service since I didn’t see anyone actually making drinks for people.
The bar featured premium alcoholic beverages, all of which were complimentary. These included wine, champagne, spirits, etc. The food in the lounge consisted of fruit, vegetables, bread, sandwiches, soup, salads, cookies, chips, pretzels, muffins, etc. The non-alcoholic drink selection featured water, soda, juice, coffee, tea, etc.
I will say that the food was excellent. The tuna sandwiches and various soups were delicious and the salad choices were also tasty. Other snacks such as cookies were equally fresh. I’m glad we were able to have a nice snack before our long flight back to Seattle.
The bathrooms were located right next to the lounge entrance and were very clean.
All in all, a great non-airline lounge with a quiet atmosphere and tasty snacks and drinks where passengers can relax or work. I was impressed by the food, since virtually everything was delicious. We spent about two hours in the lounge before heading over to another terminal where our flight was leaving from.
Security was a mess and the TSA agents were complaining how they are “understaffed” and a “mess”.. what else is new? You have got to love that they literally complain on the job as I’m sure most passengers love to hear about that. So of course there was no Pre-Check and I don’t recall the last time I had to wait in line for security for ~30 minutes. The plus was that we didn’t have to remove our shoes since we did have Pre-Check, we did however have to remove everything else.
Boarding was almost complete by the time we made it to the gate, and I was ready for another 5+ hour flight in Economy (and my last flight of that length in Economy). We eventually made it to Seattle a few hours later and were quite exhausted, though happy about the awesome weekend.