Review — Tom Bradley LAX Oneworld Business Class Lounge

Today we will be reviewing the Oneworld Business Class Lounge located in the Tom Bradley terminal of the Los Angeles International airport. Unfortunately it took a little longer than I would’ve liked to get it completed but here it is!

For a quick summary on our visit scroll to the very bottom of the post.

Location

As stated in the title, the Oneworld Lounge can be found on the second level in the Tom Bradley International Terminal. There is a first class lounge in addition to the business class lounge so make sure you go in the right one. They are both well-marked but the business class lounge can be found if you immediately turn right after going up the escalator near the time tower.

fullsizeoutput_6d6Sign near the entrance of the LAX Oneworld Business Class Lounge

I also went ahead and took the liberty of adding a map of the terminal and circling the location of the elevator in red below. This would be the easiest way to access it if you are going through security in Tom Bradley.

Screen Shot 2018-04-06 at 6.14.56 AM.pngMap of main terminal area at Tom Bradley International Terminal

Even if you are flying out of Terminal 4 on American you can still access this terminal and lounge airside. Simply take the connector, which in my experience is well-marked, and it will actually take you into the terminal on the same level as the lounge. However, if doing this I would leave a solid 10-15 minutes for the walk between terminals depending on your pace. However, now that American has opened their flagship lounge at LAX–which I unfortunately didn’t get to visit while I was there–it lowers the need for passengers flying American to make this walk. But from what I have seen the ambiance and decor is completely different between the two, so if looking for a change of scenery this is a great option to have.

Seating

Upon first impression the lounge is very large with a variety of seating options. I really liked the amount of tables they had (great for food and drinks) and the overall lighting in the lounge. Before a long flight–especially one late in the evening–I like to simply relax before boarding, which is very easy to do with the dimmer lighting in this particular lounge.

fullsizeoutput_6cfCozy sitting area with flat screen television in the Oneworld business lounge

So even though I believe the overall food and beverage offerings come out ahead in the new flagship lounge at LAX, the Oneworld lounge might have it beat in terms of the lighting atmosphere.

The lounge had a lot of loosely defined areas and wrapped around a large glass atrium that helped divide up the space while at the same time leaving a somewhat open feel.

fullsizeoutput_6d0The lounge has chairs in the rear with views of the security line in Tom Bradley

Then if you really wanted to you could go to the very back of the lounge and watch people stand in line for security at TBIT. While I am certainly a fan of views in lounges, this wasn’t exactly what I would have in mind. But given the location of the lounge there really isn’t much they can do about adding views of the tarmac so it is at the very least nice to have another window and not simply block everything off with another wall.

Overall, the seating options closer to the buffet and bar area were rather busy during our visit, with the seats at the bar itself being wide open. But there wouldn’t have been any issues finding a seat in another area if we hadn’t of lucked out with a couple leaving for their flight right as we arrived.

Food & Drink

As I’m sure the case is for most people, one of my favorite parts of these types of business class lounges is that all of the food and beverages are complimentary. Its an excellent way to relax and fill up before a long flight without having to worry about the added stress of the airport food court.. which just so happens to be right outside the lounge. This particular Oneworld lounge had a respectable selection of spirits available at the bar along with options for red wine, white wine, and champagne.

fullsizeoutput_6dcThe bar in the Oneworld Lounge at Tom Bradley International Airport

Since we were just beginning our adventure to Hong Kong we decided to start our lounge visit with a couple glasses of champagne and a toast to our adventure. We then moved on to gin & tonic to enjoy with our meal that was made with the Beefeater they had on hand. The image below gives a very good idea of what type of spirit selection you can expect when visiting the Oneworld lounge here.

fullsizeoutput_6e9Decent selection of complimentary spirits available in the Oneworld Lounge

fullsizeoutput_6e7They had plenty of self-serve wine available at the bar

fullsizeoutput_6e6No need to be concerned about finding a glass to pour your drink in

fullsizeoutput_6ddHot buffet items at the Oneworld Business class lounge

As soon as we had our drinks in order and found a table we decided to go check out the buffet. They had a few warm options that included things such as noodles, chicken, and eggplant. As well as some cold options like salad and potato salad. Overall I would have to say the food at the buffet was okay, nothing particularly memorable about it, but still nice to have a hot meal option before the flight.

fullsizeoutput_6deThey had a few different cold salads to choose from

fullsizeoutput_6dfThe dessert section was rather bare and picked over during our time there

fullsizeoutput_6ceThe highlight of our visit had to be the LAX Taco Cart!

Now where this lounge really stood out for us was the LAX Taco Cart! As average as we found the buffet to be we LOVED the made-to-order tacos and quesadillas. The cook at the station was extremely friendly and talked to us about our upcoming trip while throwing our tacos together for us. We also ordered a quesadilla to split, just to try it, cause why not? This took a little longer since he had to grill it but once it was done he knew exactly where we were sitting and brought it right to us. When it was all said and done the tacos were absolutely fantastic! As long as this LAX Taco Stand is open for business I would certainly come back to this lounge to have some more.

fullsizeoutput_6d8Tacos on the left with food from the buffet on the right

Unfortunately I didn’t get a great picture since the taco looked so good I completely forgot to take a picture before taking my first bite.. oops! But as you can see, the food from the buffet on the right doesn’t look as good as the tacos.

fullsizeoutput_6d7We really enjoyed our fries at the end of our meal from the fry cart

Just when we were both ready to be finished eating for the night we quickly had to make room for some more food. Seemingly out of nowhere one of the lounge attendants came by pushing a cart full of french fries and ketchup. We simply couldn’t turn down fresh french fries that were literally being wheeled right in front of us. As soon as we obliged to his question he asked if we wanted ketchup or mayo before setting our fries down on the table for us. It’s really so simple, but what a great touch it was, fresh hot french fries wheeled right to you while waiting for a flight.

Amenities & Lounge Staff

This particular lounge didn’t have any real “WOW” factor amenities but it did cover all of the basics. They have wi-fi, showers, a business center, and a very interesting circular seating area with a fire place in the middle that feels like it could be in an Austin Powers movie. I didn’t sit in this area but needed to walk by a couple times to use the restrooms and there were actually people sprawled out sleeping on the couches–which I found to be a little tacky–but not a big deal since there were still plenty of open seats.

fullsizeoutput_6d9Circular sitting area with fake fire place in the LAX Oneworld lounge

fullsizeoutput_6d2Back desk for requesting a shower suite in the LAX Oneworld Lounge

There seemed to be plenty of shower suites in the far back corner of the lounge, however I didn’t feel the need to use them before our flight to Hong Kong. But from what I could tell there wouldn’t have been much of a wait at all if I had wanted to take a quick shower before boarding.

fullsizeoutput_6d5Business center with plenty of Mac computers and a departures board

The business center didn’t offer a whole lot of privacy but there were plenty of computers to use for browsing the internet or checking email. There was absolutely nobody in here during our visit in the evening so in turn that would’ve made it a very quiet work area if I had been hoping to work.

How can you get in the LAX Oneworld Lounge?

The LAX Oneworld Business Class Lounge offers a few ways to gain entry:

  1. Flying in either Business Class or First Class internationally on your itinerary with Cathay Pacific or another Oneworld carrier
  2. Flying internationally in any class of service on your Oneworld itinerary as a Oneworld Sapphire or Emerald member
  3. Flying with anyone who has one of the above statuses as they can bring in a guest free of charge

Pros

  • Very large and relaxing lounge with lots of seating options
  • The LAX Taco Cart is an excellent food option with great service when open
  • Solid complimentary beverage options and friendly staff that could even be found wheeling around a french fry cart 🙂

Cons

  • Very few views and the ones it does offer are not of the runway, tarmac, or apron
  • The buffet options and dessert restocking could be improved

Final Thoughts

When it comes down to it, this lounge is a great option to have. While it’s not the best lounge out there–I have been to far worse–at the end of the day we were relaxed and ready to take on our 15 hour flight to Hong Kong. If you ask me, that is really what matters the most.. is the lounge able to remove you from the stresses of traveling and allow you to relax before the flight. Because if a lounge makes that possible then you can start your vacation before even departing. While the buffet came short of expectations for us the taco cart more than made up for it. So between that, the complimentary premium drink selections, overall friendly staff, and relaxing ambiance I would have no problem stopping in here again before another international flight out of LAX. But don’t forget, if you’re flying American there is an even more convenient option to check out now in the form of their LAX Flagship Lounge. Until next time!

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