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Best airport lounges
Photograph: Time Out

Time Out’s favorite airport lounges in the U.S.

Find 10 domestic lounges worth going out of your way to find and gain access to the next time to you fly.

Virginia Gil
Written by
Virginia Gil
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At Time Out, we’re all about helping you see the world on the cheap and leading you to the best travel deals whenever possible. But sometimes, even the thrifty seek a bit of luxury on vacation, a place to comfortably kick their feet up before it’s time to squeeze into that basic economy seat. I mean, who can turn down a $99 flight to Europe? Not us!

For that, we love an airport lounge. These once exclusive domains for the most privileged passengers have dramatically changed since American Airlines opened the first in NY’s LaGuardia Airport in 1939. What started as an invitation-only club for folks to enjoy a pre-board cocktail has evolved into a massive network of areas for travelers to rest, work, refuel and idle before a flight. Today, there are more lounges than ever, offering all kinds of amenities (pickleball, anyone?) and greater access for all.

Headed to the airport soon? We asked Time Out editors and frequent contributors to share their favorite lounges in the U.S. Whether you're lounge-curious or a pro looking for a new respite when you fly, you'll find helpful intel for your next trip below. 

Best airport lounges in the U.S.

Delta Sky Club at Boston Logan International Airport
Photograph: Courtesy J.Q. Louise for Time Out

1. Delta Sky Club at Boston Logan International Airport

As soon as you step into the Delta Sky Club in Terminal E at Boston’s Logan International Airport Club, the sheer size of everything impresses. This is both the newest airport lounge at Logan and the third for Delta. At nearly 21,000 square feet, the space can host more than 400 guests, but the level of service the staff offers every guest makes this lounge worth the membership.

How to find it: Terminal E, near gate E13

How to access it: Unfortunately, you cannot simply buy a day pass. You must either have a Delta Sky Club membership, be flying in Delta One (or affiliated SkyTeam premium cabin), hold Delta Diamond or Platinum Status (and in select instances Gold Medallion status), or have an American Express Platinum or Delta Credit Card.

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JQ Louise
Editor of Time Out Boston

2. Delta Sky Club at Los Angeles International Airport

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My favorite airport lounge is the Delta Sky Club at LAX. It has a full outdoor seating area with a bar, and you can look out on the planes and even the Hollywood sign in the distance. I’m always a bit despondent about leaving the weather when I fly out of LA, so it gives me one last chance to say goodbye. Also, the food is great and—wait for it—there’s an ice cream machine.

Where to find it: Terminal 3

How to access it: Complimentary for AmEx Platinum Card members with a departing flight no more than three hours prior to entry. Up to two guests are allowed for an additional $50 each.

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Will Gleason
Content Director, The Americas
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3. Centurion Lounge at Miami International Airport

There’s something utterly baffling about the Miami Amex Lounge: every single time, it’s just nearly too full. But yet, somehow, there’s miraculously one seat left in a third-floor lounge that spreads out in a long rectangle of a space so that every inch of it gets flooded with lots of bright Florida light. But the real reason to come is the buffet, with dishes by chef Michelle Bernstein. A longtime Miami favorite, Bernstein’s homey Latin-ish dishes are serious scores before a long flight.

Where to find it: North Terminal, Concourse D

How to access it: Free for AmEx Platinum Card members with a departing flight no more than three hours before entry. Up to two guests are allowed for an additional $50 each.

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Eric Barton
Contributor
Chase Sapphire Lounge at LaGuardia Airport
Photograph: Courtesy of Chase Sapphire

4. Chase Sapphire Lounge at LaGuardia Airport

If it's true lavishness that you're after, you might want to head to LaGuardia Airport's recently revamped Terminal B to bask in all that the new Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club has to offer. The new pre-flight destination has it all: delectable food options by Joseph Leonard, delicious cocktails, wellness treatment rooms, a retro-inspired arcade equipped with photobooths, pinball machines, a jukebox and shuffleboard, and top-notch coffee. Be careful, though: you might miss your flight while distracted by all the awesome things you can do on-site. Don't forget to also ask about Reserve Suites by Chase, which are basically bookable suites that come with a dedicated attendant, a personal bathroom with a shower, signature caviar service, a curated wine list and food by Jeffrey's Grocery.

How to find it: Terminal B, fourth floor

How to access it: Chase Sapphire Reserve, J.P. Morgan Reserve and The Ritz-Carlton Credit Card cardmembers and authorized users who have activated their complimentary Priority Pass membership have lounge access. Cardholders may bring two guests for free, and any additional guests are $27 each.

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5. Admirals Club at Miami International Airport

I’m a newly minted executive platinum member (humble brag!) who uses the American Airlines Admirals Club every chance she gets. I love the enclosed kids’ area, where I can let my feral toddler burn off some energy before our flight without disturbing other lounge guests. I also look forward to the pop-up food station, like the avocado toast bar I happened upon recently before a morning flight.

Where to find it: Concourse D, near gate D30

How to access it: First- and business-class passengers or AAdvantage members with qualifying status if you’re departing, arriving or connecting on an international or domestic flight. Each person is allowed three guests.

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Virginia Gil
USA Editor

6. Centurion Lounge at JFK International Airport

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I love this swanky lounge so much that I sometimes arrive extra early at the airport to ensure ample time to enjoy its amenities. The 15,000-square-foot space spans two floors, so it never feels overly crowded. Among my favorite features are the hip 1850 Speakeasy Bar, accessible via a metal door, and the Equinox Body Lab for self-guided meditation and stretching sessions. I love to snag a seat by the window to look out at the planes while sipping coffee or a cocktail (that is, depending on the time of day).

Where to find it: Terminal 4

How to access it: To enter the lounge, you must have access to at least one of several AmEx premium credit cards, including the Platinum Card.

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7. Admirals Club at Philadelphia International Airport

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My favorite airport lounge is the American Admirals Club at Philadelphia International Airport. The club’s location is the Terminal B/C connector. It’s ideal as it’s a two-minute walk from the TSA Pre-check security point in Terminal C. There are panoramic windows offering views of arriving and departing aircraft. There’s rarely a shortage of seating. There are work stations if you need to catch up on a project. The lounge boasts a full bar, a buffet set-up with hot and cold selections, and the fare also features baked sweets for grab-n-go. If you’re headed on an early flight, you’ll find an attendant making custom avocado toast with toppings, including smoked salmon, hard-cooked eggs and onions. There are also two entrances to the B and C terminals so you can dash to your flight.

Where to find it: Terminal B/C connector

How to access it: Complimentary for Citi /AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard holders. You must present this card as well as a same-day boarding pass for an American Flight. You can bring two guests with you, but they must also present a same-day boarding pass for an American Airlines flight. Additional guests will required to purchase a day pass for $79.

8. Centurion Lounge at Denver International Airport

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I often have a layover in Denver on flights out of San Francisco, and the Centurion Lounge there has been a lifesaver too many times to count. Opened in 2021, the 14,000-square-foot space is one of American Express' newest and largest lounges, featuring an expansive buffet with a live cooking station, two shower suites, a family room to keep kids entertained, and plenty of seating. The best part: a craft beer bar with local brews on tap.

Where to find it: Concourse C, near gate 46

How to access it: Complimentary for Platinum Card Members, Centurion Members and Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card Members.

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9. The Club MCO at Orlando International Airport

My favorite airport lounge is the family-friendly and group-friendly The Club MCO at Orlando International Airport. There are two locations at Airside 1 and 4, but Airside 4 is my favorite because it has shower facilities to freshen up before my flights. Both lounges offer food all day, like chicken tacos, breaded cauliflower, and raspberry-drizzled ice cream. The Hydration Station, a water bar with fruit-, herb, and veggie-infused waters, helps keep me hydrated on the go. For something boozy, I also like the bar’s Blackberry Whiskey Crush, that’s made with whiskey, citrus, blackberry syrup, bitters and ginger ale. The Wi-Fi is fast and free too.

Where to find it: Airside 4

How to access it: No membership is required—anyone can access the lounge starting three hours before their flight. Book a spot online for $50.

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Lauren Mack
USA contributor

10. Centurion Lounge at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

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The Centurion Lounge at LAX is a great spot for a quick refresh before or after a flight. In addition to a locally-inspired menu curated by James Beard Award winner Nancy Silverton, you can enjoy a shower, a quick spa service (including chair massages) and some quiet time in the Sunrise and Moonrise rooms, designed to help you adapt to new time zones and get over dreaded jetlag.

Where to find it: Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT)

How to access it: Amex cardholders including Platinum, Business Platinum, Corporate Platinum, Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card Members, Delta SkyMiles Reserve Business Card Members and Centurion Members

Gerrish Lopez
Contributor, New Orleans
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