This is one of the few lounges at Hong Kong Airport that isn't overcrowded at the moment, and the X-factor is the bar, which serves up a variety of great cocktails.
Prior to a late-night departure out of Hong Kong Airport, a friend was gracious enough to guest me into the American Express Centurion Lounge Hong Kong. AmEx opened their first Centurion Lounge outside the U.S. in Hong Kong in 2017, and access is open to a variety of AmEx cardholders (which I’ll detail in the Access and Opening Hours section below).
This was my first time in an AmEx Centurion Lounge, so I wasn’t too sure what expectations to set (in terms of crowding, etc.). Nevertheless, here’s a review detailing The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong’s access policy and opening hours, location, seating, food and beverages, facilities, and service.
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Access and Opening Hours
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong is open from 3 PM until 12:30 AM daily, and open to the following AmEx cardholders:
- Platinum Card, Business Platinum Card, and Corporate Platinum Card members
- Centurion members
- (Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Business Reserve Card cardholders have access to the lounge when flying Delta in theory, though there aren’t any Delta flights out of Hong Kong Airport)
Platinum/Business Platinum Card and will be charged a US$50 fee for each guest (two complimentary guests are allowed up until January 31st, 2023), unless they have spent US$75,000 in eligible purchases on the card either that calendar year or the year prior. Centurion Lounge members may enter with two additional guests or immediate family at no additional charge. You can access the lounge from three hours before departure (this only applies to the cardholder, as the guest’s boarding pass isn’t checked).
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Location
The Centurion Lounge is located by gate 60 at Hong Kong Airport, with clear signage pointing up a set of escalators. The (currently still closed) Emirates lounge and Plaza Premium Lounge are located in the same area, with the Centurion Lounge tucked in at the very end.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Entrance
My friend’s Platinum Card was scanned, as was his boarding pass – I was simply allowed to enter, without my boarding pass or any other details (for the record, my friend wasn’t on the same flight). We were also asked whether we wanted a WiFi passcode, which we obliged.
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Seating and Atmosphere
Once being admitted into the lounge by the friendly lounge agent, we headed down an L-shaped hallway into the main area of the lounge.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Hallway into Lounge
The main area of the lounge consisted of a fairly large room with a small selection of seating. Much of this seating comprised of wire chairs with butt padding, though there was a small selection of bar seating, bench seating and comfier armchairs available (these were all taken, so it was hard to take pictures).
Despite the fact that many of the comfier chairs were taken (perhaps that’s to say that there weren’t that many to start with), the lounge was much less crowded than I was expecting.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Seating
There was a TV by one of the walls which played the news out loud, but at least it was fairly quiet. Rishi Sunak was promising a “better future” for the UK live at the time of our visit, so perhaps the quiet TV wasn’t a good thing for us…?
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Seating
There’s a separate area by the hallway which also features wire chair seating. This area stayed unoccupied throughout the duration of our stay.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Enclosed Space
This is a pleasant space to spend time, though I wished for more diversity in seating options. Unless I’d missed something, you’re more or less out of luck if you want to nap or lounge.
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong WiFi
As aforementioned, I was given a WiFi code when entering the AmEx Centurion Lounge at Hong Kong Airport. Connecting to the WiFi was straightforward, and speeds measured an impressive 69.1 Mbps down and 79 Mbps up, which is above average for WiFi speeds in airline lounges.
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Dining Options
The Centurion Lounge doesn’t feature a la carte dining, but does feature a small food spread. I couldn’t open the individual food containers without looking suspicious (given the size of the lounge and the fact that it wasn’t very crowded), but I thought the spread was higher quality than your average non-airline operated lounge.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Buffet
Below are some of the options that I sampled, including mashed potatoes, stir fried vegetables with yam, fish fillet (the fish was specified, though I forgot), as well as fish maw soup. I liked that the selection had a sense of place – while there was a variety of food, you could definitely tell you were in Hong Kong.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Buffet Food
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Bar
The centerpiece of the AmEx Centurion Lounge Hong Kong is a cocktail bar, which also serves up barista coffee during the day. The lounge partners with bartender Jim Meehan, who works the PDT at the Landmark Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Bar
The lounge features an extensive wine menu, though arguably the more exciting selection is the cocktail menu, featured on the right in the photo below. The bartender described to me that “all” of the cocktails were the Centurion Lounge’s signature selection.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Menu
Intrigued by the use of soy sauce in one of the cocktails, I ordered the Soycar. While I enjoyed it, I didn’t find it to be particularly tasty, and also didn’t think the soy sauce “added” anything to the drink.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Bar – Soycar
I then tried the bartender’s Gin Basil Collins, which sounded more like the typical “up my alley” drink, featuring gin, yuzu soda, lemon juice, and simple syrup. You can’t go wrong with that, mmm…
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Bar – Gin Basil Collins
For those who don’t drink, as far as I’m aware, the lounge can nix the liquor from any of the drinks in the menu (since they’re freshly prepared) to create a tasty mocktail. I’m not sure how a Virgin Soycar would go down, though.
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Facilities
While I wasn’t in need of any facilities in particular, I noticed quite a few facilities at the Centurion Lounge. The lounge features a shower room, though unfortunately it was occupied when I tried to photograph it.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Shower
The lounge features bathrooms as well, so you won’t have to exit the lounge to use the bathrooms in the terminal.
Furthermore, the lounge has a meeting room, should you want to call somebody, or have a meeting with the guests/fellow cardholders in the lounge.
AmEx The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Meeting Room
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong Service
All of the people I interacted with at the AmEx Centurion Lounge Hong Kong were a delight. They were attentive, and plates were cleared quickly. While I ordered my first drink at the bar, a server proactively asked if I wanted a second drink, and brought it to me when it was prepared. (She even encouraged my friend to try a cocktail as well, though he wanted to stay sober for his flight.)
The bartenders were also clearly enthusiastic about their job, and had all sorts of exciting descriptions and recommendations about the drinks I tried. I have nothing but good things to say about the staff working at this lounge.
Conclusion: The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong
The Centurion Lounge Hong Kong is a small, exclusive lounge that’s a pleasure to visit. I’d say that the experience of visiting this lounge is made significantly better by their bar and cocktails, though I suppose otherwise it’s still a decent offering for a credit card-access lounge, since there’s plenty of free seats and the food is above average as well.
It’s a shame that Platinum Card members will soon have to pay extra for guests to access the lounge. The utility of the lounge does vary heavily according to whether you like cocktails or not, since there’s not otherwise any reason to spend more time here than necessary. Hong Kong Airport’s terminal is a very pleasant place to spend time in, so I don’t think I’d shell out the extra US$50 to be guested into the lounge, unless I was specifically seeking out a cocktail experience with a mate.
Have you visited the AmEx Centurion Lounge at Hong Kong Airport?
Alvin, information from the other well known blogs such as OMAAT and View from the Wing are very US-centric, and so it may be worth checking whether the information they provide apply equally in HK.
It appears that the guesting policy changes (i.e. US$50 guest fee) you refer to only apply to US-issued Amex Platinum cards (see https://global.americanexpress.com/lounge-access/the-platinum-card?locale=en-US&extlink=va-us-CPS-LFfindalounge).
The corresponding page for HK-issued Amex Platinum cards makes no mention of the guesting policy change (see https://global.americanexpress.com/lounge-access/the-platinum-card?locale=en-HK).
I did see this – genuinely I’m not sure, as there’s no other mention of this. Non-U.S. cardholders that I know seem to have received news of a policy change, though.
I don’t recall having received any notice of it myself, but maybe I missed an email or two…!
If the policy change also applies to HK-based cardholders, then I will seriously consider terminating the card, as it would represent a big perk loss for me (i.e. bringing my kids into the lounge as well (and they are *generally* well behaved!)). The only other benefits that would be left, and that I think are worth having, would be the Hilton Gold status and the travel insurance when you pay with the card.