After an ephemeral stay at the Marriott Resort Fiji Momi Bay, Jessy and I returned to Nadi International Airport via taxi about two hours prior to our 7pm flight for Auckland.
We were assisted by an effervescent Fiji Airways staff member at the Premier Class check-in queue, who helped us with our checked bag, handed us our boarding passes, and invited us to the Fiji Airways Premier Lounge to pass the time.
While I’m don’t always choose to review every individual lounge prior to my flights, I was mightily impressed by Fiji Airways’s flagship lounge as soon as I entered, so I decided it’d be worthwhile to document the full experience of what you can expect as a Fiji Airways premium passenger on the ground in Nadi.
Note that the Fiji Airways Premier Lounge Nadi is also a part of the Priority Pass network, meaning that you’ll have access even if you’re travelling in economy class with a Priority Pass membership. It’s somewhat rare to see an airline’s flagship lounge being listed as part of Priority Pass, but here in Fiji where most traffic is presumably leisure-oriented, it does make more sense.
The lounge is down a short hallway after completing the security checkpoint. It may be hard to spot at first, and Jessy and I had to circle back to find it after initially proceeding further into the airport concourse.
Check your documents with the friendly front desk staff – whether it’s a business class ticket or a Priority Pass membership – and proceed into the lounge to your right.
The physical design of the lounge is very thoughtful, using a central curved wall to guide guests towards the various zones for relaxation, dining, work, and play.
The lighting throughout most of the space is quite subtle – you’ll notice the elegant “starry night” lights on the ceiling – but in the absence of any natural light, the central wall is brightly illuminated and decked out entirely with plants and greenery, bestowing a sense of heightened well-being upon your stay in the lounge.
Let’s take a look around at the seating areas first. A large portion of the space is occupied by traditional lounge-style seats facing one another in clusters of two or four, available in a variety of upholstery.
There were also a handful of seating booths, which looked like a comfortable spot to sit back with a book and a glass of wine while you wait for your flight. A Christmas tree adorned the space nearby during our visit in mid-December.
There’s a row of seats facing a supersized television viewing screen, which felt a little close for comfort. I did appreciate, however, the curved half-wall that separates this area from the dining room, which was a continuation of the elegant interior design here in the Fiji Airways lounge.
Towards the back of the lounge was a slightly more private seating zone with partitions between each seat, which seemed more suitable to solo travellers than larger groups.
Jessy and I sat down for some dinner, having not eaten anything substantial since breakfast. I don’t normally have too high an expectation for the food quality at a regional airline lounge that’s also part of Priority Pass, and I must say I was quite impressed by the offerings here.
The dining zone consists of a buffet, a fully-staffed bar complete with an espresso machine, and a solid number of dining tables that could sit two, three, or four people.
The hot buffet spread catered to a range of tastes, with tonight’s menu consisting of rosemary roasted chicken, sautéed potatoes, and mushroom pappardelle. In addition, there was a selection of fresh focaccia loaf, which was baked to perfection and kept us coming back for multiple portions.
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The salad, fruit, and dessert spread wasn’t too shabby either…
…and on top of all that, there was a traditional Fijian snack cart that housed a delightful mix of Indo-Fijian sweet and savoury snacks.
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Over by the bar, you could help yourself to a glass of red wine, white wine, or (of course) Fiji Water. A greater selection of premium liqueurs and soft drinks was available behind the bar, along with your choice of hand-crafted espresso drinks, which you could order with the staff and ask to be delivered to wherever you were sitting.
Between the hot and cold spreads, the snack cart, and the barista service, Jessy and I managed to put together quite a wholesome meal, and we both remarked at how surprised we were by the overall quality of this lounge.
Service by the staff members in the lounge was also exemplary, and a breath of fresh air compared to the poor demonstration of Fijian service we had witnessed back at the Marriott Resort Fiji Momi Bay.
One of the staff came around our table to ask if she could fetch any drinks for “the two lovebirds”, and when we said that we were in no position to refuse, she came back with a couple of extra-strong rum punches that were “usually only given to couples on honeymoon”. How nice of her!
After our meal, I spent some time exploring the remainder of the lounge.
There’s a children’s play room, which contained a great number of toys and playthings, and was housed in a glass enclosure to allow for easy adult supervision.
Towards the front of the lounge was a business centre with four iMac workstations and a printer. Compared to the traditional airport lounge, the Fiji Airways lounge is somewhat lacking a dedicated workspaces, although I suppose the hope is that relatively few travellers here in Fiji will have to spend their holidays catching up on work.
The lounge’s restrooms are spacious and kept in a good condition…
…and there’s even a shower room, which ranks among one of the nicer-looking airport lounge shower rooms I’ve encountered around the world, although it is lacking a toilet.
While not pictured here, the Fiji Airways Premier Lounge also features a Spa at the Gate, where you can book a pre-flight spa treatment at a very affordable price.
You can find the spa treatment menu here, although a few other travellers report that there may be relatively long wait times for a spa treatment, so it’s best to inquire about one soon after arriving at the lounge.
For our part, Jessy and I continued to nurse our beverages for a little while, before moving into the main seating zone to spread out more freely and eventually heading to the boarding gate about an hour before departure for our flight to Auckland.
Despite coming in with modest expectations, I was pleasantly surprised by the Fiji Airways Premier Lounge Nadi, from its rejuvenating botanically-inspired interior to the quality of the food and service in the lounge.
In addition to serving as Fiji Airways’s flagship lounge at its hub airport, it definitely ranks up there as one of the best Priority Pass lounges I’ve visited, meaning that you’ll be able to enjoy your time here whether you’re passing through Nadi in business or economy.
While I wouldn’t necessarily recommend arriving early just to maximize your time here, I’d say that dedicating an hour or so to this lounge, in order to savour the best that Fiji Airways has to offer, will surely be time well spent.