Review: Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda

Location
HND, Terminal 3
Date
September 2022
Rating

Prior to my Japan Airlines First Class flight to Los Angeles, I had access to the JAL First Class Lounge at Tokyo Haneda International Airport.

This would be my first time flying Japan Airlines First Class out of Tokyo Haneda, and therefore my first time paying a visit to this lounge.

In This Post

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Access

Haneda Airport’s international departures hall is in the shape of a long walkway. Japan Airlines has two sets of lounges at Haneda: the First Class Lounge and the Sakura Lounge, which is the airline’s business class lounge.

The JAL First Class Lounge is located airside, across from Gate 112 in Terminal 3. A single set of elevators lead up to the fourth floor, one level above the departure gates. 

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Lounge access
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Escalator access

The lounge’s operating hours are between 6:30am and 2:45am. Passengers travelling in First Class on Japan Airlines and other Oneworld airlines have access to the lounge, as well as those with Oneworld Emerald status flying on a Oneworld carrier.

Stepping off the elevators, I arrived at a sleek stone entryway with the JAL First Class Lounge emblem marked outside. Inside is the reception, where there is a check-in desk.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Entrance

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Seating

Upon entry, there are two hallways, where the right-hand side leads to most of the lounge’s offerings, and the left-hand side leads to the shower amenities.

Heading down the hallway to the right, marble floors are flanked by partitions exhibiting beautiful traditional Japanese motifs. At the end of the corridor are the lounge’s two main seating areas and dining areas.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Hallway

There are actually two floors to this lounge; however, the portion on the fifth floor was closed at the time of my visit.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Map

The lounge features natural tones with elegant touches of marble, greenery, and wood furnishing, and there are large windows spanning the wall with views of the tarmac. It’s a sprawling space with a “room-to-room configuration,” as Japan Airlines describes it.

At the front of the lounge is the main seating area. Rows of three armchairs are in the centre of the lounge, and additional chairs line the wall. It’s worth noting that each seat has relatively easy access to power ports, which are located next to or behind the seats.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Seating
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Seating
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Seating

There is a designated quiet with private cylindrical pod-like seating situated between the main seating area and the walkway. This area also served as a business centre, with some desks and printers.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Pod seating
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Business centre

Moving further into the lounge, you’ll find the dining area, JAL’s Table. There is ample seating here, with clusters of four-person dining tables concentrated in the centre of the space.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – JAL’s Table seating
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – JAL’s Table seating

Among these clusters of dining tables are long communal tables, each with over a dozen seats.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – JAL’s Table seating

Along the windows spanning the edge of the lounge, the seating offers panoramic views of the tarmac. In the central area of the lounge seat with smaller tables in sets of two with floor lamps between them, while on the outer edges of the lounge, individual seats are dotted along a long counter.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Tarmac view

At the back of the lounge are two-person dining tables and bench seating. It never felt crowded during my time in the lounge, and the seats weren’t close to being full. 

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – JAL’s Table seating
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – JAL’s Table seating

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Dining

The dining area, JAL’s Table, has a live-cooking station along the terminal-side wall of the lounge. The station is highlighted by a large graphic installation on the wall behind it.

The majority of the food options were available via the à la carte menu. However, there is a very light buffet spread. At the time of my visit, there were just a few fish and sashimi options.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Self-serve items
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Self-serve items

Sushi, curry rice, and Chinese-style noodles were among the selections from the à la carte menu. It struck me as odd that there weren’t any Japanese-style noodles available.

Naturally, I still went for the Chinese-style noodles. Even though it was a tasty bowl, I had hoped for an udon or ramen bar like the one that ANA has in their Suite Lounge here in Tokyo Haneda.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Chinese-style noodles

I also helped myself to sushi and curry rice. Admittedly, I didn’t eat too much, since I wanted to maintain some of my appetite for the flight.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Curry rice

The unlimited portions of sushi is definitely the highlight of Japan Airlines’s First Class ground experience, whether you’re departing from Haneda or Narita Airport. If you’d like, you can even go up to the live-cooking stations to watch the sushi chef prepare your meal. 

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Sushi

Next to the live-cooking station was a comprehensive drink station. There was self-serve juice, coffee, tea, and some alcoholic drinks.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite

The Red Suite is located at the far end of the lounge, and has a sophisticated aviation theme throughout. This is definitely one of the most notable features of the lounge and was certainly a highlight of my visit. 

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite entrance

The space is distinctively different from the rest of the lounge, with a premium ambience. It’s divided into four sections: the Library, the Gallery, the Retreat, and the Bar.

Upon entering the room, aviation motifs and memorabilia are dotted around. Historical photos, globes, travel books, aircraft replicas, and aviation-themed maps filled the space.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite aviation memorabilia

There is a central seating area of large black leather sofa chairs, and then two-person seating in another section.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite seating
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite seating

Moreover, there is a self-serve bar featuring Laurent-Perrier Champagne and premium sake. If you’re looking for a quieter area in the lounge, this is a prime location to sip on a drink and unwind – there wasn’t a single other occupant who stationed themselves here during the time of my visit. 

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite bar
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Laurent-Perrier Champagne

In the back of the Red Suite was a games room. There was a foosball table and four chess boards, with additional seating nearby. For me, though, the highlight of this room was poring over the dozens of aviation-themed maps that were lined up across all four walls. 

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Red Suite foosball table

Overall, I thought the Red Suite was a fantastic themed addition to the Japan Airlines First Class Lounge, and I wouldn’t mind having a room like this in my own house one day.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Other Facilities

The restrooms are located to the left of the entrance. They were kept nice and clean, and were also quite spacious.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Restroom entrance
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Restroom

There are a few additional amenities available here, including showers. These are accessible by speaking to an attendant and scheduling a time slot in advance.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Shower rooms entrance
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Shower rooms

Moreover, there are a number of phone booths and storage lockers, which can be found near the check-in area and down the hallway to the right.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – Phone booths

It’s a shame that the remainder of the lounge, known as JAL’s Salon, wasn’t open during the time of my visit. 

It’s located one level up, accessible from the elevator or stairs near the reception. According to the lounge staff, the drink menu is the same as downstairs; however, this space is somewhat cozier and more intimate for relaxing and sipping beverages.

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo Haneda – JAL’s Salon entrance

At the time of my visit in September 2022, JAL’s Salon only operates during very limited hours, perhaps as a result of the scant foot traffic at this time. Now that Japan has reopened to tourists, I anticipate that this space could soon return to full operating hours, and I look forward to checking it out on a future occasion.

Conclusion

The JAL First Class Lounge in Tokyo Haneda is a fine spot to spend time prior to a Japan Airlines First Class flight. I wouldn’t say it’s worth arriving too far in advance, though, as there aren’t too many world-beating lounge features to occupy yourself with, and there are only so many plates of sushi you can eat.

Compared to many of the world’s more ostentatious First Class lounges, this lounge is rather modest and understated in comparison. However, one in-lounge attraction is certainly quite noteworthy: the aviation-themed Red Suite, which is well worth checking out and makes for a unique atmosphere in which you can enjoy a glass of Champagne or sake. 

1 Comment
  1. Leon YYC

    I’m happy to report that there was ramen available at the JL F lounge at HND on November 15 but of course, YMMV.

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