Our journey to Montreal begins at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1. I hardly go to this airport as most of my flights commence from Terminals 2 and 3. This one’s the oldest of the 3 big NAIA airports, and As far as I remember it hardly stands out of the options I’ve got in Manila.
The silver lining was D telling me that we could use the Club Manila Lounge with his credit card. I didn’t bring that card with me but it was ok because cardholders can bring a plus one (yay for the freebie!). It is open for use by platinum and gold cardholders of selected banks in the Philippines. For non cardholders, the lounge is also open for a fee of 750 pesos (around $13 US).
It’s located at the fourth floor. I set my expectations low as on our way from the lift the hall was dim and there were a lot of blockages, it almost felt as if we were walking at a back alley. I wonder if we took the service lift?
At last, the lounge. It was bigger than the one we always go to at Terminal 3, and the lighting here is more relaxing. The food options are more varied: there are halal food, fruits, salad, sandwiches, hot meals, pastries, nachos and chips. For drinks there’s beer, fresh fruit juice, coffee and tea, and liquor. The seats are comfortable and the place is spacious. Wifi speed was also fast. Lastly their restrooms were clean. Unlike NAIA 3’s lounge, the boarding announcements can be heard in Club Manila Lounge. I guess the one advantage that the lounge at Terminal 3 has is the view of the runway – though it comes with too bright lighting in the whole lounge as well.
It’s quite a steal for cardholders, but something I’d reconsider if I didn’t have my card and will be paying out. I guess if I was so tired and needed a few hours’ sleep while waiting for my flight out of NAIA I’d pay for a stay at the lounge. Otherwise, I’m happy walking around next to the terminal gate, giving my feet a stretch in preparation for a long flight. Which reminds me, I have less than an hour to do that now.