The so-called First Class Lounge Doha might have the most miss leading name ever. Why? Because it’s actually a Qatar Airways Lounge only for oneworld status members, not for Business or First Class guests. Plus, the lounge is really bad for something called ‘First Class’ as you’ll see in this review.
Qatar Airways likes playing games when it comes to elite members. In Doha, there are four lounges:
Weirdly enough, the Al Mourjan Lounge is actually the Business Class Lounge for all Qatar Airways Business Class passengers, while the Qatar Airways Business Class Lounge is only for elite members with an oneworld Sapphire or Emerald Status. The Qatar Airways First Class Lounge Doha, which I’ll present in this review, is just for oneworld Emerald Elite members and is definitely worse than even the “real” Business Class Lounge, the Al Mourjan Lounge.
The so-called First Class Lounge Doha consists of basically one medium-sized room in a L-shape. It’s a semi-open area as it’s located inside of the terminal without a roof. The positive side of this is that the lounge feels spacious and bright, the negative one is the constant and extremely annoying noise.
The seating itself consists of several different arrangements with several armchairs and other comfortable seating in the entrance area. It’s actually quite nicely designed with several green elements.
Further armchairs are located in the “corner” of the lounge as well as near the buffet in the back of the “L”. Here, you can also find some dining tables.
In the entrance area, you can also find an area, which is dedicated to relaxing and is a little darker. Here, a few daybeds in a semi-private setting allow you to rest a little.
All in all, I thought that the design and style of the First Class Lounge is actually nice enough, but it’s not a stunning place by any stretch. There are also two really bad things to say about the lounge. First, there’s no place to properly work with your laptop due to a lack of tables. Second, there is a very large screen right above the lounge, which shows various ads and really annoys everyone in the lounge (the light settings are changing every other second).
Qatar Airways tends to really amaze me when it comes to catering, even in Economy Class. Sadly, the lounge in Doha (at least this one) isn’t on the same level. The offerings are actually quite sad for anything branded a First Class Lounge. There are a few cold options on the buffet, which I thought were relatively tasty.
Then there were a few hot dishes, which weren’t really hot when I tried them and which mainly tasted quite bland.
It’s not that the food was actively bad, but you’d just expect a lot more in a lounge operated by Qatar Airways, even if it’s only for elite members flying Economy Class. Other than that, there was some soup available on the buffet.
Desserts were lacking and the choice of drinks was just between water, soft drinks and juices.
If we don’t see the constant noisy and blinking ads above the lounge as entertainment, this is another lacking area. There is a set-up of a few magazines and newspapers in the middle of the lounge, which I thought was nice enough (there were even international newspapers).
Other than that, there is no business center, no printer and once again, no real place to work. The WiFi was at least working, but it was slow and spotty. For a new airport and an airline like Qatar Airways (five star airline) this is just plain disappointing.
After reading this review, you’re most likely already guessing what my conclusion is. The so-called First Class Lounge Doha is plain disappointing. While it’s physically nice and offers at least an okay buffet and a nice choice of newspapers and magazines, everything else is really bad. I was particularly offended by the open layout, which made the lounge incredibly noisy and very uncomfortable due to the large screen showing ads all day long. I would say that the lounge is on par with a Priority Pass lounge, but for me it’s definitely no place to stay for longer than a few minutes as you can neither relax nor work.