Etihad Lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 Review
As you’ll read over the next couple of weeks Hannah and I have spent the last week in Abu Dhabi on a well needed holiday – which is why there has been a lack of posts over the last couple of days (apologies!). The positive is that over the next couple of weeks I’ll be writing about our thoroughly enjoyable experience flying business class with Etihad to Abu Dhabi as well as our once in a lifetime first class ‘apartment’ flights back.
However, today I’m going to be giving you an insight into the Etihad business class lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 which has recently rebranded as The House Heathrow Terminal 4.
As you may already know Etihad airlines has had its financial difficulties over the last 2 years. They have made both cuts to their service in the air as well as on the ground. At the Etihad lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 there have been a number of changes over the last year. The first major change at The Etihad business class lounge Heathrow was the removal of the Six Senses Spa, now only available in the first class lounge at Abu Dhabi Airport.
In October 2018 Etihad made a further significant change to their lounge offering at London Heathrow with the outsourcing of the operations to a third party – No 1 Lounges. It was at this point that the Etihad lounge London Heathrow was rebranded as ‘The House – Home of Etihad and Other Leading Airlines’.
For those who have flown out of Gatwick and have used the No 1 facilities in either the North or South terminal, you’ll know that whilst the facilities are good they are far from what might be expected in a business or first class lounge.
As a result, both Hannah and I were pleasantly surprised with the product offering at the new No 1 Lounge Heathrow Terminal 4. Read on to find out more about the excellent silver service dining experiences and friendly staff that The House Heathrow Terminal 4 has to offer as well as how you can gain access.
The House Terminal 4 – Access Rules
Until No 1 Lounges took over the Etihad business class lounge Heathrow it was only available to those who were flying with Etihad airlines.
Whilst The House Terminal 4 is still available to passengers flying with Etihad in business, first or if you’re really lucky ‘the residence’, it’s also available to other passengers flying with both Etihad and other Airlines.
Let’s take a look at the possible methods of accessing The House London Heathrow Terminal 4:
- Complimentary access to passengers flying with Etihad in business, first or the residence.
- Free access to Gold and Platinum members of the Etihad Guest frequent-flyer programme.
- Free access to Priority Pass or Dragonpass members – Whilst you don’t have to book in advance to gain entry with either Priority Pass or Dragonpass we’d strongly recommend reserving a place for just £5 per person through the No 1 website. This will guarantee you access and also provides fast-track security. Priority Pass is available for free through the American Express Platinum Card (reviewed in full here).
- Like all No 1 lounges, you can also gain access by purchasing a pass through the No 1 website. If you book in advance the price is discounted to £40 per person otherwise you’ll pay £50 pp on the door. Whilst the No 1 Lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 is head and shoulders above other No 1 lounges, £50 per person is a lot to spend in my eyes especially when you can gain free access through the likes of Priority Pass and Dragonpass.
Etihad Lounge Heathrow – Before You Arrive
As I previously mentioned, the Etihad business lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 is shared by both business and (importantly) first class passengers. As such, and unlike other business class lounges at Heathrow, the lounge provides high-end facilities in line with expectations of first-class travellers.
The lounge is situated opposite Gate 10 and 11, which is fortunately where the majority of Etihad flights depart from (including ours), however it couldn’t be much further away from the fast-track security.
The Etihad Airways Lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 is slightly tricky to find. We initially ended up in the SkyTeam Lounge which is situated directly above. After being redirected by the kind staff at the SkyTeam Lounge we headed down a floor using a spiral set of stairs to The House Lounge Heathrow.
Upon arrival, we were greeted at reception by a very accommodating member of staff, who confirmed that we weren’t the only ones who had mistakenly walked into the SkyTeam Lounge that day! Situated next to reception is an area to store luggage.
When entering the lounge one of the first things that you notice, when comparing to the likes of the British Airways business class lounges at Heathrow, is that the Etihad business lounge Heathrow is a fraction of the size. We arrived roughly 2 hours 45 minutes before our flight, at which point the lounge was extremely quiet.
However it didn’t take long for it to fill up, which is no surprise given that the A380 we were travelling on carried 70 business class passengers and a further 9 first-class passengers alongside various elite status members and further No 1 guests who had gained access to the lounge through either Priority Pass, Dragonpass or by paying to enter.
Seating in the Etihad Lounge London Heathrow
Whilst The House Lounge Terminal 4 Heathrow was rebranded in October last year, it is still very much presented in Etihad colour schemes – think yellow and beige…
To the left when you walk in is the main bar area, with seating offered at either the bar or a selection of swivel chairs in the nearby surrounds.
Next to the main bar area is a further casual seating area providing a mixture of sofas and armchairs which had a typical airport lounge feel. Various charging points were located throughout the lounge but unfortunately not in the dining area (I’d recently visited the Cathay Pacific lounge, which I reviewed here, and really appreciate the number of charging points in the restaurant!).
Whilst Hannah and I were planning to eat on board, we couldn’t resist the opportunity of testing out the a la carte menu. The House Terminal 4 Heathrow prides itself on its fine dining experience. In hindsight, choosing to eat early was a great idea as the lounge quickly filled up and there were only very few tables left within 15 minutes of sitting down.
Unlike most lounges, and as you can see from the photograph below, the tables in the restaurant of the Etihad business class lounge Heathrow were laid with tablecloths, which really does transform the lounge dining experience.
Also, and unlike other ‘fine dining’ I’d experienced at the British Airways Concorde Room (reviewed here), the area had plenty of natural light making it a nice place to pass the time until our flight was called.
Upon entering the restaurant area we were met by a very pleasant member of staff who quickly showed us to a table and offered us the a la carte menu as well as taking our drinks order. Throughout our time at the Etihad lounge London Heathrow Terminal 4, every member of staff we met went above and beyond to make sure that our experience was unforgettable – some other lounges really need to take note!
Food at The House Lounge Heathrow
The House lounge Terminal 4 offers both a buffet and a la carte dining experience.
As we were on the evening flight from London to Abu Dhabi, a selection of hot foods including vegetable curry and beef stroganoff were offered at the buffet.
Alongside this were various pastries, fruits, salads and a selection of soft drinks.
As we were also planning on making the most of the in-flight meal we decided to just test something from the a la carte menu. You can see a full menu for The House Terminal 4 restaurant below.
I went for the sauteed wild mushrooms and Hannah went for the lamb kofta – both were good choices. Whilst the food itself was reasonable what really made it the experience was the excellent service by each member of staff throughout our time in The House lounge Terminal 4.
Drinks in the Etihad Lounge Heathrow Terminal 4
Whilst we were travelling during Ramadan, there appeared to have been no changes to the way alcohol was served at the Etihad lounge Heathrow – it was a very different experience in the Abu Dhabi First Class lounge (which is no real surprise).
As we were kicking off our holidays we both opted for a glass of champagne on arrival and, in fact, this continued to flow throughout the duration of our stay in The House Terminal 4 lounge.
There is a manned, fully stocked bar offering a wide selection of spirits and various wines, which is again far superior to a standard No 1 Lounge bar.
Additional Amenities in the No 1 Lounge Heathrow Terminal 4
For those travelling with kids, the Etihad lounge London Heathrow provides a children’s play area with plenty of things to hopefully keep the little ones entertained.
As I previously mentioned the Six Senses Spa closed last year. Since the take over by No 1 Lounges, the showers are no longer available. For those travelling with a Priority Pass or Dragonpass and who would like to use a shower, you may be better off using the SkyTeam Lounge situated directly above.
Thrifty Points Final Thoughts on The House Heathrow Terminal 4
I have to admit that the Etihad lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 is, without doubt, the best No 1 lounge I’ve ever been to and is not far off the likes of the Cathay Pacific Lounge in Heathrow Terminal 3.
What The House Terminal 4 lounge lacks in size is made up for by the exceptional service offered by its very attentive staff and good overall facilities.
Full details of the lounge can be found at the Etihad website here. If you’re not flying with Etihad Airlines and would like to access the Etihad business class lounge Heathrow you can either pay through the No 1 website which will cost £40 or alternatively upon entry at reception for £50.
Free access is available to either Priority Pass or Dragonpass cardholders but we would strongly recommend reserving a space in advance for £5 to guarantee entry and benefit from fast-track security. Don’t forget complimentary Priority Passes are offered with the American Express Platinum Card reviewed here – whilst the card comes with what may initially seem like an extortionate annual fee, in certain instances this is likely to be offset by the significant number of benefits offered.
Don’t forget to check in over the next couple of days to hear about our business class flight experience with Etihad Airways as well as our visit to the first class lounge at Abu Dhabi Airport and our once in a lifetime first class apartment flights home.
As always we hope you found this Etihad lounge Heathrow Terminal 4 review useful and please do reach out in the comment section below if there’s anything further you’d like to know!