Review: Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge: Ottawa, Canada

This post is one chapter on our trip to Atlantic Canada on Air Canada. This trip was booked and credited to Aeroplan. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.

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Review: Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge, Ottawa, Canada

I woke up at about 5:50 AM and checked out and left my work hotel for the week. I happened to have been driving a beautiful blue Volvo V90 for the week which was a generous upgrade from an Intermediate I had booked at Hertz courtesy of Five Star status. As I arrived to the rental return in Ottawa, I was sad to see this one go.

The Ottawa airport is a fantastic but compact space for the most part. It has beautiful open spaces with open air fitting of an airport for a capital city in a first world country. Despite the open spaces, there are quite a few bottlenecks at the security check point and immediately after security.

There are also odd ball airlines at YOW that service the capital, including Canadian North.

Security screening is situated one level down from the check in concourse. It has a view of the arrivals’ hall and baggage screening. I don’t know of many airports where you can look at the baggage claim at 7:45 AM on a weekday and not see a single person except for two stone statues sitting around.

After a slow security screening, I headed over to the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge. This is currently the only available lounge in Ottawa. Porter Airlines used to operate a lounge here but that was has been closed for several years. There is no priority pass option in Ottawa either.

Accessing the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge:

The lounge is located to the left after security. Since the construction that is occurring in the area, the lounge entrance is a bit hidden. I’ve taken a reverse angle shot here.

I took the elevator up where there were a bunch of DYKWIA’s blocking reception and access into the lounge. Everyone seemed to be trying to get re-booked to Toronto to make meetings. Thanks to the first of the season heavy snowfall, this was proving to be a challenge for most.

Lounge access was provided courtesy of the Business Class ticket. Unlike the United States, you don’t need a lounge membership to access the lounge when flying business class.

Inside the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge:

The lounge itself is pretty standard Maple Leaf Lounge fare. This version happens to have great windows on both sides of the lounge that let in a lot of natural light.

I stuck to coffee as the lounge only offered the usual cereal silos and some cut fruit for breakfast. I had a Lavazzia Latte for breakfast, which was dispensed from the sole machine.

There were good airside views, although there isn’t much moving around on the apron here at most times.

The Ottawa Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge overall:

The Ottawa Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge is the only option in Ottawa. It probably caters to most of the government destined travelers through here. The views and the space are probably among the best part of this particular lounge, although I have seen it when it has been completely full here. It beats the concourse for sure.

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