Review: South African Airways Cyobab Lounge Domestic, Cape Town, South Africa

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Before departing the Mother City, we were able to visit the South African Airways Cyobab Premium Business Lounge Domestic at the Cape Town International Airport. Visiting a nice lounge is always a great way to end any visit and the South African Airways Cyobab Premium Business Lounge Domestic fit the bill with it’s beautiful oversized windows.


This post is one chapter on our trip to South Africa, a Safari in the Maasai Mara in Kenya and Mauritius. This trip was redeemed through Air Canada’s Aeroplan and through Starwood Preferred Guest (Marriott Bonvoy) and Hyatt Gold Passport. 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: South African Airways Cyobab Premium Business Lounge Domestic, Cape Town Airport, Cape Town, South Africa

“Like many aspects of South African Airways, the Cyobab Lounge Domestic at Cape Town International Airport offers a spacious place with great airside views to relax before your flight.”

Arriving to Cape Town International Airport:

More Headaches with Europcar…

After the food extravaganza at The Tasting Room, the next morning we checked out of Le Quartier Français and drove the two hours to the Cape Town airport and returned the Europcar to CPT Returns. There was no roving return attendant with a printer here today, although there was a very through check of car including mileage, fuel level and spare and equipment. 

I asked about the GPS that were were promised and proposed to be billed on the reservation. “Go talk to Bradley inside”. Bradley inside says we have a GPS on reservation. Can I have it removed? I’ll have to email you back later today. “I can’t remove it from here”. I never heard from him again.

“We will email you a bill”. A little strange to leave the counter without a final tally but it seems that the business travelers were doing this so we went with the flow. 

As we mentioned earlier, four days later we received an email bill as promised with a 10$ charge on it for refuelling. The car was returned full and filled up for $35 less than 30 minutes ago. We emailed National at the email provided. We never got an answer.

Based on this treatment, lengthy initial process, unclear policies, failure to guarantee GPS when reserved and gas mix ups, lack of customer service response, I’d probably recommend renting some where other than Europcar while you visit CPT. 

Checking into South African Airways:

We entered the airport building and checked in at the Star Gold counter at far left end of the Cape Town terminal.

Cape Town – South African Airways Premium Check In
Cape Town Airport Departures Hall

Our two bags were accepted as checked bags without issues. We had elected not to wrap bags in plastic film for this short domestic flight. We had a few bottles of wine that we had purchased at wineries hidden in our bags for Mauritius. 

Locating the South African Airways Cyobab Lounge:

We cleared through security and proceeded onto the secure side. We located a not well marked passage way to the upstairs domestic lounges and an elevator that smelled like stale smoke and sticky floors reminiscent of a pub that has been open for too long.

Access up to the Cape Town Domestic Lounges

The South African Airways Lounge was at the end of a long corridor. The left side was marked for Business with the right side marked for Platinum First Class. At the time of our visit, South African Airways was still running a premium First Class lounge for it’s South African Airways Voyager Lifetime Platinum travelers.

Accessing the SAA Cyobab Lounge:

The lounge was accessed today courtesy of holding Star Alliance Gold Status in the Air Canada Aeroplan Program, on a departing Star Alliance flight, regardless of travel class. The lounge can also be accessed with a departing flight in business class on South African Airways or connecting to another Star Alliance carrier.

South African Airways also affords access to those travelling on South African Airways Business Class, South African Airways Gold and higher (Platinum and Platinum Elect), and South African Airways Lifetime Platinum members. If you happen to be a credit card holder of the SAA Nedbank Premium Card and Voyager Credit Card issued by Ecobank, you also are lucky enough to get access.

Entry – SAA Cyobab Domestic Premium Business Lounge
Entry to the Lounge with the Reception Desk in the Foreground

Inside the South African Airways Cyobab Domestic Lounge:

We were give access and invited into the lounge. The lounge is some what split into two areas. It has a darker part that shares windows with the indoor terminal concourse check in desks, and a part that has great views outside to the apron. In its efforts to be contemporary, similar to the South African Airways Baobab Premium Business Lounge in Johannesburg, the area lost a lot of space thanks to curvy design.

Inside Window Views
Inside Views with Food Snack Station
Funky Colored Chairs

The lounge really shines on the brighter side with the plane apron views. Unfortunately, due to the foot print, there are a lot less seats over here. As a result, we weren’t able to get a seat over on this side.

Looking through the Shadows of the Lounge

There was also a general computer work area with separate tables and chairs for eating, seen on the center left of the below photograph.

The brighter air side seats with a computer cove for twelve of your closest friends
Airside views

In addition to loungers, the air side portion of the lounge also offered bistro styled tables.

Bistro Dining Seats with Airside views

The lounge offered WiFi with a free with code available at front desk. Unfortunately, there were no electric plug in’s near seats which were regretfully only for work stations.

In addition to the above amenities, the lounge also offered a children’s play area. There was also a media room for the adults.

Kid’s Lounge for children
Media Room for Adults

The airside views were a great opportunity to see aircraft that I don’t usually get the opportunity to see back home. Today, we were treated to views of a Taag Angola B737 and a South African Airways Airbus 340.

TAG Angola Boeing 737
South African Airways A340

Food and Beverage:

The lounge itself reminded me of a format that was much along the lines of a Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge.

Pre-packaged snacks

There were some light snacks available along with an attended bar. The lounge featured self pour South African wines with 2 reds and 2 whites. 

Saam Mountain Chenin Blanc & Stellenrust Chardonnay
New Gate “Easy Red” & Liberty Shiraz

The airport was featured as one of Africa’s Top Airports and placards were posted around the lounge celebrating this fact. I actually think that the Mauritius Airport is much better than Cape Town, and easily takes the trophy for the best airport in Africa.

Lounging at the Best Airport in Africa

The Bottom Line: South African Airways Domestic Lounge:

The South African Airways Cyobab Premium Business Lounge at Cape Town International Airport was an enjoyable place for a domestic lounge. The high ceilings, large windows and views of airside operations made this place an entertaining spot to hang out in before a flight.


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