Review: LATAM VIP One World International Business Lounge, Santiago International Airport, Chile

Advertisements

The LATAM VIP International Business Lounge in Santiago, Chile is the flagship lounge for this southern city, that was previously the home to LAN Chile. The LATAM VIP Business Lounge was recently renovated into a world class space that offers a tranquil relaxation space prior to your long haul international flight from South America.


This post is one chapter on our trip to Mexico City, Mexico and Easter Island, Chile. This trip was enhanced through Alaska Mileage Plan and through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status. 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.

If you enjoyed this post, please follow us here or on social media through Facebook, Twitter or Instagram for more travel tips and hacks on how to “Upgrade Your Travels”.





Review: LATAM VIP One World International Business Lounge, Santiago Arturo Merino Benitez Airport, Chile


We exited the international arrivals area from our LATAM Business Class Easter Island – Santiago domestic flight, and headed back over to the LATAM Preferente customer check in through the public side.

LATAM VIP Preferente Business Class Check In Area

With our boarding cards already in hand, we headed to the busiess exit immigration and through to the security screening. LATAM offers a private business class immigration and security screening departure, which was an a great touch. There was no wait whatsoever and we were immediately stamped out of Chile Immigration.

Locating the LATAM VIP International Lounge:

Directly after the security screening, and completely segregated from the regular area of the airport, was the LATAM VIP International Business Lounge. The lounge access was easy to navigate thanks to the dedicated LATAM Business Class Check In Area.

LATAM Business Lounge Access Location
Map Courtesy of Santiago International Airport Website

Access to the Lounge was found down a discrete hallway after immigration.

An Unmanned LATAM Lounge Lower Lobby Reception
LATAM Business Lounge Access
Advertisements

Accessing the LATAM VIP International Lounge:

There are a variety of way to access the LATAM VIP lounge.

If you are a member of the LATAM frequent flyer program, as a LATAM Pass Black Signature member, you may enter with your family and one companion. A fee is charged for the second guest onwards.

Lounge Access is also available for purchase at the LATAM VIP lounge reception, according to availability. Payment can only be made by credit or debit card. 

The Lounge is also a One World Lounge, and as a result, access is also granted under the One World access policy. For those travelling in One World First or Business Class:

  • Customers flying First or Business Class have access to the equivalent class of lounge regardless of their frequent flyer status. First Class passengers may use a Business Class or frequent flyer lounge if a First Class lounge is not available.
  • First Class passengers may invite one guest to join them in the lounge. The guest must also be travelling on a flight operated and marketed by a oneworld airline.
  • Access is available on the day of travel (or before 06:00am the following day), at the airport from which the oneworld flight on which the eligible customer is travelling departs.
  • Connecting between oneworld marketed and operated flights:
    • First and Business Class customers connecting on the same day of travel, or before 6am the following day, can access the lounge when travelling between an international long haul (a oneworld international long haul flight is defined as an international flight marketed and operated by any oneworld carrier with a scheduled flight time longer than 5 hours) and an international short haul or domestic flight (and vice-versa).
    • Lounge access will be determined on the international long haul ticketed flight (either First of Business Class) regardless of the ticketed class of travel on the international short haul or domestic flight.
    • You must be prepared to show your boarding pass or itinerary showing travel in First or Business class on the international long haul flight, in order to access the lounge before your international short haul or domestic flight.

For those that hold One World Elite Status (Emerald or Sapphire Tier Status), you are also entitled to access the lounge under certain conditions. Members of oneworld airline frequent flyer programmes with the equivalent of oneworld Emerald or Sapphire tier status can use lounges offered by oneworld airlines when departing on any flight marketed and operated by any oneworld member airline, regardless of cabin class being flown (exceptions are noted below).

  • Emerald tier frequent flyers can use First Class, Business Class or frequent flyer lounges.
  • Sapphire tier frequent flyers are welcome in Business Class* or frequent flyer lounges. (*does not include Qantas Domestic Business Lounges)
  • Emerald and Sapphire members may invite one guest to join them in the lounge. The guest must also be travelling on a flight operated and marketed by a oneworld carrier.
  • The traveller must be prepared to show your boarding pass and frequent flyer membership card, with oneworld Emerald or Sapphire tier status, to access a lounge.
  • Access is available on the day of travel (or before 06:00am the following day), at the airport from which the oneworld flight on which the eligible customer is travelling departs.

In our case, access was granted as a result of our LATAM Business Class ticket. We showed our boarding cards at the entrance and we were granted access based on our class of service. We were shown to the right, although there appeared to be a smaller lounge to the left. I suspect this left hand lounge was for shorter narrow body flights around South America.

Inside the LATAM VIP International Lounge:

The LATAM VIP Business Lounge Santiago was recently renovated in early 2015. It was advertised as the largest international lounge in South America with capacity for 460 patrons. They have done a really nice job with it and I wished that we had more time at this particular lounge, thanks to the classy environment.

The lounge has an odd shape to it which takes a bit of walking around to familiarize ones self with. It is a two level lounge with a staircase or elevator connection the top and bottom levels.

On entry, you are led to a lower level which has a rather small foot print. On the lower level downstairs there was a self serve bar, some food snacks and a few chairs and tables and chairs.

Downstairs Lounge Area and Wine Bar
Downstairs Dining Area

The feature of the downstairs area was the large grand staircase. It made a strong statement. However, a staircase of this length is really impractical in an airport lounge since most travellers are carrying rolling suitcases or laptop bags and are more likely to use an elevator. During our time here, I typically saw staff as the only people actually using the staircase.

The Grand Staircase leading to the Upper Lounge

Throughout the lounge, the wines were self serve, along with other drinks.

The Wine Bar on the Lower Level

We eventually found the elevators and went upstairs to the larger level on the fourth floor. Even the elevators waiting area was nicely decorated.

Lounge Elevators

The spread and layout was much larger upstairs on the top floor. Upstairs, there was a larger lounge space with many loungers against the windows with high back chairs. There was also a semi private resting area that was right up against the glass.

Upper Lounge Seating Next to Media Screens
General Upper Lounge Seating
Lounge Recliners Overlooking Airside Operations

The lounge itself was a dark space as a result of the late evening visit time that we had. While this is appreciated for your circadian rhythms for the overnight flight you’re likely to be departing from here, it doesn’t necessarily make for a bright environment for working or reading.

Advertisements

Food and Beverage:

There was a self serve wine bar with help yourself bottles from a large metallic container. More amazingly, the lounge was offering free pour Louis Roderer Champagne and a sparkling wine, along with two other whites and three other reds. Since it’s highly unusual to see champagne available in an International Business Class lounge these days, with most champagne being saved for First Class lounges or cut entirely from business class, this was a definite advantage to the lounge.

Free Flow Champagne and White Wines
Red Wines

On the food side, the lounge was a little less than exciting. Most LATAM flights depart from the lounge during the evening hours between 9 PM – 12 AM. Ideally, if you’re maximizing sleep, it would be great to eat in the lounge before getting on your flight so that you can maximize your sleep. British Airways has almost perfected this concept with the British Airways Pre-Flight Dining at JFK New York. Unfortunately, the LATAM lounge didn’t offer much in the way of full food. The food items were limited to snacks, cold cuts, and a few empanadas. While some food is appreciated, I found this to be a bit of a weak spot in this particular lounge for an airline that services many overnight flights. It would have been nice to have a little more substantial food offering at this particular space.

LATAM Lounge food offerings: limited to snacks

There were also two separate entertainment rooms, two long tables for communal working, showers, grand style bathrooms.

LATAM Media Room
Communal Tables for Working

The lounge had an open atrium and you could look down the grand staircase to the downstairs.

Views Towards the Lower Lounge

A further hallway led down towards another area of the lounge that was completely deserted. Here, there was another private sitting area that contained another wine bar, snacks, tables / chairs and loungers.

Although the magazine rack was impressive, the magazines were all marked for “consumption in the lounge only”.

LATAM Lounge Magazine Racks
Hallway Loungers

The back area was much quieter than the front area. Although it was quieter, it didn’t feature the impressive airside views. It did feature a large wine display and bar area, which made for an inviting and tranquil space.

Wine Bar
Attractive Wine Displays
A Quiet Back Corner for Snacking

There were no flight announcements in the lounge, and all information was recorded and displayed on television monitors. During our visit, most of the flights were leaving for the Americas and other odd ball destinations; like the remote southern Pacific Ocean flight from Santiago to Sydney.

LATAM Lounge Flight Information Displays

The only negative thing to comment on about this place was that the wifi was barely passable. I wasn’t able to even get on social media during our 30 minutes here.

We enjoyed the lounge prior to departing for our LATAM Business Class Santiago – Mexico City flight.

The Bottom Line: The LATAM VIP One World Business Lounge Santiago

In summary, the LATAM VIP International Business Class Lounge Santiago is a solid lounge. We really enjoyed the space and the free pour champagne. The only downfall of this place was tired wifi and the somewhat disappointing food. We were wishing that we had more of a layover here instead of the 40 minutes that we had on this connection.


If you visited the LATAM VIP Lounge in Santiago, Chile did you find it a relaxing place prior to a long international flight ?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: