In a surprising twist, I found the Qatar Airways Al Mourjan Business Class lounge in Doha to be completely underwhelming. People constantly rave about this lounge in reviews that heap praise on the whole concept. I just don’t get it!
My best description for this lounge is large hotel lobby. It has about as much personality as one and certainly had no wow factor as far as I am concerned. Let’s have a look at a few things.
Excellent Shower, Annoying Staff
Once in the lounge you need to walk quite a way to find the relatively hidden shower rooms which are down the back and through the restaurant. As they were busy there was about a 5 minute wait before a shower was free. No problem. An attendant then showed me to my shower suite.
These are world class facilities so I was quite happy when I entered. What I was not happy about was the guy who showed me to the room. He stood waiting, presumably for a tip, for quite a long time until I literally had to shut the door on him. It was tremendously irritating and very bad form.
Showering between flights is extremely pleasant and really makes a person feel human again.
Once done, who should be waiting outside hurrying in my direction, but my friendly attendant. I just gave in at this point and handed him a €5 note from my wallet. Perhaps this whole experience coloured my feelings towards the lounge, but who knows.
Al Mourjan Hotel Lobby
Since I had flown 6 hours from Pisa and was connecting to a 16 hour flight to Auckland, I had no plans to eat anything during my stopover. The Qatar Airways cabin crew had fed me well on the first flight and if that was anything to go by I knew there would be a food frenzy on the next one.
The sweeping staircase above the large water feature is quite nice and the feature itself probably helps cool the air. All around are banks of seating with tablet devices for use if you wish. It is very easy to find a private area to perch.
An exploration found places where there are snacks and drinks. It appeared to be mainly coffee and a few scabby cakes. Clearly the main event is going to the restaurant which I had no plans to visit. There is only so much one person can eat!
I relaxed until it was time to head off to my gate, which thankfully was not very long. Leaving the lounge, my overall feeling was one of puzzlement. That was it?
Qatar’s Al Mourjan Lounge at Doha’s Hamad International Airport is airy and nice and when I visited, it was quiet and soothing. That being said, it is so anonymous that you could be sitting in any quiet spot in any building in the world. There is nothing that made it stand out as unique for me. The lack of a view outside makes it feel disconnected from the whole experience of being in an airport. Perhaps that is the point, but I prefer to see the airport action.
I found it to be the most un-lounge like lounge of any I have ever visited. Literally it is like a hotel lobby and that is not to my taste at all. Several other business class lounges I have visited have been far superior. For example the Qantas Hong Kong lounge has superior styling and a much nicer atmosphere. Both Cathay Pacific and Qantas’ First Class lounges in Hong Kong and Sydney respectively leave this lounge for dead in their design.
Perhaps this lounge really comes into its own when you are eating there. For those that aren’t, it’s almost not worth visiting at all. Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.