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Virgin unveils invite-only secret members lounge for high-status flyers


Behind an unmarked door in the seemingly boring utopia of some of Australia’s domestic airports is a club so exclusive you can only get in via an invitation from Virgin Australia’s CEO Jayne Hrdlicka.

It’s called the “Beyond Lounge”, a frequent flyers paradise so secretive that only members have access to it and general passengers are almost unaware of its existence.

Built to rival the equally-exclusive Qantas Chairman’s Lounge, Virgin’s new Beyond Lounges officially open today in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

The lounges are decorated with leather-clad and oak timber walls, plush Chester-style armchairs, bright greenery and frosted glass pods that allow “discretion” for those inside. (Supplied)
The lounges are hidden behind largely unmarked discrete doors. (Supplied)

Featuring all-day à la carte dining, complimentary beverages, privacy pods and even showers, the lounges will be reserved for corporate partners, some high-status Velocity Frequent Flyer members and “key opinion leaders”.

Ms Hrdlicka said the invite-only lounges will allow the airline to offer “premium travel experiences” to business travellers.

“We are continuing to write a new chapter at Virgin Australia and this is the next wonderful edition of our transformation journey,” Ms Hrdlicka said.

“Virgin Australia is dedicated to providing exceptional service experiences and product offerings at great value prices, and Beyond is a great example of Virgin Australia investing in the products and services our guests value most.”

Guests can enjoy all-day eating and drinking options when inside. (Supplied)
One of the lounge’s signature “privacy pods”. (Supplied)

Inside, members will find leather-clad and oak timber walls, plush Chester-style armchairs, bright greenery and frosted glass pods that allow “discretion” for those inside.

Private offices and board rooms are also available to members who book ahead.

Virgin’s Group Chief Customer and Digital Officer Paul Jones said the lounges were set up to equally facilitate discreet business meetings or solo travel.

“Last year our members told us privacy, comfort, functional spaces and relaxed dining experiences are important in a private Lounge. And this is what we have delivered today,” he said.

Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said the Beyond Lounges were a part of the airline’s transformation. (Supplied)

“The dining experience is exceptional. Dishes take anywhere from five to 15 minutes to prepare and range from quick and convenient light dishes to more substantial items depending on the time of day and the duration of the members’ visit. Our various seating zones also mean guests can dine with others or in private.

“We also know how much our members value our unique approach to service which can only be found at Virgin Australia. Our team members right across the airline are empowered to deliver our wonderful ‘flair’ in every step of the guest journey, no matter the status of the guest, or the seat number on their boarding pass.”

Each member will be allowed to nominate a spouse or partner to enjoy the lounges, with memberships “reviewed” on an annual basis.

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