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This lounge featured comfortable seating, widely available power outlets, a wide selection of food, terrific decor with odes to and amazing views of Washington D.C., and was the best domestic airport lounge I had ever visited.
Pros-Terrific Local Decor, Tranquil Atmosphere, Amazing City Views, Wide Variety of Food Options, Wide Selection of Complimentary Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic Drinks, Comfortable Leather Seating, Widely Available Power Outlets, Private Bathrooms
Cons- Bland Food
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Location and Check-In
Christina and I arrived at Washington Reagan National Airport (DCA) Terminal B in a jubilant mood as we were very excited to start our First Class Honeymoon. This was our first time flying Delta Airlines First Class and our first-time visiting a Delta Sky Club. Because we were flying in Delta First Class we used the Sky Priority check in which was very fast. The one hiccup we had was confusion over how to tag our bags. The Delta agents placed the bag tags on our bags themselves instead of letting the machine do it as we were used at American Airlines. It will be interesting to see if this process continues as Delta takes precautions in the post-COVID-19 era. We breezed through security using TSA pre-check and as we exited security for gates 10-22 we saw the sign for the Delta Sky Club. The Delta Sky Club DCA is located on Level 3 of Terminal B (Gates 10-22). To enter the lounge, we took the elevator up one level and the lounge is right in front of the elevator.
Access and Hours
Delta Sky Clubs are accessible on a unlimited complimentary basis to a number of passengers including:
Sky Club Decor and Seating
The Delta Sky Club DCA reopened in 2018 after a significant renovation and takes up 9000 square feet. Upon walking into the Delta Sky Club DCA Christina and I were immediately blown away by the decor which featured odes to Washington D.C. To the right of the entrance is a stunning Cherry Blossom chandelier the most impressive piece of decor in the lounge. All over the lounge there were touches of Washington D.C. including pictures of the Lincoln Memorial and the U.S. Capitol.
The lounge also featured amazing views of Washington D.C. through floor to ceiling windows to the right of the entrance. Through the windows we could see the airplanes on the tarmac, the Washington Monument, and the U.S. Capitol. This lounge gave a clear sense of place which is often lacking in airport lounges.
Another thing which really impressed me about the lounge was just how tranquil the atmosphere was compared to the hectic airport terminal below. As I have said previously one important part of an airport lounge is the respite from the chaos of the terminal which it provides. On this point the Delta Sky Club DCA shines.
This lounge was much emptier and substantially quieter than the two American Airlines Admirals Clubs I had experienced at DCA. I think this was driven by the fact that Delta has fewer flights out of DCA, we were traveling on a Wednesday, and that the lounge seemed to be primarily full of business travelers. Another reason the lounge was quieter is that the televisions in the lounge could only be accessed through the Tunity app which I thought was a great feature. One of the few noises made in the lounge were boarding announcements which I don't remember American Airlines making in Admirals Clubs.
The lounge also had a wide variety of modern and comfortable leather seating. One of my pet peeves with airport lounges is the lack of sufficient functioning power plugs. Here the Delta Sky Club DCA shined again. Power plugs were available at almost every seat in the lounge and every plug I tried was working. My favorite seats were the ones next to the windows. These seats had high leather backs which made them more private and they featured amazing views of the tarmac and Washington D.C.
One last feature of the lounge which I appreciated was a large private bathroom which I found to be well lite and clean, something I can't say for all airport lounge bathrooms I have visited. The bathroom also offered Malin+Goetz soap and hand lotion, which are also offered onboard Delta, and is a brand I really like.
Food and Drinks
There were a wide variety of food and drinks available when we checked out the Delta Sky Club DCA. The lounge rotated their offerings seasonally and I never have had same dish offered as a part of the menu during multiple subsequent visits. We arrived around 11 am during the transition between breakfast and the all-day menu. I will start by saying that the Delta Sky Club DCA blew American Airline's Admirals Club food options away both in terms of selection and quality. With that said I found the Delta offerings to be a mixed bag with some being really good and others bland. With some of the dishes I felt that Delta tried too hard to make complex dishes instead of nailing the basics. For breakfast I had eggs, which were really bad, with bacon bits, which were okay.
The all day menu was a very healthy affair with the choice of a smoked turkey sandwich with mustard cream, cucumbers, and arugula along with a mushroom sandwich with spinach, and mozzarella baguette. The menu also offered fresh vegetables, including carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers, and celery. To accompany these items there were a variety of offerings including seasonal green salad, roasted cauliflower, kale caesar salad, and a quinoa salad. Finally, as a special offering the lounge had Pho, which was another nice local touch because of the Washington D.C. area's large Vietnamese population. I tried the quinoa salad which was great and the smoked turkey sandwich which was boring. The sandwich really needed more mayo and higher quality sandwich meat. Christina choose the Pho and found it to be bland. She felt it lacked sufficient seasoning. For desert we tried one of the mini-cupcakes and I have only one word to describe it, amazing!
The lounge also offered a wide variety of complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks along with premium wine and spirits available for sale. The non-alcoholic drinks included water, unsweetened ice tea, orange juice, cranberry juice, Starbucks coffee, and a wide variety of sodas available from a soda machine. I really liked that Delta had the option to select from a machine which made it easy to refill, unlike the Admirals Clubs at DCA where typically I had to ask a bartender.
In terms of alcoholic drinks, the lounge offered two different beers, four wines, and six spirits. The lounge also offered premium wine and spirits for sale using cash or SkyMiles. I tried the unsweetened ice tea and thought it was disgusting while Christina tried the Starbucks coffee which she thought was okay. Even though I didn't like the unsweetened ice tea I was able to try a variety of other drinks which I did like and made me really appreciate the lounge's wide drink selection.
The Delta Sky Club DCA left an amazing positive impression on me. This was the best domestic lounge I had ever visited. The lounge delivered stunning views of Washington. D.C., terrific local decor, and a tranquil atmosphere which left me with the feeling that I was at a nice cocktail lounge instead of an airport lounge. It is clear with the Sky Club DCA that Delta is targeting premium business and leisure customers at DCA and this lounge alone is a strong reason to choose Delta over DCA's dominant airline American Airlines.