Helen and I recently upgraded from an American Express Gold card, to an American Express Platinum card. With this came a complimentary Priority Pass that provides us with access to hundreds of airport lounges around the world for free. I’ve been wanting a priority pass for some time now but struggled to justify the cost. However, with the benefits of upgrading to the platinum card from American Express, we found it to be worth it – for this year at least.
Which means we’re going to be doing A LOT of airport lounge reviews from different airports around the world. Airport lounges are in our opinion at least great value for money if you’re flying long haul or enjoy an alcoholic drink or two as a way to kick off your travels. Access to an airport lounge usually retails between £15 and £25 depending on the lounge you visit and different lounges offer different facilities and services.
In today’s review, we’re looking at the Escape Lounge In Manchester Airport T2. Escape Lounges are available in eight airports between the UK and the USA, three of which are located at Manchester Airport (one in each of the three terminals)
Where To Find The Escape Lounge At Manchester Airport T2
You’ll find the Escape Lounge at Manchester Airport T2 when you go through security, and then through the duty-free. Once you’ve made it to the gates you’ll turn left and the staircase and lift are you’re next left just opposite the café Nero express.
Once you’ve made it to the second floor you’ll want to turn right, then left past the toilets. It’s then a long corridor to the Escape lounge. If you turn left when you come out of the staircase (or the lift) you’ll find the Escape Plus Lounge. This lounge is reserved for invitation-only guests.
Priority Pass Access
Gaining access to any of the three lounges up on the second floor of terminal 2 at Manchester Airport was difficult (Wednesday 6.50am) despite the two main lounges accepting Priority Pass.
Unfortunately, a lot of people had been pre-booked in the lounge with premium economy Thomson flights. However, the lady on the desk said we could gain access up until 8.00am as this is when those passengers would be arriving.
Safe in the knowledge we could get breakfast and drinks in that time that would save us £60+ based on the four of us travelling we decided to stay.
This lounge is easily one of the largest either Helen or I have been in anywhere in the world. However, judging by our accessibility issues it could still do with being bigger.
The lounge is divided into three sections, each section is broken up by a pain glass screen or tall desk/bar like seating.
View from The Airport Lounge
Unfortunately, there is very little in the terms of a view from this airport lounge as the second floor is situated on the opposite side of the airport to the concourse or the runway.
However, considering the lack of natural daylight I do feel as though the lounge has maximised the light and it doesn’t feel dark or uncomfortable.
There’s a range of different seating options inside the Escape Lounge Manchester Airport T2 including;
Relaxing Lounger Chair
Alongside this seating arrangement, there are also combinations of seats suitable for all parties from 2 right through to seven or eight. As we were having breakfast we sat on the standard table and chairs, at the time there were no tables for four available (all empty tables were reserved however nobody had seemed to show) instead we opted for two tables of two sat next to each other.
Catering / Bar
We had breakfast at the Manchester Airport Escape Lounge T2 and I must say it was one of the finest breakfasts I’ve had in any airport lounge worldwide.
There was a coffee machine available serving a number of different hot drinks including hot chocolates, cappuccinos and traditional flat white’s. We did have to queue for access to the machine though so I might suggest looking at getting another one (the queue was made up of four people)
Alongside the hot drinks, there was a range of cold fruit juices such as elderflower, apple and orange. As well as your traditional Airport Lounge drinks; beers and soft drinks. Finally, there was a wine bar serving a number of wines and champagnes (this wasn’t something we tried so, unfortunately, I’m unable to comment further)
In the terms of food here at Manchester Airport Escape Lounge, we found there to be the likes of porridge, fresh fruit, pastries, cereal. As well as ingredients such as beans, sausages and bacon to make up a full English breakfast. If that wasn’t enough there was also breadcakes should you wish to have a bacon or sausage sandwich.
During our entire stay at the Manchester Airport Escape Lounge, the food was delicious, easily accessible and readily available. Between the four of us, we pretty much tried a little bit of everything and wasn’t left disappointed.
As you walk in to Manchester Airport Escape Lounge you’ll notice the media area to the right. Here you’ll find racks of magazines, newspapers and books as well as a coat stand. Books are available to take with you with a recommended donation of £1 going to Cancer Research.
There are a number of plug sockets located across the tables but not at all the tables. However there are USB ports embedded into the menu holders, these are ideal for charging mobile phones, tablets and e-readers.
TV’s are located around the Manchester Airport Escape Lounge and can be seen from the majority of seats, no volume is set however subtitles are usually turned on. The channels remained on the BBC News channel throughout the duration of our visit.
Unfortunately, there are no ‘exclusive’ toilets to this airport lounge. Instead, the toilets are shared between the three airport lounges and are located just a 50 foot walk from the entrance of the lounge.
As we were not staying in the Manchester Airport Escape Lounge for longer than an hour we didn’t use the internet.
Both the size and full capacity of Manchester Airport Escape Lounge meant that there were a vast number of staff on hand to assist customers. This allowed for tables to be cleared quickly, and questions to be easily answered.
Our interactions with the staff were only pleasant. Especially from the one person on ‘reception’ who trusted us to leave before her 150 passengers from the premium TUI flights arrived at 8am.
In conclusion, I would not hesitate to use or recommend the Escape Lounge Manchester Airport T2 to others in the future. I only hope that during our next visit we’re able to spend more time here making the most of the facilities, and food available.
We enjoyed this lounge a lot, and we would have loved to have stayed longer which means there’s only one major improvement I’d like to see from Manchester Airport Escape Lounge inside T2 – an expansion.