Here’s the good news: LAX apparently isn’t such an awful place to while away some time. Two lounges and one restaurant were just singled out by Frommer’s Travel Guide as some of the best airport facilities of their kind in the country.
Now, here’s the bad: None of those three is in any of the main domestic terminals. Worse, one place is about to close.
The reLAX Lounge, which made Frommer’s top 10 lounge list and opened only two years ago, will be closing within the year due to the Tom Bradley International Terminal renovation.
The lounge has been a hit with travelers as Los Angeles International Airport’s first pay-to-use public-access lounge, costing $15 an hour and $50 to hang out all day. It offers Wi-Fi, refreshments, and recently began serving beer and wine.
“It’s at its peak and they will have to shut it down,” said reLAX manager Walter Vergara, who explained that the rent would “skyrocket by 500 percent” if it tried to move elsewhere at the airport.
Also making the list is the oneworld Alliance lounge for British Airways passengers, which is also in the international terminal. It was praised by the guide for its nine showers, free liquor, Wi-Fi and “particularly good” free food.
Meanwhile, the Encounter, in the landmark Theme Building in the middle of the airport complex, made Frommer’s list for top 10 airport restaurants.
“It was a pleasant surprise,” said Operations Manager Kenneth Merritt, who added that Frommer’s description of the décor as “a 1960s ‘Star Trek’ set gone Technicolor” was spot on.
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