Qantas First Lounge, Sydney International Airport, Australia
The new flagship lounge in Sydney sets an international benchmark in lounge design with the highest levels of comfort, service and luxury. Led by the vision of internationally renowned Australian designer, Marc Newson in collaboration with associate architect Sebastien Segers and Woods Bagot, the project is part of a progressive luxury product upgrade being rolled out in anticipation of the airline's Airbus A380 fleet being delivered from 2008.
Located on level four of the Sydney International Terminal, the lounge offers an all-encompassing luxurious experience with innovative design thinking driven by the idea of 'bringing back the romance of travel'. All aspects of the experience from the service, to the quality of the product, are driven by the airline's vision to deliver a first-class product which aligns with the in-flight service and provides the customer with a seamless experience curb to curb.
The aeronautically inspired base building was specifically designed to accommodate the lounge, with the floor plate, structure and facade detail influenced by the lounge design. The end result provides customers with an abundance of natural light and 180º panoramic views overlooking the airline's boarding gates and to the city beyond. The radial shape of the building lends itself to the creation of a space which is distinctive, yet private and intimate.
A key feature of the interior design was the creation of zones including lounge areas, a day spa, a restaurant and library, which would appeal to a range of customer needs – rejuvenation, relaxation, entertainment and business.
The palette and detail principles were set very early in the concept design. These principles allowed the design to develop and evolve within strict parameters ensuring the design concept remained strong and in line with the brand guidelines.
Each of the zones reflects a distinctive ambience which is unified by the warm and neutral palette of natural materials and shades of red, brown and aubergine – all signifying solid quality and a mood of calm. High-quality materials, products and finishes further reinforce the statement of luxury.
The operational requirements of the projects were considered with materials selection and maintenance regimes developed to ensure the more delicate materials such as leather floor tiles could be maintained. Significantly, the space is put together from a 'kit of parts' moulded and shaped to echo the signature curve of the building.