Perth airport’s former control centre and observation deck to be transformed into new pay to enter Aspire lounge

The fact that it is housed in Perth airport’s former control centre and a part of the observation deck, Swissport’s first Aspire lounge in Australia, will provide outstanding views of activities at the Western Australia gateway to international passengers preparing to depart on flights.

The new premium departure facility will be located on level 3 of T1 International, connected to the international departures area and close to boarding gates. It will cover an area of 530 square metres and provide accommodation for up to 140 guests.

It is due to open in mid-2020 and supports an increasing demand from passengers for so-called pay-to-use lounge facilities across the globe. It will cost AUD55 + 10% goods and services tax (GST) for a three hour stay, but will also be open to complimentary guests once partnership agreements are closed.

“There will also be a range of loyalty or airline affiliations, to be announced in early 2020,” confirms Swissport, which already manages and operates multiple Aspire lounges around the world. These include others in Australia, notably Perth airport’s T1 lounge for Virgin Australia.

Perth airport’s CEO Kevin Brown said the new lounge is part of a wave of investment to take the airport into the future, providing the amenity and efficiency to deliver passengers a seamless, quality travel experience.

“These pay per use lounges are becoming more popular at international airports both interstate and around the world. They provide passengers, regardless of what air ticket they have, a dedicated space to relax, refresh and recharge before a long flight,” Mr Brown said

“International travellers from Perth Airport have never had this option but the wait will be more than worth it. We believe this will be the best lounge of its type in Australia,” he added.

Swissport says guests at the new lounge will enjoy unique and exciting food and drink options, adjusted seasonally, with small, local suppliers bringing a taste of Western Australia. The food offer will include a variety of vegetarian and vegan choices and will be available throughout the day.

As part of their airport ground services Swissport manages 40 lounges at more than 27 airports in 11 countries across the globe under its hospitality brand Aspire Lounges, welcoming guests irrespective of airline or class of travel. Last year, it welcomed over five million passengers across their global Aspire lounge network and over the coming five years it plans to further grow its hospitality business significantly.

Aviation headlines at Perth have been dominated by the nonstop Qantas flight to London, which passenger numbers would suggest has been a great success. Traffic levels at the airport returned to a growth position in 2018, rising +2.1% year-on-year after three consecutive years of negative traffic growth. But, total annual passenger levels still remain below the 2014 high, and this year remain fairly flat, growing just +0.5% in the first half of 2019.

Perth’s international network extends to 18 destinations, based on CAPA – Centre for Aviation analysis of OAG schedule data for the current week (week commencing 09-September-2019). This accounts for just under a third (31.7%) share of the airport’s total system capacity.

While Qantas and Virgin Australia are the largest operators in Perth, international connectivity is dominated by foreign carriers with Singapore Airlines, Indonesia AirAsia, Emirates Airline and Qatar Airways among the operators offering the largest capacity. From next year, passengers of these airlines will all be able to access to the new Aspire lounge.

CHART – While Qantas and Virgin Australia are the largest operators at Perth airport, international connectivity is dominated by foreign carriersSource: CAPA – Centre for Aviation and OAG (data: w/c 09-Sep-2019)