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We all love airport lounges. A place to relax, with complimentary food and drink. Malaga Airport has only one lounge, the Sala VIP. This was my 2nd time in the lounge – I previously visited in 2017. My previous visit was very enjoyable. Sadly, the lounge has gone downhill since then. The food wasn’t as good and the lounge was very busy.
The Malaga Airport Lounge can be accessed with a Priority Pass card. Business Class passengers will also be sent there. The lounge itself is large and bright. The food options are somewhat limited however. The tea and coffee were pretty bad too.
The Sala VIP is the only lounge in Malaga Airport. You can get in with a Priority Pass or a business class ticket. I got in with my Priority Pass. You could pay €35 for entry too. This isn’t good value, unless you plan to drink a lot of alcohol. The food isn’t good enough to pay €35. It’s better to spend that money in a restaurant outside.
I had good memories of this lounge. I previously visited in 2017, before I was the Soulful Travel Guy! The lounge was mostly empty. Fresh pizza was being served every 20 minutes. This occasion didn’t live up to my memories. The lounge was super busy and there was no hot food.
There was a massive queue at the entrance. We waited for 20 minutes to get in. I was worried that the lounge would be full, and we wouldn’t be allowed in.
Malaga is a popular tourist destination for Brits. In summer, I think half the flights are from the UK! Most of the people in the lounge were Brits. The UK is becoming like the US. So many people have credit cards with lounge access. As such, airport lounges get very busy.
The Malaga Airport Lounge is large and bright. There’s floor to ceiling windows. I didn't see any facilities like kids play area or business centre. I was only there for 30 minutes, however. I was also with my family, so I didn’t walk around much.
There were lots of different types of seating. There were lounge style armchairs with tables. There was a rectangular high table. This was good for solo passengers. There were also larger sofas, which are good for families and groups. The furniture was in good condition and the décor was modern.
The lounge was absolutely rammed. We sat on a tiny table in one corner. Overcrowding of airport lounges is a massive problem. I’m getting to the point where I might give the lounge a miss. Lounges should provide a private space to relax. Away from the hustle of the terminal. On this occasion, I queued for 20 minutes and was packed in like a sardine!
I was travelling with my family. One benefit of family travel, is that we get special treatment. E.g. we get the biggest sofa in the lounge or skip the queue. This is especially true at bigger airports like Heathrow or Frankfurt. These airports are full of business passengers, and there’s less kids. Malaga is a leisure destination and full of kids. So there was no special treatment at this time!
There was a buffet counter near the entrance. Only cold food was available. The selection was pretty sad!
As a vegetarian, there’s basically nothing for me to eat. I had some cous cous, olives and rice. It wasn't very good. For meat eaters, there’s only sandwiches available. The sandwiches were mainly ham and cheese. There may have been some chicken ones. In the end, we chose to leave the lounge and eat in the terminal.
Europe is a wonderful place for cuisine. Sadly, the airport lounges haven’t caught up! They love to serve cold and soggy sandwiches. I reckon that 80% of Lounges in Europe serve crappy sandwiches. Examples include the ANA Lounge in Lisbon and The Lounge in Dublin Airport.
Don’t expect the lounge to improve their food any time soon. The lounge was busy, and I’m sure it’s very profitable. It’s also the only lounge in Malaga Airport. Why would they want to spend more money on the food?
The Malaga Airport Lounge has a full compliment of alcohol. Beer, wine and spirits were all available. The spirits were branded, including Bacardi rum and Ballentine’s Whisky.
Tea and coffee were available from a machine. I had an English Breakfast tea. It was Lipton branded, and didn't taste good. The cups were too small. The coffee didn't look good either. In virtually every lounge review, I say that the coffee doesn’t look good. Don’t blame me! Blame the lounges that have cheap coffee machines!
The Malaga Airport Lounge is what I've come to expect in Continental Europe. Lots of alcohol and not a lot of food! Also, the lounge was very busy during my stay. On the plus side, it’s large and was beautifully bright. If you visit the lounge, I suggest to make alternative plans for food. You won’t get a proper meal.
While I didn’t enjoy the Malaga Airport Lounge, I love Malaga itself. I reviewed Marriot’s Playa Andaluza. It’s a beautiful resort, aimed at families. There are apartments to stay in and a 24 hour supermarket on site. The resort has more activities than any place I’ve been to! There’s miniature golf, giant chess, tennis and so much more!