Before departing for PVG on China Eastern, I was able to get a quick look at the Korean Air lounge in Terminal 1 at JFK.  Whenever I had previously flown from T1 this lounge had been closed.

Other posts about this business-class trip from Charlotte, NC to Bangkok, Thailand via Shanghai, China:

Delta CRJ 900 First Class, Charlotte, NC (CLT) to New York, NY (JFK) and a “Midfield” Takeoff

Delta Airlines SkyClub, New York, NY (JFK) Terminal 4

China Eastern Airlines Business Class New York, NY (JFK) to Shanghai, China (PVG) – Terminal 1 Check-in and Expedited Security Process

China Eastern 777-300 Business Class, New York, NY (JFK) to Shanghai, China (PVG)

China Eastern 777-300ER Business Class, Shanghai, China (PVG) to Bangkok, Thailand (BKK)

Bangkok Hotel Review – The Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, A Starwood Luxury Collection Hotel

Bangkok Hotel Review –JW Marriott, The Best Hotel Lounge Buffet

Review — Air France/KLM Lounge, Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK), Bangkok, Thailand

Korean Air 777-300ER Business Class, Bangkok, Thailand(BKK) to Seoul/Incheon, Korea (ICN)

Asiana Airlines Business Class Lounge Seoul/Incheon, Republic of Korea (ICN) Main Terminal – Priority Pass Lounge Review

Korean Air A380 Business Class (The Celestial Bar), Seoul, Republic of Korea (ICN) to New York, NY (JFK)

Korean Airlines JFK Terminal 1 Lounge

After the outstanding escort through security provided by the China Eastern rep, I took the short hallway to the right to go to the Air France lounge near Gate 1.   The Korean Air lounge is across from Gate 3.  It is a Priority Pass lounge.

For Priority Pass members this lounge is accessible only between 14:00 and 20:30.

The other Korean Air Lounge in the US that I’m familiar with is in the Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX.   This lounge is large, has very nice seating including a terrace that overlooks the terminal.

Terrace at the Korean Air lounge LAX

I have often visited this lounge over the last several years when flying internationally on Korean Air or Delta.  The quality of food and beverages has declined noticeably in that time.  The decline seems to have been related to becoming a Priority Pass lounge and having many more customers than when it was only open to Korean Air and SkyTeam elites and Korean Air lounge members.  I wanted to compare the Korean Air JFK T1 lounge with those experiences.  \

The greeting as I entered the lounge was unenthusiastic, which is something that also seems to have become commonplace at LAX.  In contrast, the representatives at the Korean Air Prestige and First lounges in Seoul/Incheon are very friendly and helpful.

I entered the business class lounge to the right of the reception desk and was immediately unimpressed by the decor.  The seating areas offer no privacy and lack convenient power outlets.  The lounge overlooks the concourse at T1 with limited views of the tarmac.

Main seating area
A separate TV area

The food selection was even more limited than the offerings at LAX.

Snacks and nuts and pretzels
Noodles and hot water and pastries
Alcoholic beverage selection

Overall Impression

Korean Air is an airline with great in-flight service and very good and improving hard  products.  The two Korean Air lounges in the US that I’ve visited have not lived up to that high standard.