This review is as much about the very interesting the No1 Clubrooms Lounge at Gatwick as the Easyjet flight itself.
I decided to visit Mauritania in December 2018. This is a country I wanted to go to see for a long time and it seemed that – after a period of ten years or so when it was considered too dangerous to go – Mauritania was again safe to visit.
Although not many airlines fly to Mauritania, finding the best route from my home airport Keflavík, Iceland to Nouakchott offered a great number of combinations. Only Air France flies from mainland Europe, and while it seems to be the obvious choice, the drawbacks are a red-eye return flight and an overpriced business class. Turkish also flies from Istanbul but it’s a long detour and the flight times are not very convenient. Royal Air Maroc flies daily from Casablanca with good connections for Europe, and the return flight is in the morning, not at night. Both economy and business class seem to be reasonably good, but the latter is quite expensive, although not as much as Air France. Other airlines flying to Nouakchott include Air Algérie and Tunisair but they fly only a few times a week using uncomfortable aircrafts and short red-eye return flights – not the best options for me. Mauritania Airlines flies from Casablanca – would have been interesting to try. Eventually I flew with Bintar Canarias from Las Palmas – this airline has good reviews, reasonable prices and the schedules suited me. My return flight was with Royal Air Maroc as I had to go anyway to Morocco for work right after my stay in Mauritania.
While several airlines fly between London and Las Palmas I selected Easyjet for its very low price and schedule that perfectly fitted my plans. I choose to try No1 Lounges’ upmarket Clubrooms at Gatwick to make this flight comfortable
I arrived at Gatwick North from Keflavík with Icelandair with a delay of about 40 minutes – but I still had two hours and 40 minutes between my flights. Although I was connecting within Gatwick North, I was checked in and had hand luggage only I still had to go through immigration and security again. The automated gates at immigration didn’t work for me but I was through the manned gate anyway in two minutes. I went up to departures level and went through (priority) security. It took me a total of 25 minutes between leaving my arrival aircraft and being airside after security for my connecting flight.
Gatwick North has several pre-bookable or pay-as-you-enter lounges for passengers who do not travel on business/first class, do not have a frequent flyer card that gives access to a lounge or do not have a Priority Pass. I was flying Easyjet which obviously has neither a business class of a frequent flyer program, and I don’t have Priority Pass as it doesn’t give a lounge access at my home airport in Iceland, so my only option was – if I wanted to be in a lounge between my flights – to purchase access.
No1 Lounges offer a standard business class lounge with an option to upgrade to Clubrooms which are in some aspects closer to a first class lounge than to a business class lounge. What are the differences?
• There were only four guests in a quite large lounge when I visited • There’s an à la carte menu with very good waiting service • The quality of the food is superior to what you get in most business lounges
Most of the loungers are close to each other.
The main No1 Lounge is on the third floor but the Clubrooms are on the first floor.
There’s plenty of seating (I’m sorry about the quality of some photos, the light in the lounge was not ideal for taking photos)
Here is the menu:
I first ordered a Kir Royal and a glass of Chablis white wine
The soup of the day was pea soup which was delicious
My main course was a cold salmon meal which was also very good
I had a cappuccino with some sweets to finish
Is it worth to buy access to this lounge? The total price was 45 pounds for which I had priority security, I stayed at the very quietest place of an otherwise overcrowded terminal, I had a Kir Royal, a glass of white wine, a very good two-course menu with waiter service, a cappuccino and water. So my answer is definitely yes if you have a long time between your flights and you’re at lunch- or dinner time. Obviously if you only have 20 minutes and you’re not hungry this wouldn’t be the case.
The main drawback of this lounge is that there are no views.
I left the lounge just on time for boarding from gate 112. This beautiful aircraft was just pushed back
Boarding started on time and speedy boarding was enforced.
I booked seat 1C. While many Easyjet aircrafts have no bulkhead wall in front of seats 1ABC this particular plane had one so legroom was not much better than at most other seats.
Easyjet’s current BoB menu:
As I had lunch at the lounge and I was planning to have dinner at a restaurant after landing I only had a coke and some water
The flight itself was otherwise perfectly fine: we were on time, the crew was efficient, the cabin remained clean and the weather was clear outside.
No.1 Traveller No.1 Gatwick
London - LGW
Gran Canaria Island - LPA
Flying Easyjet is normally perfectly fine but is of course nothing special if you fly a lot. If you want to enjoy your airport experience, you have enough time and you want to have a good meal booking the Clubrooms lounge is a very good option.
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