Review: Etihad Business Lounge (AUH)

To get from our first, amazing, honeymoon destination to our second, we flew Etihad from Male to Amsterdam with a layover in Abu Dhabi where we got to check out the Etihad Business Class lounge in Terminal 3. After arriving from Male in Etihad’s 787-9 Business Class, we cleared transit security and made our way towards the lounge.


The Etihad Business Class Lounge is located in Terminal 3 at Abu Dhabi International Airport across from gate 36. After clearing security, follow the signs through the duty free maze for gates 28-61 and the Etihad Premium Lounge. When you reach the split for US Preclearance flights, turn left and you will see the lounge.

people in a large airport
a sign in a building

Hours of Operation

The Etihad Business Class Lounge is currently open 24 hours a day.

Entry Requirements

The Etihad Business Class Lounge can be accessed for free if you are an Etihad Guest Gold member or if you are flying Business Class on an Etihad operated flight. We had access thanks to our onward business class flight to Amsterdam. The lounge attendants checked our boarding passes and quickly admitted us into the lounge.

a building with a sign and plants
a group of people at a reception desk


Once inside, we took a quick lap around to get a lay of the land. The lounge is an open space that is arranged in a U shape of sorts. From the entrance, there is a short hallway that leads you to the main part of the lounge. Off to the right is a family room.

Etihad Airways Business Class Lounge Abu Dhabi

This opens up into a larger space with a variety of seating areas centered around the main bar.

a group of people sitting in a lobby
people sitting at a bar

The seating considered of sets of 2-4 chairs in mint green and crown colors. Due to the late hour, many of the couches were being used as impromptu beds.

people sitting in chairs in a room with a tv
a group of people sitting on chairs in a lounge

We ended up taking a couple of seats near the window that overlooked the exterior of the airport, facing one of the access roads.

Etihad Airways Business Class Lounge Seating Abu Dhabi

In the rear of the lounge, completing the U, were the restrooms and the shower area which were well appointed, but nothing special.

a sign on a door
a bathroom with sinks and mirrors

Food and Beverage

While Mrs. ATX Jetsetter stood watch over our bags, I fetched us each a glass of champagne before going out to explore the food and beverage options.

Etihad Airways Business Class Lounge Champagne Abu Dhabi

There were two buffet areas in the lounge with a variety of hot dishes and pre-packaged items. In the first area, the hot items consisted of steamed vegetables, jasmine rice, carsarecce with mushrooms along with a couple of pasta and rice dishes.

a group of stainless steel pots on a black counter top
a row of bowls with food in them

Next to this were some pre-packaged salads with a selection of dressings, cheese and nut bowls and a selection of dips.

a group of bowls of food on a counter
a group of small bowls of food on a counter
a group of small bowls of food on a counter
a group of plastic bowls with food in them

There was a large selection of pre-packaged pastries as well as fruit, Arabic dates, and coffee available.

a group of food on a counter
a group of trays of bread and pastries
a group of bowls of fruit
a table with plates and cups on it

The other buffet had some pre-packaged desserts, which were mainly a variety of cakes.

a group of bowls of food on a table
a group of white bowls with food in them
a group of small plastic containers with food in them
a group of plastic bowls of fruit on a counter

There were also a selection of non-alcoholic beverages available in the coolers underneath the counter as well as a selection of infused waters.

a coolers with water bottles on display
a group of drinks dispensers on a table

In the corner was some bar seating which also had a coffee setup. However, it wasn’t open during our visit.

Etihad Airways Business Class Lounge Coffee Bar Abu Dhabi

Given that this is Etihad’s home airport and their flagship Business Class lounge, I was very disappointed in the amount of pre-packaged items on the buffet. The food and drink selection was more like what you would find in a Priority Pass lounge instead of a flagship business lounge. It was a far cry from our experience in Qatar Airways’ Al Mourjan Business Class lounge earlier in our trip. I just grabbed some pasta, rice and cheese to snack on to pass the time.


The lounge area stayed relatively quiet as it was after midnight while we were in the lounge and many of the passengers were connecting from one long haul flight to another. The only interruption came from an older woman who was watching videos on full volume without headphones at 1:00a. Many of my fellow passengers were giving her dirty looks but, when those didn’t do the trick, a fellow pax sitting near us told her that they had headphones for sale at the front desk if she needed them. When that didn’t work, someone finally said something to her in what I assume was her native language and, after some back and forth, she moved on to bother some other folks in the lounge.


The Etihad Business Class Lounge was one of the more disappointing flagship lounges I’ve been in, especially considering what the competition (Qatar and Emirates) are offering. Etihad has long been the smallest of the ME3 and struggled with their strategy and this was no different. While the flights were great, the ground experience left something to be desired.

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