Aviation News

June 5, 2015

American Express Opens The Centurion Lounge at Miami International Airport

For many years, American Express Platinum cardholders have had access to airline lounges located in airports around the world. For frequent travelers, these lounges can be a haven of luxury, providing peace and tranquility from the hustle and bustle that is the norm of a busy airport as well as many amenities that make that trip a little more special.

Beverages are served from a multi-tiered, see-through display. (Photo: Mark Lawrence)

Beverages are served from a multi-tiered, see-through display. (Photo: Mark Lawrence)

When American Airlines switched allegiance from American Express to MasterCard, American Express cardholders soon learned they would be losing access to American Airlines Admirals Clubs located in airports around the world as of March 2014. Under some pressure from its members from the loss of privileges, American Express embarked on a venture to create its own lounges, named The Centurion Lounge. The concept was to create a luxurious environment for AmEx customers, providing them with locally themed world-class food, wine and cocktails; staff to assist with any requests; and a location to either relax or catch up with the last minute business. The first lounges were created Las Vegas McCarran International Airport, Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport, New York’s La Guardia Airport and San Francisco International Airport. Access to the lounges is complimentary to holders of the consumer, business and corporate Platinum cards and Centurion members and their immediate families. Holders of other levels of American Express cards can purchase a one-day pass to the lounge for $50.

On June 2, 2015, The Centurion Lounge at Miami International Airport was previewed to media, special guests and select employees of Miami International Airport to allow a firsthand experience of the lounge and all its luxurious amenities. NYCAviation was privileged to be part of this event. The lounge opened to the public on June 4, 2015.

The lounge is located on the fourth floor of the North Terminal at MIA, which is home to American Airlines and Qatar Airways. The elevator ride from the lower concourse of the terminal already takes the visitor away from the normal noise of the terminal, and opens up to the large entry way to the lounge.

A semi-private booth seat provides an atmosphere of concentration while offering a view of the American Airlines ramp in the background. (Photo: Mark Lawrence)

A semi-private booth seat provides an atmosphere of concentration while offering a view of the American Airlines ramp in the background. (Photo: Mark Lawrence)

Visitors are welcomed at the reception desk and then enter into the heart of the lounge. From there, expansive views are available of the north runways and the ramp area of the D concourse gates of MIA. There are numerous amenities available such as a bar and dining area, high-speed internet wireless connectivity. For those travelers who didn’t bring their own electronics, a desk with several computers and printers offer full internet access at open seating stations that overlooks the ramp. Semi-private enclosed nook seating is also available that affords the view of the ramp. A soundproof family room that contains all amenities to entertain the younger flyers and spa facilities for massages, manicures and all amenities to relax their parents. American Express staff are always available to assist visitors with any travel arrangements, or any other requests and assistance.

American Express has placed special emphasis on the dining experience in these lounges. At MIA, food is designed by James Beard award-winning local chef Michelle Bernstein, known for her Latin-inspired cuisine as well as for her Miami-area restaurants Cena by Michy and Crumb on Parchment. Beverages served in the lounge are created by renowned mixologist Jim Meehan.

VIPs at the grand opening celebration look over the dining amenities. (Photo: Mark Lawrence)

VIPs at the grand opening celebration look over the dining amenities. (Photo: Mark Lawrence)

A poignant moment of the evening came when all the visitors to the lounge preview were asked to raise their glasses in a toast to the late Ed Gilligan, president of American Express who suddenly passed away during a recent flight home. Gilligan had been a guiding force in the vision and promotion of The Centurion Lounge and a strong leader in American Express travel product development.

Mark Lawrence is a NYCAviation producer and a south Florida-based aviation fanatic that has been around the industry since he was a small boy. As well as being an avid photographer, he also runs his own blogHe would like to extend great thanks to all the staff of American Express and its agency for the invitation to view The Centurion Lounge firsthand. This coverage was a joint effort between NYCAviation and Airways News.



About the Author

Mark Lawrence
Mark Lawrence is a NYCAviation staff member and a south Florida-based aviation fanatic. He has been around the industry since he was a small boy. Mark can be reached at [email protected]




 
 

 

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