The LAX Delta Skyclub is probably one of my least favorite clubs that I use to be a regular to. Thankfully, I’ve moved away from LA to San Diego, so I rarely find myself at the LAX airport, but from time to time I do pass through and stop by the club. Normally if the Alaska Boardroom is open, I make the short trek to T6 and spend my layover in what I find to be the nicest and newest lounge in the airport, however if it’s closed or I don’t have a long layover, I’ll stick it out in the Delta club. It’s really not a bad lounge, but I find it often times to be loud and crowded.
Last month I was flying from San Diego to Tampa when I found myself on a long layover in LAX after taking a bump from an earlier flight. It was late in the evening and the Alaska boardroom was closed. As I entered, I noticed there was a sign stating that the club was “under construction”. Sure enough, the club is getting a facelift despite being one of the newer clubs in the system.
The middle section of the club has been closed off, leaving just a hallway leading from the front of the club to the back. Temporary tables and bar fridges line the hallway and all the typical drinks and food offerings are on the table. The soda fountain is gone and it has been replaced by cans of soda. This has led to a number of ½ and ¼ empty cans sitting around on the table and lots of spilled soda. Furthermore, due to the former bar area being closed, a number of seats have been removed, leaving the club to feel even more crowded at peak times. It’s messy and inconvenient, but it is what it is until the remodeling is complete.
So what is it that Delta is so busy doing at LAX? They are remodeling their bar area obviously, but not only are they updating it, they are getting rid of the self-serve bar and replacing it with the Delta Luxory Bar. Gone will be the days when one could stir up their own martini or mixed drink; here comes the days of the single shot watered down jack and cokes, and overpriced drinks. LAX is a market that Delta is planning to cash in on, offering premium drink to the movie stars and millionaires who call the LA area home. Sure Joe Blow will be able to get his well drink for free while the life styles of the rich and famous pay for a more high-end drink.
For those willing to pay for a drink, per Delta.com:
the Luxury Bar spirit offerings include: Ciroc, Ketel One and Godiva vodkas; Tanqueray Ten gin; Don Julio, Jose Cuervo tequilas; Bulleit and George Dickel American whisky; Bushmills Irish whisky; a multitude of single malt scotches including Caollla 12, Clynelsih 14, Cragganmore 12, Dalwhinnie 15, Glenkinchie 12, Lagavulin 16, Oban 14 and Talisker 18; Crown Royal, Canadian Whiskey and Johnnie Walker blended scotches; Zacapa rum and many premium liqueurs.
I personally prefer the self-serve bars. Maybe it’s because I’m cheap and enjoy mixing my own drink and I don’t have to worry about tipping the bar tender or even attempting to make small talk. For me, the self-serve bars have always been a plus of the old World Clubs which has slowly disappeared in the days of Delta. What are your thoughts? I understand why Delta would want to cash in on the lucrative market in LAX, but would you rather have more pay for drinks options or a self-serve bar?