United Expanding Polaris Lounge in Chicago, Opening Other Locations by End of Year
Updated 7/10/17 12:30pm: A United representative confirmed that there won't be any new lounges opening until "early 2018." Read the full story here.
Last year, United launched its brand new business-class product, Polaris. And along with it, the carrier also opened its first Polaris lounge at its hub in Chicago (ORD). Just a few months after the lounge first opened, however, the airline is realizing that the lounge just isn't quite big enough for the amount of Polaris-ticketed passengers trying to come through its doors. So, it's going to expand.
According to the Chicago Business Journal, United is going to expand the Terminal 1 Polaris lounge at ORD by moving into a portion of the Concourse C United Club. The United Club is located right next door to the Polaris lounge in Concourse C, however, it's been shut down since renovations on the Club began last year. So, at the moment, the two United lounge options in Terminal 1 are the United Club in Concourse B and the Polaris lounge.
According to a United spokeswoman, the Polaris lounge expansion is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. And, as for the United Club that it's partially taking over, the renovated space will be ready to open at some point in early 2018. The Polaris lounge is seeing the most overcrowding during the peak times of early morning and late afternoon. Even though this lounge is expaning, it begs the question of what will happen if the new Concourse C United Club becomes overcrowded as well. Since the Polaris lounge is taking over part of the United Club next door, there's a chance that could suffer from the same overcrowding issues with less space to offer travelers.
Also with this announcement, the spokeswoman released some exciting information about the future of the carrier's Polaris lounges at other airports. The carrier plans to open its Polaris lounges at both Newark (EWR) and San Francisco (SFO) by the end of the year.