A guide to Amex Centurion Lounges
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American Express offers excellent membership benefits on its premium credit cards, including various luxury travel perks. But, one of the most tangible perks offered by select American Express cards is airport lounge access. And Amex’s network of Centurion Lounges provides the most exclusive lounges in Amex’s Global Lounge Collection.
Centurion Lounges outpace most other lounges in several ways. For example, Centurion Lounges all offer seasonally inspired food designed by renowned local chefs, signature cocktails, premium spirits and curated wines. Some Centurion Lounges even offer spa services, wine tasting, family rooms and shower suites. Best of all, these services are all complimentary to eligible cardholders and their guests.
If you like the sound of Amex’s Centurion Lounges, keep reading to learn more about these lounges and how to get access.
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Airports with Centurion Lounges
The following airports have a Centurion Lounge:
- Charlotte (CLT)
- Dallas (DFW)
- Hong Kong (HKG)
- Houston (IAH)
- Las Vegas (LAS)
- Los Angeles (LAX)
- Miami (MIA)
- New York (JFK)
- New York (LGA)
- Philadelphia (PHL)
- Phoenix (PHX)
- San Francisco (SFO)
- Seattle (SEA)
The airport names above link to articles on each Centurion Lounge. But, I’ll also discuss each of these lounges in more detail near the end of this guide.
Note that as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, some Centurion Lounges may be closed, have limited hours or offer modified services. Check Amex’s Centurion Lounge website or Zach Griff’s Amex Centurion Lounge reopening post for current information.
Tip: Don’t see a Centurion Lounge in the airports you frequent? Check to see if another Global Lounge Collection lounge is available.
Airports that will soon have Centurion Lounges
Amex has worked to bring more Centurion Lounges to airports its cardholders want to visit. So far Amex has opened new locations in Phoenix, Charlotte, Los Angeles and New York (JFK) in 2020. And, American Express plans to open two more Centurion Lounges by the end of 2020:
Plus, Amex plans to expand its lounges in Las Vegas (LAS) and New York (LGA) for a 2021 reopening date. Since access for American, United and Delta lounges is now more restricted, these Centurion Lounge openings and expansions will be welcome additions for passengers who use these airports.
How to gain access to Centurion Lounges
American Express cardholders with a Centurion or Platinum-branded card such as The Platinum Card® from American Express or The Business Platinum Card® from American Express have access to Amex Centurion Lounges. Cardholders with other flavors of the Platinum Card, such as the Schwab or Ameriprise version and international versions, may also have access. But, Amex recommends calling the number on the back of your card to confirm.
Authorized users with a Centurion or Platinum Card also have access. And, you can add up to three authorized users to the personal Platinum Card for a total of $175 per year (see rates & fees). But, authorized users who have the Platinum’s complimentary additional Gold Card don’t have access. Likewise, Amex cardholders with cards that aren’t Centurion or Platinum cards, such as those with the American Express® Gold Card or the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, won’t have access.
Finally, Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card and Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card cardholders also get complimentary access to Centurion Lounges when flying on a Delta-marketed or Delta-operated flight purchased with any U.S.-issued American Express card.
Centurion Lounges are only for Platinum and Centurion members, Delta Reserve and Delta Business Reserve cardholders (when flying Delta on a ticket paid for with an eligible Amex card) and guests of these members and cardholders. You can’t purchase Centurion Lounge access even if you carry another American Express card.
When and how to access Centurion Lounges
To enter a Centurion Lounge, you must present your eligible card, a boarding pass showing a confirmed reservation for same-day travel (on any carrier, unless you are entering using a Delta Reserve or Delta Business Reserve, in which case you must be flying Delta and have paid for your fare with an eligible card) and your government-issued identification.
You may be able to use the Amex mobile app instead of showing your physical card. But, it’s still best to bring your card with you in case the Centurion Lounge you want to visit needs to see your physical card. Whether you use the app or show a physical card, the name on the card must match the name on your government-issued identification.
The access regulations also vary based on the type of card you carry. Centurion cardholders may use Centurion Lounges as long as they have access to the terminal and a confirmed reservation for same-day travel.
However, non-Centurion cardholders have two additional access restrictions. First, they can’t enter with a boarding pass for a flight that has just landed unless they can produce proof of a confirmed connecting flight departing from the same airport. Second, they can’t enter more than three hours before the departure time on their same-day, confirmed boarding pass unless they can provide proof of a connecting flight.
Centurion Lounge guest policies
Platinum cardholders may enter with up to two guests at no additional charge. And Centurion cardholders may enter with up to two guests or immediate family — defined as a spouse or domestic partner and children under 18 — at no additional charge. But, Delta Reserve and Delta Business Reserve cardholders aren’t allowed any complimentary guests.
Guest access is per cardmember, not per card. So you’ll still only get two guests even if you have the personal and business versions of the Platinum Card. If you want to bring additional guests over the complimentary-guest limit, you can purchase day passes for $50 per person at the time of entry. These one-day passes can be used at multiple Centurion Lounges on the same day, as long as the cardmember still accompanies the guest. Eligible Delta Reserve and Delta Business Reserve cardholders may purchase access for up to two guests per location.
Children under two years old may enter free of charge as long as the cardmember traveling with them can produce a lap-infant boarding pass or proof of age. For example, you can show a passport, birth certificate, infant boarding pass or immunization record to prove that a child is under age two.
Extra benefits for Centurion cardholders
The American Express Centurion Card is an invitation-only card that requires high levels of annual spending to be invited, a hefty initiation fee and a high annual fee. But along with many other benefits, Centurion cardholders receive some extra benefits at Centurion lounges. These benefits aren’t widely publicized, but the benefits that we’re aware of for Centurion Lounges are:
- Access is virtually guaranteed, even when Platinum cardholders might be turned away because of capacity restrictions
- Reserved seating for Centurion cardholders (sometimes in a special area)
- Complimentary upgraded champagne
- Complimentary premium drink selection (only available at some lounges)
The information for the Amex Centurion Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Overview of each Centurion Lounge
Each Centurion Lounge is different. All provide a wide variety of drinks, quality dining, high-speed Wi-Fi and a mixture of seating for relaxation and work. But each Centurion Lounge provides unique amenities and excels in different areas. Here’s what to expect at each Centurion Lounge.
The Charlotte Centurion Lounge is located at the intersection of Concourses D and E on the mezzanine level. You can access this Centurion Lounge airside regardless of your gate.
You can enjoy Southern-leaning cuisine from North Carolina’s Joe Kindred at Charlotte’s Centurion Lounge. This lounge also offers a family room, shower suite, large flat-screen televisions and personal workspaces.
The Dallas Centurion Lounge is located in Terminal D across from Gate D12 on the mezzanine level. You can reach this lounge from any other terminal via the Skylink train.
Dining options at this lounge are designed by James Beard Award-winning chef Dean Fearing and include locally-inspired dishes such as Texas Migas with chorizo and sweet onions. Lounge amenities include spa therapies from Exhale, a shower suite, large flat-screen televisions, conference space, a family room and semi-private workspaces.
Hong Kong (HKG)
The Hong Kong Centurion Lounge is located in Terminal 1 on Level 7. You can reach the lounge by taking the escalator just before Gate 60. This lounge offers locally inspired cuisine as well as a phone room, shower suite and dedicated work area.
The Houston Centurion Lounge is in Terminal D. You can reach this lounge via the elevator in the duty-free shop near Gate D6. You can get to Terminal D from other terminals inside the secure area via the Skyway train.
Locally inspired cuisine at this lounge is designed by James Beard Award-winning chef Justin Yu, chef and owner of Houston restaurant Theodore Rex. Lounge amenities include a tranquility area, phone room, dedicated work area, family room and shower suite.
Las Vegas (LAS)
The Las Vegas Centurion Lounge is located in Concourse D across from Gate D1. Concourse D can be reached from Terminal 1 or Terminal 3 via the transit system. Once you pass security, follow signs to D gates.
Dining options at this lounge are designed by James Beard Award-nominated chef Kim Canteenwalla. Lounge amenities include a shower suite, large flat-screen televisions, conference space, family room and semi-private workspaces.
Los Angeles (LAX)
The Los Angeles Centurion Lounge is located in the Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT). After clearing TBIT security, walk to the great hall, turn left and take the elevator from level four to level two. When you exit the elevator, you’ll see the lounge straight ahead. You can access TBIT airside by walking from Terminals 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 and taking an airside bus from Terminals 2 and 3.
Dining at this lounge is designed by Nancy Silverton, the James Beard Award-winning chef and owner of Los Angeles institution Osteria Mozza. Lounge amenities include spa services, Sunrise and Moonrise rooms, a shower suite, family room, large flat-screen televisions and personal workspaces.
The Miami Centurion Lounge features floor-to-ceiling windows with expansive views of the runway. This Centurion Lounge is in Concourse D on the fourth floor near Gate D12. The lounge is accessible via the SkyTrain within the D Concourse. But if you’re coming from another terminal you’ll need to re-enter through security with either a connecting or onward boarding pass.
This lounge features locally inspired cuisine designed by James Beard Award-winning chef Michelle Bernstein. Lounge amenities include spa therapies from Exhale, a shower suite, large flat-screen televisions, a family room and semi-private workspaces.
New York (JFK)
The New York JFK Centurion Lounge in Terminal 4. After you go through security, the lounge is to the left of the escalators that lead passengers down to the gates.
This new lounge offers cuisine designed by Uruguayan-born Chef Ignacio Mattos. And, you can enjoy premium drinks from two bars or a Speakeasy. Other lounge amenities include self-led spa services from Equinox, a specialty coffee bar, family room, dedicated work area, semi-private workspace, phone room and shower suite.
New York LaGuardia (LGA)
The New York LaGuardia Centurion Lounge is located outside security in Central Terminal B, on the third floor between Concourses B and C. However, this lounge is currently closed and won’t reopen. Instead, in 2021, a brand-new Amex Centurion Lounge will open at LaGuardia Airport.
The Philadelphia Centurion Lounge is located in Terminal A West near Gate A14. You can reach this lounge from any other terminal by walking or using a shuttle bus.
Cuisine at this lounge is designed by chef Michael Solomonov, a pioneer in Israeli cuisine and four-time winner of James Beard Awards. Lounge amenities include a phone room, a shower suite and personal workspaces.
The Phoenix Centurion Lounge is located in Terminal 4 across from Gate B22 on the upper level.
Local Chef Doug Robson designs dining options at this lounge. His cuisine includes exquisite Mexican dishes like Pollo Asado with a tamarind glaze. Lounge amenities include shower suites and workspaces.
San Francisco (SFO)
The San Francisco Centurion Lounge is located in Terminal 3 near Gate F1/F2. You can reach the lounge after clearing security in Terminal 3 or International Terminal G. If you are departing from a different terminal, you may be able to use your boarding pass to enter through Terminal 3 security to visit the lounge. Still, then you will need to exit security, take the AirTrain or walk to your terminal and then re-enter through security before your flight.
This lounge features James Beard Award-nominated chef Ravi Kapur’s Californian inspired cuisine. Lounge amenities include a wine-tasting area, shower suite, open kitchen, large flat-screen televisions, family room and semi-private workspaces.
The Seattle Centurion Lounge is located in Concourse B opposite Gate B3. You can get to this lounge after passing through any security checkpoint.
Unlike most Centurion Lounges, this lounge offers locally inspired light bites instead of meal-worthy cuisine. The amenities at this lounge are also more limited, likely because it was initially a Centurion Studio before it eventually expanded by about 50% to become a Centurion Lounge. Amenities include large flat-screen televisions and a shower suite.
The premium American Express Membership Rewards cards that provide access to Centurion Lounges — the Platinum Card, Business Platinum Card and the invitation-only Centurion Card — are cards you carry for their membership benefits. One of the top benefits is access to lounges in the American Express Global Lounge Collection, which includes Centurion Lounges. These lounges can provide terrific value for frequent domestic and international travelers and can help justify keeping one of these premium cards in your wallet.
Plus, now Delta Reserve and Delta Business Reserve cardholders can visit Centurion Lounges on select trips. In particular, these cardholders will get complimentary access to Centurion Lounges when flying on Delta-marketed or Delta-operated flights if they pay their fare with a U.S.-issued American Express card.
For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum card, click here.
Featured image of the new Amex Centurion Lounge at JFK (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy).
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