Confirmed: Amex will open largest Centurion Lounge in Newark Airport

Sep 30, 2021

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Editor’s note: This article has been updated with additional details.

There’s some great news for Amex cardmembers passing through the New York City area: the issuer will soon have a Centurion Lounge in all three of the region’s largest airports.

Though American Express already operates Centurion Lounge outposts in New York’s LaGuardia and JFK airports, Newark is currently missing one.

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Fortunately, that’s about to change. The issuer just received approval for a 15-year lease in the airport’s brand-new Terminal A for an 18,000-square-foot lounge, which would make Newark its largest location to date.

As part of the Thursday, Sept. 30 board meeting of The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which oversees the region’s airports, a proposed resolution about the development of a non-airline-branded lounge in an expansion to the new terminal passed the appropriate committees.

The Port Authority and the terminal operator received two proposals for the new lounge, and both parties are moving forward with Amex’s offer. (The other interested party was not disclosed in the resolution nor during the board meeting.)

In a statement confirming the move, an American Express spokesperson shared that:

We are working closely with the Port Authority to explore options for a new Centurion Lounge at Newark Liberty International Airport. We will continue to work with their team to finalize these proposed details.

The resolution includes many (exciting) details about the lounge itself. It wouldn’t just be the largest one in the network, it’d also offer a slew of first-rate amenities that could make it the nicest one too.

Some of the proposed amenities include an outdoor terrace overlooking the airfield, with views of the Port of Newark, New York and Newark Harbor and the Manhattan skyline, a piano lounge, a Jersey jazz-themed bar and a speakeasy-themed cocktail lounge. Amex is also proposing wellness rooms, workstations, multiple food buffets and “world-class” restroom facilities as well.

The new lounge will be located in the airport’s brand-new Terminal A, which is currently under construction with an opening date slated for the first half of next year. The lounge itself is expected to open in the second half of 2023.

Rendering of the new Newark Terminal A (Courtesy of the Port Authority)

While the terminal itself has space for up to four airline-branded lounges, Amex’s location will be on the top floor of a 50,000-square-foot, three-story expansion building adjacent to the new terminal. The Port Authority is proposing the expansion either on the north or south end of the new terminal.

Related: The complete guide to the Amex Centurion Lounge network

Amex will lease the entire expansion area for a 15-year term, with one five-year extension option, at a total cost of $121.5 million, equating to over $8 million a year. The issuer will also invest roughly $100 million to construct the expansion area.

As part of the agreement, Amex will sublease the first and second floors of the new building expansion back to the Port Authority for potential subleasing to concessionaires and other interested parties. Notably, the Port Authority will not make any capital investments in the connection with the proposed lease.

Featured photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy

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