Sabah el kheer from the Royal Jordanian Crown Lounge at Amman’s Queen Alia International Airport
After a thoroughly refreshing sleep and nourishing Arabic breakfast at the Kempinski Amman hotel, we made our way back to Queen Alia International Airport. Construction on the new terminal building is nearly complete, and it will open in a few months. It looks spectacular and will truly enhance the entire airport experience. For the meantime, we have used the current terminal.
Royal Jordanian have a dedicated premium check-in suite which differs from most airport operations as guests sit on sofas and are handled by very efficient RJ staff members who check you in from large desks along one wall. With boarding passes in hand, we went through a dedicated fast-track immigration and security lane right up to the Crown Lounge.
This vast space can accommodate up to 340 guests at any one time, and is rumoured to be the second largest airline lounge in the Middle East. It certainly is busy today, given the large number of flights departing for a wide variety of destinations including New York, Montreal, Tripoli, Abu Dhabi, Baghdad and our flight to Frankfurt. For guests that have longer connections, there are hotel rooms available connected to the lounge for a small fee ($50USD for the first four hours, and then an hourly charge thereafter). There are two bars, and a buffet serving hot and cold food, salads, sandwiches and snacks. There are also wait staff who are very attentive, bringing piping hot coffee to those travellers in need of their morning buzz. We are most keen to see what the new lounge will be like once the new terminal opens.
Royal Jordanian was founded in 1963, and has been growing ever since. It operates to 61 destinations across the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe and North America. The long-haul fleet is comprised of Airbus A340s and A330s, with the short to mid-haul operation being flown with Airbus A320 family aircraft, along with Embraer 175/195 aircraft. RJ have 11 Boeing 787 aircraft on order, which are due for delivery in 2014.
Our flight today is on board Royal Jordanian’s Airbus A319 aircraft, with 14 seats in Crown Business Class in a 2×2 layout, and 102 Economy Class seats in a 3×3 layout. The aircraft is fitted with the OnAir mobile services system, so we will try and upload something from the flight if possible. It is time to head to the gate, so fingers crossed, more from on board!