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Passenger Trains > Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opens!


Date: 09/23/13 09:21
Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opens!
Author: railwaybaron

Amtrak's Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge opened today at 5:00 AM. This writer was its first guest--traveling in Business class on a Surfliner to far-off Fullerton, and returning via a nameless Metrolink all-stops milk run. The beautiful wood-paneled lounge, otherwise known as "Julie's Surf Club" is open only to Amtrak Business Class and sleeping car passengers. Metrolinklink tickets are not honored. An "official" Grand Opening event will take place sometime in October. The lounge is located on the second floor and is reached by elevator or stairs to the right of the Amtrak ticket counter and down the hall. Passengers are taken to their trains by free Red Cap carts (tips accepted) because the walkway is blocked by the Gold Line trolley.

UPDATE 10:00 AM: Over 100 Coast Starlight passengers crowded the otherwise commodious Amtrak Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge on its first morning of operation.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 09/23/13 11:12 by railwaybaron.



Date: 09/23/13 09:29
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: jp1822

railwaybaron Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Amtrak's Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge opened
> today at 5:00 AM. This writer was its first
> guest--traveling in Business class on a SurfLiner
> to far-off Fullerton, and returning via a nameless
> Metrolink all-stops milk run. The beautiful
> wood-paneled lounge, otherwise known as "Julie's
> Surf Stop" is only open to Amtrak Business Class
> and sleeping car passengers, Metrolinklink tickets
> are not honored. An "official" Grand Opening event
> will take place sometime in October. The lounge is
> located on the second floor and is reached by
> elevator or stairs to the right of the Amtrak
> ticket counter and down the hall. Passengers are
> taken to their trains by free Red Cap carts (tips
> accepted) because the walkway is blocked by the
> Gold Line trolley.


Don't get me wrong, I think this is a great thing, but even here, Amtrak can't standardize its lounges.....Chicago and Northeast Corridor - Business Class passengers can't use the Amtrak lounges. And even though the ones in the Northeast may have a "Acela" ring to them - hardly the case. I am sure the LA lounge is superior than the Acela Lounges! As a business class traveler, all I am saying is it would be nice to use the Amtrak lounges since most business class amenities in the East are gone, but some still remain in effect out West!

Kudos to the lounge opening! I hope it is a much added improvement for all California corridor service and the long distance trains.



Date: 09/23/13 10:18
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: rickycourtney

jp1822 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Don't get me wrong, I think this is a great thing,
> but even here, Amtrak can't standardize its
> lounges.....Chicago and Northeast Corridor -
> Business Class passengers can't use the Amtrak
> lounges. And even though the ones in the Northeast
> may have a "Acela" ring to them - hardly the case.
> I am sure the LA lounge is superior than the Acela
> Lounges! As a business class traveler, all I am
> saying is it would be nice to use the Amtrak
> lounges since most business class amenities in the
> East are gone, but some still remain in effect out
> West!

Apparently Amtrak's rules are changing... while it wasn't well advertised, the Metropolitan Lounge in Chicago is now open to Business Class passengers.

The station lounges page on Amtrak.com says: "Metropolitan Lounges are available to sleeping car passengers, business class passengers with the same day travel ticket (departure or arrival) and Amtrak Guest Rewards Select Plus or Select Executive members".

But that being said... I've heard reports of Cascades Business Class passengers being turned away from the Metropolitan Lounge in Portland.

The ClubAcela locations remain open only to Acela Express First Class passengers, sleeping car passengers and other passengers with that perk.

It's all about adding value to your service... the ClubAcela is all about increasing the value of a sleeper or First Class ticket on the Acela, while the Metropolitan Lounges are all about increasing the value of a sleeper or a Business Class ticket (where the Acela doesn't run and no First Class is offered.)

Ricky Courtney
Seattle, WA



Date: 09/23/13 13:27
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: ProAmtrak

What took them so long to put one in LA is my question though!



Date: 09/23/13 13:50
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: mundo

Funding, however ownership/management of the station was a big factor.

Times have changed and many changes will start taking place next year and will take several years, along with finding funding.

May, 2014 sees the 75th Birthday of the station and a new edition to the history book, is in preparation.



Date: 09/23/13 14:57
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: MojaveBill

I boarded the Lark in that station in Nov., 1959, on my way with a group of fellow soon-to-be soldiers-in-the-rain on our way to Fort Ord!
Nice station, nice train!

Bill Deaver
Tehachapi, CA



Date: 09/23/13 15:00
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: houstonguy2010

rickycourtney Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

>
> But that being said... I've heard reports of
> Cascades Business Class passengers being turned
> away from the Metropolitan Lounge in Portland.

There is one male agent in Portland that turned me away and I was AGR Select Plus and had a business class ticket on the Cascades a little over a year ago. He VERY rudely told me the lounge in Portland was for sleeping car passengers only. Will have to try the Chicago Metro Lounge next time I am there with a business class ticket.

Keith Hunter
FOREST CITY, IA



Date: 09/23/13 15:05
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: jp1822

houstonguy2010 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> rickycourtney Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
>
> >
> > But that being said... I've heard reports of
> > Cascades Business Class passengers being turned
> > away from the Metropolitan Lounge in Portland.
>
> There is one male agent in Portland that turned me
> away and I was AGR Select Plus and had a business
> class ticket on the Cascades a little over a year
> ago. He VERY rudely told me the lounge in
> Portland was for sleeping car passengers only.
> Will have to try the Chicago Metro Lounge next
> time I am there with a business class ticket.

Select Plus they should have let you in without a problem. Not doubting you had a problem, but when I was last in the Portland lounge there were plenty of "Select Plus" members using the lounge for the Cascades!



Date: 09/23/13 19:14
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: ColdRainAndSnow

houstonguy2010 Wrote:
> There is one male agent in Portland that turned me
> away and I was AGR Select Plus and had a business
> class ticket on the Cascades a little over a year
> ago. He VERY rudely told me the lounge in
> Portland was for sleeping car passengers only.
> Will have to try the Chicago Metro Lounge next
> time I am there with a business class ticket.

It's best to assume all lounge dragons are oblivious to Amtrak policy. Carry Amtrak's lounge policy documentation with you, and hand it to them at their first sign of recalcitrance. In the early days of Select Executive, I used my SE card at Chicago Metropolitan Lounge because my sleeper ticket was buried in my carry-on. I kept the ticket in my bag and refused to take "Denied" for an answer. Under threat of bringing the station manager into it, I was "allowed" to enter the ML. But she acted like she was doing me a favor, and I told her later as she walked us out to the train that she would be receiving some retraining very soon. And indeed she did.



Date: 09/23/13 19:56
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: john1082

ColdRainAndSnow Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I
> told her later as she walked us out to the train
> that she would be receiving some retraining very
> soon. And indeed she did.

Do you really think that she cared?

John Gezelius
Tustin, CA



Date: 09/23/13 20:02
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: ColdRainAndSnow

john1082 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> ColdRainAndSnow Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I
> > told her later as she walked us out to the
> train
> > that she would be receiving some retraining
> very
> > soon. And indeed she did.
>
> Do you really think that she cared?

Considering she was disciplined and retrained several weeks later - yes, I do.



Date: 09/24/13 17:40
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: Jimbo

Would the lounge be open for arriving Coast Starlight passengers?



Date: 09/24/13 20:18
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: rickycourtney

Jimbo Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Would the lounge be open for arriving Coast
> Starlight passengers?

The lounge is open from 5am to 10pm. So, in theory, you could wait in the Metropolitan Lounge after #11 arrives for the connecting #796 to San Diego that departs at 10:10pm.

Posted from iPhone

Ricky Courtney
Seattle, WA



Date: 09/24/13 21:36
Re: Los Angeles Metropolitan Lounge Opened!
Author: ColdRainAndSnow

Hmm...#14's pax are looking pretty cozy here. I wonder if it is actually big enough to support this biz class idea during LD times.




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