Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has announced it will open a premium lounge in Manchester, the third Etihad lounge to open outside of the airline’s home base in Abu Dhabi.

etihad-logo-blackThe new lounge, which will open later this year in Manchester Airport’s Terminal 1, is part of a gradual roll out of lounges across the airline’s network, and will reflect Etihad’s award-winning style, service concept and high quality look and feel already seen in its lounges in Abu Dhabi, London and Frankfurt.

Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways Chief Commercial Officer, said: “Manchester has always been an important part of Etihad’s growth plans, and the ties between Manchester and Abu Dhabi have never been stronger. We recently announced a capacity increase of close to 60 per cent on the route from June, and we continue to look for partnership opportunities that deliver real benefits to both regions.

“The choice of Manchester as the next venue for a dedicated Etihad lounge is yet another example of our long-term commitment to this important route.”

The 318 square metre lounge will offer the airline’s premium customers a range of features, including:

• five-star dining facilities with a selection of international cuisine;
• a modern business centre providing individual workstations and privacy for people with laptops;
• a prayer room;
• a family room, where children can be kept entertained by nannies;
• a relaxation area, including high-comfort leather chairs and reading material;
• luxurious bathrooms and shower facilities for customers to freshen up before their departure; and
• expansive views over the airport’s taxiway and runway.

“We are pleased to offer our premium customers travelling from Manchester a convenient, luxurious and relaxing experience before their flight,” Mr Baumgartner said.

Andrew Cornish, Manchester Airport’s Managing Director, said: “The Etihad service to Abu Dhabi is a crucial link between our two closely-linked regions and the addition of a premium lounge demonstrates real confidence in this vital relationship. A premium lounge is a key enhancement for Etihad at Manchester Airport, particularly with the additional capacity provided by the Boeing 777-300 aircraft which will operate the service from June. Etihad’s loyal and growing customer base will be as delighted as we are at today’s news and we look forward to developing this successful service together.”

Etihad has been operating services to Manchester since 2006 and offers connections from Manchester to Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow with its codeshare partner, bmi and from Manchester to Isle of Man, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Southampton and Inverness with its codeshare partner, Flybe. In 2009, the airline signed a three-year deal to be the official shirt sponsor and partner of English Premier League side, Manchester City.