Australia’s most frequent flyers can rack up as many miles and status credits as they like but that won’t get them through the door at The Chairman’s Lounge, Qantas’ super-elite airport lounge.
This invitation-only lounge “is probably the most exclusive club in the country” Qantas CEO Alan Joyce once told Australian Business Traveller, while wearing the smile of a man with a sly secret.
That exclusivity alone makes The Chairman’s Lounge a subject of ardent curiosity, further fueled by the scarcity of hard information on this haven for the very well-heeled.
Stephanie Tully, Head of Airline Loyalty at Qantas, laughs at the suggestion that a la Fight Club, the first rule of The Chairman’s Lounge seems to be that you don’t talk about The Chairman’s Lounge.
The Chairman’s Lounge is aptly named: the Chairman of Qantas, Leigh Clifford, personally signs off on each membership application, which lasts for two years.
“We manage the membership on his behalf, but it’s not an easy group to get into” Tully tells Australian Business Traveller. And it’s got nothing to do with your frequent flyer miles or status credits.
“Our Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum One tier is about hard-core flying loyal Qantas customers. It’s a very different group to The Chairman’s Lounge, which tends to be decision-makers, CEOs and celebrities.”
This select group includes politicians and high court judges, along with the chair and CEO of major corporate accounts – the top end of town which spend heavily on Qantas flights.
“Membership is very sought after and it’s a great asset for Qantas to utilize for our commercial endeavors” Alan Joyce says.