The Air France First Class Lounge (Salon La Première) in Paris CDG is a remarkable lounge with superb amenities.
I deliberately booked a long layover to give me several hours to enjoy the lounge. After arriving from Los Angeles, a driver was waiting to drive me to the lounge, about five minutes away.
Upon arrival, I was welcomed by an attendant and offered a seat in the dining area. It seems that most arriving first class passengers sleep through the pre-arrival meal and eat in the lounge. But I had just enjoyed a nice breakfast and only ordered a cappuccino.
If you happen to be walking in via Terminal 2E, look for the red elevators, which will take you upstairs to the lounge.
The lounge was nicely decorated for Christmas.
Air France Salon La Première Paris Seating
Seating is divided into two rooms, a larger main room and a smaller back room. The back room has couches only while the main room has couches and chairs. Power outlets are abundant and staff roam the lounge to ensure you are comfortable. Although you can eat anywhere in the lounge, I recommend eating in the dining area.
Air France First Class Lounge Paris Quiet Area
Down the hall from the main seating area is a relaxation area that features a number of easy chairs and two actual beds behind them. I was well-rested from my flight and did not avail myself to them, though they looked quite comfortable.
Air France First Class Lounge Paris Spa
Further past the quiet area is a spa. My mistake was in not making a reservation in advance. I arrived on a Sunday at 2:00PM and the spa closed at 3:30PM…there were no treatments available. Generally, La Première passengers are entitled to a complimentary 30-minute treatment, though there is a whole menu of massage and facials available for purchase.
I had a remedy to the spa issue, though that will be the subject of a post tomorrow.
Air France First Class Lounge Restrooms
Restrooms are available and very private. You’ll have your own room with toilet and sink.
Air France Salon La Première Paris Showers
Four showers are available. There did not appear to be an attendant staffing them…just go right through the door and fresh towels will be waiting. There is even a bathrobe and slippers available.
Air France Salon La Première Whiskey Bar
I’m not a whiskey drinker, but the lounge has a fairly beautiful whiskey bar with a dedicated menu.
Air France Salon La Première Dining
The highlight of my trip to the lounge was the exquisite dinner I enjoyed before my flight to Basel. The food is simply amazing…even better than the feast I enjoyed in the SWISS First Class Lounge in Zurich.
Let’s start with the menu:
I started dinner with an appetizer of scallops and root vegetables, which were perfectly browned and brimming with flavor.
Leave room for the fresh bread and butter.
And exquisite wine.
The pumpkin-squash soup was so flavorful as were the toasted croutons dipped in olive oil. What a superb combination!
Next, I enjoyed a green salad that served as a healthy palate cleanser before the main course.
Instead of my usual filet, I ordered pigeon instead, a delicacy I do not often enjoy. It was such a good choice: so tasty and cooked perfectly.
I finished the meal with a decadent chocolate and praline dessert, ice cream, and coffee.
I’ll give Air France one strike (if you’ll pardon the pun) for lackluster coffee. The machine-made cappuccino was not very good. Surely Air France can offer better coffee in its flagship lounge. That said, everything else about the meal was exceptional.
There’s also a self-serve area with appetizers, cheese, sweets, fruit, and the largest variety of bottled water I’ve ever seen in a lounge.
Finally, afternoon tea is available if you are so inclined.
Air France First Class Lounge CDG Service
The lounge staff were so wonderful throughout my stay. While I was not assigned one agent in particular, like Lufthansa does, I interacted with several and all were kind without the slight hint of pretentiousness.
The only constructive criticism I can offer is that the staff in the dining room took a bit too much time to clear away dishes or offer refills. One person asked me if I wanted “to try some” wine with my pigeon when the bottle (as you can see above) was sitting right on the table and my glass full. At the same time, I was never offered a glass of water with my meal.
Overall though, the service was every bit as outstanding as I expected.
When it came time to leave, I was again escorted downstairs and driven to my Hop! flight to Basel. I was very sorry to leave the lounge, even after several hours.
If you fly Air France La Première, leave time for the lounge in Paris. It’s a refreshing oasis where you can enjoy a meal better than most restaurants.