Let’s just say the Amtrak ClubAcela Lounge at Washington Union Station (WAS) does not hold a candle to the swanky Metropolitan Lounge at New York Penn (NYP). That said, I still appreciated a quiet place to work after my Acela journey to Washington.
Amtrak ClubAcela Lounge Washington Review
Eventually, Amtrak will build a beautiful new Metropolitan Lounge in Washington Union Station, as it has in New York, but for now the ClubAcela will have to do…a small lounge for premium cabin and elite customers.
Hours + Access + Location
ClubAcela is located behind the information booth, between gates D and E. The door of the lounge is always locked: you must ring a doorbell to be buzzed in.
Hours of operation are from 4:45 am – 9:30 pm Monday – Friday and 6:00 am – 9:30 pm on Saturday and Sunday.
Access is included for:
- Amtrak Guest Rewards members traveling with a same-day Amtrak ticket and valid Select Plus or Select Executive member card
- Amtrak passengers with a same-day travel ticket (departure or arrival) in First Class or sleeping car accommodations
Eligible guests can bring in “immediate family members traveling together, or one, non-family guest. Unaccompanied guests are not permitted.”
Day passes are not available for purchase in this lounge.
Food + Drink
Food and drink items are very limited. In terms of snacks, there was only Chex Mix, pretzels, potato chips, and peanuts available.
In a little galley area, bottled water and orange juice was available as well as a coffee machine and soda dispenser featuring Pepsi products.
Amtrak “refreshed “this lounge in 2019 with new furniture and carpet, but there’s no denying it: the lounge looks dated and tired. While I cannot exactly pinpoint why, the woodgrain on the walls and stonework floor looked too old to be modern and too new to be classically tasteful. That subjective assessment aside, I had no trouble finding a seat, all of which were comfortable.
The District of Columbia prints on the wall felt a bit tacky, but maybe comparing this lounge to the Metropolitan Lounge in New York was a bit unfair.
Restrooms were also refurbished as part of the 2019 update and are small with a single toilet and urinal in the men’s room along with a large sink with automatic water dispensers.
If you will be here for a while, luggage storage is available near the lounge entrance (just behind the front desk).
This is certainly not a lounge I would arrive early for, but it was helpful as a place to regroup and get some work done before I headed out to the suburbs after my journey south. Snacks are extremely limited, so do not expect to come here on a full stomach and leave satisfied.