Review: Copa Club Lounge Panama

by TwoHeartsTraveling
Copa Club Sign

There are three lounge options at the Panama City Tocumen International Airport (PTY) for those who have Priority Pass. While the Copa Club is the largest in terms of capacity, it is the only lounge for Copa elite members and since Panama City is Copa’s main hub it can get pretty crowded.

Additionally, the food and drink were mediocre with no warm food options and the lounge itself was in need of some serious renovation.

Location & Hours Copa Club Panama City

It is a little confusing to find the lounge, and adequate signage is certainly lacking. The directions in the Priority Pass app say the lounge is located on the 2nd floor above Gates 130 and 133.

After wandering around by the gates for several minutes, we realized the entrance isn’t actually by the gates, but by the shops near those gates.

So in short, find the shops by gate 130 and you will see the lounge entrance

Copa Club Entrance

Copa Club Entrance

Copa Club Sign

Copa Club Sign

Then take the elevators upstairs.

Copa Lounge PTY Elevators

Copa Lounge PTY Elevators

The lounge hours are 5:45am to 9:45pm daily

Access to Copa Club Lounges

Access to Copa Club is a little confusing but essentially for:

•      Business class or first class passengers traveling same day on Copa Airlines or an internationally on a Star                    Alliance member
•     ConnectMiles (Copa Elites) Gold, Platinum or Presidential members traveling same day on Copa Airlines
•     United Club members
•     Priority Pass, Lounge Key, Lounge Club, Diners Club
•     Passengers who purchased a same day pass
•     A few other ways such as passengers flying KLM/Air France who are traveling business class or have KLM/Air             France elite status, Aeromexico Premier passengers traveling on Aeromexico flights, Iberia Plus Elite or                       Infinita passengers traveling on Iberia flights

Check In

There were about 10 people in line ahead of us checking in. Luckily there were four agents so the wait was only about five minutes. While we were waiting, we couldn’t help but notice how crowded the lounge was already. Finding two open seats was going to be a chore.

Panama City, Panama Copa Club Entrance

Panama City, Panama Copa Club Entrance

Copa Club Lounge Area

Immediately to the right of the check in area were the restrooms, showers and luggage storage area.

The main lounge area was straight ahead after check in. Unfortunately, it was crowded I didn’t want to take many photos because there were dozens of passengers in each photo. I managed to get one just to show the main lounge area and how crowded it actually was.

Copa Club Lounge Panama City

Copa Club Lounge Panama City

The food buffet area was located in the center of the lounge.

Copa Air Business Class Lounge Food

Copa Air Business Class Lounge Food

Just past the food buffet was a high-top communal dining table as well as multiple smaller dining tables.

To the right was a business center.

Business Center

Business Center

The bar was located at the very back of the lounge.

Copa Club Bar Panama PTY

Copa Club Bar Panama PTY

The decor is definitely out dated with mostly browns, yellows and light greens. However, it looks like there have been some updates more recently as there were new modern light fixtures and the modern bar in the back.

Modern Light Fixtures Copa Lounge Panama

About half of the lounge chairs aren’t the standard comfy lounge chairs but rather these hard wooden monstrosities..

Copa Club Lounge Chair

Copa Club Lounge Chair

There were plenty of seating options (although all seats were full) with rows of lounge chairs in the center and by the windows.

The one redeeming feature were the beautiful wide-open views of the tarmac. Jess and I were able to find two seats together by the window and this allowed us to tolerate an hour in the lounge before we felt claustrophobic and had to escape.

Copa Club View Panama Tocumen Airport

Copa Club View Panama Tocumen Airport

Tarmac Views Copa Club Panama City Airport

Tarmac Views Copa Club Panama City Airport

Food & Beverage Copa Airlines Lounge

As mentioned previously, the food and drink were certainly underwhelming. There was an assorted mix of small snacks such as veggies, crackers, cheeses, fruits and prepackaged pastries. There was no warm food.

Snacks Copa Club Panama

Snacks Copa Club Panama

Food Copa Club Panama City

Food Copa Club Panama City

Food Copa Business Class Lounge PTY Airport

Food Copa Business Class Lounge PTY Airport

Food Copa Biz Lounge Panama

Food Copa Biz Lounge Panama

Copa Club Panama Food

Copa Club Panama Food

There was also a Nescafe machine for coffee

Coffee Machine Panama Copa Club

Coffee Machine Panama Copa Club

Copa Club Showers & Restrooms

The restrooms and showers appeared to have been updated recently and were well maintained.

Showers Panama Copa Club

Showers Panama Copa Club

Service Copa Club Panama City, Panama

One thing we noticed that started out as a nice gesture, but eventually became distracting is that staff members came around every 5 minutes to clean. Normally this is welcome as no one wants to sit in a lounge seat with dirty glasses and left-over food.

However, the staff were so aggressive about cleaning, they would remove our ¾ full champagne glasses and entire plates of food sitting that were sitting directly in front of us, without even asking if we were done. It felt as if we were being told it was time to go as they cleared our area. I’m not sure if this was a tactic to try and open up more seats or what, but it was certainly disrupting.

After several passes, we felt the need to hoard our food and drink in the corner like savages each time the cleaning staff came around.

With this aggressive cleaning and entirely full lounge, Jess and I felt the need to escape and went off to find The Lounge Panama by Global Lounge Network. Immediately when we arrived at The Lounge Panama, we knew we had made the right choice and stayed there for the remainder of our layover.

The Lounge by Global Lounge Network

The Lounge by Global Lounge Network

Overall Impression

The Copa Club Lounge is one of three Priority Pass Lounges at the Panama City Tocumen Airport (PTY). While the lounge is large, it was completely full and the atmosphere was chaotic. The food and drink were sub-par and we felt rushed out by the staff cleaning.

After an hour we left for The Lounge Panama by Global Lounge Network (GLN) and didn’t regret that decision for a second. If you are in Panama City for a layover, I would recommend going directly to The Lounge Panama first and only checking out the other lounges if that one is too crowded.

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