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I have to be honest. When traveling through Mexico or the Caribbean I generally have very low expectations for Priority Pass lounges. Heck, even when I’m in the States the lounges are usually nothing too special.
However, the Priority Pass lounge at Los Cabos International (SJD) Terminal 2 was actually a nice surprise. It’s not your typical boring, small airport lounge that you might expect to find. Instead it’s actually a pretty cool and refreshing place to relax in (unless you need to visit the baño). In this article I will review my recent experience at the Los Cabos International Terminal VIP lounge and show you what you can expect.
Getting to the airport
We left the all-inclusive Hyatt Ziva Cabo after a great three night stay and then made our way toward Los Cabos International via a Chevrolet Suburban. The Hyatt Ziva originally picked us up in a Cadillac Escalade so this ride was not quite as fancy but still pretty luxurious.
The drive over to the airport from San Jose is very scenic and it was nice to have some views to admire along the way. It only took us about 20 minutes to get to the airport which was very nice. However, if you are coming from Cabo San Lucas, it will take closer to 35 to 40 minutes.
We pulled up to Terminal Two and then made our way to the American Airlines premium check-in and received our boarding pass. This flight was my lucky day and I was hit with the “quad” aka SSSS. If you don’t know about the dreaded SSSS, I suggest that you read my article here to find out more about it. (In the end, it wasn’t that bad but still — it’s just never a fun experience.)
Once we were issued our boarding passes we simply followed the signs to departures, up the escalator.
Once up on the second floor there was a sign pointing us towards the VIP lounge, which will be towards your left.
We were flying on July 4 and the terminal was pretty packed, so I was expecting to find a pretty full lounge. But lucky for us that would not necessarily be the case.
Getting to the lounge
The terminal is pretty small and it only took us a couple of minutes to find our way toward the lounge which quickly became visible at the end of the terminal. The lounge has a really cool futuristic façade that is very different from an ordinary boring airport lounge.
You will know that you are at the right lounge because it is clearly marked “VIP Lounge.”
There was no line at check in so we got in quickly using our Priority Pass membership that we get with the Chase Sapphire Reserve. We also have Priority Pass with the American Express Platinum Card but when traveling through airports we choose to use the pass from the Sapphire Reserve now since it offers access to the airport restaurants.
At the check-in desk there is a small journal where you can sign in and leave some comments and it sort of reminded me of being in the Lufthansa First Class Terminal (except not). I meant to leave some notes but I ended up forgetting.
Los Cabos International Priority Pass Lounge
The lounge has two different floors. On the bottom floor you will find a large counter/bar area where you can pick up food and get complementary alcohol served.
This lounge is a little bit fancy in that they actually have display of their food items so you can know what to expect. Not all of the foods looked that appetizing but I appreciated them keeping it real.
During our time at the lounge they were serving cereal, sandwiches, salad, toast, and a couple of other dishes and soups. They also had other snacks like fruit, cookies, and healthy vegetable snacks like celery.
I noticed right off the bat that there were outlets and USB ports in many of the seats which was really nice.
There were a few places to eat and some semi private areas to take a seat, although some of the areas felt a little cramped.
The bottom level had a decent amount of people in it so I wanted to go upstairs and check out what the second floor was all about. I’m very glad that I did and if you are ever at this lounge I highly recommend going upstairs.
You can get to the second floor via a small elevator or stairs. The stairs are quite narrow especially when trying to bring luggage up or down so sometimes there are bottlenecks. (If you have some large luggage, you are probably better off with the elevator.)
The second floor has an interesting mid century modern set up. There is a dining area that is just a really cool looking area. Again this lounge did not feel like your typical Priority Pass lounge which was refreshing. It was also nice just to see the crowds so thinned out on the second floor.
The food and snacks were pretty much the same that were offered on the bottom floor. Here’s a look at some of the items that they were serving.
I wasn’t too impressed with their sandwiches until I tried a fresh batch that they brought out (pictured below) which were much better. Still basic but much better.
Overall, I would say that the food selection was decent and enough to get you carried over until your flight but nothing special.
The upper deck had a lot of modern seating options.
While these modern seats did not have outlets in them you could find outlets randomly on the floor. I also thought that the lounge did a pretty good job of supplying tables for the seats.
And one thing that I like about this lounge is that it had great views of the surrounding mountains. Cabo really is just a beautiful place.
There was a section in the back of the lounge that I think was designed for families. Inside this room were two very large and comfy looking recliners.
The recliners looked very relaxing but that room also got very loud with kids running around so I’m not sure it was the best place to put recliners….
There were a number of TVs in the lounge playing Wimbledon and there were a few racks where you could pick up different types of literature.
Ultimately, we found a spot over by the windows that was pretty quiet and that’s where we settled.
The lounge also had a VIP area with some sofas lining the wall (that was only for reservations). There was also a business meeting room that was filled to the brim during my stay.
I do want to say that the crowds did start to pick up after we had been there for about an hour and a half. So I think this lounge can get quite busy but for the most part it was very low-key during most of our stay.
Dónde está el baño?
The biggest issue with this lounge is that the bathrooms were broken. Yes, the men’s and women’s bathroom on both floors were out of service during our entire stay.
This wasn’t that big of a deal for me because I was able to exit the lounge and go to the bathroom found directly next to the lounge. However the women’s bathroom right next door was also out of service and I saw many frustrating women trying to figure out where to go. This lounge also does not have any showers.
When traveling through Mexico or the Caribbean I usually have pretty low expectations for Priority Pass lounges. I found many of them to be very basic and small and often times extremely crowded and hot places I just don’t care to be. However, at this lounge was an exception to that.
It was a beautiful mid-century lounge that never got too packed and while the food wasn’t gourmet, there were some decent offerings. So if you are traveling through Cabo I think you should look forward to using your Priority Pass membership. I wouldn’t say to arrive super early just for the lounge but if you do like to arrive extra early, you’ll have a nice spot to relax in.
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Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the digital smart wallet, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. His content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.