THE INSIDE TRACK • August 2023
Often referred to as one of Heathrow’s best kept secrets, this lounge has welcomed the arrival of a new bespoke bar – and the updates don’t stop there
If Terminal 5 is an apiary, then it has three central hives: A, B and C. Its A concourse is the largest post-security honeypot of the three, where (most) short-haul flights say their goodbyes to London. The B and C gates, meanwhile, handle longer-haul destinations, and can be reached by a shuttle train or walkways. Most of our lounges (available for those of you in Silver Tier or above – or flying in business or First) are situated around the A gates, closest to security. Inevitably, since these gates handle the most flights, their lounges welcome the most traffic.
View this post on Instagram
If you’re assuming, then, that the Galleries T5B Club Lounge catering to the less busy, smaller B and C gates may be quieter – you’d be right. It’s open to all customers flying in business or First, and you can use it even if you’re departing from the A gates, should you have ample time to take the shuttle train there ahead of your flight (noting that you can’t get the shuttle back to the A gates – in this direction, it’s a ten-minute walk).
The lounge has been around since 2008, so why are we talking about it now? One word: wine. And not just any wine, either – Château d’Esclans’ Whispering Angel, the rosé of the moment, which is now offered from a bespoke, Whispering Angel-only bar in the heart of Terminal 5B.
“This fusion of British Airways and Whispering Angel embodies our premium identities,” Isobel Wallbank, Brand Partnership and Sponsorship Executive at British Airways, tells The Club. “The bar marks the first phase of the T5B lounge refresh and will thoroughly enhance the customer experience. We only wish to deliver the very best for our customers, so it seemed like the perfect fit.”
The vineyards of Château d’Esclans, home to Whispering Angel
While layout changes in the lounge are confirmed, but yet to be revealed, a general refresh of the interiors has seen new and reupholstered furniture (in a similar style to our recently refreshed T3 lounges) as well as a brand-new carpet.
The next time you’re in T5B, Isobel recommends you look out for the little details: “The winged Whispering Angel bottle glorifier on the welcome desk is something of a piece of art in itself,” she tells us. “It’s made from a hand-sculpted mould and cast with resin. And the final details of the feathered wings were finished by hand.”
Within the lounge itself, all the usual trimmings apply. Several convenient seating areas include sofas, comfy chairs and high tables with stools. Showers provide a chance to freshen up before a long flight. There are the wine walls and glass partitions, plants, lamp lighting and wall-hanging art – not to mention a kids’ zone (open seasonally) and dedicated business zones for those on a deadline.
Thanks in part to this new Whispering Angel addition, though, acloholic beverages remain one of T5B’s biggest draws. Here, self-serve bars mean you can help yourself to a glass of prosecco or chilled wine, while cocktail-making stations allow you to mix things up to your exact specifications. You’ll even find three bespoke pre-bottled cocktails from master mixologist, Mr Lyan.
The Whispering Angel bar at Heathrow T5B
More free-standing bars – which spotlight some of our favourite spirits – also stock plenty in the way of soft drinks via full fridges, plus there are olives and a range of bottomless snacks. A dedicated Union Coffee station will see you sorted with an array of hot drinks, including Union’s own cup of Joe, plus hot teas and hot chocolate (and rest assured, there are enough biscuits to go around). Finally, there is – of course – a self-serve hot food buffet for those with rumbling stomachs.
But no amount of feasting at T5B is complete without a glass of something pink and fizzy alongside. Isobel concludes: “Whispering Angel endeavours to bring the effortlessly chic style of the Côte d’Azur to T5, so we hope our customers are able to relax and feel a little bit of that rosé magic.”
You can purchase Whispering Angel rosé online using cash or Avios at High Life Shop. Cheers to that.