Singapore Airlines has reopened its first overseas SilverKris Lounge (SKL), with news that the carrier’s facility at London Heathrow Airport Terminal 2 is once again accepting eligible frequent flyers and those travelling in premium cabins with SIA and Star Alliance partners.
Our regular readers may recall this isn’t the first time the lounge has reopened during the pandemic. The Heathrow SKL was first able to reopen its doors in early November 2020, but closed again as the UK suffered another wave of COVID-19 cases and another lockdown in December 2020.
This time round eligible passengers will also need to show a negative COVID-19 PCR test to pass the threshold, not a problem for SIA passengers who need one anyway but worth bearing in mind if you’re flying elsewhere on a Star Alliance carrier.
The lounge is located in the Terminal 2B pier, where most long-haul flights depart, one level above the main departure concourse and accessed via a lift lobby next to the World Duty Free store.
The lounge was first opened in April 2015 as the carrier’s third to embrace the new ‘Home away from home’ concept by interior design firm ONG&ONG.
Only the Business Class section of this lounge has been reopened, meaning there are still no dedicated First Class SilverKris lounges in operation on the SIA network.
Update 21st September 2021: The First Class section of the London Heathrow SilverKris Lounge has now also reopened, operating between 6am and 11am, to accommodate passengers departing in this cabin on SQ317.
The Heathrow SilverKris lounge is now open from 6am to 9pm daily (Business Class section), with the First Class section also available in the mornings between 6am and 11am daily.
This caters for up to three Singapore Airlines flights to Changi each day, which depart from the UK capital at 9.25am (selected days), 11.25am and 8.50pm.
|Singapore ⇄ London
|SIN ➔ LHR
|SIN ➔ LHR
|SIN ➔ LHR
|LHR ➔ SIN
|LHR ➔ SIN
|LHR ➔ SIN
In addition to those flights, the facility welcomes eligible travellers flying on fellow Star Alliance carriers throughout the day, including ANA, Air Canada, Lufthansa and United Airlines.
The lounge is not accessible to arriving passengers.
A PCR test is required
Passengers flying on SIA flights from the UK to Singapore currently require a pre-departure PCR test within 48 hours of departure. This also applies to passengers transiting at Changi and flying on to another destination.
Do be aware that Singapore Airlines has therefore decided to impose the same requirement on other lounge guests, for example those flying on a Star Alliance flight within Europe (e.g. TAP Air Portugal to Lisbon).
In that example, a pre-departure PCR test is not required for fully vaccinated travellers holding a valid EU Digital COVID Certificate. However, the SilverKris lounge in London will turn you away with no PCR test in hand, regardless of your vaccination status.
“All customers need to present a valid negative Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test result, taken within 72 hours before the scheduled departure time of their flight, for access into our SilverKris Lounge in Heathrow.“SIA Spokesperson
It’s a shame SIA has not made any mention of this on its website, because it’s a long walk to the T2B piers only to have to turn back to the Lufthansa / Plaza Premium lounges in the main terminal!
Update 21st September 2021: SIA has now updated its SilverKris lounge information page to include the PCR test and temperature screening requirements for access.
Lounge access (Business Class section)
The following passengers are able to access the Heathrow SilverKris lounge, when departing on a Singapore Airlines or Star Alliance member operated flight:
- in Suites Class or First Class (+1 guest)
- in Business Class (passenger only)
- in Premium Economy or Economy class and holding KrisFlyer Elite Gold, PPS or PPS Solitaire status (+1 guest)
- in Premium Economy or Economy class and holding Star Alliance Gold status (+1 guest)
- in any class holding paid membership to United Club or Air Canada Maple Leaf Club Worldwide (+1 guest)
Additionally, only when flying on a Singapore Airlines flight:
- Virgin Australia Velocity Platinum and Gold status members, in any cabin class (+1 guest)
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Gold status members, in any cabin class (passenger only)
In all cases your guest (where permitted) must be travelling on a Singapore Airlines or Star Alliance member operated flight, with the exception of Virgin Australia Velocity members’ guests, who must be travelling on a Singapore Airlines flight.
If your guest is flying on a Star Alliance member flight, you must be travelling on the same flight in order to invite them to join you in the lounge.
Lounge access (First Class section)
Additionally, the following passengers are entitled to access the First Class section of the Heathrow SilverKris lounge, open between 6am and 11am each day:
- Singapore Airlines and Star Alliance First Class (or Suites) travellers
- Solitaire PPS Club members travelling on Singapore Airlines
This is designed to cater for passengers travelling in the First Class cabin on SQ317 at 11:25 each morning, but is also available to Solitaires regardless of travel class.
SIA’s Heathrow SilverKris Lounge is well equipped, however the shower suites are not available for the time being.
Unlike when the lounge was briefly operating in late 2020, however, bartender service is now available from 8am to 8.30pm.
Food and beverage service has been amended due to COVID-19 precautions, as it has at the carrier’s temporary SilverKris lounge in Singapore.
Please note that we have suspended self-service buffet meal services and reduced all other food and beverage offerings at our lounges with the welfare of our customers and staff in mind.Singapore Airlines
Other Heathrow T2 lounges
Singapore Airlines passengers in London have been directed to the Lufthansa Business Lounge in Terminal 2 while the SilverKris facility has been shuttered.
That remains the only other Star Alliance lounge open in the terminal, and eligible SIA passengers remain entitled to use the Lufthansa space if they wish, though it is a long walk (10-15 minutes) to the long-haul T2B departure gates when it comes time to board.
Unfortunately, the Air Canada and United lounges, both adjacent to the SIA facility in T2B, remain closed.
Both were our ‘go-to’ lounges at Heathrow prior to Singapore Airlines flights, since we preferred them to the SKL and they served all-day Champagne (SIA had started to skimp with sparkling wine instead, even before COVID-19).
For those without access to one of the two operating Star Alliance lounges, the Plaza Premium Lounge in Terminal 2 is open from 5am to 9pm daily and accepts DragonPass in addition to offering paid access packages. Shower facilities are available.
Unfortunately there is no longer access for Priority Pass members, since Plaza Premium cut ties with the programme in July 2021.
Some SKLs aren’t coming back
In September last year we reported how three of SIA’s 13 overseas SilverKris lounges would not be reopening after COVID-19, with the airline taking the decision to seek alternative third-party arrangements for eligible passengers in Delhi, Kuala Lumpur and Adelaide.
Here’s a summary of SIA’s overseas SilverKris lounges, including which have been revamped with the latest design.
||‘Home away from home’ concept
The temporary SilverKris lounge in Terminal 3 is currently the sole option for Singapore Airlines passengers departing Changi, and indeed remains the only other SIA lounge open globally.
It is operating from 5am to 2.30am each day. Unlike at the London lounge, showers are available in this case.
We recently reviewed the facility, which will become the permanent KrisFlyer Gold lounge in the near future, once SIA’s T3 lounge revamp project is finished.
Unfortunately the lounge is not currently available to most transit passengers, who instead are offered a designated section of the segregated transit holding area, with complimentary drinks and refreshments.
It’s encouraging to see the reopening (second time round) of the London SilverKris lounge, following last year’s news that three of the airline’s similar facilities in Adelaide, Delhi and Kuala Lumpur would be permanently closing, leaving only 10 SKLs outside Singapore.
We generally prefer both the United Club and Air Canada Maple Leaf lounges at Heathrow Terminal 2 when departing on Singapore Airlines, however with both of those facilities still closed for now, the SilverKris lounge is clearly the best option currently available for those travelling during this period.
If you’re eligible for access but flying on a Star Alliance carrier, do note the pre-departure PCR test requirement before you make the long trek to this lounge before your flight.
If you’re fully vaccinated and flying within Europe – you probably don’t need a test, while some other countries are satisfied with an ART test instead. Neither will pass muster with the lounge staff here, and you’ll unfortunately be turned away.
(Cover Photo: Singapore Airlines)