Trip Report: Joan Oliver Lounge VLC
I’ve been visiting the single shared lounge in Valencia Airport for several years now, the Joan Oliver Lounge operated by the airport. For the longest time it was really just a place to sit and get some water before flying.
I usually get access when flying Star Alliance carriers Lufthansa and SWISS as a Star Alliance Gold member, but today I used my Priority Pass membership to enter, since I was flying the non-affiliated airline Volotea. Bonus: this lounge accepts the Prioirty Pass digital card, so no need to carry the physical one!
Recently they renovated the space, but the food was still limited to packaged snacks and refrigerated packaged sandwiches manufactured who knows when.
But, today I was shocked to find two new food islands in place .... with actual food!
I stopped in around 12 noon, and I think they must have been just adding in the lunch items. There was what seemed to be a leftover plate of warm Spanish tortilla of potatoes and onions, hygienically served in squares with toothpicks in each square.
This tortilla had a very uniform texture, and a was a bit gummy, two signs telling me that this was likely an industrially produced tortilla that was simply reheated on site. If you’ve read my previous post about Spanish tortillas, you wouldn’t be surprised that, while not my favorite kind of tortilla, I still found it tasty!
While I was sitting in the lounge, one of the attendants brought out individual plates of penne with bolognese sauce. Again, not gourmet, but serviceable. I liked how it came in an individual bowl, which I think is more hygienic than having a big plate of food that people spoon out themselves, since that communal spoon sometimes gets a bit gross, especially when it touches already-used plates.
Later, she brought out individual plates of menestre, the plate that sounds like it should be like Italian minestrone soup, but is really boiled vegetables. In fact, this menestre of peas, carrots, potato, and artichokes, resembles one that the Mercadona supermarket sells in plastic packages. But I was quite in the mood for vegetables, so despite the soggy, even texture and simple saltiness, I still ate it all up.
So, big thumbs up to Valencia Airport for vastly improving its lounge offering! Not only is there “real food” now, in addition to the fridges full of beverages, there is also a new Nespresso machine and some upgraded snacks including Japanese rice crackers. Furthermore, plates were cleared constantly, so the lounge’s past of piled up dirty plates is long gone.