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The Philadelphia (PHL) American Express Centurion Lounge – Location, Hours, Amenities, and More

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James Larounis
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James Larounis

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James (Jamie) started The Forward Cabin blog to educate readers about points, miles, and loyalty programs. He’s spoken at Princeton University and The New York Times Travel Show and has been quoted in...
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Keri Stooksbury

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All over the world, travelers are wowed by the offerings of the Amex Centurion Lounges. Why? They are comfortable, well thought out, and offer great amenities while you relax before your next flight.

In this article, here’s all the information you need to know when visiting the Centurion Lounge at the Philadelphia International Airport (PHL), including hours, amenities, restrictions, access, and most importantly, how to make the most of your visit.

Location of the Amex Centurion Lounge at PHL

The Centurion Lounge at PHL is located on the second level of  Terminal A-West, near gate A14. This is actually where the majority of international flights depart from, but the good news is that you can get to Terminal A from other terminals without leaving security. There’s nothing worse than having to go through security more than necessary. From one end of the airport to the other, allow 20 minutes or more if you’re departing from the regional gates.

If You’re Coming From a Connecting Flight

If you’re connecting in PHL, enter Terminal A-West, walk down a slight ramp into the massive terminal space. The Centurion Lounge at PHL will be your very first option on the right. It’s directly across from the Airport’s Exhibition Program. The lounge hallway entrance is adjacent to the British Airways Galleries Club Lounge.

For accessing the Centurion Lounge, walk past the bright blue artwork to the elevator and go up 1 floor. In the event that you’re on your way from the Terminal A-West security, take a left at security, and walk past the British Airways Galleries Club Lounge, and then you’ll be entering the Centurion Lounge on your left.

Hours of Operation

The Centurion Lounge at PHL opens at 5:30 a.m. and closes at 9 p.m. every day. Most of the flights out of PHL leave before 9 p.m., with a few exceptions, so you shouldn’t really experience a time when the lounge would be closed but you still have a flight departing after.

Guest and Check-in Requirements

Like all Centurion Lounges, in order to access the Centurion Lounge at PHL, you’ll need to be a cardholder of one of the following American Express cards:

Hot Tip: Check to see if you’re eligible for a welcome bonus offer of up to 125k (or 150k) points with the Amex Platinum. The current public offer is 80,000 points. (This targeted offer was independently researched and may not be available to all applicants.)

In addition to one of the cards above, you’ll also need to present the following to the agent upon entering the lounge:

  • A valid boarding pass showing confirmed same-day air travel reservations
  • A valid government-issued I.D.

Your boarding pass must include a confirmed seat assignment. Unfortunately, if you are flying non-rev or standby without a confirmed seat, you may be denied entrance. If you’re standing by for another flight, use the boarding pass from the confirmed flight that shows a specific seat assigned.

PHL Centurion Walkin
PHL Centurion lounge welcome area. Image Credit: Jarrod West

Lounge Guest Policy

  • Amex Platinum card and Amex Business Platinum cardmembers may enter with up to 2 complimentary guests if they have spent $75,000 in eligible purchases in a calendar year. Otherwise, a guest day pass can be purchased for $50 per adult or $30 per child between the ages of 2 and 17.
  • Centurion cardmembers may enter with up to 2 guests or immediate family (spouse or domestic partner, and children under 18) at no additional charge.
  • Delta Reserve cardholders may bring up to 2 guests at a per-visit rate of $50 per person, per location.
  • Amex Platinum card, Amex Business Platinum card, and Centurion cardmembers may purchase a day pass for any additional guests for $50.

Rules at PHL Centurion Lounge

There are 2 rules to accessing the Centurion Lounge and they pertain to every guest, no matter what card you have:

Rule #1 — 3-Hour Rule

American Express indicates that guests may be limited to entering the lounge, depending on capacity, to only 3 hours prior to their departure time. For example, when your flight departs at 8 p.m., you could be denied access if you try to enter the lounge prior to 5 p.m.

While the 3-hour rule seems to indicate that it’s based on capacity, it tends to be enforced frequently. For this reason, don’t plan on getting to the lounge more than 3 hours prior to your flight to be safe.

Rule #2 — Departure Flights Only

Cardholders and their guests will not be granted access if they do not have a departure flight out of PHL. The lounge is reserved for departures only or for use between connecting flights. So, if PHL is your final destination on a particular trip, unfortunately, the lounge is unavailable for you.

If you took a flight to PHL and have an onward connecting flight, you’ll have no problem entering the lounge, provided you have proof of your onward flight.

Bottom Line: You will only be able to enter the lounge within 3 hours of your flight, and you cannot use the lounge if PHL is your final destination.

Food and Beverage

Food

The Centurion Lounge at PHL has some amazingly flavorful dining options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The cuisine comes from the mind of Chef Michael Solomonov, who is not just a chef but an accomplished restaurateur as well.

For starters, he has won 4 James Beard awards — one in 2017 for Outstanding Chef. He brings to the table a very fresh and unique view of Israeli food. Back in 2008, Philadelphians started enjoying the amazing dining experience at Zahav restaurant, which is located in Philadelphia’s historic Old City.

With an intense focus on Israeli food, Chef Solomonov expanded to several other local restaurants, including the popular hummus bar called Dizengoff, which is located in Rittenhouse Square right next door to his other trendy restaurant, Able Fisher. Clearly, Chef Solomonov was the perfect choice for bringing unique flavor concepts to the Centurion Lounge’s menu.

PHL Centurion Food
PHL Centurion lounge food. Image Credit: Jarrod West

Even if you’re only catching a connecting flight through PHL, just one taste of Chef Solomonov’s food and you’ll be following your taste buds right back to PHL to stay awhile and eat more. Every day, breakfast is served from 5:30 a.m. and the menu includes such tasty fare as:

  • Bourekas
  • Challah French toast
  • Crispy potatoes
  • Fall fruit salad
  • Shakshuka

If you’re around for lunch or dinner, here’s what you can expect:

  • Bulgarian kababs
  • Harira, a Moroccan vegetable soup
  • Israeli salad
  • Kale tabouleh
  • Malabi
  • Rice pilaf
  • Stuffed peppers

Drinks

PHL Centurion Bar
PHL Centurion Lounge bar. Image Credit: Jarrod West

Drink preparation in the lounge is a very special thing where cocktails, beer, and wine are served daily beginning at 5:30 a.m. and offered as long as the lounge is open. It’s 5 o’clock somewhere, right? With Philly’s own local spirit, Art in the Age, and the Pennsylvanian favorite beer, Yuengling, you’ll feel the nod to the City of Brotherly Love.

To further enhance that Philly theme, the lounge also serves 5 local specialty cocktails:

  1. The Liberty Bell Ringer — Botanist Gin, lemon juice, Bitter Truth Apricot Brandy, simple syrup, and Peychaud’s Bitters
  2. The Philadelphia Flyer Laird’s — Apple Brandy, lime juice, maple syrup, and Gruet Brut Sparkling Wine
  3. The Gateway — Mt. Gay Black Barrel Rum, grapefruit juice, lime juice, John D. Taylor’s Velvet Falernum, simple syrup, and Angostura Bitters
  4. The Red Eye — Yuengling Traditional Lager, Siete Leguas Reposado Tequila, Clamato juice, lemon juice, Campari, Worcestershire sauce, and Tapatio hot sauce
  5. The Blue Door (named for the blue door at the Centurion Lounge at the PHL entrance) — Johnny Walker Black Scotch Whiskey, Myer’s Dark Rum, Benedictine, and lemon juice.

On the other hand, perhaps your drink preference is a glass or 2 of fine wine. Well, during your visit to the Centurion Lounge at PHL, you’ll find a complete wine selection menu posted right on the wall.

Amenities

What kind of amenities can you expect to discover at the Centurion Lounge at PHL? Great question and, there’s a lot to keep you happy during your time there starting with the interior decor. It’s exceptionally warm and welcoming, mixing modern comfort with more traditional wood touches, some warm colors sprinkled with pops of brighter colors, and lots of throw pillows.

Atmosphere and Decor

In the true spirit of honoring Philadelphia, the walls in the Centurion Lounge are covered with Philadelphia icons, including the 1980 World Series Phillies team, Jazzy Jeff, Will Smith, and Grace Kelly, who later became Princess Grace of Monaco.

The Centurion Lounge at PHL even has its own signature scent called Modern Prestige. All in all, the place has everything to engage all of your senses, from its comfortable design to the amazing drinks, food, and even smell.

Elevate your lounge experience from that very first step inside the blue door. This gorgeous and roomy 6,300 square foot lounge can give you the perfect escape from the loud and bustling terminal below.

PHL Centurion Seating
PHL Centurion lounge seating. Image Credit: Jarrod West

The floor-to-ceiling windows offer a panoramic view of the terminal. Upon entering the lounge, you’ll see a lush greenery wall to your left and the member services desk to your right. The modern design of the lounge and its beautiful dark woods immediately let you know that this isn’t your typical airport lounge.

Walking down the hallway, you’ll catch a glimpse of countertop seating on your left, a welcoming bar straight ahead, and a mixture of comfortable booth seating and wood tables.

Here’s a list of the amenities you’ll find inside:

  • High-speed Wi-Fi
  • Locally-inspired cuisine in a buffet-style atmosphere
  • Member Services desk
  • Personal workspaces
  • Phone room
  • Premium bar
  • Printing, faxing, and copying services
  • Shower suite
  • Workspaces

Shower Suite

The Centurion Lounge at PHL also offers a refreshing shower suite for lounge guests. It’s the perfect spa-like place for freshening up while you wait for your connecting flight. That second leg of your flight can be a lot more enjoyable when you feeling refreshed.

The shower suite room includes a toilet, sink, and shower complete with soaps and towels, so there’s nothing additional you need to bring inside. You can also ask for other amenities like razors or shaving cream from the front desk, and they’d be happy to provide that.

To access the shower suite, you must reserve it at the front desk of the lounge where a Member Services representative will write your name down if there’s a wait. The suite is restricted to 30-minute showers, so keep in mind, it may only accommodate 2 people an hour, which could be quite a wait if folks are ahead of you.

Bottom Line: The shower is first come, first served so visit the front desk as soon as you arrive to set your shower time.

Business Amenities

The Centurion Lounge at PHL also offers everything you need to get some work done including semi-private workspaces and free high-speed Wi-Fi.

When you enter, you’ll receive a business card with all the Wi-Fi information so you can connect quickly. It’s complimentary, so you can use it for as long as you want to get your work done. Taking care of business in comfort is a way of life at all Centurion lounges.

There are also several tables available that are perfect for speaking with colleagues or holding a small conference. Keep in mind the lounge can get busy and these seats can fill up, but depending on the time that you visit, it could be a great way to still be able to conduct business on the go.

Service Animals and Pets

Service Animals

The lounge welcomes guests traveling with service animals for emotional support needs and/or disabilities. However, certain restrictions do apply. Most importantly, animals are not allowed in any food service areas. Additionally, all animals must be leashed at all times and never left unattended. For more specific rules and regulations, please check the Centurion Lounge FAQ website.

Other Animals

Pets are also allowed in the lounge and, as with service animals, they must be under proper supervision at all times and have the necessary documentation. Again, animals are not allowed in any food service areas. Further, pets are not permitted on the furniture and should remain in their carriers. American Express staff members reserve the right to ask owners to remove animals from the lounge at their discretion.

Hot Tip: Interested in bringing your pet along but nervous about the flight? Check out this study on the best and worst U.S. airlines to fly with your pet

Final Thoughts

Frequent travelers know the importance of comfortable airport lounges, whether at the beginning of a long arduous trip or during seemingly never-ending layovers. The Centurion Lounge at PHL is a haven that offers some of the finest food, cocktails, local craft beers, and wine available.

The information regarding the Centurion® Card from American Express was independently collected by Upgraded Points and was not provided nor reviewed by the issuer. 

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, click here.
For rates and fees for the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

What credit card do you need to access the Centurion Lounge at PHL?

To access the Centurion Lounge at PHL, you’ll need to be a cardholder of one of the following American Express cards:

What amenities are available at the Centurion Lounge at PHL?

The lounge includes a full buffet and open bar with top-shelf liquors, a shower room, plentiful seating, free Wi-Fi, and workspaces to allow business folks to check e-mails or meet with colleagues. It’s a quiet getaway from the busy terminal below and is a great place to relax before a flight.

What terminal is the American Express lounge in Philadelphia airport?

The Centurion Lounge at PHL is located on the second level of Terminal A-West, near gate A14.

Is everything free at Centurion Lounge?

The Centurion Lounge at PHL has some amazingly flavorful dining options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Food and beverages are complimentary, including top-shelf liquors.

James Larounis's image

About James Larounis

James (Jamie) started The Forward Cabin blog to educate readers about points, miles, and loyalty programs. He’s spoken at Princeton University and The New York Times Travel Show and has been quoted in dozens of travel publications.

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