Lounge Sharks is happy to present our Hafa Adai Lounge Review – Saipan (SPN). We are sure that you didn’t come to Saipan in the expectation of a five start luxury experience, and that’s a good thing, because this is not the great lounge that anyone has ever been to. But here at Lounge Sharks we fully believe that any lounge is better than no lounge, and in that sense, this place rocks. It’s the only lounge airport lounge on the entire island, in fact, in all the Northern Mariana Islands, and that alone makes it worth a visit. Still, temper your expectations and read on for all the details.
Our Trip – Hafa Adai Lounge Review – Saipan (SPN)
Award tickets are the best, but also the worst. We wanted to travel from Palau to Mongolia, and the only way to do that on an award ticket was to take this long routing through Guam, the Marianas, and Korea. We had a solid seven hours to kill in SPN, so you can be sure that we looked at every single corner of the lounge.
The Facts – Hafa Adai Lounge Review – Saipan (SPN)
The first thing that will strike you on arrival at Saipan’s international airport is that its a dinosaur. Really, this place has to have been built in the sixties. Since then, its been preserved perfectly, like a mosquito in amber, steadfastly remindering travelers of what it was like to travel when the jet engine was still novel, sea travel was still the norm, and Dutch people still went about in wooden clogs. In other words, this airport is terrible. But its small and it gets the job done.
The other noteworthy thing about Saipan’s airport is how foreign it feels. Aside from a domestic flight to Guam, the vast majority of flights from Saipan (about 90%) go to Korea. Duty-free staff speak Korean. The food options are mostly East Asian, and largely Korean. Signage is in English and Japanese. So basically, not that different from the way that most of the island itself feels. For those wanting a taste of the mainland though, there is a restaurant selling hotdogs.
The front door has all the information you could need.
As for the lounge, It is located at the far left of the terminal. Once you’ve gone through security, hang a right, pass through duty free, and head straight through the double doors to the terminal area, where you’ll see it directly before you. The lounge is only open on days when full-service airlines fly to Korea (Sunday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. It accepts Priority Pass, Dragon Pass, Lounge Key, and also admits business class passnegers from the airlines flying there, as well as those who would normally get access with status. The lounge is only open for four hours a day, from noon to 4pm. If you’re flying to Guam, your timings will simply not line up. This lounge is really just for flights to Asia.
The Space – Hafa Adai Lounge Review – Saipan (SPN)
We cant hold this against the lounge, since you can only work so much magic in a dour airport that was built over half a century ago. But the truth remains that this is not the most spectacular space. The ceilings are squat, and there are no windows. The lounge is essentially a box marked off from the main terminal by flimsy temporary walls. It shares a kitchen with the bar next door.
We spent a full three hours here, and we can attest that the chairs are not particularly comfortable.They work for an hour or so, but after that you’re going to start getting stiff. The tables are quite low. There are no long spaces, so this is not a great place for sleeping.
The lounge has one large sitting area, with a divider between it and the food and bar area. Once things start to fill up it can feel a little noisy and crowded.
The is a “bar” in the lounge, but we can’t say that we were very compelled to sit there. This is where visitors to the lounge have their boarding passes and Priority passes checked, so its busy and loud. It may be a better idea to get your drinks and then head back to a table to set up your camp.
There is a computer in the lounge. This is presumably for surfing the world wide web and, it is at least thirty years newer than the airport itself.
Another great feature of the lounge is the outdated reading material. When we visited in July of 2022 were delighted to be able to spend our time in the lounge browsing Asian’s duty free catalog from February 2020. We left $10 in the leftmost for a lucky LS reader to find.
The Food – Hafa Adai Lounge Review – Saipan (SPN)
Another thing we like to say around the Lounge Sharks office is that some food is always better than no food. And we are sticking to that now, even though we can’t say that the food here is much to get excited about. The entire food buffet is shown in the photo below.
Let’s dive in to this item by item, shall we?
After the snacks we come to the main course, a beef with rice.
And then we have something for the true connoiseur, delictable, saran-wrapped sandwiches, with a choice of thon and jambon et fromage. Take whichever you like, they’re both de choix.
Then we have more plastic, this time in the form of fruit cups.
Despite all this goodness, we focused in on the beef. It was reasonably tasty and, obviously, filling. It could have been better, but it wasn’t bad.
The lounge did not shine in the drinks department, we are sad to say. From an American perspective, the soda selection could have been much better than it was, as you can see below. The juices were sugary and less than healthy.
Beyond this, there was coffee from a caraffe, red wine, and beer.
Wifi was available, witih average speeds.
Restrooms are located inside the lounge. They feel a bit like a high school bathroom, but they do work. There are no showers.
We are glad this lounge exists, becuase the options in the main terminal are not very good at all. And the lounge had free alcohol and food, which are always great. The staff is also really friendly and relaxed, which honestly is what the lounge has going for it most. On the downside, the seating is awfully uncomfortable, the food isn’t great, and the ambience couldn’t get much more depressing.