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Space, the final frontier: Our first look at the brand new Starlux Galactic lounge in Taipei

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Paging Capt. Kirk to the starship lounge.

Starlux, the Taiwanese startup airline, opened its second lounge at Taipei Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) on Feb. 1, 2024 and it could double as a set for Star Trek. The Points Guy was among the first travel outlets to get a look inside.

In case you’re not familiar, Starlux is an airline that just started service in 2020, but it’s got lofty ambitions. The airline now serves 23 destinations mostly in Asia, but just expanded service to San Francisco International Airport (SFO). The airline also reportedly is planning to launch service to Seattle.

I got to experience business class on another of the airline’s newer routes from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Taipei and back this month. In fact, I’ll have a formal review of the airline coming soon, but I also got to check out their brand new Galactic Lounge in Terminal 2 right after it opened.

In short, I was blown away.

Here’s what to expect.

Accessing the new Galactic Lounge from Starlux


You’ll need to be a top-tier Starlux elite member or hold a first class or business class ticket on Starlux to enter the Galactic Lounge. Those with Starlux’s Cosmile Explorer or Insighter status are able to access the lounge when flying the same day. Starlux offers three elite levels – Adventurer, Explorer, and Insighter – and those with status in the top two tiers get lounge access along with at least one companion. Starlux Galactic doesn’t accept Priority Pass or any other club program passes.

The lounge is open from 5 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. each day.

Related: Flying Starlux’s impressive new business class

Note that most Starlux flights depart from Terminal 1, which has a small Galactic Lounge as well — mostly for Starlux flights to the rest of Asia. Its long-haul flights leave from Terminal 2, and it sounds like the Galactic Lounge there is much swankier than its counterpart in the other terminal.

Starlux destinations in Asia.
Starlux destinations in Asia. CIRIUM

Starlux Galactic Lounge layout


Once you pass the welcome desk, you enter cool sliding doors that open into a main level with bright yellow lockers to the left, and a wall of reading materials and lots of food and drink options at an island and buffet to the right. More on the food and drinks a little later on. Among the newspapers and magazines on offer were the New York Times, the Financial Times and Vogue.

This was one of the coolest lounges I’ve been in from a design perspective. The steel gray interior looked like it was yanked straight from a Star Trek movie. The decor was spare and gray with pops of bright yellow to break up the metallic hues. I was one of the first guests to arrive for the evening bank of flights that day, so I got to see the club mostly empty. Not only are the interiors cool, but the employee uniforms were stylish and futuristic too.


There are two floors here. The main level has a giant seating area with lots of chairs and padded benches.

You’ll find plenty of outlets, including standard sockets and USB ports as well, both underneath the benches and even built into the freestanding tables.

In the back was a set of restrooms that included sliding doors that made a swooshing sound when the doors opened at the touch of a button … just like on a Star Trek vessel. Of course, the toilets were automatic and touchless and featured bidet toilets by Toto.

The amenities were branded Eden Breeze by a natural beauty company called Thann. They smelled fresh with hints of citrus — though not very futuristic.


Downstairs there was another level of seating along with the showers. I can’t imagine this lounge ever getting completely full with all this space and just a few flights a day to the United States. In fact, there are 116 seats in the lounge.

There’s also a separate first-class lounge in the same spot, but it was roped off when I was there. No first-class passengers were on my flight to New York that night, which is likely why it wasn’t open. It has room for 17 people, though I wasn’t allowed to take a look.


Starlux Galactic Lounge location


The Starlux Galactic Lounge is located post-security near gate D7 in Terminal 2 at Taipei Taoyuan International Airport. My flight was leaving from gate D8, so it will likely be close to your departure gate if you are heading to Los Angeles or San Francisco on Starlux.


It’s a bit of a journey from where the majority of the lounges are in Terminal 2, including the Priority Pass-accessible Oriental Club Lounge. The other clubs are right after you clear security, but you’ll need to keep going to the D gates to find the Starlux lounge.


Starlux Galactic Lounge Amenities


The Galactic Lounge had plenty of amenities, though there was no spa or nap room, there was plenty to do to kill a few hours.

Unlike the Starlux lounge in Terminal 1, there are plenty of bathrooms and even showers at the Terminal 2 lounge. I got to test out a shower, and the water pressure was incredible. High-design and plenty of bathroom amenities made it a refreshing pit stop. You’ll need to get a key card from the front desk in exchange for your boarding pass. Another starship-like door leads you into the shower room. Here, again, you’ll see Toto washlet toilets.


The lounge has complimentary Wi-Fi. The internet was good enough to stream Netflix, at least for a while. The speed test showed internet speeds were “fine.” I lost my connection for a while, though I was able to get back on after about 20 minutes. It was similar to my internet experience onboard Starlux planes.

Internet speed test from Google.
Internet speed test from Google. GOOGLE

Service during my visit was exceptional with employees going out of their way to ask if customers needed anything. Dirty dishes were removed promptly and food was delivered quickly and with a smile. When the staff saw me taking hundreds of pictures, they even offered to photograph me in the lounge.


Starlux Galactic Lounge Food and drinks


There was a great selection of food and drinks at the Galactic Lounge. You can order a la carte from a QR code menu by snapping a photo of your table number with your mobile phone.

There were four hot dish options, including a shredded chicken dish, beef sukiyaki, gua bao and four herb soup or a Japanese style tofu burger. I tried the gua bao and soup, though it wasn’t my favorite. Food was brought out within 10 minutes.

In the main dining area, there was a massive wall of options, including hot and cold items and desserts, along with an island buffet with salads and other dishes. The hot dogs looked interesting, but I wasn’t brave enough to try.

Among the hot dishes on the buffet were deep-fried pork with Kyoto sauce, braised beef in a truffle mushroom sauce, Wollongong brown sugar buns and handmade baozl, steamed crab shaomai and Chinese pearl meatball with sticky rice. I tried several dishes. I didn’t care for the beef or chicken, which were both heavily spiced. I loved the sticky rice meatball, however.

There were also plenty of drinks, including San Pellegrino, Coca-Cola, Sprite, a cold tea branded Jing Shang Yu, Natural Benefits honey lemonade and a local soda called Pocari Sweat. I enjoyed a bottled vegetable juice (mostly carrot) called Vigor Dong Shih. Check out the cooler of Taiwanese treats – Ninao frozen yogurt.

Of course, there were lots of booze options as well. Among the top-shelf liquor were Jose Cuervo tequila, Bacardi rum, Jim Beam bourbon and Bombay Sapphire gin. Wine offerings included Stags’ Leap Napa Valley chardonnay and petite sirah.

Starlux Galactic Lounge Bottom line


Starlux’s brand new Galactic Lounge in Taipei’s Terminal 2 is simply out of this world … pun intended. I loved flying in Starlux business class, which I’ll go into more detail on in an upcoming review, but the lounge was a happy surprise on top of a couple of great flights.

The new space-themed lounge was especially fun, since I’d heard mixed things about the small Starlux lounge in Terminal 1 — and I also hadn’t heard great things about the Priority Pass lounge in Terminal 2.

I’m curious to hear what other travelers have to say about the new lounge, especially as Starlux continues to expand its map with other long-haul destinations in the years ahead. Hopefully this innovative airline can continue to wow consumers and give some of the world’s best airlines some serious competition.

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