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New Metropolitan Lounge in NYP expected to open in 2021

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https://www.cntraveler.com/story/inside-penn-stations-fancy-new-amtrak-lounge?fbclid=IwAR0ZHDKu_AOYdj-fFqnPcYucEHWsHIhdJcKKK0awwhN6oA3rgVfOcgOydRU

 

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Even Traveler's most avid Amtrak users didn't know there was a premium waiting space in New York City's Penn Station, and given the state of it, that's probably not surprising. In the dark ClubAcela lounge, near tracks 7 and 8, you'll find several dated blue chairs, a few bags of chips, a soda machine, and a coffee maker. That's not exactly up to par with the airport lounges we love. (We see you, whiskey bar in the Senators' Lounge at Zurich Airport.) It's a good thing, then, that ClubAcela—rebranded as the Metropolitan Lounge—is getting a major makeover in Amtrak's multi-million dollar Penn Station renovation. And lucky for you, we've got a look inside the new space, which is set to open in early 2021.

 

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I’m probably going to be ripped apart for saying this, but I actually quite like the NYP ClubAcela as is. Sure, it’s a bit dark, but the seats and couches are pretty comfortable, the snack stand has muffins, chips, tea, coffee, juice, and soda available, and it’s just an overall cozy place to wait for a train. :blush:

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Some of those chairs are pretty lumpy and threadbare.  I do appreciate the clean bathroom and quiet area.  

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9 hours ago, cpotisch said:

I’m probably going to be ripped apart for saying this, but I actually quite like the NYP ClubAcela as is. Sure, it’s a bit dark, but the seats and couches are pretty comfortable, the snack stand has muffins, chips, tea, coffee, juice, and soda available, and it’s just an overall cozy place to wait for a train. :blush:

Just goes to show you that New Yorkers are used to less than First Class places!:D:giggle:

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Oh great, just 2 years to wait for a lounge that approximates what the airlines have been doing for their First Class passengers for, what, decades.

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I think people view lounges differently when they are used for end point travel rather than connections. The CA to me is a place I can drop my bags and relax waiting to board the LSL or an NER to connect with the CL. Way different than a place for killing 4 hours + to a half a day like I often do in Chicago.

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I have enjoyed the New York lounge while connecting as a sleeping car passenger on the Crescent to a Northeast Regional to Boston.  It is rather small but is an oasis of peace in the midst of chaos.  Penn Station could have better signage for the lounge.  As I recall, it is near the baggage claim section so I look for signs for the baggage claim section in order to find the lounge.

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I take trains that use the Empire Connection (Empire Service or LSL) on a regular basis, so that's my "natural" side of the station. Considering the lack of available space, it isn't bad..

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15 hours ago, cpotisch said:

I’m probably going to be ripped apart for saying this, but I actually quite like the NYP ClubAcela as is. Sure, it’s a bit dark, but the seats and couches are pretty comfortable, the snack stand has muffins, chips, tea, coffee, juice, and soda available, and it’s just an overall cozy place to wait for a train. :blush:

I like the pay phones.  4 minutes worldwide for $1.00.

club acela pay phones.jpg

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2 hours ago, Bostontoallpoints said:

I like the pay phones.  4 minutes worldwide for $1.00.

club acela pay phones.jpg

Is that a particularly good deal? I'm Gen-Z and though I occasionally see them around, have never used a pay phone once in my life, or even made a single international call.

LOL, they look real dank and lit. :P

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5 minutes ago, cpotisch said:

Is that a particularly good deal? I'm Gen-Z and though I occasionally see them around, have never used a pay phone once in my life, or even made a single international call.

LOL, they look real dank and lit. :P

It probably was a good deal back in 1994 when that sticker was placed on the phone.  Next time I visit the lounge I think I might pick up the receiver just to see if has a ring tone.  Be thankful you never had to use a pay phone.  We use to carry wipes just to clean the receiver before use.  Yuck.

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Also  "Road Warriors" had Phone Cards and the herd would rush to the phones in Airports and Train Stations upon arrival!;)( Pre-Cell Phone and Internet Days)

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7 minutes ago, Bob Dylan said:

Also  "Road Warriors" had Phone Cards and the herd would rush to the phones in Airports and Train Stations upon arrival!;)( Pre-Cell Phone and Internet Days)

I used to carry a pager and a phone card.  Those were the days.  

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The Club Acela at NYP is getting really sad, in my opinion.  As of 3:00 today, the ice/water machine had a big out of order sign on it.  The mini-fridge had only 5-6 mini-cans of soda in it, no bottled water, and there was nothing in the rack for pastries/chips/whatever.  But then, every hour it fills to near capacity and suddenly empties when Acelas' in both directions depart on or near the hour.

But still, the seats are far more comfortable than the new lounge at CHI and the chairs in the lounge at BOS.  Next week, I get to try the redone lounge at PHL.  From the pictures Pennyk posted a couple weeks ago, it looks like the same uncomfortable furniture as BOS.

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On ‎1‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 10:45 PM, cpotisch said:

... , the snack stand has muffins, chips, tea, coffee, juice, and soda available, and it’s just an overall cozy place to wait for a train. :blush:

 

14 hours ago, bratkinson said:

The Club Acela at NYP is getting really sad, in my opinion.  As of 3:00 today, the ice/water machine had a big out of order sign on it.  The mini-fridge had only 5-6 mini-cans of soda in it, no bottled water, and there was nothing in the rack for pastries/chips/whatever. 

While possibly the Philly lounge has me spoiled, the few times I have been in the NYP lounge, I too found it very lacking.    At those times, the NYP attendant(s) appears to ration out the snacks.   Like putting out two bags of a chips per hour, and those two get scarfed up in seconds.   In the Philly lounge, the attendant seems to get pleasure out of keeping the snack area full.   If I took a bag of chips, within seconds, it was replaced with another, keeping the area full.

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18 hours ago, cpotisch said:

Is that a particularly good deal? I'm Gen-Z and though I occasionally see them around, have never used a pay phone once in my life, or even made a single international call.

LOL, they look real dank and lit. :P

This is nothing compared to the time my sister and I  called home from Jerusalem in 1972.  We had to go to the Post Office, no direct dialing from hotel rooms, and back then, the Post Office ran the telephone company in Israel.  not sure, I think we had to make an appointment, in any event, we had to wait in line until a booth was free, then the operator had to connect us, and we talked for maybe 5 minutes.  The cost was the equivalent of $10 -$15 (in 1972 money).  The next time I called Israel was in 1989, I was able to dial direct from my landline, and the cost was about a dollar, or maybe even less. 

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On 1/23/2019 at 11:11 PM, Steve4031 said:

Some of those chairs are pretty lumpy and threadbare.  I do appreciate the clean bathroom and quiet area.  

Oh yes, that's what makes the lounges worth it, even if they do need some improvement.  My morning commuter train comes in about 30 minutes before i need to get to the office.  So I duck into the Club Acela (this is WAS where they haven't rebranded yet), use the clean quiet restroom and then chill out for a half hour with a cup of coffee and the New York Times.  Or at least I used to do that before the shutdown, and I  hope to be doing it again soon.

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2 very disparate comments.

First I very much remember the pager and pay phone days.  And I do not miss them one little bit.

Second, the headline for me here is that Moynihan Station (Post office building) is expected to be open in 2021.  Ah, to escape Madison Square Garden's basement.  

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21 minutes ago, zephyr17 said:

Second, the headline for me here is that Moynihan Station (Post office building) is expected to be open in 2021.  Ah, to escape Madison Square Garden's basement.  

Good news! The west concourse at NYP is already open. You can escape Madison Square Garden’s basement for...the post office basement. 

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1 hour ago, keelhauled said:

Good news! The west concourse at NYP is already open. You can escape Madison Square Garden’s basement for...the post office basement. 

:lol:Looking forward to daylight, though, which'll have to wait until Moynihan itself is open.

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1 hour ago, Cho Cho Charlie said:

"Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these trains from the swift completion of their appointed routes”

OK, maybe NYP would end up with a nicer lounge than PHL.  ;)

Moynihan-Train-Hall-August-2017-7.jpg

Or maybe not.  

I don't like the furniture.  I'll take the worn out  chairs of NYP any day over those bar stools.  I like the staff at NYP as well, much more friendlier than Chicago.  Chicago had multiple announcements warning of non-lounge-eligible passengers not allowed in the 2 hours I waited.  I didn't understand the point as I had my ticket inspected prior to entering.       

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41 minutes ago, Steve4031 said:

They can skip the bar chairs.  Not relaxing at all to sit in.  

Isn't that their purpose?    Encouraging you to finish your drink as quickly as possible, and leave so someone else can sit and order.    Turnover is the key to profits.

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3 hours ago, Steve4031 said:

They can skip the bar chairs.  Not relaxing at all to sit in.  

I'd say it depends on what you are drinking. :)

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