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Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Review Vancouver YVR Canada

October 7, 2023
Osman Dadi
The Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge in Vancouver was a great experience, even though some of its amenities were closed.
Location:
Vancouver YVR
Dates:
May 2023
Managed By:
Air Canada
Accessible To:
Star Alliance & Business Class passengers on Air Canada tickets, Air Canada 25K Members
Last Updated:
July 2023

I did not have as much time as I would have liked to sample the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge in Vancouver YVR. I only had a couple of hours between my Air Canada flight from San Francisco SFO and my departure on ANA business class to Tokyo. So, with transfers and all that, I only managed to spend about an hour in the lounge, meaning I could not sample all its delights.

The lounge was conveniently located for my departing flight, only about 5 minutes from Gate D70. Coming in off an Air Canada flight, I used my Air Canada Aeroplan Card to gain access to the lounge- The card grants access to all Air Canada lounges.

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge entrance
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge entrance

Although I sadly did not get to use all the amenities in the lounge, it still left an excellent impression on me. The service was all smiles! The staff was amazing from the moment I checked in to when I left.

Although the lounge is getting a little old and could do with a retrofit, it is still architecturally attractive and well worth a visit.

Air Canada Maple Leaf Logo in wood
Air Canada Maple Leaf Logo in wood

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Location & Entry

One of my most significant issues with this lounge is how confusing it is to find. Especially when transiting through Vancouver. The lounge is adjacent to the original security as you enter the terminal. Therefore, to reach it, you have to head all the way back towards security. This is very counterintuitive, especially when you consider airports tend to be designed to carry passenger traffic in one direction. It was so confusing I had to ask for directions twice.

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge check in desks
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge check in desks

On the other hand, if your origin point is in YVR, the lounge is simple to find. Clear security and it is on your left.

Departure boards
Departure boards

However, once I found the lounge, I realized it was worth it, and I was greeted with a beautiful, elegant entry.

Entry

Processing my entry was a breeze and took about 30 seconds. All I needed to do was show my ANA 115 boarding pass and Aeroplan Card.

Even though the entry counter was only staffed by one attendant, the process was rapid since nobody else was there.

Model of Air Canada Aircraft
Model of Air Canada Aircraft

Just as you enter, there is a beautiful Air Canada plane model. I asked the staff if they didn’t mind taking some shots of me and the model, and they very helpfully obliged.

The entry has lots of warm oak finishes, with a large Air Canada logo etched into the wood. The logo visibility changes with the viewing angle, which I thought was some pretty cool architecture!

The helpful staff snapped lots of pictures of me with the model aircraft
The helpful staff snapped lots of pictures of me with the model aircraft

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Layout and Space

The Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge has impressive architecture and a good feel. As you walk in, there are five different time zone clocks on the wall and departure screens. Air Canada models and plaques are on either side of the lounge.

Storage Cubbies and eating area
Storage Cubbies and eating area

The main lounge has four separate spaces. Firstly the bar and food area with its associated seating.

Maine Food area in the Air Canada Maple Leaf lounge
Maine Food area in the Air Canada Maple Leaf lounge

Then, there are three separate seating areas on the lounges’ perimeter. Each area has its own feel and seating arrangement.

High Table seating
High Table seating

The rooms are along the lounge windows with a decent amount of light.

The lounge windows provide some excellent view onto the airport
The lounge windows provide some excellent views onto the airport

The seating is comfortable and spacious. USB  and power ports are liberally scattered around the seating areas.

long view down the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge
long view down the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge

The bar is U-shaped and has a nice open feel; it feels like the focal point of the room and the hub of all its activity.

The Central bar area is the lounge hub
The Central bar area is the lounge hub
comfy lounge seating
comfy lounge seating

In the far extreme corner of the lounge is a Nap Area with some lounge seats with Ottomans. On the way, there is another set of departure screens and a magazine rack along one of the interior walls.

The lounge has lots of natural light due to he big windows
The lounge has lots of natural light due to the big windows

One thing to note is that the lounge has an upper level that is reached by some stairs when you enter the lounge. However, during my visit, both the desk and stairs were closed. It felt as if most of the additional amenities were upstairs.

Sadly he upstairs area with all its amenities was closed
Sadly the upstairs area with all its amenities was not open

Although the lounge is pretty with lovely oak tones, it is clear the lounge is aging and could do with a renovation.

Wi-Fi

I found the Wi-Fi connection fast and stable during my time at the lounge. Connecting is easy using the information supplied at the check-in desk.

Private Dining Seating

The lounge has a private dining area for Star Alliance and Air Canada elites, and that is about as far as I know. Sadly, not open and curtained off during my visit. So, I cannot say what it looked like or anything else about what was happening inside.

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Shower

The Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge has several shower rooms for guests. The one I ended up using was triangular-shaped, but nevertheless, it was still spacious.

shower room entrance
shower room entrance
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge shower room
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge shower room

The bathroom and showers were spotless, with a nice color scheme. I found it very classy and elegant with its mix of grey, dark grey, and wood tones with bright lighting.

sink with amenities and blow dryer
sink with amenities and blow dryer
Shower room sink
Shower room sink

The shower room featured a minimalist design, and the spacious shower had no door. However, it did have a large rain shower head, which I liked.

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge walk in shower
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge walk in shower
Shower with huge rain head
Shower with huge rain head

I noticed the shower smelled nice, complementing the Molton Brown Shampoo and soap products on offer.

Molton Brown Toiletries
Molton Brown Toiletries

Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Food & Beverage

Like many other lounges, the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge has a buffet-style service with many different food choices. Although I must confess that while the food was excellent, it did feel a little haphazard.

Main food serving counter
Main food serving counter
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge food station
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge food station

For instance, Chinese Eggrolls, Tater tots, and Indian Samosas were served together as appetizers, along with Nacho Chips and cheese. I guess another way of looking at it is that Air Canada provides a wide selection of food to cater to broader tastes. However, I did not eat a lot on my visit; I was saving my appetite for the courses I’d soon be having on my ANA flight to Japan.

Chinese Eggrolls, Tater tots, and Indian Samosas
A selection of salads
A selection of salads

The visit timing was not the best in terms of food. I hit the lounge after lunch but before dinner, so items were a little less fresh, and things were not as well stocked as during peak times.

serving station
serving station
Fruit and snack
Fruit and snack

The drinks selection was good, with some great beer options, including some great local choices and mainstream brands.

A nice selection of beers on tap
A nice selection of beers on tap

A nice touch of this lounge is it has a staffed cooking area that makes custom food for guests. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a chance to try it on this visit. Although, the Thai Mango Chicken Curry sounds quite appealing for another visit!

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a quick stop in Vancouver you can’t go wrong with the Air Canada Maple Leaf lounge. However, I would double-check times and such to ensure more lounge amenities are open for business.

While the lounge needs an overhaul and can be a little confusing to find if transiting Vancouver, it is still a solid offering. And I would not hesitate to use it again. My overall experience was tempered by the fact that most of its premium services were closed. Hopefully, the next time, I can try out some of these services and upgrade my review!

Pros

  • Service was all smiles! Air Canada consistently has friendly and welcoming staff.
  • Excellent Check-in and Customer Service experience.
  • I enjoyed the shower room. Spotless bathrooms and showers.
  • The shower smelled nice and well-scented.
  • Seating was generally wide and spacious, with Power and USB ports freely available and accessible.
  • Good lounge color scheme and finishes.
  • Beautiful entry.
  • Stable Wi-Fi

Cons

  • It felt a bit crowded.
  • I think the choice of drinks can improve substantially.
  • I think the choice of foods can improve substantially, but to be fair, I didn’t have a chance to try the lounge when all food services were offered.
  • Many services were not available during my visit.

Verdict: 8.5/10