Review: Amanpulo Lounge and Island Aviation Flight

Amanpulo Flight Review-Dornier Plane on Tarmac at Amanpulo


This Amanpulo Lounge and Island Aviation Flight Review is part of our Southeast Asian trip report including flights and luxury hotel stays in the Philippines and Indonesian, including Bali. If you're an Aman Junkie, see all our posts tagged Aman Resorts.

Prior posts in this trip report include:

JAL Sakura Lounge, Tokyo, Narita

Review: JAL Business Class Tokyo NRT to Manila

Review: Shangri-La at the Fort, Manila and Horizon Club Lounge


Amanpulo Lounge

Amanpulo's private lounge is located at the A. Soriano Hangar, close to the Manila International Airport. If you're arriving on an international flight and departing to Amanpulo the same day, you'll provide your flight arrival details in advance to Amanpulo, and an Amanpulo representative will meet you in the Arrivals Hall and accompany you on the short drive to the lounge. This arrival and departure transfer between Manila Airport and the Amanpulo Lounge is complimentary with your Amanpulo stay, but note that if you're staying at a Manila area hotel before or after your Amanpulo stay, you'll need to pay for your own transfer between your Manila hotel and the Amanpulo Lounge.

Amanpulo asks that you allow a minimum of 2 hours between your arriving or departing international flight and the Amanpulo flight; more on flight times below.

Here's the entrance to the lounge, which is comfortably air conditioned, a welcome respite from Manila's humid heat.

Review-Amanpulo Lounge Manila Entrance


The Amanpulo Lounge isn't large, but it doesn't have to be, since each flight carries no more than 16 guests, and often fewer. The decor is in keeping with Amanpulo itself: rattan chairs, wood and marble finishings, white orchids.

Review-Amanpulo Lounge Manila Philippines


There are men's and women's bathrooms:

Amanpulo Lounge Review-Bathroom


For those arriving from long international flights, there's the opportunity to freshen up by taking a shower. Just don't take too long, since the shower is part of the bathroom, so it means other guests can't wash hands or use the toilet while you're in there.

Amanpulo Lounge Review-Shower

Review-Amanpulo Lounge Manila-Amanpulo Shampoo


When we arrived, we were asked what we'd like to drink. My son and I both had mango juice, but there was a full range of soft drinks, water, tea and coffee on offer.

Review-Amanpulo Lounge Manila-Mango Juice


As we were on the 1pm flight and hadn't had lunch yet, it was nice to be given these savory spinach turnovers and bread rolls:

Review-Amanpulo Lounge Manila-Food-Spinach Turnovers-Bread


The brownies were just as good as I remembered from a few years ago, and there were also delicious mango cakes and coconut cakes.

Review-Amanpulo Lounge Manila-Mango Cakes-Brownies


Here's my Amanpulo Lounge and Flight Video Review:


Island Aviation Flight to Amanpulo

It's important to arrange your flights when you book at Amanpulo, since the charter flights, flown by Island Aviation, are the only way to get to the private island resort, located on Pamalican Island. There are two flights each day, in each direction:

From Manila to Amanpulo

  • Depart Manila 1pm, Arrive Amanpulo 2pm
  • Depart Manila 4pm, Arrive Amanpulo 5pm

From Amanpulo to Manila

  • Depart Amanpulo 9:30am, Arrive Manila 10:30am
  • Depart Amanpulo 2:30pm, Arrive Manila 3:30pm

Most travelers prefer to take the earlier 1pm flight to Amanpulo, and the 2:30pm flight from Amanpulo, to maximize their time on the island, so during busy periods, these flights tend to book out first. Be sure to plan your Amanpulo stay well in advance if you want your pick of flight times.

Here's the Island Aviation Hangar in Manila, where flights depart from and arrive to:

Amanpulo Flight Review-Island Aviation Hangar Manila Philippines


Island Aviation uses Dornier 228 turboprop aircraft. Due to the small size, each passenger is limited to a maximum of 44 lbs. of checked luggage per person. You're going to a tropical island, though, so there's really no need to bring a lot of stuff with you.

Review-Amanpulo Flight-Island Aviation Plane-Dornier 228-202K


The seats don't recline, but are perfectly fine for a 1 hour flight. There's a small pillow at each seat.

Amanpulo Flight Review-Seat


There are also ear plugs thoughtfully provided, given the noise of the turbo prop. If you're bringing an infant or small child who doesn't tolerate ear plugs, I recommend bringing some kind of ear protection.

Review-Amanpulo Flight-Island Aviation Plane-Ear Plugs


You can see footage of the flight and our arrival in my Amanpulo Flight Video. Once we'd landed, we were warmly greeted by the Amanpulo Resort Team, who rolled out the red carpet–literally 🙂

Amanpulo Flight Review-Arrival at Amanpulo-Red Carpet


Our Casita Assistant, Princess, introduced herself, and offered us some cool towels, as well as fragrant jasmine leis.

Amanpulo Flight Review-Cool Towels


We were soon settled in a golf cart and ready to drive to our casita–stay tuned for my upcoming 2018 review of Amanpulo.

Amanpulo Review-Arrival-Golf Cart


The Verdict

From our arrival at the lounge to the flight and welcome at Amanpulo, everything was seamless. I was pleasantly surprised to be offered some savory snacks as well as the brownies and cakes, and this was appreciated given our 1pm flight time.

Our flight back wasn't quite as smooth, but this wasn't the fault of Amanpulo; as a small aircraft, Island Aviation's plane had to wait for Manila Air Traffic Control to give the go ahead to cross busy runways, which caused us to be on the tarmac about 30 minutes. This is also why it's important to allow the full two hours from the scheduled departure/arrival time of the Amanpulo flight (or even more time if you're being more cautious) because of this type of potential delay.

The welcome at Amanpulo was especially nice, what with the many smiling staff, fragrant leis, no need to worry about our luggage, which was transferred separately to our casita, and our personal guest assistant who drove us in a golf buggy to our casita.

If you've been to Amanpulo recently, what was your lounge and flight experience?

Recommended Posts

Review: Shangri-La at the Fort, Manila and Horizon Club Lounge

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