b'CONCESSIONSFLL 45I think it was just time for Fort Lauderdale, in its evolution,lounge able to handle their premium first-class and business-class to have a first-class amenity such as a common-use, or VIP,passengers, Gale recalls. passenger lounge, Gale says, noting that the airport has aAt the time, the airport was already planning a terminal diverse air service portfolio. While FLL has long been knownrenovation and expansion but had had yet to identify an for many low-cost carriers such as Spirit, JetBlue, Southwest,appropriate post-security space to install a new passenger lounge.Allegiant and others, it is also home to the various legacy carriers, plus an array of foreign flag carriers such as AZUL, Air Canada,The highly-anticipated upcoming inaugural service from Avianca and Copa.Emirates was soon punctuated by the announcement of new London flights from British Airways. In addition, longstanding The Greater Fort Lauderdale area and passenger demographicinternational carriers such as Norwegian Airlines and others also includes upscale international business travelers and internationalvoiced their desire for a premium passenger lounge. Needless to vacationers. And we would like to think that we have a growingsay, Gale and his team were highly motivated to get the ball rolling young, high-tech professional populationa very diverseon a suitable solution. population with different ethnicities from all parts of the world, Gale explains. Having this type of amenity in our airport would beClearly, we did not have the real estate to be able to widely accepted and, frankly, rather successful. accommodate that, so we got the team together and started to take a look at some of our construction phasing inside of our terminal Making it Happen renovation and expansion program to see whether or not we could Gales push for a new upscale lounge was further supported by aallocate 5,000 square feet of space to this type of an amenity for our big announcement mere months after he arrived: Emirates Airlinespassengers, Gale recalls. Ultimately, the project team was able to was bringing its five-star air service to FLL.move things around and accommodate the project in Terminal 3.There was one glaring, missing component to our airport thatThis effort was followed by a public registration of interest in they were anxious for us to address, which was the need for aAugust 2019 to seek developers and operators with both practical AirportImprovement.comMarch | April 2023'