Delta’s newest lounge has an unusual feature: an all-season Sky Deck, where up to 110 guests at a time can work at open-air tables next to a living plant wall with seasonal foliage, order cocktails at an indoor-outdoor bar, and enjoy fresh air without leaving the airport. Even more surprising? It’s located at Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (MSP) in Minnesota, a place where the average low in January is around 6 degrees Fahrenheit.
In April, Delta unveiled the new 21,000-square-foot lounge, its third and largest at MSP and perhaps the most notable aspect of the space is the first-of-its-kind Sky Deck. It consists of an area with retractable glass walls and skylights that can be heated in colder months, and two always open-to-the-elements rooms. But that’s not where the impressive features end for the newest offering in the Sky Club portfolio. There are also beautiful design details throughout, two bars, a menu sourced by local chefs, noise-proof workspaces, a locally-curated art collection, and sweeping views of the airfield and concourse.
Here’s what it’s like inside the new Delta Sky Lounge in Minneapolis.
Art and design
The sprawling lounge space means there are several distinct areas to hang out in. In the bar area, guests will find high-top bar stools and cafe-style seating, with emerald-colored leather chairs and burnt-orange booths arranged on either side of round two-person tables.
There is also a business area with rows of individual cubicles, a coworking table, and three noise-proof phone booths where guests can take calls. Beyond that is a space better suited for relaxing, with red leather couches and blue suede chairs (almost every one is conveniently located next to a power outlet).
Adjacent to the lounge is the buffet and self-service drink station (with non-alcoholic beverages), and a dining area with various high and low-top tables.
And on the aforementioned Sky Deck, there are a variety of patio furniture-style seats and couches, including one semi-circle couch that looks somewhat like a Tilt-a-Whirl—a nod to the carnival ride that was invented in Minnesota.
Minnesota is known as the “Land of 10,000 Lakes,” which plays into the lounge’s aesthetics, according to Claude Roussel, Delta Sky Club’s managing director. “The Club’s rich color palette—earth tones like sage greens paired with warm copper and amber hues—is meant to evoke natural foliage and summer sunsets at the lake,” Roussel tells AFAR.
That theme is also represented through the artwork in the lounge (all commissioned by local artists), such as a mosaic in the main lounge that depicts birch and poplar trees in autumn (by Rebecca Campbell, titled November Morning II), and a series of wilderness-inspired prints behind the Ambassador desk (by artist Charles S. Anderson, titled Up North Camp).
One of the largest pieces, hanging in the buffet area, is a mixed media composition titled Seagulls Have No Use for Satellites by artist Danny Saathoff, who tells AFAR that the artwork centers on the Great Lakes and uses numbers and circles to represent using a compass to navigate the waters by boat.
“Our goal was to create a space that reflects the natural beauty of the Great Lakes region, transporting and inspiring customers through the Club’s design, all while delivering a full suite of amenities and our signature hospitality,” Roussel says.
Food and drinks
In addition to a regular menu featuring lounge staples (like cheese, salads, nuts, and small desserts), the new lounge will highlight recipes from different local chefs every quarter as part of Delta Sky Club’s “Local Flavor” program. Currently, Justin Sutherland, a Top Chef alum and executive chef at Handsome Hog, a contemporary Southern restaurant in Saint Paul, oversees the menu, which includes his take on chicken and andouille gumbo, shrimp and grits, and banana pudding. After July 19, another Twin Cities chef will take over.
How to get into Delta’s new Minneapolis Sky Club
The new Delta Sky Club in Minneapolis is located in Concourse G, between gates 17 and 18. It’s open every day from 4:30 a.m. to 10:15 p.m. It’s open to anyone with Delta Sky Club privileges, such as Sky Club members, Delta One or SkyTeam Premium Cabin passengers, Delta Diamond, Platinum, and Gold Medallion members, and American Express Centurion Card and Platinum Card holders (if they’re flying with Delta that day).
Additional new Delta lounges
In early May 2023, Delta unveiled two new grab-and-go concepts at its two busiest U.S.-based lounges, where guests can take prepackaged sandwiches, salads, snacks, sweets, and drinks for the road. They’re found within the lobby areas of the Sky Clubs at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (Concourse B) and John F. Kennedy International Airport (Terminal 4, Concourse B).
Later this year, Delta will open new Sky Club lounges at John F. Kennedy International Airport, Boston Logan International Airport, and Newark Liberty International Airport (the first being at JFK at some point this summer).