The view from the Slow Lounge at the Lanseria Airport. Photo: Thuli Mbatha.

For years the Lanseria airport has been about convenience. Now, it can be about both convenience and comfort. 

This was the message at the launch of the compact but trendy transit lounge, called SLOW XS,  that will become open to the public at the end of  August. 

Part of the Slow brand that has become associated with and recognisable for it's efficient but comfortable spaces, the lounges are operated by Comair-travel and aviation brand that operates kulula.com and British Airways. Lounges are located at O.R Tambo International Airport, Cape Town International Airport and King Shaka Airport. 

Access to the lounges is limited to qualifying kulula.com, FNB, RMB and Comair Limited VIP guests.  

According to the company, the lounge is designed specifically to fit the smaller airport space that is Lanseria. The smaller space has meant that certain services that are provided by traditional SLOW lounges will be downscaled but not reduced in quality. 

"While the spatial constraints of its present location has led to a paring down of certain services, such as buffet catering, in-house spa and private washroom facilities, SLOW XS is by no means an inferior experience when considered alongside the existing SLOW Lounges. By contrast, it is an elevated expression of authenticity, small-scale local production and modern connoisseurship, a space that caters to guests on a completely new scale by offering a refined sensory experience and an appreciation of the finer things in life. The lounge’s name is therefore not a reference to its more diminutive dimensions, but rather that there is so much more to be appreciated in the detail of its design". 

        The physical structure and the decor were carefully curated to create this trendy but not overwhelming space. Photo: Nokuthula Mbatha

In making the dream of the lounge a reality Comair partnered with specialist design agency  UNKNOWN to provide the small touches that make the lounge a different experience. 

"The notion of scale was extended across a range of media, from a limited edition volume of hand-made guest books and sustainability-sensitive reusable water bottles to a taster-inspired menu, cold-brewed coffee selection and boutique, small-batch alcohol labels from micro-distilleries.  Other lounge touch points introduce a light and unexpected palette of mint, blush and midnight blue tones, all accented with a dash of copper. The lounge is also the first to unveil SLOW's new signature pattern – specially commissioned to artist Givan Lötz – across its range of compostable food packaging". 

The furniture and interior design of the lounge is based on using soft colour palettes. 

"The Tonic-designed interior achieves a distinct sense of volume within fairly narrow spatial constraints, by merging floor and wall surfaces with a soft grey tonal palette, reducing high-contrast elements, and introducing rounded, linear detailing that adds subtle sophistication to both furnishings and the light-washed feature paneling. This sense of weightlessness is further emphasised by the natural texture and tonality of oak timber and stone, as well as the elevated profile of furniture pieces."