JetBlue opens new outdoor rooftop lounge at Kennedy Airport

NEW YORK (WABC) -- JetBlue Airways opened its new outdoor rooftop space Wednesday at Kennedy Airport.

The airline said its T5 Rooftop is the only post-security outdoor space accessible to all customers at a New York airport.

JetBlue brought out a band, hot dogs and ice cream to celebrate the opening of its new rooftop waiting area.

The outdoor area is past security at JFK. But instead of waiting by the gate, any JetBlue passener can now wait there. There are grassy patches to watch the planes come and go.

"Really this park changes the experience of what it means to be at an airport and what it means to have outdoor space within the airport," said JetBlue architect Ty Osbaugh.

And that's certainly convenient for those traveling with pets. "We actually have the first post-security pet relief area for our pet travelers. At JetBlue we love our pet customers as well," said JetBlue's Don Uselmann.

On a day like this one, it made the wait that much more enjoyable. "It's great, more airlines should copy it," said one passenger. "Being cooped up in an airport all day is not very fun, so the opportunity for fresh air is pretty awesome."

The T5 Rooftop, which includes kid-friendly and dog-friendly spaces, is open all summer from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. for travelers who clear security at JetBlue's home terminal -- T5.

The outdoor park offers customers views of the Manhattan skyline and the historic Eero Saarinen TWA Terminal from its airport rooftop vantage point.

It features a wood roof deck, aluminum outdoor furniture and planters, free WiFi and New York-centric food and beverage carts/kiosks featuring Brooklyn's Blue Marble ice cream and Hebrew National hot dogs.

"As New York's Hometown Airline, T5 was designed to show off the pride we have for our city. We brought many elements of New York into T5, including the new T5 Rooftop," said Jamie Perry, Jet Blue's vice president of brand and product development. "The latticed cable work in T5 holding up the digital ring in the Marketplace is a nod to the same elements on the Brooklyn Bridge and our grandstands were designed to mirror New York City landmarks known for people watching. As rooftop bars, sunbathing and summer enjoyment are such a big part of living in New York City, we wanted to bring this unique aspect to customers traveling through T5."

JetBlue will host an ongoing Summer Friday series with DJ sets, acoustic performances, food and beverage samplings and other entertainment offerings for customers visiting the outdoor space and traveling through T5 this summer.
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