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Sunday, January 11, 2009

The best new retro-luxe train journeys

You want to take a luxurious train trip in retro-chic style but don't want to do the long haul down under to ride Great Southern Rail's The Ghan or Indian Pacific? (Although trust me, they're worth it!) Then check out these new and old classic trains offering endearingly old-fashioned rail experiences:
* The Orient Express - this sumptuous 'hotel on wheels' may be known as the grande dame of great trains, but there are in fact two sumptuous trains you can check into, the Eastern and Oriental Express, which travels through Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Laos, and the Venice-Simplon Orient Express, which does an array of routes, including the classic trips from Paris via Budapest and Bucharest to Istanbul, and the Venice via Krakow and Vienna to Paris trip.
* The Golden Chariot - this charming Indian 'chariot' is my favorite, running from Bangalore via Mysore and Goa back to Bangalore over 8 days, the beautiful train boasts two elegant restaurants and gorgeous lounges featuring proper dining chairs, as well an on-board gym and spa where guests can enjoy massages and treatments!
* The Danube Express - calling itself the 'Central European Train Hotel' this classic new train service offers a number of nostalgia-imbued journeys that you can join in Brussels, Berlin, Budapest or Istanbul, and enjoy in Classic and Deluxe Sleeping Cars - both look pretty swish.
* The Tangula Luxury Trains - due to start operating in a few months from Beijing to Tibet and Beijing to Yunnan, the only thing old-fashioned about these sleek contemporary-designed trains managed by the Kempinski group is the service and attention to detail - everything from spacious suites equipped with mini-bars and wireless internet access to personal butlers!
Want some more ideas? Check out these Eight Great Rail Escapes from the
Man in Seat 61 and Dan Kieran's Slow Trains Through Eastern Europe.
The image? The lounge car on The Ghan.


Jon said...

Thanks for your posts! Always great... I have a few photos of Paris on my Blog here. Bit foggy unfortunately on teh day I took these...

Lara Dunston said...

Hi Jon

Thanks for the feedback! I'll go check out your Paris pics now!

Anonymous said...

Great article, I really love these exotic trains like the Orient-Express and Danube Express - it's such an elegant and luxurious way to travel.

Anonymous said...

Hi !

Thanks for the post, such a great photos and a very informative post you got there. A very elegant way to travel. BTW, just wondering if you might want to check out the site i found about Travel by Train reviews. I know you'll find it interesting.