You’ve likely heard of the infamous luxury train voyage aboard the Orient Express. If you’re an Agatha Christie fan, you’ve definitely come across this train. It’s a journey appreciated by history buffs, royals, and celebrities, and, joyfully, it’s something you can enjoy as well.
The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express is its less-known name, and it is part of the impressive Belmond luxury train offerings. This train journey is likely the most famous and made its maiden voyage in 1883. The route has changed a bit since then, and they continue to develop different routes for travelers to enjoy, but the carriages are from the 1920s and 1930s!
Restorations have managed to maintain their elegance and old-world charm and are lacking more modernized attributes. In colder weather, though, you may very well still catch a glimpse of your steward shoveling coal into a boiler so you have heat in your cabin.
Although, last year they did make sure the cabins and public areas now have air conditioning, and there is also WiFi.
This is definitely not your average train experience. Besides being surrounded by gorgeous surroundings, the staff go out of their way to ensure you are being pampered and having a memorable journey.
Your steward brings your breakfast and afternoon tea to your cabin. If you’re in a twin cabin, the steward will change your cabin from its sitting room style to the bedroom configuration while you dine in one of the fancy dining cars.
During brunch and lunch, you’re able to be more relaxed while dressed in smart casual attire, but dinner is meant to be an affair. Most men will go with the black tie ensemble, but the bare minimum is a jacket and tie. Ladies typically prefer a cocktail dress. One of their philosophies toward dress is “You can never be overdressed.”
Besides the fact that your sumptuous meal is prepared by French chefs, tables are adorned with flowers, white linen and silver. Depending on which car you’re dining in, you will also be surrounded by stunning marquetry, art deco pieces, and/or black lacquer decor.
Probably one of the toughest decisions to make will be which route you choose. The most popular one is London to Venice (or vice versa). However, other wonderful destinations such as Budapest, Vienna, Prague, and even Istanbul are also possibilities.
Where would you go?