January 6, 2023

The Art of Travel is returning

This could prove to be the longest pre-launch promotion in the history of hospitality.

Bit by bit, and with the help of some fabulous 3D virtual technology, we are being introduced to the various component parts of the soon to be relaunched Orient Express luxury train.

Sections of the train have been brought to virtual life and shown at major design fairs including Paris and Miami last year with more revelations to come.

As you can see from the renderings here, it promises to be dazzling.

And owners Accor have taken onboard a handful of world renowned designers and to help re-create the magic.

Orient Express promises to bring back the ‘art of travel’.

By the time the train sets off on its inaugural journey expectations of excellence will by sky high.

That in itself is not a problem, providing the finished product lives up to the hype, and for that we’ll just have to wait.

The renderings shown here depict the Presidential Suite, designed by architect Maxime d’Angeac.

Fascinated by the great revolutionary artistic movements and a lover of travel novels, d’Angeac has been carrying out prestigious restoration and decoration projects for major luxury houses (Daum, Hermès, Guerlain, etc.) for the past 20 years.

“The Orient Express Presidential Suite captures the essence of the future train,” he explained, adding: “It is a work carved out of excess, inspired by the geniuses and pioneers of Art Deco, Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann and Armand-Albert Rateau, and by the importance of refinement and the absolute finesse of detail.

“It is a Suite where travellers can experience history, extreme luxury and ultimate comfort all at once.”

Occupying an entire train car of the former Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express, the Presidential Suite is a space of unprecedented dimensions: 21 meters long and nine meters wide.

The 55 square meter space was designed to accommodate a theatrical “Four Column room,” adorned with the most beautiful Lalique panels and a gas fireplace.

The spacious bedroom offers more subtle decor, wrapped in embroidered velvet, decorated with custom-made furniture and is home to an elegant bathroom, a tribute to Albert-Armand Rateau and his work dedicated to Jeanne Lanvin.

True to its heritage, the Presidential Suite opens onto a unique collector’s item: an “LX” luxury cabin dating from 1929, with two beds, adorned with solid mahogany and Nelson and Prou marquetry, found aboard the Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express and fully restored.

The ultimate surprise is the Cabinet de l’Égoïste, a secret room dedicated to good vibes and epicurean festivities.

Orient Express is a brand synominous with luxury travel and in 2024 it will open two hotels: Orient Express La Minerva in Rome and Orient Express Palazzo Donà Giovannelli in Venice.

Another project has also been announced in Riyadh, the first city in the Middle East to announce the arrival of an Orient Express hotel.

The luxury travel experience will continue with the launch of Orient Express La Dolce Vita and the return of the legendary Orient Express to railways.

Renderings courtesy of Maxime d’Angeac and Martin Darzacq.