Catch the world’s most elegant and refined train on this luxury journey from Vienna to London. Starting amid the imperial splendour of the Austrian capital, you'll have two days uncover the city's charms, from its art nouveau treasures to its coffee houses and classical music scene. Spend your days surrounded by fine art, elegant waltzes and the trappings of 700 years of the Hapsburg Empire before boarding the Venice Simplon-Orient Express for one of the great travel experiences in the world. Settling into your private, butler-served cabin, you'll be transported not just from Vienna to London but all the way back to the Art Deco glamour of the Roaring Twenties.
Start your trip by flying to Vienna, the City of Music and historic capital of Austria. Here, immerse yourself in the Medieval streets and squares dominated by spectacular Baroque architecture or uncover a rich musical heritage that includes the likes of Mozart, Brahms, Haydn and Strauss, using your base at the irresistible Palais Hansen Kempinski to ensure that you are in the heart of the action. Savour fabulous cuisine at the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant, relax in its atmospheric lounges or indulge with a spa treatment. We suggest a more in-depth exploration of the city by hiring a scooter to take in the Hofburg Palace, Albertina and opera houses, theatres and galleries of the Museums Quarter. Contrast the Gothic splendour of St Stephen’s Cathedral with the UNESCO-listed Baroque design of the Schonbrunn Palace and the altogether more light-hearted, antique Riesenrad, a giant Ferris wheel that frames the city skyline. Take time out from all this culture to stroll through the boutiques and flea markets of the main shopping area nearby and haggle over a found treasure or give in to temptation and take a seat in one of the city’s renowned coffee shops.
Wake to a leisurely breakfast and then ease into the day with another stroll through Vienna before an afternoon transfer to the station where you’ll get your first glimpse of the classic blue and gold carriages of the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. Boarding the beautifully restored train, you'll make your way to your cabin, feeling yourself transported back to the glamorous 1920s. Then, after unpacking your tuxedo or evening gown, you'll enjoy some champagne and the chance to luxuriate in the trains unique history and tradition as the spectacular landscapes of central Europe race past your window. Later, dressed for dinner, you’ll mingle with other passengers in the Bar car and order a perfectly balanced martini while you listen to the sound of the baby grand piano. When the time arrives, settle into your seat in the atmospheric dining car and let waiters with impeccable service lead you through a sumptuous four-course dinner. After eating, you may want to linger longer in the bar with a brandy. Finally, satiated, return to your cabin, which has artfully been converted into a cosy sleeping compartment and retire for the night.
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner included
Let the gentle knock on the door by your personal cabin steward signal that your continental breakfast is about to be served in your cabin. Keep an eye out of the window as you travel towards Paris and admire the iconic sights of the French capital. There’s just time to take brunch before you arrive at the coast of northern France. Disembark form your Art Deco bubble to board the Eurostar and cross under the Channel to England. Here, you will be escorted to the beautifully restored Belmond British Pullman for the last leg of the journey to London. As you cross the pretty Kent countryside in period style and unrestrained luxury, take traditional English afternoon tea, accompanied by a glass of English sparkling wine for a stylish finale to an incredible journey.
Breakfast & Lunch included
"This short break will see you journey back in time. Beginning in Vienna, waltz through cobbled medieval streets, and soak in the rich cultural and musical history that the Austrian capital possesses. But, it’s for the journey home that I have recommended this short break. Allow a bellboy to help you with your bags whilst you take in the details of the beautifully restored Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. Then, settle in with champagne in hand as you’re whisked through spectacular European landscapes back to London. "
Year Round from: £3,140 pp
Valid for travel: Selected dates departing Vienna May, September and October 2019