Three new Grand Suites have just been announced for the world’s most famous train – the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. The suites will be in operation as early as spring 2020, and are currently being built by the master craftsman of the train’s workshop in Clermont Ferrand. The car that's being converted is 3309 – the very same carriage that Agatha Christie was travelling in when that fated avalanche struck, serving as inspiration for her seminal work – the Murder on the Orient Express.
The new Grand Suite carriage will be positioned next to the existing one, doubling the capacity and forming an exclusive section of the train. Each carriage will have its own steward providing unrivalled personal service. And, like their counterparts before them, they’ll be named after, and take their design notes from some of the most iconic cities on the train’s routes: Vienna, Prague and Budapest. Take a look below and the superb new designs.
Simply, this is the ultimate experience on the ultimate train. Gold detailing, marble accents and intricate carved marquetry create a truly opulent grandeur that’s fit for the royalty that have travelled these routes. Expect everything from Baroque furniture and delicate silks to embossed leather and woven fabrics.
Along with the expansive lounge area, there’s also plenty more that sets the suites apart from the standard cabins. Uniquely, they come with spacious en suites and an option of double or twin beds. It’s all served by a personal butler, always on hand to top up your free-flowing champagne or dish up your private in-cabin meals.
Like the Orient Express, the Hungarian capital came of age at the turn of the 19th century. As such, both share a certain fin-di-siècle extravagance – a golden-age eclecticism of neoclassical, Baroque and Art-Nouveau fineries. And the Budapest Grand Suite doesn't disappoint. An Art-Nouveau flourish can be seen on the bed's headboard, with intricate wood carving bringing a sense of refined opulence and a distinct nod to the Ottoman era – not too dissimilar to the Istanbul Grand Suite. We're yet to have a peek at the bathroom but can also expect inspiration from Budapest’s famous bath houses, with the en suite likely to feature everything from Turkish-era fonts to the city’s iconic mosaics.
Built on the legacy of the powerful Habsburg monarchy, the imperial city of Vienna is ripe for inspiration. Like its museums and palaces, we can see subtle Baroque flourishes mixed in with the signature Art Deco elements the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express is renowned for. Given the nature of train travel, the signature chandeliers of the city’s Imperial Apartments would have been pushing it, but we love the furniture and cushions adorning the suite.Orient Express Vienna itinerary
Rivalling the likes of Rome and Paris, Europe has only just started to wake up to Prague’s beauty over the last few decades. Everything from Gothic severity to Art Nouveau wit graces its cobbled street and, now, its very own Grand Suite. We love the Art Deco headboard and delicate rose touches, visible on the lampshade and sofa cushions. Breakfast in bed while reading Agatha Christie? Don't mind if we do.Enquire about an Orient Express Prague itinerary
To find out more about a journey or put your name down to be among the first to travel on the new suites, get in contact with one of our specialists: