From live music on the Grand Hibernian to the 21st century luxe of The Orient Express 2.0, rail remains the only way to travel in style. At a standard consumer level, increased investment in and extension of networks like Amtrak in the US and the cross-channel Eurostar, along with other continental providers, has opened up previously inaccessible routes and created a whole new generation of train travellers. At the same time, increased pressure on many points of air travel (from invasive security, to the retiring of Concorde and repeated failures of business-only carriers) has made flying frequently seem like a necessary trial, rather than an enjoyable experience.
With this in mind, Belmond, the venerable travel institution responsible for some of the world's finest train journeys, has been tapping into a new gap in the market. With the roots of the company dating back some 40 years and the operation of the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, the Belmond experience allies the tradition of Art Deco design and historic routes, with the ultimate in modern service and amenities. From cabins draped in plush fabrics and softly lit wood panelling, to fine dining over crisp white tablecloths with drinks in crystal glassware, this is transcontinental travel as it was supposed to be experienced.
A large part of the beauty of train travel lies in the level of engagement with your surroundings. Rather than drifting through featureless banks of cloud, a Belmond journey carves its way through some of the world's most stunningly beautiful landscapes. In Europe, the Orient Express will take you from London to Vienna via Paris and Verona, while the Grand Hibernian criss-crosses acres of Ireland's patchwork fields and miles of wild coastline, as live music fills the train's saloon bar. Further afield, two routes in Peru will take you across the Andean planes, or deep into the heart of the Inca Empire, while a network of different Asian routes link up Bangkok, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. And there's an exciting scoop for safari lovers. Belmond will partner with British Equestrian Polo Player and international fashion model Jodie Kidd, to host an exclusive six-night horseback safari in the wilderness of Botswana from 25th September to 1st October 2018 at Belmond's intimate lodges, Belmond Savute Elephant Lodge and Belmond Eagle Island Lodge.
All of these routes offer a spectacular sense of immersion and a chance to rekindle a love affair with travel itself – a reminder that the journey should be as much a part of your holiday as the destination. The airport will never seem the same again.
As part of the 'Bellini Club' of Belmond, Quintessentially's travel specialists
can offer Members a suite of supplementary amenities and benefits that would not be applied if booking direct, including an augmented on-board experience. To learn more about travelling in style, contact the travel team at: email@example.com or +44 (0) 207 022 6560