Following the restoration of 17 original cars from the 1920s and 1930s, a new version of the Orient Express will be unveiled.
Before being relaunched in 2024, the set of Orient Express cars, formerly called as Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express, will be updated and reconstructed by French architect Maxime d’Angeac.
After two years of discussions, the Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express was sold to Orient Express in July 2018.
The Orient Express brand, which was established in 1883 and operated until 1977, was revived by two businessmen, and the train first entered service in the early 1980s as a result.
The Venice-Simplon-Orient-Express, which is now owned by Belmond, was revived by American Cipriani Hotel owner James Sherwood, while the Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express, which traveled between Zurich and Istanbul, was launched by Swiss businessman and tour operator Albert Glatt.
In spite of its popularity, the Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express ceased operations in the late 1990s and vanished from sight.
In 2015, while conducting a global inventory of the Orient Express for railway operator SNCF, researcher Arthur Mettetal rediscovered the train cars on the border between Belarus and Poland.
The interiors of the train, which were decorated with Lalique panels and the same marquetry by Morrison and Nelson, had been preserved beautifully.
Twelve sleeping vehicles, a restaurant, three lounges, and a van are all part of the set.
During the reconstruction of the vehicles, architect Maxime d’Angeac will interpret the Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-interior Express’s design.
Accor, the parent firm, announced that more information would be made public in October.
“Reinventing the Orient Express of tomorrow from historical cars dating back to the Golden Age of rail travel has been nothing sort of an adventure,” said Orient Express vice-president, Guillaume de Saint Lager.
“It is a treasure that we have rediscovered: the last Orient Express, which disappeared for ten years and has now been saved. In just a few months, the talent and passion of Maxime d’Angeac and the best French artisans will reveal a train like no other, whose appearance will remain faithful to the memory and the Art of Travel according to Orient Express.
“The legend is back, and with it, a redefinition of luxury rail travel.”
Maxime d’Angeac, an architect, added: “The rebirth of the Orient Express is a technological challenge, meeting scientific, artistic and technical criteria, where the entire project has been conceived as a work of art.
“Entrusted to the best artisans and decorators specializing in their unique fields, this embassy of French luxury will unveil a setting of absolute refinement, faithful to the art of tailoring. It will be an incomparable train travel experience, imagined through a contemporary vision of comfort and extreme luxury.”
In addition, Orient Express La Dolce Vita, a different train project that carries the Orient Express trademark, will debut in 2024.
The Orient Express La Minerva in Rome and Orient Express Venice at the at the Palazzo Donà Giovannelli, both of which will open in 2024, are two upcoming hotel developments in Italy. The train is made up of contemporary carriages that evoke the Italian La Dolce Vita period of the 1960s.
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