Belmond’s Venice Simplon-Orient-Express will be delivering a winter experience to its guests this December for the first time ever. The opulent service usually runs across Europe from March to November.
Europe’s most iconic train service made its inaugural journey in 1982. It is made up of 17 original midnight blue 1920s and 1930s carriages. Guests can start their winter voyage at one of Italy’s cultural capitals: Venice, Verona, or Florence and head towards Paris or vice versa. Aside from Belmond’s Italian routes, an additional itinerary has been planned between the City of Lights and Vienna.
The full schedule is as follows: Venice to Paris, leaving December 2 and 12; Verona to Paris, leaving December 2 and 12; Venice to Paris (via Rome and Florence), leaving December 7; Florence to Paris, leaving December 7; Paris to Florence, leaving December 8; Paris to Venice (via Rome and Florence), leaving December 8; Paris to Vienna, leaving December 17; Vienna to Paris, December 18; Paris to Venice, leaving December 20; and Paris to Verona, leaving December 20.
No matter the route, guests will get treated to the extravagance the train is known for watching the snow-frosted scenery of the European countryside pass by.
The highlight of the journey is the dining experience, with the ride on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express beginning with an invitation to dress up for dinner upon boarding. Chef Jean Imbert, who heads Monsieur Dior, will serve winter-inspired seasonal menus with local ingredients from the scheduled routes.
Following the banquet, guests can get cozy in their lavish private accommodations with options ranging from Historic Cabins to six Grand Suites which are themed and named after iconic cities along the route. Suites feature marble ensuite bathrooms, 24-hour butler services, unlimited Champagne, in-cabin dining, and a plush lounge area.
Guests can head on to Bar Car 3674 for after-dinner cocktails and live entertainment from the train’s resident pianist. At midnight, guests can partake of a “Midnight Brunch” menu that includes champagne, lobster rolls, and truffled club sandwiches.
Prior to disembarking, a lavish three-course lunch is served to send guests off to their destinations.Prices for a one-night itinerary on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express start from $3,351 per person for a Historic Cabin, and about $8,433 per person for a Grand Suite. For more information, visit the Belmond website.