The British Pullman – A Belmond Train, is the epitome of elegance and excitement for lovers of vintage luxury and design whimsy.
If, like me, you’ve been a fan of filmmaker Wes Anderson’s aesthetic ever since you set eyes on The Grand Budapest Hotel in 2014, you’ve probably also been following the Accidentally Wes Anderson handle on Instagram and its related website. The sheer symmetry, the exquisite detailing, the particular selection of pastels, a certain wonderful whimsy… they all add up to that specific Andersonesque look that we can all instantly recognise. Either a place has it or it doesn’t.
The British Pullman carriage called Cygnus on the Belmond train certainly does, and there’s nothing accidental about it. Because Anderson was invited to collaborate on the reimagining of one of its 11 vintage carriages, some of which were built back in 1895.
While Cygnus was relatively new, dating back to 1951, it has made some historic journeys with British royalty and heads of State and even been used in a 1972 film named Agatha, which starred actors Vanessa Redgrave and Dustin Hoffman. In its Anderson avatar, it still cleverly references the constellation it is named after, in its Champagne chillers and fluid lines that elegantly encompass its Art Deco and Art Nouveau elements.
You’ll see his trademark pastel-pink ceiling detailing with a variety of green tones in the carpets and chairs instantly. Take a moment to appreciate the gorgeous, polished marquetry inlay in a hand-worked mahogany symphony of sunbeams, clouds, stars, and waves, which takes craftsmanship to a whole new level of exquisite.
On day trips and weekend wanderings that start from London’s Victoria Station, the British Pullman can take you on a tour of discovery to historic Bath, York or Canterbury, royal residences such as Blenheim Palace or Sandringham, an interactive murder mystery set up, key calendar events such as the Chelsea Flower Show, Royal Ascot, or Christmas at Chatsworth House, coupled with their signature Pullman dining experiences.
Be it a Bellini brunch, a high tea, or a five-course fine-dining meal paired with French wine and Champagne you’ll enjoy the pampering by the Pullman team comfortably ensconced in your roomy armchair as you traverse the British countryside. The pristine linen, white-gloved stewards in Pullman livery, the gleaming silverware, and fine china will transport you to a bygone era.
And that’s precisely the endeavour of the Belmond group, to recreate the world’s most iconic and exciting luxury journeys such as these aboard the British Pullman as well as The Royal Scotsman in the UK, the Venice-Simplon Orient Express in Europe, the Hiram Bingham, and Andean Explorer in Peru, and the Eastern & Oriental Express in Southeast Asia.