The Belmond Grand Hibernian. Photo: Adrian Houston/Belmond
Luxury hotel and cruise operator Belmond is about to bring a new option to Ireland, as it launches its seventh luxury train there on August 30.
Ten coaches have been refurbished to form a “country house on wheels,” reports the local media, for a series of two-, four- and six-night tours departing from Dublin for the Irish countryside and Northern Ireland.
Sixty craftspeople and 35,000 person-hours of work went into transforming the coaches into elegant cars that reflect the Irish countryside, with color schemes and carpets based on the country’s tartan, the local press reported. The train’s five sleeping cars will hold a total of 40 guests; there will also be two restaurant/pantry cars, one observation car, a crew car and a generator car.
Rates start at about $4,100 per person for a two-night journey, including food and beverage and excursions.
Ireland is a top destination this year, travel professionals agree, with a built-in comfort factor for Americans that know its culture and, of course, its language, and feel it is a safe destination.
In its quarterly earnings call last week, Belmond president and CEO Roeland Vos said the company has “not seen any meaningful impact to overall demand” in Europe.
Belmond also will launch the first luxury train in South America in May 2017.
The two new trains “provide opportunities to leverage our vast train experience and further our legacy as one of the world’s greatest luxury train operators,” Vos said.