Romance on rails: inside the new La Dolce Vita Orient Express

Launching in 2025, this new Orient Express is bringing a taste of 'the sweet life' to the rail lines of Italy.

By Chris Ashton, March 22 2024
Romance on rails: inside the new La Dolce Vita Orient Express

There’s an undeniable romance surrounding premium rail travel – elegant cabins concealed behind sliding timber doors; sleek dining carts tailor-made for candlelit dinners or gatherings around the piano with a martini in hand.

In this space you’ll find a slew of iconic names including The Ghan, Rocky Mountaineer, and of course, Belmond’s Venice-Simplon-Orient Express. Soon, another train sporting that famous moniker will be taking to the rails: La Dolce Vita Orient Express.

Rather confusingly, this Orient Express is unrelated to Belmond, with the rival train actually created in partnership with French hotel group Accor, which intends to relaunch the 140-year-old rail marque and also broaden its scope to include a new hotel.

If the train looks familiar, that may be because it inspired the recently-released LEGO Orient Express.
If the train looks familiar, that may be because it inspired the recently-released LEGO Orient Express.

Regardless of which group is at the throttle, La Dolce Vita – debuting in early 2025 – will be an experience worth travelling for, with its nine seasonal itineraries unlocking the delights of the Italian countryside, from Venice to Portofino and the stunning Montalcino.

On departures from Rome Ostiense station, the La Dolce Vita lounge will set the tone with a pre-boarding experience, and after the whistle blows, the journey of a lifetime begins.

The city of Matera (as made famous by the Bond film 'No Time to Die') is among those visited.
The city of Matera (as made famous by the Bond film 'No Time to Die') is among those visited.

Itineraries vary from one to two nights, giving plenty of time to admire the changing scenery, plus off-train excursions allowing you to take in the local sights, whether it’s the walled city of Siena in Tuscany or the Valley of Temples in Agrigento.

Designed by Milanese architecture firm Dimorestudio, interiors are immaculate – a “tribute to the glamour, joie de vivre and artistic fervour of the 1960s”, featuring 12 deluxe cabins and 18 suites, complemented by a restaurant, lounge, and bar.

A suite onboard La Dolce Vita.
A suite onboard La Dolce Vita.

In true Italian fashion, cuisine is destined to be a highlight, beginning with a ‘Grand Tour of Italy’ at breakfast, followed by afternoon tea, pre-dinner drinks and a grand evening affair, complemented by sommelier-selected wines.

When the socialising is done, guests can retire to deluxe cabins and suites embellished with timber slats on the ceiling, brass fixtures and a leather headboard. Each is fitted with a private bathroom.

La Dolce Vita Deluxe Cabin.
La Dolce Vita Deluxe Cabin.

Orient Express CEO Gilda Perez-Alvarado says the endeavour “embodies the essence of exquisite exploration, where sophistication meets adventure,” while hailing it as “the pinnacle of elegance and excitement, immersed in the charm and splendour of Italy.”

Tickets go on sale April 24, though they won’t come cheap. A one-night itinerary starts at €3,500 (AUD $5,327) per person in a deluxe cabin, rising to €4,700 (AUD $7,153) per person in a suite.

30 May 2018

Total posts 36

The Orient Express was the Paris - Venice - Istanbul service via the Simplon tunnel in the Alps. What has this train to do with that?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

09 Jan 2017

Total posts 28

Apart from the name - totally unrelated, except in the level of luxury and as a homage to the romance and grandeur of days gone by.


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