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Asian special report – luxury train Eastern & Oriental Express


Author: Krzysztof Zapletal

Asian special report – luxury train Eastern & Oriental Express

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You move yourself in time and do something original – book your trip aboard one of the most luxurious trains in the world of Eastern & Oriental Express! This remarkable and certainly unique adventure data is for only a few elect and is a real trip back in time through many lands and cultures.

Train Eastern & Oriental Express will never win a battle against time, because obviously it isfaster from Singapore to Bangkok, to get a plane, but it is not what this is about … Such experiences do not happen using any other means of transport. I had the opportunity to experience this exclusive train trip and am happy to share with you my impressions.

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The journey started in Singapore, from staying in a unique hotel, which coincided with the landmark of the city – Marina Bay Sands. It turned out, the most expensive building in the world and at the same time featuring the largest infinity pool (over 150 meters) in the world, located on the 57 floor, offering far-reaching breathtaking views of Downtown. I would recommend spending at least one night in this place. For people who need more privacy, and looking for more of a boutique hotel design I would recommend Fulerton Bay Hotel or the traditional colonial Raffles Hotel.

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It was at the Raffles Hotel that I began my adventure – a journey through time on the train Eastern & Oriental Express. In anticipation of the ride to the train station to the accompaniment of music, nostalgically savoring the taste of the famous Singapore Sling drink (invented in this hotel). Here I recognize also sitting at the same table, travelers from other parts of the world.

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Before reaching the station, the delectable guide tells countless interesting facts about Singapore and the life of its inhabitants, subtly referring to a trip that awaits us. Train Eastern & Oriental Express, continuing the tradition of luxury concept in turn, initiated by the European sister called the Venice Simplon Orient Express, began passenger transport from Singapore and Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok. It’s luxury sleeping cars and restaurant cars are renowned for their gastronomy means that the train transported people of noble origin, diplomats and business people. Today, the Eastern & Oriental Express chauffeurs mostly foreign passengers wanting to explore this part of Asia since its interior. The Americans, the British, the French, but also Swiss and Japanese have loved this form of sightseeing and they are a constant clientele.

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After passing customs before my eyes appears this long station, turned out to be a train. At the entrance to each car a stewards is waiting eager with a warm welcome, and help to carry your hand luggage. The steward assigned to my car escorts me to the range. The cabin, as always in the network Orient Express, is finished with the best materials. The walls of richly inlaid cherry wood, Malaysian curtains with Chinese motifs, and on the floor hand-woven Thai carpets. Cab State, because that I had the chance to book, a spacious place for two people, with bathroom and shower, which provides a great deal of privacy. The cabin is equipped also with a wide sofa bed and a chair that if necessary transformed into a second bed, one movable chair, two folding tables and a wardrobe. Wide double windows provide immaculate view.

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Immediately after the entrance to the beautiful cabin feel the real atmosphere of this incredible time machine on the rails. In one carriage are only four such cabins. The exception is the presidential cabin. Only two are in the car, which proves the class of the train. Outside, there is a warm, humid, tropical climate, but in the cabin already optimum temperature and humidity, via a programmable air conditioner.

If, however, we wish to smell the scent of the surrounding rice fields or photograph ever-changing hues of the setting sun, we can take advantage of in the back of the train in the Observation Car, where with a glass of fine wine we will enjoy the beauties of nature. The lush plantations of rice, sugar cane, palm oil, rubber and coffee trees are building ever-changing views outside the window. Local farmers, who often worked quite primitive methods yet, with a smile to greet passengers on this stately train.

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During the trip through three states, while longer stops the train trips are organized for the guests. It is therefore an opportunity to meet such places as George Town on the island of Penang,where, thanks to the stress-free lifestyle, a diet based largely on fish and seafood and a friendly community, the average life expectancy is 83-85 years, which is one of the best results in the world. For this reason, many Japanese moved here permanently. In George Town I also visited the local market, rich in local, to me extremely exotic products. The next stage of the trip was a giant, valued on the island of Confucian-Taoist temple Khoo Kongsi, which is the carefully tended heritage of the place. The charms of the island of Penang were also appreciated by American filmmakers, filmed here the film “Anna and the King,” with Jodie Foster in the lead role was filmed.

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Kanchanaburi, west of Bangkok, is the goal of the other tours on the itinerary. Its history is strongly linked to World War II, was filmed here because the Hollywood classic “The Bridge on the River Kwai” in 1957. And this proved steel bridge is a symbol of the area. Along with other participants also I saw traveling War Museum to commemorate the events of those times and took part in a brief but meaty cruise along the river, run by a local historian. Each tour is accompanied by guests specially uniformed members of the Eastern & Oriental Express Security, which certainly increases the safety and comfort at the same time. At the entrance to the train always watch to prevent unauthorized people from getting inside.

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During the journey, the train manager invites guests for an evening entertainment. I had the pleasure to participate in an evening Briefing, led by the charismatic pianist, and tasting of local fruits such as durian, rose apple, pomelo and pitaya, also known as dragon fruit. In addition, I watched the mystical show of traditional Thai dance that the shaking of the train was no mean feat.

Train service has an impeccable reputation, and this is felt in every situation. Like most travelers, and very important for me was the opportunity to taste oriental dishes, served in three different restaurants. The chefs showed their skills, combining international cuisine with local, typically Asian, and creating unforgettable flavor compositions.

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Every morning the smell of freshly ground coffee spreads through the cabin. The individually agreed upon the previous evening hour steward knocks on the door and gives light but nutritious breakfast. Both lunch and dinner are offered guests two different times to choose from. This avoids the crowds and gives you a sense of uniqueness to every traveler. What’s more, the person on enigmatic position of Maître d’hôtel daily writes system tables so every time the guests sit down to a meal, it is with another interesting person. Besides the three gourmet restaurants, the train also features a piano bar, a library with massage corner, a small boutique with souvenirs and the aforementioned open observation car. Despite numerous attractions, you should also spend a few moments for yourself, look at your favorite book, write a letter to the next on the paper’s signature logo train. I have used this time to write down this relationship with the trip.

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After three days, I got to Bangkok. When I said goodbye to the crew of the train, at the station a driver waited for me a and private guide with whom I went to explore the city.

For me it was an unforgettable adventure through which I got to know a large part of tropical Asia in a unique way. Do not leave me to think that in the future to return once again to this great Asian tour, which also and I wish you!

Christopher Zapletal
Luxury Travel
krzysiek@luxurytravel.pl, +48 502 057 769

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