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The Eastern & Oriental Express returns to service as luxury rail travel becomes top trend in 2024

One of the world’s most opulent train journeys is back on track following a major refurbishment and is already proving a sellout.

Travellers thirsty for a taste of old-school glamour and opulence are flocking to Singapore, where Belmond’s Eastern & Oriental Express returned to service this week, embarking on a three-day journey through Malaysia.

Billed as a “travelling memoir” and the sister of the infamous Orient-Express train, the glamorous locomotive paused services during the pandemic, with all 15 carriages undergoing a major refurbishment, including its two signature dining cars led by culinary director André Chiang.

The relaunched Eastern & Oriental Express line will offer two seasonal itineraries this year; the first will take guests on a tropical journey to the island of Penang, via Kuala Lumpur and Langkawi, while the second journey will head north through the jungles of Malaysia to the Taman Negara National Park, where the endangered Malayan tiger lives.

With luxury rail travel already tipped to be one of the top travel trends of 2024, demand for the slow rail journey has already seen the first services sell out, with limited availability from April onwards.

Veuve Clicquot Solaire journey

Those wanting to supercharge their luxury experience should look to join the Veuve Clicquot Solaire journey onboard the Eastern & Oriental Express, departing April 22, which will see guests joined by the Champagne house’s Cellar Master, Didier Mariotti, who will lead a series of tastings across the three-day venture through the jungles of Malaysia. Paired with a series of bespoke menus by Chiang, Mariotti will open the vault to share some of Veuve’s most sought-after vintages, including those from La Grand Dame series and The Cave Privée series.

The journey is one of three Solaire rail experiences to run this year, with a three-day European tour from Vienna to Paris aboard the Orient-Express set for July. Finally, in October, guests can join Mariotti as they traverse Peru’s Sacred Valley, before ending their journey at Machu Picchu, travelling on the iconic Hiram Bingham train.

For more details on the Eastern & Oriental Express journeys in 2024 — and to book — visit

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