Despite the often stunning views and soothing motion, the train may be the most underrated form of travel in recent decades. But a brand new option in train travel is so over the top in the luxury department that it has the power to completely redefine train travel – well, for the one percent, that is.
Enter the industry-changing G Train. Designed by famed French designer Thierry Gaugain and described as a “palace on rails,” the ultra-luxury train promises to be a 1,300-foot locomotive with all of the refined trappings of a luxury hotel.
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The Luxury G Train
Unlike most trains – which can carry millions of people from the general public in their lifespan – this $350-million train will be privately owned by one deep-pocketed individual. Nope; this sleek work of art is definitely no public or passenger train.
On the five-star “train,” owners along with their friends and families can comfortably lay their heads in one of 20 guest rooms, burn calories in a state-of-the-art gym, pamper themselves at a spa, and unwind in a movie screening room. But that’s not it. The train features fold-down wings that create sophisticated terraces for social events(!), a “secret “garden, and a state-of-the-art glass exterior that changes colours from opaque to transparent to various hues depending on the environment.
Meanwhile, a luxurious caboose stores automobiles, motorcycles, and other (presumably high-end) vehicles. Accommodating varying directions and different journeys, the G Train can also be split into two parts.
Like a Private Plane or Luxury Yacht
The train’s discerning designer envisions the pricy vehicle as a means to savour the journey – in the way those with dollars to drop would on a fully-loaded yacht or private jet would, for example. It’s essentially the train version of either.
“We tend to think about rail transportation only in terms of speed, moving lots of people from point A to point B in record time,” Gaugain told Robb Report. “But this 14-car train would belong to a single owner. It’s an alternative, very leisurely way to see the world, beyond the yacht and jet.”
For those unfamiliar with his name, Gaugain is known for his work on superyachts for a famous clientele. This includes the stunning Venus, a 262-foot yacht co-designed by Philippe Starck for the late Steve Jobs. To get the lavish job done properly, Gaugain enlisted top industry experts like esteemed Swiss train builder Stadler and British engineering firm Eckersley O’Callaghan.
Those with an interest in the well-appointed train will have to wait to add it to their collection of rich people toys. The G Train is currently in its conceptual stage, but Gaugain is confident the idea will attract the attention of wealthy travellers and investors around the globe.
However, those with a soft spot for instant gratification will have to wait. The pricy project would take about two and a half years to build.
As the realization hits that – sadly – none of us will likely take a ride in the G Train, it begs the question of whether the future owner would consider renting it out a la Airbnb (we’re guessing no, but let us dream).