Jet, set, go is the mantra nowadays. Especially because time is money and most high-flying business people are constantly in a rush to get to their destinations as quickly as possible. Long-distance rail travel is not seen by many as an appealing option.
French designer Thierry Gaugain has grandiose plans to take luxury rail travel to a whole new gamut with his latest concept described as “palace on rails” worth $350M. He is keen to revolutionize the lack of luxury rail travel and has designed a private luxury train called the G train that will be 400-meter long, comprising 14 cars with an exterior shell made of technologically advanced glass that can switch from opaque to completely transparent with the flick of a switch. Passengers also have an option and can change the interior ambiance of the train in whichever section they are.
The G Train will have space for around 18 overnight guests and will run at 160 kilometers per hour. The G train will be adapted to run on railways across the Americas and Europe. To ascertain that the design will be compliant with all the railway systems around the world, Gaugain has tied up with several experts such as Swiss train builder Stadler, UK engineering firm Eckersley O’Callaghan, glass manufacturer Saint-Gobain and security company Marine Guard.
Gaugain, who has had a fascination for trains since childhood, feels that traveling need not be focused on speed alone and that the actual journey is just as important as reaching the destination. He wants a buyer with similar romantic ideas about trains and says “Travel is not about speed. It’s about taking the time because time is the only treasure we have.”
The concept of long-distance overnight rail travel seems to gather steam because of the concerns regarding the environment. The Austrian company OBB has announced the launch of its new “Nightjet” routes and also a sleeper train between Zurich and Barcelona in the next four years. They have collaborated with the German company Deutsche Bahn, Swiss Federal Railways and, the French company SNCF.