This occasion merits its own blog post, separate from my other London/UK trip posts.
Absolutely thrilled with this experience of a lifetime! As a Poirot fan (I have all the DVDs of the series from 1989 until the finale), this art deco, 1930's train, with all the history, charm, and Poirot-infused murder mystery on board, I have goosebumps just being here. The train is a gem and it feels like stepping back in time, to the 'belle epoque'. So grateful for the opportunity. The golden age of travel. Veneered panels that show off exquisite, exotic art deco marquetry; art nouveau lamps shed soft light on polished brass, bevelled glass and glowing mahogany fittings, velvet armschairs... I could see Poirot sitting across from me, with his trademark moustache and monacle. Perhaps Miss Lemon is just out to look for the butler...
This magnificent train the Belmond British Pullman is a sister train to the Orient Express' Venice Simplon. I hope to try the other voyages of this beautiful train.
Belmond has its own lounge at the London's Victoria station. Luckily we arrived about 45 minutes prior to departure; many guests had already been there, enjoying some refreshments and beverages before boarding. The service is an experience it itself; we were satisfied from start to finish.
The characters from the murder mystery started appearing at the lounge just minutes before boarding...
... and mingled with the guests.
Our carriage was 'Zena', which, according to the booklet on our table, was built in 1929.
We were completely surprised and ecstatic when we knew we had this coupe, private 4-seat compartment to ourselves. We giggled like 2 little girls in a candy land. Thank you, Belmond!
Our amuse bouche had been there upon our arrival, to greet us.
I could not stop having this smile from ear to ear. Absolutely happy!
The deceased's will...
And one by one, the characters started passing by and talked to us.
Angela was quite the inquisitive detective... She was busy questioning Lady Jezebel, the deceased's sister, who had insured her brother for a handsome sum, knowing she would not get a penny of his inheritance.
Love the tiles in the spacious washroom.
I could see Poirot trimming his moustache!
Another character; this time the son of the deceased.
I did not know England produced wine. Something new to learn every day...
The details are impressive, to say the least.
The nurse, with whom the deceased was smitten, proudly showed off her big ring.
Those are real flowers. Nice touch.
Tamara, the deceased mistress, who had inherited a fortune from her parents, so it seemed like she had no motive...
And the Dutch wine seller, who sold bad wines to the deceased for profit.
And the butler, who actually lost employment with the death of his master, so we thought he had no motive... Obviously my grey cells are non existent... Pardonnez-moi, Monsieur Poirot.
The book, which had our names printed on the front. Talk about customized service!
Printed only for that particular journey.
Our scribbles when we interrogated the suspects and tried to deduce the murderer.