Train travel isn’t just returning, it’s poised to come back better than ever—especially if money is no object. By
French designer Thierry Gaugain — best known for designing the kind of superyachts favoured by the rich and famous — is setting his sights on train travel, which is seeing a rise in popularity as a more environmentally sustainable way to get around. Gaugain’s new G Train concept aims to take rail travel up several notches, though. He describes his vision as a “palace on rails” stretching for more than 1,300 feet with 14 cars.
“This train is envisioned for one unique owner,” Gaugain told CNN Travel. “It’s not a public train or a passenger train.” This is a palace on wheels that needs an owner who isn’t just seeking transport between points A and B, but is instead looking to enjoy the journey, he explained.
“Travel is not about speed. It’s about taking the time, because time is the only treasure we have,” Gaugain told CNN Travel. Onboard, passengers will be able to change the opacity of the windows, allowing them to bring the outdoors in as much or as little as they want. They’ll also have the option of adding seasonal filters to the window, as well as access to a dining car, gym, and what Gaugain described as a “toy chest,” according to Robb Report. That chest would hold cars, motorcycles, off-road vehicles, and more.
When it comes to trains, Gaugain concedes he is a romantic, but it’s yet to be seen whether customers will share his vision of what rail travel could be. He estimates that bringing his G Train aka ‘palace on wheels’ vision to life would take more than two years and cost more than $350 million.
Should that deep-pocketed buyer emerge, they will find themselves in the running for a truly one-of-kind and over-the-top way to experience European and American railroads.
Meena Thiruvengadam is a Travel + Leisure contributor who has visited 50 countries on six continents and 47 US states. Find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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