Fans of Wes Anderson can now travel on a train designed by the American filmmaker himself.
Luxury travel pioneer and hospitality company, Belmond, has recently announced an exclusive cinematic design partnership with Anderson. The collaboration will see a re-imagination of the Cygnus carriage aboard the legendary British Pullman, which will travel throughout the English countryside from London.
The alliance is unsurprising to say the least. After all, The Darjeeling Limited was mostly set on a luxury train, and who could ever forget that delightful funicular in The Grand Budapest Hotel? The Cygnus carriage that Anderson is designing also has another cinematic link: it was featured in the 1979 film Agatha starring Dustin Hoffman and Vanessa Redgrave.
“I love trains! I have often had the chance to invent train compartments and carriages in my movies — so I was immediately pleased to say ‘yes’ to this real life opportunity, and very eager to make something new while also participating in the process of preservation which accompanies all the classic Belmond train projects. They are keeping something special alive; – igniting this endangered species of travel into anew golden era,” says Anderson, on the design collaboration.
Here, Anderson manages to carefully balance the historical preservation of the Art Deco-inspired carriage, but with a modern twist. The filmmaker’s work here is unmissable: think his signature symmetrical lines, unique colour palettes and art nouveau style.
He maintains a generally green monochromatic look in the carriage with a green-patterned fabric on the couches, adding to the already busy, green carpet and curtains. The pop of colour here comes in the form of a cheeky pink ceiling that adds a bit more fun to the dark-wood interior.
Yet Anderson also made sure to maintain the heritage of the carriage in his design. Cygnus, a Greek God of Balance, is often personified as a swan and immortalised as one of the most recognisable constellations in the night sky, and so has been cleverly weaved throughout the design, most notably via the wave and swan detailing in the marquetry.
The bespoke design will also introduce an elevated guest experience with two new private coupés in the carriage. With the VTL scheme between Singapore and the UK coming up this November, this has definitely topped our bucket list of activities.
‘Pullman Dining by Wes Anderson’ starts from £400 (about S$739.80) per person. The ‘Pullman coupé by Wes Anderson’ starts from £1,800 (about S$3329.10) per coupé. The full carriage hire price is available on request.
For more information, head to Belmond’s website here.
(All images courtesy of Belmond)
This story first appeared in Lifestyle Asia Singapore