“The Orient Express, in the collective imagination, embodies the golden age of travel. The fabrics, the silverware, the woodwork; their evocative fragrance… all contribute to this particular atmosphere, created by the best craftsmen of the time. The experience on board is absolutely unique…” – Sir Kenneth Branagh, from the foreword
The first train to connect Paris to Constantinople – the gateway to the Orient and epitome of all its associated desires and fantasies – the Orient Express was an immediate success. Quickly nicknamed ‘the king of trains, the train of kings’, it had already become a legend in its own time. This unique train and its celebrated passengers (both real and fictional) have become one of the great cultural icons of our times and have helped to create a limitless source of stories and fantasies to feed our imaginations. It’s a story told here through fabulous new photographs of the restoration workshops where the historic train carriages are being brought back to life, through archive photos of famous and exotic destinations, and portraits of the most famous passengers who were lucky enough to climb aboard.