The Vintage Cars
The great streamliner trains - the Twentieth Century Limited, Capitol Limited and Santa Fe Super Chief - consisted of a series of specialized cars, designed and engineered to meet the needs of the passenger. The cars epitomized the sleek architectural style of the era and created functional intimate places where rail travelers could socialize, view the landscape, dine with others and relax in private. The American Orient Express keeps this tradition alive.
All our rail cars are authentic, restored both to preserve history and to incorporate contemporary convenience and comfort. Unified by the dark mahogany walls and adorned with delicate marquetry, they reflect the aesthetics and attention to detail established by George Pullman, the first builder of luxury rail cars.
Soak up the sun's rays or the starry velvet night in the dome car. The glass-enclosed dome car offers 360-degree viewing. Plush upholstered couches, chairs, booths and tables are ideal for board games, conversation, or time alone. In the 1950s, the dome was advertised in National Geographic as state-of-the-art in rail innovation. Today, its practical construction makes it a classic. Built by the Budd Company in 1953 for the Southern Pacific's Daylight, this car seats 72 people in an upper-level glass enclosure that affords a 360° view of the surrounding countryside and is equipped with a bar, library, a through passage on the lower level and the Passenger Services Office.
The 1940s-era lounge car, originally built for the Union Pacific Railroad, is decidedly sophisticated, with lavish fresh floral arrangements, comfortable seating, and a full, professionally tended bar. In the early evening, cocktails and light hors d'oeuvres are served here. After dinner, gather around the baby grand, where our pianist plays your favorites by Gershwin, Hoagy Carmichael and Cab Calloway. The lounge car has been redesigned to accommodate a baby grand piano, a full service bar, comfortable couches and lounge chairs.
Lustrous mahogany panels, gleaming brass fixtures, sleek lines, and plush upholstered chairs and couches — welcome to our legendary New York observation car. Relax in its spectacular viewing salon. Sit back and savor a cocktail, marvel at the scenery, converse with fellow travelers ... you're reliving the past. The observation car features plush swivel rockers, with slender tables for writing, playing cards, reading, or sipping refreshments. The car itself evokes a time of romantic and adventurous rail travel. With its bow-tailed window seats, it has earned the nickname, the Lookout Lounge. The observation car has been appointed with a circular bay window which makes this an elegant place to watch the rails and passing scenery from the end of the train — bringing up the "markers" — as trainmen might say of the last car on the GrandLuxe Rail Journeys.
Savor outstanding cuisine at elegant tables with an ever-changing view. A visit to the dining car has been, from its introduction in 1868, the high point of any train trip. When you step into the dining room, you enter an intimate atmosphere. The dining cars seat up to 88 passengers; they were reconfigured from their original state to give passengers a more comfortable dining experience. A banquet, decorated with fresh cut flowers, divides the room and tables for two or four invite conversation. An attendant in formal attire beckons you. You are seated, ready to partake in epicurean pleasures of the highest order, prepared by chefs d' cuisine who have carefully planned a menu of recognized favorites and regional specialties.