The Blue Train is unique - it is not merely a train but combines the luxury of the world's leading hotels with the charm of train travel. Think of it as an all inclusive luxury rail cruise with an opportunity to view South Africa's spectacular landscapes and visit interesting tourist attractions along the way. Take a journey into a timeless world of grace, elegance and romance, where spectacular scenery stirs your imagination and luxurious comfort soothes your body and soul. Sit back, de-stress and relax. This unique luxury recreation and business experience takes you where you want to go in an endless, five-star splendour. It pauses only to pick up prestigious World Travel awards for being a cut above the rest and the Diner's Club accolade for its connoisseur selection of South African wines. The Blue Train cuisine puts sheer good taste on a plate while butler personal attention puts you on a pedestal.

Since its launch in 1946, The Blue Train has been synonymous with elegance and luxury and this latest incarnation is guaranteed to make it the focus of global attention.

With interiors created by a leading interior architectural design company, the new Blue Train rivals many a five-star hotel in terms of grace, ambiance, comfort and style. The suites have been superbly redesigned to offer discerning guests and travellers the best that modern technology and superior craftsmanship can offer.

In January 1995, management and interior designers gathered to conceptualise a level of luxury that has never been seen in motion before. By January 1996, construction of the new Blue Train was under way at the Transwerk workshop, Koedoespoort in Pretoria (South Africa).

Each Blue Train suite has a fully appointed bathroom en-suite, featuring either a bath or shower; a telephone, TV monitor and individually controlled air-conditioning. A range of videos, movies and radio channels provides guests with a variety of entertainment while onboard The Blue Train. The video choices include access to short documentaries about the area through which the train is travelling. A large screen in the Club Car provides a driver's-eye view of the track ahead, courtesy of a camera mounted onto the front of the locomotive. Other innovations include CD players and video machines in the luxury suites. To enhance your experience, you can choose from a selection of CD's and videos that can be obtained from the train manager's office.

A Club Car, styled along the lines of a gentleman's club is an ideal place to enjoy an after dinner cigar and relax over a cup of coffee. For those who desire a smoke-free environment, the Lounge Car offers just that. Here, traditional high-tea as well as a variety of drinks and snacks are served.

A new concept in wining and dining features cuisine created by The Blue Train's own team of chefs. Only the finest South African wines are served to compliment your choice from the menu.

Finally, to ensure the ultimate in hospitality, professionally trained personnel are on call for guests in each suite 24 hours a day. The 380-meter long (416 yards) train has 18 carriages, which accommodates up to 82 passengers and travels at a maximum speed of 110km/h (68mph).

The Blue Train operates a total of four routes. Offering the biggest attractions are, Pretoria to Cape Town or vice versa (1 600 kilometers or 994 miles), with guests spending one night on the train. Pretoria to Victoria Falls or vice versa (1 596km or 991 miles) offers a descerning traveller a glimpse of some of Southern Africa's natural beauties such as the great plains of the South West and Victoria Falls. During this trip, guests get to spend two nights on board The Blue Train.

It's a journey of a lifetime for those who appreciate finer things in life.

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