Luxury Trains

Belmond teams up with filmmaker Wes Anderson on its British Pullman train service

12. Oct 2021
by Varun Sharma

With the launch of Wes Anderson’s latest cinematic masterpiece – The French Dispatch – the travel brand Belmond has unveiled a luxury British Pullman train carriage that the filmmaker helped design.

Belmond is best known for its international hotels, including the Cipriani in Venice and the Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro, and, of course, the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express train service. It also runs the British Pullman – a superb day-trip rail experience that starts at London Victoria Station. The service runs through the British countryside and passengers enjoy fabulous dining and memorable vistas in the comfort of plush carriages.

British Pullman, a Belmond Train, England

The Pullman has eleven carriages and Anderson helped design Cygnus – named after the Greek God of Balance. The carriage carries 26 passengers and is very 1950s in look and feel – not to mention dramatic, cinematic, and charismatic.    

Cygnus featured in the 1972 film Agatha starring Dustin Hoffman and Vanessa Redgrave

Anderson has featured travel in many of his films – from submarines (The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou – 2004) to hotels (Grand Hotel Budapest – 2014) and indeed - trains (The Darjeeling Limited - 2007).

Inspired Wes Anderson interior

Wes Anderson says: “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 a new golden era.”

The theme of Cygnus is the swan - an emblem that runs through the carriage 

The French Dispatch – trailer: