Pioneers of luxury train travel since the 19th century, Orient Express is a brand synonymous with fabulous, opulent and expensive slow travel. And now it has unfettered itself from its iron tracks and pointed its prow towards the high seas, ushering in a new floating era of luxury travel: the Orient Express Silenseas.
It’s quite the endeavor too—the largest sailing ship in the world, she’s a result of a partnership between hospitality giant and Orient Express owner Accor and Chantiers de l’Atlantique, a French shipbuilder. Powered by a unique ‘solid-sail’ wind propulsion system combined with a hybrid propulsion system powered by liquified gas, she’ll begin plowing the seas in 2026, hopefully eschewing the many environmental concerns associated with cruise ships.
At 220 meters long with a tonnage of 22,300 UMS, Orient Express Silenseas has room for 54 suites measuring on average 70 square meters, but those with deeper pockets may want to splash out on the monumental 1,415-square-meter Presidential Suite complete with 530-square-meter private terrace.
Guests will also enjoy two swimming pools including a lap pool, two restaurants and a speakeasy bar. More extravagant perhaps are the state-of-the-art amphitheater and private recording studio, should guests be feeling musical.
“With Orient Express Silenseas, we are beginning a new chapter in our history… This exceptional sailing yacht, with roots in Orient Express’ history, will offer unparalleled service and refined design spaces, reminiscent of the golden age of mythical cruises,” commented Sébastien Bazin, chairman and CEO of Accor. “Innovation is at the heart of this ultra-modern ship that will revolutionize the maritime world with new technology to meet today’s sustainability challenges. It is a boat designed to make dreams a reality, a showcase for the best of French savoir-faire.”
Orient Express Silenseas will sail the Mediterranean Riviera during the summer months taking in stops at Europe’s most glamorous destinations—Portofino, Capri and Saint Tropez—before crossing the Atlantic to the Caribbean islands for the winter.
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