The new train-hotels which run several routes through northern Spain are luxuriously equipped with great food and plenty of culture and history. La Robla and El Expresso are restored coal-carriers, modelled on the Orient Express, that ran from the Picos de Europa mines a feat that made the Basque industrial revolution possible.
The Historico train has only three carriages that date from 1929 to 1960 and can carry 105 people. The carriages have been luxuriously restored which air-conditioning, a public address system and background music. One of the salons had been equipped for meetings with cafeteria service. This train covers two routes in the Basque Country and two in Cantabria.
The Estrella del Cantabrico also has three carriages and a capacity for 120 people. This train offers two routes in Asturias. The Costa Verde has five cars and a capacity of 290 people and runs from and back to León a twelve hour trip.
Spain’s Luxury Trains – an Update
One of the most luxurious ways of seeing Spain is from the comfort and grandeur of one of the Gran Lujo or Grand Luxury Trains. With personalised service and a maximum of 28 guests on some of the trains, incredible views combined with seeing the best sites in Spain and dining in some of the best restaurants these are said to be some of the most luxurious train cruises in the world. With various itineraries from the rugged coastline and green mountains of northern Spain to the splendour of the dry hot Andalusia with its Moorish palaces in the south.
Travel across the length of the northern coast from the world-famous gastronomic city of San Sebastian to the end of St. James Way or Camino de Santiago on the north west coast. Stunning scenery accompanies the salubrious setting. Luxury coaches are on hand for transfers to city tours, museum visits or fine dining restaurants.
These ‘palaces on wheels’ cover some of Spain’s most spectacular scenery, offer lavish interiors and impeccable service and enable a fabulous overview of Spanish culture, cuisine and history. With a range of itineraries and destinations.
The four gorgeous luxurious hotels on wheels in Spain combining modern luxurious conveniences and old-world glamour are:
El Transcantabrico Gran Lujo
El Transcantabrico Clasico
El Expreso de la Robla
The Al Andalus Train has two categories of cabins, four lounge cars, which often host live entertainment. and menus that change during the journey to offer typical, local gastronomy. The Al Andalus as its name suggests covers the southern routes mainly in Andalusia and the fabulous cities of Seville, Cordoba, Granada and Cadiz.
Its French-built restaurant, lounge and bar carriages have been restored to their original 1929/1930 splendour and the charm of the Belle Epoque period lives on. There are seven beautifully renovated sleeper carriages, five of which are original from the Wagon-Lits company and also date back to 1929.
El Transcantabrico Gran Lujo train is Spanish luxury on wheels, blending nostalgia with modern comforts. Relax and watch the constantly changing scenery from lush green countryside to rugged coastline pass by from the large windows in both cabins and lounges. Transfer for dinner in fabulous local restaurants with this five-star train and five-star trip.
El Transcantabrico Clasico was the first luxury train in Spain and has some of the wonderfully evocative original 1923 Pullman cars. The Clasico was the inspiration for other luxury cruise hotel trains such as the Al Andalus. Its tours run through some fabulous medieval cities in Spain’s north such as León, Bilbao, Santander, Oviedo, Avilés, Gijón and Ribadeo.
El Expreso de la Robla train is a lovely, little vintage train offering nostalgia of bygone train travel. As a narrow-gauge train it may not be very comfortable for larger and taller passengers, its trip tend to be of a shorter duration, 4 days and 3 nights.