The Maharajas’ Express, one of India’s most luxurious trains owned and operated by Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), has received the 2016 Seven Star Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards at Marbella in Spain.
The award for the highly decorated train was received by IRCTC Chairman and Managing Director, Dr AK Manocha, in the ‘Seven Star Experience Sector’. The Maharajas’ Express was presented the ‘Signum Virtutis’, the seal of Excellence, from the Seven Star Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards at a function held at the Villa Padierna Hotel in Marbella.
— Maharajas Express (@Maharajas_Exp) October 18, 2016
“I am absolutely thrilled to receive the prestigious award for the Maharajas’ Express which boasts of incredible grandeur, top rated cuisines and an unmatched hospitality. It is also a testament to the international appeal of the train, which offers to its valued guests an experiential journey into the bygone era of imperial India,” Dr Manocha said.
The Maharajas’ Express is a 23-coach train that currently runs on five routes, and a newly introduced route with itineraries ranging from 7 Nights/8 Days and 3 Nights/4 Days. Destinations like Agra, Jaipur, Ranthambore, Bikaner, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Balasinor, Ajanta, Gwalior, Khajuraho, Varanasi and Lucknow are covered by this grand train.
The Maharajas’ Express, launched in 2010, has already been awarded several titles since its inception. It has been a winner of the coveted Leading Luxury Train of the World Award for four years and is in the league of leading luxury trains of the world, including the Royal Scotsman and the Eastern and Oriental Express.
The design of and service on the train has been created to bring back the elegant opulence and ceremonious royalty of the personal carriages of erstwhile maharajas or kings. Anyone aboard the Maharajas’ Express is bound to feel like they are living the life of a royal, with modern-day amenities and sight-seeing tours that are carefully looked after with guides. Priced on the steeper side, the train ride promises to leave no stones unturned in terms of its commitment to make guests feel like maharajas.
A regal affair, the train is burgundy on the outside and the insides are lined with silk on the windows, carved wood panelling and marble-tiled floors. There are two thematic restaurants named ‘Mayur Mahal’ or palace of peacocks, and ‘Rang Mahal’, or the palace of colours decorated with a hand-painted fresco ceiling. Both offer guests Indian and international cuisines, with options of pairing wines from a big collection. With two bars also present on board, guests have the option of unwinding and relaxing as the maharajas of the bygone era would, at the end of a long day.
The destinations on the itinerary are a glimpse into the splendour that Indian history holds. Private gardens and meets with notable personalities is on the agenda, alongside grand welcomes with red carpets rolled out. Local dancers and vibrant music awaits at every offboard trip. For those looking to experience the lifestyle of maharajas and explore the Indian subcontinent’s royal sights, just for a short time, the Maharajas’ Express is the ride to catch.