Orient Express Reveals Next Venture: Luxury At Sea

The Orient Express, the legendary long-distance passenger train service of the 19th century, is thundering back into the 21st century with a new overland service and an upcoming luxury sailing ship, the Orient Express Silenseas. In 2026, Silenseas will set sail on her first voyage and become the largest sailing ship in the world. 

The new ship is one of two being built in partnership between Accor, a French hospitality company, and Chantiers de l’Alantique, a French shipbuilding company. Silenseas will be propelled by “solid-sail,” a wind propulsion system, as well as a hybrid liquified gas propulsion system. The dual system showcases the growing role that sustainability plays in cruise-ship design. 


  • 54 suites measuring an average of 753 square feet.
  • Two swimming pools, including a lap pool.
  • A speakeasy bar, Amphitheatre-Carbaret, and a private recording studio.
  • Spa treatments, meditation sessions, and wellness programs.

“With Orient Express Silenseas, we are beginning a new chapter in our history,” said Sébastien Bazin, chairman, and CEO of Accor. “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. 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.”

More Orient Express Plans 

Besides the announcement of Orient Express Silenseas, the brand plans to open its first Orient Express hotels in Rome and Italy in 2024. The following year, a new Orient Express train will pull into stations with 17 original cars dating back to the 1920s and 1930s, their interiors redesigned by architect Maxime d’Angeac. Orient Express plans to continue adding luxury to its name, whether by sea or land. 

Will you travel on the Orient Express Silenseas? Let us know in the comments!

Julie Bouchner is the Digital Editorial Manager for Porthole Cruise and Travel. She has a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Syracuse University. When she is not writing, she enjoys traveling, spending time with family, baking, and playing with her Siberian Husky named Ellie.