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VIA Rail's new Concierge class offers perks, drains your wallet
Canada's VIA Rail next summer will introduce a new class of service for the traveling public on its flagship route between Vancouver, BC and Jasper, AB. It's called the Concierge-class, and offers a rather unprecedented number of amenities to the most likely well-off passengers. To start, you get two double bedrooms converted into one large suite, with a queen-size bed and two (!) separate sinks and vanity areas. (I'm not really sure why you would need two separate vanity areas for two occupants, but, hey, I'm not here to judge.) There's private seating available in a Concierge car with coffee and tea service, regional cuisine served with Canadian wine in the dining car, and access to the ultra-exclusive glass-walled Dome observation car on the rear of the train.
On top of all that, you get a welcome-aboard wine tasting and flowers with a VIA gift basket, upgraded toiletries, enhanced room service, breakfast in bed, and complimentary beverages of any kind. (Yes, any kind.) The service will debut on June 1, 2009, running through Oct. 21 for the summer travel season. Unfortunately VIA's website does not have Concierge class available for selection yet, so I couldn't figure out how much this little journey would cost. However, a round trip on the 19-hour train in just one double bedroom costs upwards of $1500, so I shudder to think of what a ticket in a suite with free booze will run.
(Via Trains Magazine)