Orient Express Silenseas: legendary train company unveils the world’s largest sailing ship


Pioneers of luxury rail travel since the 19th century, Orient Express is a brand synonymous with fabulous, lavish and expensive slow travel. And now it has freed itself from its iron spurs and turned its prow to the high seas, ushering in a new floating era of luxury travel – the Orient Express Silenseas.

It’s quite an undertaking, too – it’s the largest sailing ship in the world, the result of a collaboration 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 liquefied gas, she will start plowing the seas in 2026, hopefully avoiding the many environmental problems cruise ships bring.

At 220 meters in length and with a tonnage of 22,300 UMS, Orient Express Silenseas has room for 54 suites averaging 70 square meters, but those with deeper pockets may want to splash out in the landmark 1,415-square-foot Presidential Suite, complete with 530-square-foot own terrace. Guests will also enjoy two pools, including a lap pool, two restaurants and a speakeasy bar. Perhaps more extravagant are the state-of-the-art amphitheater and in-house recording studio, in case guests are feeling musically inclined.

“With Orient Express Silenseas, we are entering a new chapter in our history… This exceptional sailing yacht, with roots in the history of Orient Express, will offer unparalleled service and sophisticated design spaces, reminiscent of the golden age of mythical cruising” said Sebastien. Bazin, Chairman and CEO of Accor: “Innovation is at the heart of this state-of-the-art vessel that will revolutionize the maritime world with new technology to meet today’s sustainability challenges. It is a boat designed to make dreams come true. making, a showcase for the best of French savoir-faire.”

The Orient Express Silenseas will sail along the Mediterranean Riviera during the summer months, stopping at Europe’s most glamorous destinations – Portofino, Capri and Saint Tropez – before crossing the Atlantic to the Caribbean islands for the winter.