by Tilly Smith Dix
Iconic Blue Train joins Stars of Sandstone 2019
South Africa’s biennial Stars of Sandstone in the Eastern Free-State is recognised as the world’s most diversified steam and heritage transport festival. The Stars of Sandstone, set for 4-14 April 2019, will now be hosting The Blue Train, celebrated internationally as one of the world’s most luxurious trains, for an epic two-day stop at the Festival from 3-6 April 2019.
For more than 70 years, the Blue Train has pampered discerning travellers from all corners of the globe, enjoying top billing with luxurious international rail journeys, such as the Orient Express. Pack your silks and jackets, not forgetting your steam safari trunk for Stars of Sandstone 2019, and think movie-star fabulous when you luxuriate in the mystique of this adventure.
The memorable 3-night, 4-day Blue Train indulgence to Stars of Sandstone 2019 commences with a 07h00 check in at The Blue Train VIP Lounge at Pretoria Station. Pre-departure drinks and snacks are served after boarding. Butlers will usher you to your 5-star suite before departing for Ficksburg. Brunch and dinner are served in the stylish Dining Car, and High Tea is hosted in the glamorous Lounge Car. Post-dinner drinks, cognac and Cuban cigars are available prior to retiring to your plush compartment.
Luxe Blue Train, a 5-star hotel on wheels.
On day 2, board a Stars of Sandstone steam train after a leisurely breakfast on the Blue Train. Brunch is served in the Dining Car, whilst dinner will be hosted in the Waenhuis Restaurant at Sandstone Estate.You will then be taken on The Stargazer Express steam journey to savour the romantic night sky at Grootdraai. Overnight in your suite on The Blue Train, your glamorous home from home for four days.
A complimentary shuttle service will be ferrying guests between The Blue Train and The Stars of Sandstone Steam and Heritage Festival 2019.
The Stars of Sandstone 2019 is set to be bigger and better than ever. Featuring over 25 operating locomotives traversing Sandstone’s 30km 2ft narrow gauge railway, ranging from the 1895 Lawley used on the Beira Railway to a former South Africa Railway (SAR) Class 91 diesel engine built in the US in 1973, the unique, family-friendly festival will once again attract visitors from across the planet.
Sandstone’s most recently restored locomotive, a 1915 Baldwin US-built former SAR Class NG-10, will be unveiled on 5 April after a recently completed two-year restoration project.
The Stars of Sandstone is a bucket-list festival for all ages.
The exhilarating atmosphere and sharing the sheer joy of unforgettable sights, sounds and experiences of vintage cars and aircraft, tractors, steam engines, military vehicles, and the Sandstone team of 24 working Afrikaner oxen pulling Voortrekker wagons, will make for everlasting memories. Small wonder Sandstone serves as a location for international cinematographers wishing to capture vintage rail and transportation of yesteryear. Located on a state-of-the-art working farm, the estate and its railway offer spectacular vistas of the majestic Maluti mountains and the sublime natural beauty of this region bordering Lesotho.
Paying homage to steam and transportation of a bygone era at Sandstone Estates.
The Blue Train has 26 suites, comprising: 23 De Luxe Suites and 3 Luxury Suites, all offering breathtaking views of the diverse South African landscape. Private en-suite bathrooms, butler service and gourmet dining, not to mention sumptuous interiors, make for an idyllic adventure.
This bespoke Blue Train and Stars of Sandstone 2019 excursion includes:
- Three nights’ pampered accommodation on board The Blue Train from Pretoria Station to Sandstone Estates return;
- Snacks, drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic), cognac and Cuban cigars;
- Blue Train gifts and butler service on the train;
- Two days’ entrance to Stars of Sandstone 2019 plus shuttle service between the Blue Train and the festival.
- Excluded: French Champagne, caviar, purchases from the boutique shop, telephone calls on the Blue Train and any purchases/extras at Stars of Sandstone.
Dave Richardson for fares and bookings for The Blue Train Stars of Sandstone 2019 journey at: firstname.lastname@example.org – mobile +27 (0) 82447 9167 – landline +27 (0) 11 805 4692
Stars of Sandstone 2019 bookings:
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