Eastern Asian’s relationship with technology and design has always seemed somewhat other worldly to us boring old Westerners. And this is no more illustrated than on its railways. So while we get disrupting strikes this weekend, take a look inside the East Japan Railway Company’s new Shiki-shima train – complete with gold paint and greenhouse-like carriages.

Inside Japan's New Luxury Shiki-shima Train

The East Japan Railway Company’s Shiki-shima train made its maiden journey this past May with tickets already sold out until March 2018. And it’s not hard to see why. More five-star hotel than locomotive, the gold-tinted Shiki-shima train features a sophisticated blend of modern and traditional Japanese materials such as washi paper screens and lavish carpets.

It was designed by famed industrial designer Ken Kiyoyuki Okuyama, and while the private rooms ooze sophistication, it’s the train’s amazing greenhouse-like observatory coaches that really sets it apart. Glass ceilings and walls are built into two of the carriages at the front and rear of the train, which means passengers can watch the scenery pass by.


As well as the five-star lounge with panoramic windows, the train boasts just 17 tatami-style suites and an opulent dining carriage where guests can order fine cuisine prepared by an on-board Michelin-starred chef. Naturally, there’s also a concierge and butler serving your every need.

East Japan Railway Company’s Shiki-shima train is fully booked up until March 2018, but if you want to find out more, head over to the East Japan Railway Company Website where you can book your ticket. Be warned though, the most expensive suite on the train will set you back around £6,500 per person.




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