By Stacey Leasca
Jun 13, 2022
JAPAN’S NEW PLAN to test tourism is officially underway, so now may be the right time to start looking into your luxurious return to Japan by rail. And your overnight train ride through one of Japan’s most scenic islands is about to get an upgrade.
In April, Seven Stars, the luxury sleeper car experience by Kyushu Railway Co., announced plans to upgrade its already spectacular train. The new-and-improved train will hit the railroad in October 2022. It currently operates on the southern Japanese island of Kyushu.
The railway company will refurbish its luxury sleeper service, including reducing the number of guests on board at one time to ensure improved service for passengers. The upgrade plan, the company shared in a statement, will reduce the number of guest rooms from 14 to 10, and will now set the maximum capacity to 20 passengers per ride.
Beyond reducing the number of guest rooms, Seven Stars will also get a new tea room and salon so guests can spread out even more on the train.
According to Japan News, this is the first refurbishment for the Seven Stars train since its introduction to service in 2013. Beyond the new tea room, the train’s dining area, which was housed in the first and second cars, will now be found in just the first car. There, guests will dine on seasonal fare prepared by the train’s master chefs. The second car will also be transformed into a gorgeous salon, allowing guests to move smoothly between dinner and drinks. The third car, which was previously one of the passenger cabins, will now feature a lounge bar alongside a premium shop stocked with crafts and goods sourced from around Kyushu.
The train’s interiors harken back to a slower, more magical time in travel thanks to its use of rich, dark woods, luxurious fabrics, and soft lighting that seems to sway with the train’s subtle movements. Its massive picture windows allow guests to take in the epic views from every single seat. Or, guests can choose to retire to their rooms, which come with the same throwback styling as the rest of the train but include the modern amenity of a private bathroom.
Seven Stars in Kyushu offers one-, two-, three- and four-night packages. Following the completion of the update, rates will start at US$5,085 (¥650,000) per passenger for a one-night journey.
All photos courtesy of Seven Stars Kyushu.