In the second half of the 1920’s for day time high quality rail travel in Europe “Trains de luxe Pullman” were created which offered unusual comfort. Normally the “Grands Express Europeens” had sleeping coaches, salon coaches and a separate voiture restaurant, but these Pullman Trains de Luxe consisted of one or more “couplages”, a Pullman coach “salon”  coupled to a similar one with a kitchen that served the passengers of both coaches while seated.

These two always ran together and sometimes in a “Triplage”, two voitures-salon and one voiture-salon with a kitchen. No more dining in shifts and having to walk though a dozen coaches to the voiture restaurant.

The CIWL (Wagons-Lits) established the first service on 15th December in 1925 with the “Milano-Nice-Pullman–Express” with two couplages built for the british Pullman Company.
This system of luxury day trains became very popular and until 1929 no less than 20 new Pullman services were running.

The Treaty of versailles of 28th June in 1919 limited the DRG (Deutsche Reichsbahn-Gesellschaft) to run cross border trains only to the Netherlands, Danzig, Denmark and restricted places in Switzerland, Austria and Czechoslovakia. Moreover the DRG was obliged to pull International trains of Wagons-Lits over German territory “with its fastest available Express locomotives”.

It is understandable that the German company MITROPA, which ran the sleeping and dining cars within Germany, could not compete with the CIWL unless it could develop a luxury train between Germany and the neigbouring countries it was allowed, Mitropa had to break out of Germany.

The first Mitropa Train de Luxe was the Berlin-London Express, followed by the Skandinavia-Swiss Express in 1925.

The success and popularity of day trains composed of Pullman couplages  was not lost on Dr Kieschle, the Director of Mitropa, and he decided to outdo the Fleche d”Or, connecting London and Paris via Calais, that was inaugurated on  11th September in 1926.
What Mitropa could offer was a Train de Luxe all the way to Switzerland and Milano connecting in Hook of Holland with the overnight steamer from London.

Hence the birth of the Rheingold Express, named after Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold opera, which romanticized the Rhine.

>>>          1 / 2 / 3
Home / Profile / products / History / Gallery / News / Events / Purchase / Contact / catalogue
The copyrights / trademarks in all material provided on this Site belong to Darstaed.
None of the material may be reproduced, copied, distributed, republished, downloaded, displayed, posted or transmitted in any form with out the prior written consent of Darstaed.