Vintage Train Ride Along Hudson River
The vintage railway trip along the Hudson River has resumed after a prolonged hiatus during the pandemic. Join in the romantic 20th-century train ride from the Moynihan Train Hall in New York Penn Station to Albany in upstate New York.
American-Version ‘Orient Express’
Anybody who dreams of a romantic trip on a train would have heard about the ‘Orient Express.’ It is a transcontinental train connecting Eastern and Western Europe, and is synonymous with a luxury railway trip today as the train features glamorously decorated cars with beds and high-class restaurant facilities. For your reference, Agatha Christie’s was inspired by this art deco train.

Passengers dressed in vintage clothes boarding the train ©United Railroad Historical Society

Train traveling past the Hudson River ©United Railroad Historical Society

The same level of luxury trip is also available for you to enjoy while visiting the United States. ‘Hudson River Rail Excursions’ offers that special opportunity. The only difference is that it is nicknamed ‘Mini Orient Express’ with a same-day round-trip itinerary aboard a vintage train operating between New York City and Albany.
The train leaves behind Manhattan packed full of skyscrapers and skates along the romantic Hudson River, giving its passengers a beautiful view of the water.
The highlight of Hudson River Railway Excursions is the vintage train known as the ‘20th Century Limited.’ It is the original train that served passengers traveling from New York to Chicago between 1902 and 1967. Back then, it was used mainly by the wealthy upper class and celebrities. Among the known passengers are Coco Chanel, Marilyn Monroe, and Walt Disney.

The old train still looks classy. ©United Railroad Historical Society

The 20th Century Limited used to be referred to as ‘the five-star hotel on the railway’ for its luxury facilities including coaches with canopy beds, a fancy restaurant, and a reception room. For a few first-class passengers, even a red carpet was put on the ground for their entry. Red carpets that we see at event venues such as Hollywood movie previews are actually inspired by the VIP train ride. In a nutshell, the Century was the symbol of wealth in the 20th century.
As a luxury train representing the glamor of New York City, the Century used to make frequent appearances in the media. It was praised as either ‘the most famous train in the world’ or ‘the world’s best train.’ It was also featured in Alfred Hitchcock’s movie. There even was a 1978 Broadway musical titled in which the luxury train was the background. 

Passengers enjoying wine aboard the train ©United Railroad Historical Society

©United Railroad Historical Society

©United Railroad Historical Society

©United Railroad Historical Society

Relishing 20th-Century Romantic Time
The Hudson River vintage train ride departs from New York Penn Station. Penn Station is a short for ‘Pennsylvania Station’ and a household name for New Yorkers. Built in 1910, it is a train station representing New York City and a rail hub for various trains and metro lines passing through the city.
One advantage of traveling on the vintage train is gaining access to the Metropolitan Lounge, a new premium lounge at Moynihan Train Hall opened in 2021. The lounge provides passengers with light snacks including coffee, beverages and sandwiches to be enjoyed in a comfortable space.

©United Railroad Historical Society

The actual journey begins around 11:20am when the train leaves the station. The red-carpeted Penn Station creates an atmosphere in which passengers feel like VIPs. The two-car train is divided into the Hickory Creek and Tavern-Lounge No. 43 classes. The Hickory Creek is a type of prestige class equipped with four bedrooms and bathrooms, 16 lounge seats, and eight diner-style seating, while Tavern-Lounge No. 43 is a lower tier car, with 28 lounge seats, diner-style seating and a bar. Entry tickets cost $349 and $149 each per passenger on a weekday, and $379 and $179 each for weekends and holidays, with prices varying by more than two-fold depending on the seat.
The train’s interior is decorated in the art deco style that was dominant in the early 20th century. It is elegant with contrasting straight and curved lines, with metallic accessories serving as focal points enhancing the vintage vibe of the space. The window shows the Hudson River and surrounding mountain ranges for a scenic ride.

©United Railroad Historical Society

Full course meals are served during the train ride. ©United Railroad Historical Society

Short, Satisfying Day Trip
The train ride lasts for 2.5 hours to reach Albany-Rensselaer Station around 1:50pm. On the northbound route to Albany, lunch is served once at noon. Passengers aboard the Hickory Creek have a four-course meal, beer, and wine, while Tavern-Lounge No. 43 passengers can have catered sandwiches and sides served in the buffet style.
Once the train arrives at Albany-Rensselaer Station, all passengers are required to disembark. They can either wait at the station or have a personal time in downtown Albany. A little over two hours is not enough time for a full-on city tour, but it is still feasible to pick one or two destinations, potentially among the New York State Museum, Albany Institute of History and Art, a guided tour of the New York State Assembly, and Washington Park for a short tour. After the personal time, passengers are to return to the station by 4:30pm and hop on the return train to Penn Station, arriving at 7:05 in the evening.

©United Railroad Historical Society

The Hudson River Railway Excursions sell tickets on its website only. As of now, most tickets are sold out, but don’t give up as sometimes a limited number of tickets are released online for sale. If you are lucky enough to book this coveted ticket, you will have a time filled with the romantic moments that only a selected few enjoyed in  the early 20th century.


Where to Stay in New York: LOTTE NEW YORK PALACE
LOTTE NEW YORK PALACE is housed in the late 19th-century mansion built by the financier Henry Villard, while also featuring a 55-story modern tower. It has appeared in popular U.S. TV show and several other films, and has become a must-stop destination in New York. It has 909 rooms, with a beautiful courtyard inspired by the 15th-century Italian cathedral, restaurant Villard, luxury salon Rarities, and cocktail bar Trouble’s Trust.

Address 455 Madison Avenue at 50th St., New York
Phone +1-800-804-7035
June 2023 Editor:Jung Jaewook
Writer:Lee Siwoo
Hudson River Rail Excursions

Where to stay?

  • June 2023
  • Editor: Jung Jaewook
    Writer: Lee Siwoo
  • Cooperation: Hudson River Rail Excursions
  • 트위터로 공유
  • 페이스북으로 공유
  • 핀터레스트로 공유
  • 링크URL 공유