Swiss Rail Upgrade – Excellence Class

Excellence Class private bar

Excellence Class on the Glacier Express takes Swiss rail to a new level.

I love train rides and especially riding trains in Switzerland! If you also love riding trains, Switzerland is now offering the most exclusive train ride in the new Excellence Class on the Glacier Express train. Only 40 people per day (20 going in each direction) get this unique opportunity and fortunately for me, I was one of the lucky ones in August to experience it. Switzerland has taken the Glacier Express train to a whole new level with the addition of this new Excellence Class upgrade.

Excellence Class Concierge
Excellence Class Concierge. Photo courtesy of Glacier Express

The Journey

If you haven’t heard about the Glacier Express, you should know that this iconic 8-hour train journey takes guests between the towns of Zermatt and St. Moritz travelling through charming valleys, glamorous resorts, majestic mountain peaks, 91 tunnels, and across 291 bridges.

The Luxury

I have ridden the Glacier express train before, but this was my first time in this new luxurious Excellence class. When I arrived at the train platform in Zermatt, I made my way to the separate check-in counter (at the end of the red carpet!) just for the special Excellence Class guests. They immediately took my suitcase and escorted me to my seat where I was offered champagne or another drink of my choice. There are 20 plush leather seats in this new premium carriage and everyone is guaranteed a panoramic window seat.

Glacier Express
Tari McKell on the Glacier Express.

When I sat down, they showed me the menu which listed a seven course meal (Yes, seven courses!). I think the website listed a five course meal, so I was quite surprised to see seven listed on the menu. This delectable meal included a different wine pairing for each course and the food showcased regional specialties prepared in the on-board kitchen right on the train. The meal service stretches on for hours (good to pace yourself), so you certainly won’t go hungry during this ride in the Excellence Class coach!

Meal on Excellence Class
A snapshot of the delectable seven course meal on the Excellence Class.

While taking in the breathtaking scenery of the Alps, I enjoyed complimentary WIFI and the use of a personal i-pad showing an interactive map of the route and points of interests with additional information to see or hear about during this journey. There is also a personal concierge to cater to your every need and a private bar only for guests in this Excellence Class compartment. Everett Potter, a Forbes Contributor said, “If you asked me to distill the essence of Switzerland into seven and a half hours, I would tell you to book a ticket on the Glacier Express.” I say, if you want to be pampered and have a one-of-a-kind, luxurious Swiss rail experience, then you should ride the Glacier Express Excellence Class!

We are here to help you

At Alpenwild, we offer tours that we love and have done ourselves. Our goal is to put our expertise to work so that you will have the most enjoyable tour in the Alps. Excellence class is for those that want an exclusive ride in a opulent train compartment on one of the most notable Swiss rail and scenic train routes in Europe. We are so confident you’ll love it, we are now offering Excellence Class as an upgrade option on our Self-Guided Glacier Express tour.

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