JR East’s ultra-luxurious Train Suite Shiki-Shima by Japanese industrial designer Ken Okuyama—who is perhaps best known for designing the Ferrari Enzo (and this weird office chair)—embarked on its maiden voyage on Monday.
Departing from Ueno Station in Tokyo, the sleeper train, which can accommodate a maximum of just 34 passengers, began a four-day, three-night journey through Japan's Tohoku region and the island of Hokkaido—in high style, of course. On the return trip, passengers will have a view of the Sea of Japan.
The 5 billion Yen (that’s nearly $44.4 million) train is made of 10 custom-designed cars including two glass-walled observatory cars, a shared lounge car, a dining car, and six private suite cars for a total of 17 guest rooms in three grades.
Feast your eyes on the interiors: The white-and-wood lounge car features sculptural walls meant to resemble trees in a forest. The dining car feels slightly retro with geometric paneling and crisp white table linens.
But the suites take it up another notch. The decor of the rooms was inspired by traditional Japanese architecture, with warm wood paneling, washi paper, and clean, rectangular details. The two-story, ultra-fancy Deluxe Suite has its own private onsen bath and heated kotatsu seating area.
Oh, and passengers get to embark from the private “Platform 13.5” at Tokyo’s Ueno Station.
A pre-arranged multi-day excursion costs roughly $8,000 per person. But the hefty price stag has not hindered travelers. In fact, all tours have been fully booked through March 2018.