Commute in luxury: hop on board Japan’s Shiki-Shima

Designed to give you the ultimate luxury experience – the Shiki-Shima train is equipped with a full bar, two-storey suites, and bathtubs made from cypress trees.

The Shiki-Shima is a remarkable creation: a futuristic 10-coach train that runs on 3ft 6in-gauge lines and carries a maximum of 34 passengers, who enjoy the most luxurious experience on the rails.

The name Shiki-Shima means “Island of Four Seasons” and the train takes passengers from Tokyo to the northernmost island Hokkaido.

Shiki-Shima 2

The exclusive train was designed by Ken Kiyoyuki Okuyama, the Japanese auto designer behind various Porsche, Ferrari and Maserati models. The train features two-storey suites, a lounge and panoramic observation cars.

Everything on board aims to rival the experience of a top-end luxury hotel.

Michelin star chefs prepare the food on board and uniformed butlers provide service. After dining on the first night, passengers, passengers can enjoy a live performance of the traditional Japanese “Dance of the Dead”.


The train’s maximum speed is only 70mph, only one-third of that achieved in a normal Bullet Train in Japan. Just like the new Japanese-designed trains for the Great Western Railway in the United Kingdom, the Shiki-Shima is equipped with both electric motors and diesel engines.

The plans for the train were announced by the East Japan Railway Company in 2014 and since then there has been a high demand.

ultra-luxurious train 2

You’ll need a little more than loose change to hop on board the Shiki-Shima. Tickets range from £2,220 to around £7,730 and you can choose between a two or four day trip.

Despite the hefty price tag, the Shiki-Shima has completely sold out until April 2018. In fact, bookings have been so high that they are now allocated by lottery.


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