Monday, 2 July 2012

Le Train Bleu

The name and the illuminated sign recall the great inter-war era of luxury rail travel but inside the restaurant at the Gare de Lyon all is Belle Époque. The Gare de Lyon was a prestige project timed to coincide with the Exposition Universelle in 1900 and the restaurant ambience is one of unrestrained glittering opulence – swags, cartouches, escutcheons, and super-size chandeliers vie for attention. Walls and ceilings are decorated with huge Salon-style paintings representing destinations served by the PLM while lascivious nude figures lounge around wrapped in a slick layer of gold leaf. Leather upholstery, fine cutlery and glassware, and condescending service from supercilious staff complete the picture.

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