LVMH and Accor agree partnership to ‘accelerate’ development of Orient Express

LVMH and Accor have entered into a strategic partnership to “accelerate the development” of Orient Express and its upcoming product launches. 

In a deal made official on June 13, the two brands will collaborate with Orient Express on various projects, including the launch of its first ship, the renovation of a historic train and the opening of new properties in Rome and Venice. 

The partnership follows Accor’s acquisition of Orient Express in 2022. Under the new agreement, LVMH and Accor will invest in the third party companies that will operate the new hotels and trains and own the new ships. 

A statement from the brands said LVMH would add “its unique expertise in high-quality products and services, illustrated in particular in the world of travel by the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express train and the five other trains also operated by Belmond around the world”.

The revived Orient Express train and the brand’s first ship, which is currently under construction at Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in France, are set to launch in 2026.

Bernard Arnault, group chairman and chief executive at LVMH, said: “Orient Express has embodied adventure and elegance since its origins. We are delighted to be partnering with Accor to accelerate the renewal of this travel icon. 

“Each of our groups will bring the best of its expertise to take Orient Express to the pinnacle of the art of hospitality.”

Accor’s group chairman and chief executive, Sébastien Bazin, added: “With Orient Express, Accor is reinventing the art of travel, discovery and great odysseys. With LVMH today, we are opening a new chapter in this exciting journey, with the ambition of exploring new horizons and embodying the audacity and creative passion that drive our groups.” 

The statement added that Accor and LVMH are continuing “the selective development of global destinations” to grow the Orient Express hotel portfolio and are also seeking “a third partner” for the brand’s new cruise venture.

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