Traveling on Rocky Mountaineer’s GoldLeaf service through western Canada’s diverse terrain is a truly luxury experience. Our 2-day journey started in Banff, Alberta past the continental divide and onto Vancouver in British Columbia. Along the way, we were awed by the scenery replete with mountains, waterfalls, rivers, lakes, rainforests, and bridges, as well as the wildlife sightings including big horn sheep, eagles and bears. Taking to the rails in this part of the world makes for a magical journey through nature.
Traveling between 35 and 65 mph, Rocky Mountaineer is the only passenger train on the First Passenger to the West route during the day, allowing for maximum photo-ops of majestic mountain ranges such as the Canadian Rockies and formations like Castle Rock Mountain, as well as the lush vegetation in British Columbia. Stunning images are easy to capture while on board the modern, bi-level glass-domed coaches, built for comfort and offering optimal viewing.
Reclinable cream and light brown leather seating features an electric footrest and in-seat heating capability, allowing your client individual control of their space. Each GoldLeaf cabin has 72 seats on the top level and the bottom level is reserved for the dining area, which serves gourmet breakfast and lunch daily. Adjacent to the dining room level is an outdoor platform for viewing and more photo-ops.
For the start of the 2019 season, the company welcomed the first of 10 new bi-level coaches, bringing the total up to 26, just in time for the line’s 30th anniversary in 2020.
The onboard F&B gives clients a taste of Canada, with a full white linen breakfast, including locally sourced items such as scones and fruit—we highly recommend the eggs Benedict coupled with delicious bread baked on board—and gourmet lunches, also white linen, featuring five or six main course selections—think Great Alberta beef and British Columbia salmon—with vegetarian and gluten-free options, complemented with local wines. Afternoons feature drink and snack service where your clients can sample exquisite local wines such as Jackson-Triggs Sauvignon Blanc from British Columbia coupled with Canadian cheddar.
Flexibility of Experience
In cities such as Vancouver, Jasper, Lake Louise and Banff, there’s a large number of hotel choices—from value to luxury—to complement the four routes that you can curate for your client depending on their length of vacation.
Additionally, your clients can opt for the less-expensive SilverLeaf refurbished cabins that are 1950s and ‘60s vintage and offer large dome windows for viewing.
The main differences between GoldLeaf and SilverLeaf are that in GoldLeaf the food is cooked to order and there are more menu options, whereas in SilverLeaf food is served at the passenger’s seat.
There are a variety of packages to choose from, in fact, and advisors can work directly with Rocky Mountaineer’s sales professionals to pick the one that best suits your client’s budgets and activity preferences. The season runs from mid-April to mid-October, with cheaper rates in April, May, September and October. The other consideration for customers when choosing travel dates will be seasonality and how the wildlife and views change. The Rocky Mountaineer is great pre or post for clients sailing on Cunard’s Alaska 2020 cruises.
What’s In it For Travel Advisors?
TRACKS is an online training program for agents that details the four routes and two service levels, plus offers key tools and resources. Graduates are designated a Rocky Mountaineer Specialist and receive a printable certificate and e-logo, and have access to Rocky Mountaineer’s Travel Agent discount program. They also have exclusive opportunities for ongoing training, webinar and insider sales tips. Rocky Mountaineer also offers travel partners the chance to join a Learning Journey to experience a train journey first-hand.