World’s Most Unusual Hotels: A Restored Pullman Train Car

Jan 7, 2017

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Many of us have loved trains since we could say, “Choo choo!” And though the majority of adults have put their “Thomas the Tank Engines” into the toy chest for good, there are still plenty of young souls who have stayed on track. For them, it’s time to book passage to the UK, where they can center their next trip around their fondness for the rails, to which we say, all aboard!

Next stop: the Sidings Train hotel. Image courtesy of the hotel.
Next stop: The Sidings Hotel. Image courtesy of the hotel.

The ultimate accommodation option for train enthusiasts, The Sidings Hotel was created from five vintage Pullman train cars. Located about 70 miles northeast of Manchester in the charming Yorkshire countryside of the UK, the property was founded in 1985 and offers visitors the chance to sleep, dine or do both in early 20th-century train carriages. The hotel allows guests to overlook real working trains, too, as it’s built alongside the York to Thirsk line.

A train-car room at the Sidings Hotel. Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint not included. Image courtesy of the hotel.
A train-car room at The Sidings Hotel — Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint not included. Image courtesy of the hotel.

Sleeping in the old cars is truly a unique experience. Don’t expect loads of space, as the rooms are long and thin, being that they’re actual train cars. Still, the hotel has done an excellent job making each of the eight rooms as comfortable as possible, offering in-room tea- and coffee-making facilities, televisions, Wi-Fi, bath amenities, a hairdryer and en suite bathrooms in each room. Guests can choose between a single, twin, double or four-poster-bed double room.

No need to rush your drinks. The bar car's not going anywhere. Image courtesy of the hotel.
No need to rush your drinks, the bar car’s not going anywhere. Image courtesy of the hotel.

Each of the rooms are named after famous trains or train routes, and are artfully decorated to reflect the appropriate time period. There’s the Flying Scotsman, which ran from London’s Kings Cross to Edinburgh — delightfully outfitted in plaid — as well as the Yorkshire Pullman and the Oriental Express. Prices for a one-night stay include a continental buffet breakfast and start at about 59.95 British pounds (~$73) per room.

Railway memorabilia and art are scattered throughout, and guests who can’t manage a stay here can at least stop for a bite at the on-site Mediterranean restaurant, where they can dine in the outside garden (weather permitting) or in the dining-car portion of the restaurant, giving them a real feel for the old Pullman experience.

A view of the real train tracks and the English countryside from the restaurant car. Image courtesy of the hotel.
A view of the real train tracks and the English countryside from the restaurant car. Image courtesy of the hotel.

Getting There

Fly nonstop into Manchester Airport (MAN) from Chicago (ORD) on American Airlines, British Airways or Finnair or from New York (JFK) on Virgin Atlantic, Delta or United, among other carriers.

Once you’re in Manchester, make it a train extravaganza and take the TransPennine Express from Manchester Victoria Station to York Station. From there, it’s just a 10-minute drive to The Sidings Hotel. Alternatively, driving directly to the hotel from Manchester should take just under two hours.

A Final Tip

Although it may seem like there isn’t much to do in the misty Yorkshire countryside besides relax, it’s a true haven for history buffs and anyone who adores trains (obviously). The nearby town of York features the National Railway Museum and one of the largest Gothic cathedrals in northern Europe, while nearby Beningbrough Hall is home to vast amounts of art and antiques.

Would you stay in this wacky hotel? Have you stayed there before? Sound off below!

Featured image courtesy of The Sidings Hotel.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.