Richard Branson's Brightline Will Kick Off Its Boozy Rides With a Rum Train
As if Brightline’s pending extension to Orlando isn’t exciting enough, the visionary rail line — soon to be renamed Virgin Trains USA — has an even more exotic destination in the works, at least for a few weeks in June: Havana, Cuba.
OK, so Sir Richard Branson isn’t actually laying rail ties across the Florida Strait from Key West to Cuba, but if you close your eyes, sip your drink, and use your imagination, you’ll certainly come close.
Brightline’s Havana Special Rum Train rides, available on select dates from June 14 to 29, are a celebration of the relationship between Miami and Cuba. Experts from Rum distilleries, roaming musical entertainment, and historical narrators will come on board to educate passengers about the unique tie between the two spirited destinations.
“Told through the lens of the railroad (which played a critical role in the development of Miami) and highlighting the future of South Florida rail travel via Brightline, the Havana Special Rum Train will transport passengers back to a golden era paired with premium rail travel,” reps for Brightline said in a statement.
The rum train experience will last approximately two and a half hours. An hour before departure, guests arrive to Virgin MiamiCentral and head to a private lounge, where they’ll be served a rum cocktail and passed Cuban-themed hors d’oeuvres before the hour-and-a-half train ride.
On the train, guests receive three rum tastings, another two rum cocktails, and a dessert shooter while they learn about the rum creation process and the connection between Cuba, the railroad, and the birth of Miami. (Booking a Lyft home from the rum train is probably a good plan.)
The Havana Special Rum Train is exclusively for adults ages 21 and up. Tickets can be purchased on therumtrain.com or by phone at 770-516-3836 and cost $125 for individual seats or $140 for table seats, which are available in groups of two or four.
If rum and rhythms aren’t your speed, stay tuned: Brightline plans to host tasting trains for fine wines, whiskies, and other liquors, too.