Lorain & May Design Associates recently completed a challenging and intriguing project – a top to bottom interior remodel of local tourist train - The Sacramento River Train. When we were first contacted by the owners of the River Train, Sierra Railroad Company, we realized there would be some unusual conditions with the train interior that would add to the demands of designing a more typical restaurant or cocktail bar.
With train car dimensions being between 8.5-9ft. wide and 65-75ft. long, there were significant planning and lay-out challenges. Then, while most new or upgraded eateries are looking for a design with a modern style, we needed to find fabrics, table materials, and wall and ceiling materials that enhanced the historic ambiance of the vintage train cars. Next came the flexing and torqueing the materials would endure when the train travels around curves and over un-even ground as well as the heat generated inside the cars when not in use and parked in the sun in Woodland or Sacramento in the summer.
Inspired by America’s rich railway history, we nonetheless thoroughly enjoyed all the design challenges and train owners were so pleased that they hired us to work our design magic again or the River Train’s sister train operating out of Oakdale, California, the Sierra Dinner Train. Passengers of both trains are delighted with the results.