LVMH is expanding its luxury hospitality business with a big acquisition: the Belmond Group, an iconic hotel and travel operator. The company has a collection of 45 hotels, trains and river cruises operating in 24 countries, all with a unique identity and opulent leanings.

Founded in 1976 with the acquisition of the Hotel Cipriani in Venice, the Belmond Group is known for providing the sort of luxury, out-of-this world travel experiences that might make up your vision board. The Group's accommodations include such landmarks as the Splendido in Portofino, the Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro and the Grand Hôtel Europe in Saint-Petersburg, as well as a lodge at the entrance of Machu Picchu.

"Belmond delivers unique experiences to discerning travelers and owns a number of exceptional assets in the most desirable destinations. Its heritage, its innovative services, its excellence in execution and its entrepreneurial spirit resonate perfectly with the values of our Group," Bernard Arnault, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of LVMH, said.

Notably, the Belmond Group's train services operating in Western Europe, South America and Southeast Asia present a modern take on the extravagance of 20th century train travel, bring a slower, fully romanticized time to the present. The seven trains include the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, known for its legendary Art Deco design, and the Belmond Royal Scotsman which has the elegance of a luxury hotel with all the trappings of a cozy English home.

The ink dried on LVMH's savvy acquisition in December, adding to its existing hospitality portfolio which includes Cheval Blanc (Courchevel, Randheli, Saint-Barthélemy, Saint-Tropez and soon Paris, London and Los Angeles) and Bvlgari Hotels & Resorts (with hotels in Milan, Bali, London, Beijing, Dubai and Shanghai).

Photo via Belmond Group

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