Our Washington-bound train boards from the ever-lovely platforms of New York's Penn Station.
Early 2000s artwork.
The Acela power units are manufactured by Bombardier and based on the French TGV design.
First Class seating on board the Acela Express.
The little cell-phone cubby at the end of the First Class car.
The first class car on the Acela Express.
The first class breakfast on the Acela Express. There were about four meal choices, all of them this tiny. Not exactly worth the substantial premium charged for first class!
The vestibule between cars on the Acela Express. Digital readouts advertise the next stop and final destination. Unlike Germany's ICE trains, there is no digital readout of the train's speed.
Inside the Acela Express Cafe Car. Unlike the cafes on other Amtrak trains, this one doesn't have any booth-style seating -- just the small bar and stand-up area seen at rihgt. The staff here were incredibly bored.
Some of the fine delicacies available at the Acela Express' snack bar.
Inside a business class car on the Acela Express. There is no coach class on this premium service, so these are the cheapest seats available. There are no free snacks or newspapers, although several rows have the nifty fold-out tables.
The power unit of our train at Washington Union Station.
Two Acela power cars at Washington Union Station.
Two Amtrak AEM-7 units sitting at Washington Union Station. These power the less exciting Northeast Regional trains, which are about half an hour slower than the Acela Express.
1970s-era Amfleet I cars, at Washington Union Station. These cars provide service on the Northeast Regional trains, the less expensive and somewhat slower counterpart to the Acela Express.
Inside a business class Amfleet I car on the Northeast Regional, on my return to New York.
The "ClubAcela" lounge at New York's Penn Station. It's not exactly the Maple Leaf Lounge, but it's better than standing around in the subterranean station.