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Pacific Parlour Car Permanently Retired February 2018

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Thought this might be worthy of a new thread.

 

The PPCs are being retired from service. The last northbound trip from LAX will be on Friday, February 2 returning from SEA on February 4. Nothing was mentioned about a separate First Class Lounge continuing or not in place of the PPC.

 

With the last of the Heritage Diners quickly making their way to the exits as well, 2018 will mark the end of a very long era.

Edited by AmtrakLKL

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Thought this might be worthy of a new thread.

 

The PPCs are being retired from service. The last northbound trip from LAX will be on Friday, February 2 returning from SEA on February 4.

 

With the last of the Heritage Diners quickly making their way to the exits as well, 2018 will mark the end of a very long era.

 

Is the amenity of a separate lounge space for sleeper passengers actually being removed from the Coast Starlight, or just the Hi-level equipment? Previously, plans from Amtrak indicated the Parlor Cars would be replaced by (remodeled/rebuilt) Cross Country Cafe diner-lounge cars (but this also wasn't supposed to happen for a few years). Presumably, plans have changed.

 

So, the very last Heritage cars on Amtrak are finally at an end. Had anyone suggested in 1971 or even the early 80's that some of these cars would be operating into 2018, you'd have been laughed right off the railroad. Quite a remarkable achievement (about seventy years of service for some diners). Other than company service cars, I have to wonder when the last Heritage baggage cars will finally be withdrawn (axle count service).

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Is the amenity of a separate lounge space for sleeper passengers actually being removed from the Coast Starlight, or just the Hi-level equipment? Previously, plans from Amtrak indicated the Parlor Cars would be replaced by (remodeled/rebuilt) Cross Country Cafe diner-lounge cars (but this also wasn't supposed to happen for a few years). Presumably, plans have changed.

 

So, the very last Heritage cars on Amtrak are finally at an end. Had anyone suggested in 1971 or even the early 80's that some of these cars would be operating into 2018, you'd have been laughed right off the railroad. Quite a remarkable achievement (about seventy years of service for some diners). Other than company service cars, I have to wonder when the last Heritage baggage cars will finally be withdrawn (axle count service).

 

 

The announcement wasn't specific regarding the actual lounge amenity, just that the Heritage PPCs are being retired due to age and cost. I certainly hope the separate lounge space continues for First Class guests, but we shall have to wait and see.

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I was never impressed by the PPC experience beyond my very first time in 2005 I think. That trip Nanette was the attendant and the wine tasting was a good time had by all, even non-partakers. She had the whole car playing trivia, among other things. The novelty of the whole thing was appealing, including the coveted and much-discussed swivel seats and theater below. Later trips never measured up even with additions like the $12K temperamental espresso machines whose output I enjoyed exactly once. Over time I had a few meals there which were OK but I sat there alone and missed the opportunity to interact with others in the dining car.

 

By the way, AmtrakLKL, there are no First Class guest on Amtrak long distance trains. Even Amtrak gave up that pretense years ago.

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That makes me sad. I always enjoyed the PPC, even with no heat and the abandoned space downstairs. It was unique and made my first LD train excursion on Amtrak extra enjoyable with the other travelers I met there. The lounge can get too rowdy for me at times.

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"..And another one bites the dust.."

 

RIP! 😣😣😣

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That makes me sad. I always enjoyed the PPC, even with no heat and the abandoned space downstairs. It was unique and made my first LD train excursion on Amtrak extra enjoyable with the other travelers I met there. The lounge can get too rowdy for me at times.

 

When did they "abandon" the downstairs? We were last on them in Spring 2016, and my family went down to watch The Good Dinosaur in the theater.

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One of my friends who works for Amtrak sent me a copy of the memo last night announcing this.

 

In the past couple of years, the PPC (and the Great Dome Car) were about the only reasons we had for riding Amtrak anymore... I am sure Ocean View will be next, too.

 

Oh well, it's been a fun ride with Amtrak... I was Select Plus and Select Executive many years.... starting riding a lot less when changes happened to Guest Rewards. Then downgrades in the food and sleepers... and then now this. We made it a point to ride the Coast Starlight atleast once a year just for this car.

 

It looks like a lot more flying and driving trips will be in our future. Will only use Amtrak when necessary... like getting to La Plata, MO because it's faster than driving from Chicago... and maybe in the NEC. Beyond that, no care, need or desire for long distance Amtrak trips anymore... I hate to say. Slowly lost my interest and desires for Amtrak... never thought I'd say that 13 years ago when I joined this forum.

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Is the amenity of a separate lounge space for sleeper passengers actually being removed from the Coast Starlight, or just the Hi-level equipment? Previously, plans from Amtrak indicated the Parlor Cars would be replaced by (remodeled/rebuilt) Cross Country Cafe diner-lounge cars (but this also wasn't supposed to happen for a few years). Presumably, plans have changed.

 

So, the very last Heritage cars on Amtrak are finally at an end. Had anyone suggested in 1971 or even the early 80's that some of these cars would be operating into 2018, you'd have been laughed right off the railroad. Quite a remarkable achievement (about seventy years of service for some diners). Other than company service cars, I have to wonder when the last Heritage baggage cars will finally be withdrawn (axle count service).

 

 

The announcement wasn't specific regarding the actual lounge amenity, just that the Heritage PPCs are being retired due to age and cost. I certainly hope the separate lounge space continues for First Class guests, but we shall have to wait and see.

 

Whether the Diner Lounges will replace the PPC is not known, but seems unlikely, as occasionally they have substituted the usual observation car on the CS (I have been on a CS that had the Diner Lounge substitute the observation car). However, even with the PPC's biting the dust, this will not cause me to discontinue my ridership on Amtrak, as I normally only travel coach, and I have been on other LD trains without PPC.

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Sad, but I'm very grateful I got to experiece these cars as many times as I did. As someone who was born in the late 80's, the fact that I got to ride in Santa Fe Hi-Levels in regular service on mainline railroads in my adult life.... Pretty special. (Wiping the foam away now... :-p )

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Forgive me, I have seen no evidence of this "rumor". None of the above posts produce evidence -- only "I've seen the memo" and the opening comment simply stated "last PPC leaves Feb 2.

 

After all these "retirement" warnings, it will be interesting when the PPC's return in March 2018 from their annual "time out" for maintenance. These cars are very old and cost to repair is prohibitive so, yes, I expect these PPC's(there is only 4 or 5) to eventually be beyond repair. On all other LD Superliner trains a Sightseer Lounge is the special lounge car. Only the Coast Starlight has ever had a separate lounge(PPC) for sleeper passengers. I've ridden the Coast Starlight several times and since there are only 6 or 8 sofa style single seats, they are usually hogged by just a few and when I rode last June and ate in the PPC, the temp was freezing from the AC blasting. I actually prefer the Sightseer Lounge.

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I too am glad to have had the experience! I just hope Amtrak can find a way to replace them with Sightseer Lounges for Sleepers!

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I'm trying to get official confirmation, but rumor has it that the last Pacific Parlour Car will leave Seattle on Feb. 4, the same day as the memorial for Zack Wilhoite, one of my friends who died on Amtrak 501. :(

Edited by CHamilton

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Forgive me, I have seen no evidence of this "rumor". None of the above posts produce evidence -- only "I've seen the memo" and the opening comment simply stated "last PPC leaves Feb 2.

 

After all these "retirement" warnings, it will be interesting when the PPC's return in March 2018 from their annual "time out" for maintenance. These cars are very old and cost to repair is prohibitive so, yes, I expect these PPC's(there is only 4 or 5) to eventually be beyond repair. On all other LD Superliner trains a Sightseer Lounge is the special lounge car. Only the Coast Starlight has ever had a separate lounge(PPC) for sleeper passengers. I've ridden the Coast Starlight several times and since there are only 6 or 8 sofa style single seats, they are usually hogged by just a few and when I rode last June and ate in the PPC, the temp was freezing from the AC blasting. I actually prefer the Sightseer Lounge.

 

The PPC's will NOT be returning in March 2018. They will no longer run at all after #11 arrives into LAX on February 5, 2018.

 

I am not going to post the internal memo here because it contains names of Amtrak employee(s)... let's just it's legit... on Amtrak stationary and given to atleast 3 station agents I know who shared it with me this morning.

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I'm trying to get official confirmation, but rumor has it that the last Pacific Parlour Car will leave Seattle on Feb. 4, the same day as the memorial for Zack Wilhoite, one of my friends who died on Amtrak 501. :(

 

That is correct --- last PPC trip will leave LAX on #14 on February 2nd... arriving in SEA on February 3rd.... then head south on #11 leaving SEA the next morning (February 4th) and arriving in LAX on February 5th.

 

Trying to make a mad scramble to have one last ride --- but with flights what they are and not being able to take time off during the week right now --- the most we could ride is one way PDX to EUG... and with flying and hotels the costs are likely too high to make it worth it for a 3 hour trip.

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Once the word gets out, the PPC will be too crowded to enjoy IMO!

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The show is indeed over as indicated. Its time. For what the cars and offerings are today its a highly overrated experience. The goal is to reduce expenses and car miles. If the parlour cars have to be the sacrifice to make the financials of the Coast Starlight better, so be it.

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The show is indeed over as indicated. Its time. For what the cars and offerings are today its a highly overrated experience. The goal is to reduce expenses and car miles. If the parlour cars have to be the sacrifice to make the financials of the Coast Starlight better, so be it.

 

If the goal is to reduce expenses and car miles...

 

 

post-745-0-67667400-1516215174_thumb.jpg

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I will definitely be in the minority (perhaps the only one), but in my one trip on the CS I did not see the appeal in the PPC itself. The lunch and dinner choices were restricting, I'm not a wine and cheese guy, and I thought the seats in the SSL were better for actual sightseeing. That said, I did enjoy the PPC once some riffraff that boarded overnight decided to make a bit of a mess of the SSL car. If they simply substituted the PPC with another (staffed) SSL, I personally wouldn't it consider it a huge loss, but that doesn't appear to be the intention here.

 

Still, it is a shame. I remember when a lot of effort was made to upgrade the Coast Starlate (as it was known then), and try to bring in more first class passengers.

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I will definitely be in the minority (perhaps the only one), but in my one trip on the CS I did not see the appeal in the PPC itself. The lunch and dinner choices were restricting, I'm not a wine and cheese guy, and I thought the seats in the SSL were better for actual sightseeing. That said, I did enjoy the PPC once some riffraff that boarded overnight decided to make a bit of a mess of the SSL car. If they simply substituted the PPC with another (staffed) SSL, I personally wouldn't it consider it a huge loss, but that doesn't appear to be the intention here.

 

Still, it is a shame. I remember when a lot of effort was made to upgrade the Coast Starlate (as it was known then), and try to bring in more first class passengers.

 

I loved it during my trip back in 2013. But yeah, a second Sightseer wouldn't be bad, though I'd miss those insanely comforable swivel chairs! Maybe put some of those in a Sightseer!

 

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BdEuOenFW58/

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BdEvQP9FwxA/

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BdEvoMTlwVY/

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BMkOPB4h-fE/

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The appeal of the actual cars was both for the history, and also for the slightly luxurious feel. There was actual wood in the cars.. the layout was unique, the seats were a bit more plush and didn't have the traditional amtrak blue fabric. The etched glass dividers... a bar that actually looked like a bar and not an airline galley... they were little things but they added up.

 

I felt like these cars had more charm then the VIA Rail Park cars even... not saying they were perfect. But way closer to perfect then anything else on Amtrak. ha.

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