The Silver Screen Inspiration
Murder on the Orient Express
The Orient-Express name is synonymous with both luxury train travel and Agatha Christie’s popular Belgian detective. The 1974 film, Murder on the Orient Express, told the story of detective Hercule Poirot solving a murder on the train, with a stellar cast including Albert Finney, Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Sean Connery and Vanessa Redgrave. A fabulous travel experience re-living one of Christie’s favourite ways to journey is the Venice Simplon- Orient-Express. In the opulent cabins you’ll be indulged to the extreme, with a nostalgic twenties ambience and world-class service.
Raiders of the Lost Ark
Surely one the most famed scenes from the Indiana Jones films is that set in Petra, Jordan, during Raiders of the Lost Ark: the Al Khazneh or ‘The Treasury’ at Petra being where Indy searches for The Grail. The area is a fascinating place to visit for a taste of ancient history in an utterly spectacular locale. Combine a visit with a stay at the Kempinski Hotel Ishtar; located at the lowest point on earth, the Dead Sea, at 400 metres below sea level.
Out of Africa
The 1985 the film Out of Africa starring Meryl Streep and Robert Redford as leads did much to prompt travel to the continent with its dramatic shots of plantations, valleys and savannah. If a trip to Africa with its wealth of wonders and diversity tempts, take a look at Elsa’s Kopje Hotel in Kenya. Set in the Meru National Park (home to Elsa the lioness and the inspiration for another film based on a true story in Africa, Born Free), you’ll be left intoxicated by the wonders of this remote sanctuary.
The fantastically funny Shirley Valentine prompted a generation to head to the sunny Greek island of Mykonos when it first appeared on the big screen in 1989. Today the island has lost none of its appeal for the British traveller, and a number of recent celebrity sightings there have certainly boosted its attraction. A stay at the Grace Mykonos is a wonderful spot to make the most of the area’s picturesque views out to sea across the turquoise Aegean and inland to the white-washed romantic winding streets of the main town.
When Harry Met Sally…
Set against the backdrop of bustling, vibrant New York City, 1989’s When Harry Met Sally… was the film that sparked a new generation of romcoms. The movie has proved so popular that it still has its own tour, which among other landmarks takes in Katz Delicatessen, where the famed ‘I’ll have what she’s having’ line was filmed! A stay at the timeless The St. Regis New York Hotel is the ideal place to spot real life sets from the film, and was actually used itself for scenes in The Godfather and The Devil Wears Prada.
Spoiler alert! Remember the scene at the end of 1994 classic Shawshank Redemption when Andy is sanding down his boat on the stunning white sand beach and Red walks towards him? That wasn’t actually Mexico as stated in the movie, but St Croix in the Virgin Islands.
To experience your own unspoilt paradise like Andy, head to nearby Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands – your own private hideaway for up to 28 guests. It’s certainly one of the most exclusive spots in the world to holiday.
Pirates of the Caribbean
With Johnny Depp leading the cast of Pirates of the Caribbean (2003), the film was destined to be a success, but add in the gorgeous backdrops of St Vincent & The Grenadines and the Dominican Republic and you have the recipe for a blockbuster. If setting sail in this idyllic locale sounds like paradise, take to the sea on your own yacht with Windward Islands luxury charters. Your itinerary can take in locations of the film including Bequia, all at the gentle pace of life on the ocean waves.
Sex and the City 2
Despite the sassy sequel being set in Abu Dhabi, it was predominantly filmed in Morocco. If you want to holiday like Sarah Jessica Parker in the 2010 movie and relax in an über-luxurious Moroccan setting head to the Amanjena – an oasis just outside of Marrakech. The resort offers a blend of traditional Moroccan style in a prime location on the southern road to Ouarzazate, the gateway to the Sahara Desert. A visit to the Amanjena, or ‘peaceful paradise’, spa during your stay is a must.
Stunning a-list actress Angelina Jolie joined forces with Johnny Depp for 2010’s The Tourist, which centred its storyline on the romantic city of Venice. Scenes were shot with the famous pair in the Hotel Danieli; the original 14th century palace of Doge Dandolo’s family and a beautifully restored gothic landmark synonymous with the romance and opulence of this magical city. Inside the hotel is decked out in lavish marble, with glass chandeliers, ornate furnishings and stained glass, and has a superb rooftop restaurant made for movie stars.
If you fancy mixing a luxury holiday with the thrill of Formula One then a Grand Prix hospitality package is a must. Last year’s big screen re-telling of the famous Lauder/Hunt rivalry in Rush did much to inspire travel to the world’s most glamorous circuits this year, and of course ITC Sports Travel will be at all the major racing events. Set in the playground of the rich and famous we’ll be kicking off the season in Monaco, providing road-side tickets in the very finest style with superb hosts and VIP touches.
The Hobbit Trilogy
The third and final film in the Hobbit series is scheduled for release this year, and is said to feature just as much of its prime set location, New Zealand, as its prequels. Director Peter Jackson created plenty of tourism to his home country since choosing it as a base for the Tolkien-films, and tours are available to a number of the sets. For added luxury stay on the North Island in breathtaking beauty spot Huka Lodge; which is sheltered beneath trees beside the mighty Waikato River and Lake Taupo.
Luxury travel inspired by James Bond
For more than 50 years the James Bond movies have graced the silver screen, telling the story of the British secret agent with a licence to kill.
Jamaica is considered to be the birthplace of the concept when in 1942 naval intelligence officer Ian Fleming visited the island for a summit, loved the place and decided to live there after the war.
In 1945, his house – which he named Goldeneye – was built, and it was here that he wrote many Bond novels. Fleming died in 1964 and the property was later bought by Bob Marley. Now a part of the ITC Luxury Travel portfolio, you can stay in the very place where Fleming was inspired to pen his famous characters.
Scenes from several Bond films were also shot in Jamaica and the house gave its name to the spy’s 1995 movie starring Pierce Brosnan in the title role. You can also hunt down the famous spot where Ursula Andress first appeared out of the sea in ‘that’ bikini on Ocho Rios beach on the island or stay at the Half Moon, A RockResort which appeared as Bond’s hotel room in 1973’s Live and Let Die. In fact the Caribbean islands were used as a film set for many of the franchise’s most memorable scenes. At the One&Only Ocean Club, Bahamas, you can wander around the setting for the 2006 Daniel Craig epic Casino Royale. At the Atlantis on Paradise Island you can sip a martini, ‘shaken not stirred’, at the Café Martinique; originally made famous by its appearance in the 1965 classic, Thunderball. The re-imagined restaurant pampers diners with old-world elegance and iconic Bond style.
Venice is another destination to have been graced by several Bond films, the most recent being Casino Royale. At the Hotel Cipriani you’ll be reminded of Bond’s final hours with Vesper and the hotel was also where Daniel Craig and Eva Green stayed during filming. True Bond fans will remember Octopussy’s lair, which was set at the Taj Lake Palace hotel in India, while the famed moment where Bond and Scaramanga ‘duel’ on the beach in 1974’s Man with the Golden Gun was at Thailand’s Phang Nga Bay. A stay at the Six Senses Yao Noi should add some style to a Bond pilgrimage to the region and the hotel can even arrange a helicopter transfer; giving you a bird’s eye view of Phang Nga’s National Geographic world heritage limestone formations and ‘James Bond Island’.
For details on prices please call one of our Travel Specialists on 01244 355 490.