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London - Sweeping scenery is as much a feature of James Bond films as fast cars and slinky women. From the tip of the Schilthorn in Switzerland to that beach in Jamaica where Ursula Andress emerged from the sea, iconic backdrops play a leading role in the fantasy.
If you like holidays shaken – or stirred – you will love these.
Bond thunders on to our screens on November 30 with the 23rd film, starring Daniel Craig and Berenice Marlohe. The film crew had special permission to take to the skies by helicopter to shoot this dynamic city.
Paradise Island, Bahamas
Exclusive One&Only Ocean Club is where Bond sights his enemy’s girlfriend, Solange, galloping her white horse along the even whiter sand. Daniel Craig, in his first outing as Bond, seduces her – naturally.
THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN
Phang Nga Bay, Thailand
Bond jets in over Phang Nga Bay on its way to Scaramanga’s island hideaway on Ko Tapu. He finds the baddie’s solar power plant cunningly hidden in the rocks, and its laser destroys his plane. Then it’s time for lunch and a duel on the beach. Phew!
Trust Bond to fetch up at this majestic spot even if he arrives disguised as a crocodile in the movie. Before long he’s happily ensconced in the famous palace that seems to hover over the lake.
For him, there’s good news in the form of attractive women to seduce, but bad news when he meets the villain of the piece, the mysterious Octopussy.
For the rest of us, this magical city is simply too wonderful to miss.
Rio de Janeiro
No one can forget the legendary scene where Bond takes on metal-mouth Jaws on top of two cable cars high above Rio’s Guanabara Bay. He makes a slinky escape with Bond girl Holly Goodhead (Lois Chiles). Rio is a hot ticket – and undoubtedly an exhilarating ride.
ON HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE
The aluminium-covered revolving restaurant Piz Gloria on this 2 970-metre mountain (the highest in the Bernese pre-Alps) is the lair of Bond’s arch-nemesis, Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
The secret agent speeds down the mountain in a spectacular chase, filmed by the fashion mogul Willy Bogner.
Laughing Waters beach is manna for Bond fans. Honey Rider (played by pin-up Ursula Andress) emerges from the sea with a knife tucked into her swimwear and walks into cinematic history, with the “Most Inspirational Bikini Moment” of all time.
Ian Fleming wrote more than a dozen Bond novels in Jamaica, and you can stay in Goldeneye, his holiday home. It has been spruced up to meet the demands of the 21st century’s rich travellers.
FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE
The splendid Hagia Sophia is a fitting meeting point for Bond to nab secret blueprints from sassy Soviet Embassy clerk Tatiana Romanova. The rest of us can see the city’s buildings, built by Emperor Justinian in 532 AD, by guided tour.
YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE
Himeji Castle, Japan
What a place for a ninja training camp. Tiger Tanaka, Bond’s Japanese secret service ally, certainly had a sense of style. Tanaka’s private transportation hub was filmed at the Tokyo Metro’s Nakano-Shimbashi Station, and Hotel New Otani in Tokyo served as the exterior for Osato Chemicals.
Fontainebleau Hotel Miami Beach is famously hip. A fitting place then for our special agent to be knocked out by his enemy Oddjob. He wakes up to find the body of his latest sexual conquest immersed from head to toe in gold paint. Slick! –