10 Hotels Where You Can Live Like James Bond
Spectre, the 24th installment in the James Bond franchise, hit theaters this weekend, which means that bartenders around the world are going to have to deal with an onslaught of requests for shaken martinis. While it's unlikely that you'd ever have the superspy skills or high-tech gadgetry to compete with 007, you can try to match his passport game. To get you started, here are some of the secret agent's favorite hotels around the world, as seen on the silver screen.
In the opening scene of 2012's Skyfall (seen above), Bond takes a dip in a pool that is supposed to be located at a hotel in Shanghai. In reality, he's paddling high above the Thames. And while the real pool offers amazing aerial views of London, the filmmakers had to black out the windows in order to keep up the China illusion. Bond's steamy shower scene with Severine (Bérénice Marlohe) was reportedly shot in room 712 of the hotel, so keep that in mind when making a reservation.
Opened in 1954, Miami Beach's historic Fontainebleau is one of the most memorable hotels used throughout the Bond film franchise; it’s shown immediately following the opening credits of Goldfinger (1964), and is also where the titular villain (Auric Goldfinger) passes the time cheating at cards. In the film, Goldfinger's assistant/Bond Girl Jill Masterson is found dead (and covered in gold paint) in one of the hotel’s rooms, but only the aerial shots were actually filmed there; parts of the hotel were recreated at Pinewood Studios in England. Other films that have cast the luxury resort as a character include The Bodyguard (1992) and Scarface (1983).
The bulk of Casino Royale (2006) takes place at this Paradise Island resort: Bond walks through the reception area and gardens and plays poker in the Library. The lobby of the club was transformed into a set for the film, and according to the BBC, guests can stay in Bond’s room (Villa 1085), which comes with round-the-clock butler service. Dune, the hotel's oceanfront Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurant and bar, pays tribute to its Bond link with a Casino Royale martini (a simple mix of Grey Goose vodka, Bombay Sapphire gin, Lillet Blanc, and lemon).
Pierce Brosnan (as Bond) get a bird's-eye view of Hamburg, Germany in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) as he climbs his way to the globe that famously adorns the rooftop of the Hotel Atlantic Kempinksi. The façade of the building, which was built in 1909, also appears throughout the film, as it was Bond's hotel of choice; conveniently, it was Brosnan's hotel while filming, too.
Jamaica was a recurring destination for Bond during the 1960s and 1970s. What is now the Couples Sans Souci resort was used as a location in three Bond movies: Dr. No (1962), Goldfinger (1964), and Live and Let Die (1973). Bond's connection to the famed Caribbean island is hardly coincidental: Ian Fleming penned all of the Bond novels in Jamaica, where he owned 15 acres of land that he dubbed GoldenEye. Today that area is its own hotel (still called GoldenEye) where guests can stay in Fleming's own villa.
In The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), Roger Moore follows Bond Girl Andrea Anders to Hong Kong, where she’s picked up by one of the Peninsula Hong Kong's iconic “Peninsula green” Rolls-Royce Phantoms. Founded in 1928, the five-star Peninsula Hotel group is based in China but now has 10 locations around the world with others under construction. The exterior of The Peninsula Hong Kong appears throughout the movie, and the cast and crew were lucky enough to stay there during filming.
In Casino Royale (2006), Bond docks his yacht at the private marina of this Venice hotel (the only way guests can arrive), offering an amazing shot of the Venetian island palace’s exterior. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the hotel has appeared on a few “Most Expensive” lists, with suites starting around $1200 per night. The cast and crew stayed here during filming (and George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin were spotted here during their wedding weekend).
This Tokyo hotel doubles as the headquarters of Osato Chemicals and Engineering, a front for the global crime syndicate SPECTRE, in You Only Live Twice (1967). At the time of filming, the hotel was basically brand new (it opened in 1964), and was designed to house 1000 guests and to give each one of them a view of Mount Fuji. A section of the hotel, called “The Main,” received major renovations against seismic activity and reopened in 2007.
This Buckinghamshire estate is a popular filming location in England, having appeared in both Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) and, more famously, Goldfinger (1964), where Bond faces off with the gold magnate and his henchman, Oddjob, on the golf course. The country club has also appeared in Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001), Layer Cake (2004), RocknRolla (2008), and other films.
The lavish 18th-century Indian hotel, often referred to as a “floating palace,” was used as the location of the jewel-smuggling mastermind’s lair in Octopussy (1983). It is consistently named one of India’s “Most Romantic Hotels,” and it’s not hard to see why.