Who has never dreamed of visiting famous filming locations and being a movie star for one day?
Today movies have a powerful influence on travel decisions and film tourism, also called “set-jetting”, is becoming an increasingly popular holiday option. Are you interested not only in visiting film locations, but also in staying at the hotels where these movies were shot, imagining to be your favorite hero or heroine?
If you want to sleep in the same room where Audrey Hepburn was hiding during her Roman holiday, look out from the same window where Aschenbach watched Tadzio play on the Venice Lido beach, play cards like Goldfinger at the Fontainbleau Hotel in Miami, admire the peak of Mount Etna visible on the horizon of Taormina in Antonioni’s L’Avventura (The Adventure) or imagine the brown-haired Kim Novak/Judy Barton transformed into the blond Madeleine in Vertigo, here is a list of five famous breathtaking film locations you can’t miss.
1. Apartment R/134 Margutta – Rome, Italy – Roman Holiday
The apartment R/134 Margutta enjoys a very central location in Rome, on the prestigious Via Margutta, below the Pincio and not far away from the Spanish Steps. After Wyler’s film Roman Holiday, this exclusive street became home to many famous artists, such as film director Federico Fellini.
2. Hotel Des Bains – Venice, Italy – Death in Venice
The historic Belle Epoque Hotel des Bains in Venice Lido is immersed in a beautiful park and offers breathtaking views either over the sea or the flourishing green garden. Thomas Mann was a regular guest of this hotel and set his short novel Death in Venice here. Visconti chose the same hotel for the homonymous film. The Hotel Des Bains is situated in the center of the Lido, near the Palazzo del Cinema, where the annual Venice Film Festival takes place.
3. Hotel Fontainebleau Resorts – Miami Beach, Florida – Goldfinger
The luxurious Fontainebleau in Miami Beach is the perfect hotel if you want to follow in the footsteps of the world’s most famous 007 spy, James Bond: it is the memorable location of Goldfinger. In the opening scenes of the film we see an aerial shot of the Fontainebleau hotel, today a landmark of Miami Beach. The vast complex is a regular movie star hangout and artists such as Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley were frequent guests at the hotel.
4. San Domenico Palace – Taormina, Italy – L’Avventura (The Adventure)
San Domenico Palace, built around a monastery dating back to the 14th century, is a luxury hotel in the heart of Taormina and one of the settings of Antonioni’s film L’Avventura (The Adventure). The film ends with a famous scene on the hotel’s terrace. The view that can be enjoyed from here and from the pool is extraordinary. The panorama embraces the ancient Greek theater and Etna’s peak.
5. Hotel York – San Francisco, California – Vertigo
When Hitchcock first saw San Francisco, he said it would be a good place for a murder mystery. In fact he chose different locations here for his 1958 film Vertigo. Fans of the film can stay in the York Hotel in Nob Hill, near Union Square, where the character played by Kim Novak lived. The flashing green neon hotel sign that created a ghostly effect in the film was replaced when the hotel changed its name. Today guests of the York hotel can enjoy special martinis and a show in the famous cabaret-style showroom.
Goldfinger movie set picture, courtesy of Hotel Fontainebleau, Miami Beach.