In honor of The Great Gatsby film release, step back into the opulent Jazz Age with a visit to New York’s iconic landmark hotel, The Plaza. This historic hotel is celebrating Baz Luhrmann’s eagerly awaited film adaptation of The Great Gatsby with a collection of Gatsby-inspired experiences. The setting for one of the book’s most climatic scenes, The Plaza was also a well-known haunt of the author F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda — so much so that it has been said Ernest Hemingway once advised Fitzgerald to give his “liver to Princeton and his heart to The Plaza.”
If you’re truly gaga for Gatsby, for a mere $2,795 you can spend a night in the Fitzgerald Suite that pays homage to its famous patron. Designed by one of the film’s set designers and co-producers, this 700-square-foot suite is filled with period-inspired pieces and artifacts from the film’s production, like Tom Buchanan’s sporting trophies lining the walls. Make yourself a gin martini or mint julep from the suite’s built-in bar and escape into the 1920s with Fitzgerald’s complete collection of works, all at hand in the room’s library.
If your budget is less than Gatsby-esque, you can still get into the spirit at The Plaza. The Palm Court’s “Fitzgerald Tea for the Ages” tips a hat to the Jazz Age with 1920s-inspired plates like Pate de Fruit with Gin Rickey Sugar. The Todd English Food Hall honors Gatsby with “prohibited” cocktails like “Silver Peppered Stars,” made with Hendrick’s Gin, house-made orange bitters and French vermouth. The hotel’s iconic Champagne Bar is transformed into a Moët Pop-Up Bar, offering a special cocktail called the “Moët Imperial Gatsby,” with green chartreuse and a sugar cube. And you can dance off all that gin and champagne with the live jazz bands at The Rose Club’s “Gatsby Hour” on Wednesday and Thursday evenings.
After you’ve partied like Gatsby, recover from the previous evening’s celebrations (hello, roaring headache) with a “Caudalie Grape Gatsby” custom treatment at The Plaza’s Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa. Daisy would approve.
For more Gatsby-inspired extravagance, check out our Travel Like The Great Gatsby slideshow and relive the Jazz Age decadence … without the hangover.
Each year, devoted fans of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition wait in anticipation of who will grace the magazine’s cover. Will it be Kate Upton again, or someone else? For us, the excitement goes far beyond the question of who will grace the cover. For 2013, the magazine took its production to 7 continents — and 17 wonders of the world — crisscrossing the globe from Easter Island to Africa. This year’s edition also included the first fashion shoot to take place on the ice-covered terrain of Antarctica. And Travel Channel has the pleasure of airing the 1-hour special Sports Illustrated®: The Making of Swimsuit ’13 – 7 Continents, 17 Wonders, on Sunday, Feb. 17, at 8|7c.
See these beautiful destinations for yourself in our Sports Illustrated 2013 Swimsuit Destinations slideshow. Plus, get the complete listing of hotels and world-renowned resorts that were the stunning backdrops for this year’s unprecedented production, in our SI Swimsuit 2013 Travel Guide.
With the Oscar nominations announced this week and the Golden Globes airing on Sunday, we’ve chosen our own awards … for the most travel-inspiring films of the year.
And just in time. Set-jetting, the global phenomenon of film (and TV) fans flocking to movie locations around the globe, is one of forecasted travel trends for 2013. Travelers are now, more than ever, reliving their favorite films all over the world.
Here are some of our favorite wanderlust-stirring flicks from 2012:
While this film version shows very little of Russia or its famous landmarks (much of the action takes place on a theatre stage), it still inspires opulent travel of the old world sort. The scenes of Anna Karenina traveling in a lavish train car through the snow-covered open landscapes of Russia leave us dreaming of a similar trip: a luxury train ride on the Trans-Siberian Railroad, touring historic St. Petersburg and dynamic Moscow.
This latest installment of filmmaker Peter Jackson’s epic fantasy created a huge surge of tourism in New Zealand, where bout 150 locations were used for Lord of the Rings’ scenes. The mecca of all Hobbit tourism is Hobbiton, private-farmland-turned-movie-set. You can tour the 44 hobbit holes set in the picturesque rolling hills of Matamata’s countryside to see how the furry-footed creatures live.
History buffs and the Academy Awards alike can’t get enough of this film about our 16th president. Capturing the renewed interest in Lincoln destinations, this year tours are popping up in key cities such as Washington, DC, and Richmond, VA, retracing Lincoln’s steps and revealing history-rich locations.
Life of Pi
Praised as the next Avatar due its stunning cinematography and special effects, this film adaptation of Yann Martel’s fantasy-adventure novel has sparked renewed interest in Taiwan. With mesmerizing scenes filmed at Kenting White Banyan Garden, Kenting National Park and Taipei Zoo, Taiwan is likely to be on many lists for top destinations in 2013.
For more travel-inspiring films, check out our full list of movies that moved us in 2012.
And take a look back at what films made us want to pack our packs in 2011.
On Sunday, Oct. 7, at 9|8c, Lifetime premieres a remake of the wildly-popular modern day classic Steel Magnolias. The 1989 film (originally a stage play) shows the roaring laughs and bawling tears of 6 “delicate as magnolias, but tough as steel” women in Louisiana.
The original ladies of the 1989 film were a star-studded cast — Julia Roberts, Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Daryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis and Shirley McClaine. The Lifetime remake brings together an equally heavy-hitting ensemble of great performers — Queen Latifah, Phylicia Rashad, Jill Scott, Alfre Woodard, Adepero Oduye and Condola Rashad.
In both the original film and the Lifetime remake, the seventh equally charming character is the South, with its small-town life, community and eccentricities that define this region so well.
- Downtown Natchitoches, LA
If you’re anything like us, you were probably wondering where the Batcave is actually located (and if it’s a real place) as opposed to paying attention to the plot of Dark Knight Rises. We loved the movie, and we can’t help but be a little destination-obsessed here at Travel Channel. The Gotham City of Dark Knight was so obviously Chicago, that the new locations in Dark Knight Rises had us wondering, “Is that New York?” Turns out, most of it wasn’t.