Long delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 25th James Bond adventure, No time to die, is finally in cinemas.
The film, the fifth and final installment starring Daniel Craig as 007, allows fans to revisit the familiar but evolving Bond lifestyle.
If watching the movie is not enough, our guide to everything Bond, from the cars to the bars, will take you straight into the London world of the super spy.
From the iconic Aston Martin DB5 to the immersive Lotus Esprit, the right car is as important to 007’s identity as his Walter PPK. Whether the tab will admire these vehicles from a distance or is well-heeled enough to buy one, Bond cars are surrounded by four-wheeled mystery.
Aston Martin Vantage Coupe: To get around the Bondian style for this experience, the loyal boffins at Aston Martin built the latest Vantage Coupe. It does not come with flamethrowers or the iconic ejector seat, but no vehicle fills the role of an adult, sophisticated supercar other than a machine rolling out of the immaculate factory of Aston Martin. Vantage offers 503 horsepower and a top speed of 195. It feels like you’re driving John Barry music, and its style stops traffic in and out of London.
Bond in Motion: This expensive exhibition of Bond film history vehicles and props once stood at the London Film Museum in Covent Garden. It is now open as a temporary, No time to die exhibit at the Beaulieu Museum in New Forest National Park about a two-hour drive from central London. The show contains all the essentials No time to die cars, from the legendary DB5 and Aston Martin V8 to SPECTER’s Land Rover Defenders and MI6 Folding Wing Glider.
A man with permission to kill does not lie in bed at a Motel 6. Only a luxury stay does – preferably one with a little atmosphere and a bar. When in London, it is safe to assume that Bond will live in Westminster.
St. Ermin’s Hotel: Internationally known as London’s ‘spy hotel’, the classic property’s proximity to Whitehall, # 10 Downing Street and the Houses of Parliament have long made it a popular meeting place for powerful people. Early in World War II, Sir Winston Churchill chose St. Ermin’s for the first meeting of the Special Operatives Executive – the intelligence agency that would develop into MI6. The rooms are quiet and elegant and the bar has an emergency champagne button.
The Corinthia London: There’s a scene at the end of Skyfall where a grieving Bond stares out from a roof over the British capital. Elite Corinthia London lives amidst the dignified views of central London. Not coincidentally, the press conference for the film’s premiere took place at the hotel.
BOND VILLAIN LAIRS
Just as 007 cannot be seen in a common environment, his villainous resistance must come up to the forefront and reside in impressive environments larger than life.
Cliveden House: There has been a home on this sprawling property since the 17th century. Packed with history and built on more 376 acres, the stately structure that now serves as the current Cliveden House hotel was built in the 1800s and eventually served as the home of the Astors. It is now one of the most atmospheric and inspiring hotels in the UK
Sky Garden: The late Hugo Drax — a Bond villain with excellent architectural taste and a love of botany — would be very pleasant to plan in the middle of London’s high-rise park, Sky Garden. Located near the Thames and the Tower of London, the place is home to two restaurants (Darwin Brasserie and Fenchurch) and three bars.
Bond enjoys a broad taste through novels and movies, but the one thread woven through his meals is the gourmet quality. His meals require a quality chef’s touch and proper alcoholic accompaniment.
St. Pancras of Searcys: From Ghost back to With loving regards from Russia, 007 enjoys a love / hate relationship with trains – but he gets along well with champagne. St. Pancra’s grill and champagne bar combine the two, setting up shop at an international train station with decor that reflects the era with Ian Fleming’s novels. Its extensive champagne list and satisfying classic London menu would earn Bond’s respect, glass by glass.
The Colony Grill at The Beaumont Hotel: Though he wants to try cuisine all over the world, Bond is still a Westminster-based Englishman enjoying a good piece of meat in a wood-paneled leather room begging for brandy and a cigar after the meal. One of the best steakhouses in London, The Colony Grill offers recurring surroundings and the right hearty menu.
Bond would drink his martinis shaken and not stirred because the ice would ruin the alcohol so he could soak up with less intoxication. For him, drinking is always about quality rather than quantity.
Dukes Bar: The well – known home of Vesper Martini became famous in Casino Royale, Dukes’ history in Westminster, Mayfair and St. James’s tells us that Fleming would visit this bar after leaving his office. Some say he wrote Bond pages about its elegant drinks. Although the exact original ingredients are no longer available, the mixologists replicate the Vesper recipe as closely as possible, making the serving a theatrical event.
The Distillery: Located on Portobello Road, The Distillery offers The James Bond Experience: a five-course, food-and-drink-themed storytelling journey through the 007 world. The kitchen makes sure the food is as good as the stories.
VisitBritain helped the author report on this story.