As many borders remain closed around the world, we’re constantly dreaming about our next journey and being able to indulge in a luxury journey. For now, we’re only able to dream about our next escape and film is a magnificent way to be transported to a magical far away destination, even if only for a few hours. We asked our Luxury Gold team to share the top travel films that are inspiring their next journey:
1. Out of Africa (1985)
A classic film that won several academy awards starring Meryl Streep and Robert Redford, Out of Africa showcases the spectacular landscapes on Africa, as a couple move to Africa and purchase a coffee plantation. The film is a well-rounded story of love, betrayal, personal growth and conflict. Although set in the 1913, the film still manages to ignite our need to revisit the beauty of Africa. Part of the plot also involves hunting elephants for ivory, which is confronting, but nonetheless a stark reminder of how far we have come today in protecting these wonderful creatures.
Recommended by: Christophe G., Travel Experiences, Los Angeles
“Out of Africa is, by a long shot, my favourite travel film. The scenery is breathtaking and it’s a lifestyle I’ve long dreamed of.”
2. Lion (2016)
An incredibly heart-warming film of an Indian boy who is separated from his family at just five years old and then adopted into an Australian family based in Tasmania. After more than 25 years he embarks on a journey to find his family and travels back to India in the hope of being reunited with them after such a long time. The film is tasteful and emotive, providing an insight into the reality of children living on the streets of Calcutta, India.
Recommended by: Meryll M., Digital Marketing, Geneva
“The audience is invited to imagine a long time ago— 1986, to be precise — before social media or smartphones or Google. In those days, a person could get lost, which is just what happens to a little boy named Saroo who accidentally travels more than 1,000 miles from his home in central India to the streets of Calcutta. It’s an utterly heartbreaking and extremely eye opening true story that takes you from India all the way to Tasmania.”
3. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011)
An all-star cast of award-winning actors such as Judy Dench, Maggie Smith, and Bill Nighy, play a group of British first time visitors to India, expecting the promise of a majestic Indian palace, but finding it isn’t quite as it seems. If India is on your bucket-list, we recommend this feel-good film, highlighting that while the luxury palaces and exotic experiences are extraordinary, India is truly about the people, culture and character.
Recommended by: Kirsten S., Marketing, Geneva
“This film is just so perfectly done with outstanding performances from the legends of British cinema and some younger ones in the making. Dev Patel is just fantastic as the young, ambitious and passionate wannabe hotelier in contrast to the aging guests who’ve decided to stay long term at his hotel for the retired. It’s both lighthearted and poignant about the fact that growing old comes to us all. Most importantly though, India is the star of the show. Its culture, colour and vibrancy all have a lasting and deep impact on each character – showing us all that old dogs can definitely learn new tricks.”
4. Motorcycle Diaries (2004)
A film for true adventurers, following the travels of famed Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara and his friend, Alberto, by motorbike across South America from their home in Buenos Aires. While nothing goes to plan, Che Guevara decides not to follow his studies in medicine, which would later see him become an argentine Marxist revolutionary guerrilla leader. For us, the film reminds us of the incredible beauty of South America, but also of the harsh poverty and hunger that exists in many parts. It is a clear example of how travel can enlighten the traveller and inspire one to change their path in life.
Recommended by: Brad F., President, Toronto
“A 2004 biopic about the journey and written memoir of 23-year-old Ernesto Guevara, who would several years later become internationally known as the iconic revolutionary Che Guevara. Epic scenery shot in Argentina, Brazil, United States, Chile, Peru, United Kingdom, Germany and France.”
5. The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999)
Another classic film that many of our staff love, featuring Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jude Law. Set in Positano and small island villages near Naples, during European Summer, the character of Tom Ripley is a witty and charming sociopath who impersonates another American man to assume his wealthy privileges. The eerie and thrilling film is both intriguing in plotline based in the middle of incredible scenery of the ocean, cobblestone streets and villages that we all long to visit.
Recommended by: Anthony R., Sales, New York
“Has the Italian Riviera ever looked so chic? From the sun-drenched Mediterranean beaches to the Neapolitan style jazz clubs, to the Festa de Madonna Bianca .. what a ride!!! Who could forget the cover of “Tu Vuo’ Fa L’Americano? The scene was such a hit it prompted a dance release of Renato Carsone’s jazz classic, introducing this legendary Italian crooner to the world. Just imagine seeing a film where characters are constantly being murdered and your only thought is “boy, I wish I could be there, and what I wouldn’t give for that vacation wardrobe!!!”
6. The Way (2011)
This is an emotional and inspiring travel story of a father-son bond. After his son passes away while walking the famed Camino De Santiago (also known as The Way of St James), father Tom travels to France to complete the journey instead. Along the way, he learns more about his son and himself through the spiritual pilgrimage journey that thousands have travelled before him. Watching the film, we’re in awe of the beautiful connections and friendship discovered along this historic journey walking trail.
Recommended by: Lucy W., Marketing, Geneva
“I originally watched this film intrigued to see real life father and son act on screen together with Emilio Estevez, darling of the 80s film, and cinematic legend Martin Sheen. However what I wasn’t expecting was an emotionally raw and honest performance portraying Martin Sheen’s character honouring the death of his son through an adventure he was definitely not prepared for on the Camino De Santiago. He meets all kinds of characters along the way, but more importantly he meets his son through his memory, and walks himself through the stages of grief with the help of strangers who become firm friends. There is a reason this walk has become a pilgrimage for so many.”
7. A Room with a View (1985)
Another Italian classic with a stellar cast including Helena Bonham Carter and Dame Maggie Smith, ‘A Room with a View’ is based on a 1900’s novel of the same name. A story of love, British class and discovery, reminding us of the beauty of Florence, with its magnificent architecture and extraordinary history, and such beauty that can encourage growth and a change in perspective.
Recommended by: Christine U., Contracting, London
“I fell in love with Florence from watching this movie. I defy you not to.”
8. An American in Paris (1951)
A joyous and imaginative movie following Gene Kelly’s character as an American who moves to Paris as an artistic painter. The film transports us back to the 50’s with the tale of love, theatre and toe-tapping tunes like “I got Rhythm.” Our favourite line resinates with all who have been lucky enough to experience the city; “Paris is like love or art or faith, it can’t be explained, only felt.” The movie was so well loved that it was developed into a successful Broadway musical, in 2015.
Recommended by: Claire H., Marketing, Sydney
“This is my favourite travel movie, although perhaps a little left field. One of my favourite things to watch is musicals (in particular starring Gene Kelly or Fred Astaire). Whilst ‘An American in Paris’ is not technically about travel, I fell in love with Paris through the movie. One of the lines “Paris is a mood, a longing you didn’t know you had until it was answered… It can’t be explained only felt ”, really made me want to travel there. I put this on recently and it still puts a smile on my face and makes me pine for Paris.”
9. The Darjeeling Limited (2007)
After suffering the loss of their father, three brothers are brought together a year later to realise they have lost their brotherly bond. In an attempt to reconnect and each face their own dark issues, they travel to India and board the Darjeeling Limited. While the train doesn’t exist in real life, the film has us wanting to explore India’s countryside and dreaming about the luxury train rides the country has on offer.
Recommended by: Jordan K., Marketing, Toronto
“Wes Anderson’s ode to India, this film follows three estranged brothers as they unexpectedly re-unite and travel across India by train. Highly recommended for the beautiful cinematography (the colours are spectacular), clever writing and memorable characters. You can’t go wrong with a Wes Anderson film to inspire you to visit a destination.”
10. Lost in Translation (2003)
Another incredible academy award-winning film to conclude our top ten travel films, Lost in Translation transports us to Tokyo, examining the culture shock between American and Japanese culture, as well as the contrasting modern and bustling city of Tokyo. An unlikely pair an aging middle-aged movie star and young, newlywed cross paths and form a meaningful bond in this foreign land.
Recommended by: Igor B., Marketing, Geneva
“I think Bill Murray is still irate he didn’t win the Oscar for this and he’s right, he should have. If you’ve ever felt trapped in a foreign city, besieged by jetlag, the language barrier, insomnia, and overall fish out of water syndrome, you better hope there’s a Bill Murray for your inner Scarlet Johansson. Stuck in a beautifully shot Japan, her husband is off shooting a video and flirting with Ana Ferris. All the while, Johansson and Murray form an unlikely bond as they set their inhibitions aside and conquer Japan and all it has to offer.”
While we wait for travel to return to normal, let us all dream. We hope you’re able to choose one or two of these films to reignite your passion to travel once again. What films inspire your love for travel?