Hemsidan senast uppdaterad: 2016-12-08

Operation Nassau Reloaded: En kärleksaffär på Bahamas

Av: Richard Skillman
Publicerad:
2014-11-01
Rapport från Operation: Nassau Reloaded, skriven av "Felix".

Till CIA & MI6 Interpol - här kommer äntligen min uppdatering för 2011 års delvis uppfyllda uppdrag - Villains and Voodoo kryssningen till James Bond-platserna i New Orleans, Key West och Nassau. Ni minns att kryssningen omdirigerades till Cozumel på grund av orkanen Irenes ankomst. Vårt internationella team av agenter enades om att återvända och avsluta de återstående aktiviteterna i Nassau på Bahamas. Black Op medlemmarna Rich och Leslie Skillman på Theme Party People organiserade helgen, "Operation Nassau Reloaded", och de flesta från det ursprungliga teamet från länder runt om i världen antog uppdraget.

Operation Nassau Reloaded logo
Agenter ankom den 24 maj 2012 och hälsades välkomna enligt 007:s livsstil (du kommer förmodligen ta bort det, eller hur James?) med Vesper Martinis på British Colonial Hilton, värdhotellet och filmplatsen från Never Say Never Again (* factoid, Colonial nämns även i Flemings novell "Quantum of Solace").

Scenen där Fatima Blush anländer på vattenskidor filmades på en sedan länge borttagen tiki bar i slutet av hotellpiren. En sen kväll i det Bahamiska köket och samtal om årets aktiviteter avklarades. Gruppen åt på BLU några kvarter från Rawson Square, platsen för scenen i Åskbollen där Bond, Pinder & Paula möts på en halm marknad och scenen i NSNA där Bond och Small Fawcett träffas. Efter en utmärkt måltid som inkluderade lokala conch favoriter, chowder och sallad, dansade sällskapet till det lokala bandet på BLU och återvände sedan till Hilton för att förbereda sig för morgondagens äventyr.

En tidig morgon avgick bussen för 007 turnén och Richard berättade om bakgrunden till "Thunderball" produktionen när gruppen anlänt till Rock Point, en privat bostad mer bekant som Largos hem "Palmyra".

Operation Nassau Reloaded Palmyra Bahamas
Området hade kraftigt påverkats av orkanskador sedan filminspelningen 1965. De röd/vita skärmtaken är sedan länge borttagna och man noterar att poolen nu har flera statyer i varje ände. Vid en promenad runt huset såg vi att hajpoolen fortfarande är intakt men inte i bruk och i behov av mycket reparation. Gruppen funderade hur otrolig denna plats skulle kunna vara som ett 007 museum eller Bed & Breakfast hotell. Vi skulle kunna kolla intresset men är ganska säkra på att det inte kommer att kunna genomföras.

Bussen fortsatte västerut och förbi grottorna (The Caves) som har ryktats vara platsen där Bond kommer iland efter sin koll av Disco Volante. Detta faktum undersöks fortfarande. Vi fortsatte till Cable Beach som nu är under stor ombyggnation till en ny mega resort tänkt att konkurrera med Atlantis. Resorten är döpt till Baha Mar och finansieras av den kinesiska regeringen som tagit bort många av de tidigare hotellen inklusive Nassau Beach hotel användes i NSNA som hotellet Bond & Valerie Leon anländer till efter fisket och där Fatima spränger ett hotellrum. Poolen syns också i filmen "Help". Längre västerut ligger Love Beach, som inte heller går att känna igen, platsen för strandscenen med Bond och Domino där Vargas "förstod poängen".

Richard and Leslie had a surprise for the tour group as the bus arrived at Coral Harbor, where the Royal Bahamian Defense grounds stand. Bond fans that have travelled to Nassau are aware that this heavily guarded military installation contains two of the great Bond sites. Fortunate to have secured permission from the Bahamian government, the bus is allowed to enter and agents disembark. Inside the wired fences stands the Coral Harbor hotel, a site used from multiple Bond films. Immediately entering the grounds one sees the long abandoned construction expansion of the hotel which was used in Casino Royale. Largely unchanged, one can imagine Daniel Craig and Sebastian Foucan free running across the girders overhead.

Operation Nassau Reloaded
Operation Nassau Reloaded
Following significant photos and discussion on the action from the film, the group is led to the memorial to the Flamingo, which was sunk in 1980 by Cuba aircraft, killing several Bahamian military. Further walking the grounds, the entrance to the Coral Harbor hotel is relatively unchanged from Thunderball, serving as 007’s hotel and where Luciana Paluzzi drops Bond off after taking “him for a rhy-de”. The interior, although having alterations, can be imagined as the hotel lobby, although keen eye agents remark the sequence is reversed photographically in the film.

A walk around to the rear of the hotel yields another film location from Thunderball, the pool area where Bond and Domino walk up from the beach of their first meeting and enjoy a conch chowder pool side. The rocky point where Domino points out to the Disco Volante is easily recognized. We learn of the Navy’s efforts in reducing smuggling in the Bahamian waters and are treated to a stop at the PX, where the agents are free to purchase T Shirts, a rare collectable indeed.

From Coral Harbor, we returned eastward and travel down Bay Street, along the same path as the Junkanoo from TBall and over the Paradise Island Bridge and to our next stop, Atlantis. From our relatively staid, British Colonial, the Atlantis property is a din of pools, aquariums, children, bigger children, people from all over… we take the long beach walk with our host GM of the Atlantis, who is very kind to take us onto the breakwater, where Bond fans all know as the launching point of Largos divers. Although now surrounded by luxury, the site remains intact and challenging...a great stop.

Staying on Paradise Island, the tour group is welcomed into the One and Only Club and is guided through the Casino Royale film locations in the main lobby and as another surprise, into Bougainvillea, the suite occupied by Bond and Caterina Murino. The suite is outstanding luxury, with a private pool, three bedrooms…all for a modest $10,000 a night. A walk through the Versailles Gardens and down to Dune by the Oceanside, where the tour is treated to the O & O’s James Bond martini in a private room, overlooking the rocky crag where the Disco Volante crashes and explodes…a fantastic setting indeed.

Following the One & Only, we headed to the Buena Vista Hotel which stood in for the Nambutu Embassy in Casino Royale. While there, we witnessed the beginning of its renovation as the new site of John Watlings Distillery. As a film location it may no longer resemble Bond's encounter with Embassy guards but 007 should take solace in sampling some of the "Spirit of the Bahamas" on his next run through Nassau.

Operation Nassau Reloaded logo
Once back at Rawson Square, the Churchill building is very recognizable for its pillars which Nigel Small Fawcett hid behind in NSNA. An interesting look a the intersection Bay Street and East St, you will see the Chase Manhattan Bank which was remarked to be the area where Bond, held prisoner in the station wagon, sets fire to the villains and staggers off into the Junkanoo. The afternoon is free for the tour, as many continue exploring Bay Street shops, the Straw market and wharf side restaurants.

In the evening, the agents were feted to a Vesper cocktail party, with many coming dressed to represent Bond characters over the 50 years of the series. Following this lavish event, seemingly funded by British coffers again (James, you have quite an expense account), the agents returned to Bay Street for customary carousing in the nightclubs. Fortunately, there was not one of those crazy Service Service agents among them. I'll explain it to you later, Bond.

A Bond Nassau trip is incomplete without a half day Stuart Cove experience and Nassau Reloaded was no exception. Chartering a private dive boat, Theme Party People led the team to dive and snorkel on several renowned Bond sites off the western tip of the island. The first dive was down to the Vulcan bomber remains and the NSNA trawler, called for some reason The Tears of Allah, not done so in the film. The dive is incredibly clear and although the Vulcan is barely recognizable, the trawler is in good diving condition. Our second dive was off Goulding Cay, a beautiful reef used in For Your Eyes Only as the reef hauling sequence. Our Dive master Kat, brings a container of fish food to the bottom and in a few short minutes, we are all surrounded by an array of brightly colored fish - an incredibly beautiful dive. The next location was for snorkelers only and a bit of high drama, as we experienced a large grouping of reef sharks below us as they tore into a food bucket — the group was both scared and amazed at the size of the sharks not that distant from their flippers.

Our return from the reef was highlighted by a close to shore stop at the Albany House, “Casino Royale”s location for the lovely Solange’s horse ride up the beach, Daniel Craig emerging from the surf in very small blue swim trunks and evil Dimitris looking on from his villa balcony. We cranked up the CR soundtrack on the boats sound system and broke out a champagne toast to celebrate our day. Largo passed out SPECTRE certificates authenticating the agent’s dives. Vargas was very happy.

The Tour regrouped in the evening, in full dinner formals for an evening at the Atlantis Casinos and cocktails, eventually gathering at the Café Martinique. The original Café is seen in Thunderball where Bond and Domino leave Largo losing at the Casino and have dinner together. That location has long been demolished but with credit to the Atlantis organization, a new Café has been built wharf side. It captures a bygone old British islands feel, with an ascent up an old cage elevator. Yes, we did feel as if we were in Diamonds Are Forever and yes, we did recreate the Joe Robinson/007 fight, even in a very high end restaurant. The group was feted to wonderfully created martinis and an evening of a Seared Gulf Shrimp starter, dipped in a pumpkin ginger. The main course, Bahamian Lobster, although much smaller than a Maine, had a unique texture and a dusting of island spice. With his customary graciousness, fellow agent Paul W. treated us all to a champagne toast for a wonderful day and exciting mission.

The adventures in Nassau continued with cigars and dinner at the Greycliff Restaurant, with tables nearby Michael Douglas and Alice Cooper, resting from their charity golf tournament at the Ocean Club. A late night final return to the Bullion Bar at the British Colonial where exhausted and spent, we gathered for the last time, the last team Vesper and remarked...”James Bond…and Theme Party People tours…will return".

Detta är Felix Leiter, over and out.

Operation Nassau Reloaded
Redaktörens anmärkning:
Theme Party People är en inofficiell arrangör av James Bond resor och utan koppling till de officiella James Bond produktionsbolagen.

Översatt till svenska av Anders Frejdh i november 2014

Fler FSWL rapporter om Theme Party Peoples resor:
>Licence to Kill 20th Anniversary tour (2009)
>Operation: Euro - Bond, Bourne and Beyond (2010)
>The Istanbul Venetian Affair: Skyfall to FRWL (2013)
#james_bond_resor

All information, text och grafik (om inte annat anges) på denna webbplats är skyddad enligt lagen om upphovsrätt. Kontakta oss för att använda någonting.

Denna webbplats stöds inte på något sätt av Eon Productions Ltd, Danjaq, LLC, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Sony Pictures, United Artists, Ian Fleming Publications Ltd eller någon annan av de som innehar rättigheter för James Bond. Den drivs helt oberoende av dem på fritidsbasis och utan vinstintresse.

Bilder från James Bond filmerna © 1962 - 2015 Danjaq LLC, MGM Inc., Sony Pictures, United Artists Cooperation, Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc.

Omslagsbilder till James Bond böckerna © 1953 - 2017 Ian Fleming Publications Ltd. och Glidrose Productions Ltd.

Ansvarig utgivare: Anders Frejdh