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Sunday Night Movies Go Luxe at Le Royal Monceau Hotel in Paris

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Eyebrows were raised in October, when Luc Besson’s luxe First movie theater opened in the new Aeroville mall near Charles de Gaulle airport north of Paris. For €25, First gives you a spacious leather seat, a smoked salmon and tarama snack, and a flute of Champagne, orderable from a seatside tablet. “Mais c’est la crise!” said the local press, unsure whether such luxuries make sense as France’s economy remains sluggish.

Such questions do not trouble the hotel Le Royal Monceau Raffles, in Paris’s tony 8th arrondissement, with a clientele to match. Here an even posher proposition awaits the film buff, in the private screening room of the Philippe Starck-designed five-star: the just-debuted Sunday Night Film Club.

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Travel Inspired by Holiday Movies 2013

Holiday Movies 2013: Mandela

In this season’s hottest film releases, the settings nearly upstage the stars.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Headliners:
Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth
Backdrop:
Another dystopian tournament, another paradisiacal setting (this time it’s Hawaii).
Scene Stealer:
Katniss and her rivals battle it out by Kawela Bay, on Oahu’s North Shore.
Inspired?
Stay where the cast reportedly did: Turtle Bay Resort ($$).

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (pictured)
Headliners:
Idris Elba, Naomie Harris
Backdrop:
The biopic, which features Elba (The Wire) in the title role, was filmed on location throughout South Africa.
Scene Stealer:
Idyllic KwaZulu-Natal, where the activist’s wedding to Winnie Madikizela was shot.
Inspired?
Visit Robben Island, where Mandela spent 18 years.

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How to Relive the Hunger Games in Atlanta

Want to walk (or run frantically) in the footsteps of Katniss and Peeta? Consider venturing to Atlanta, the primary filming location for Hunger Games: Cathing Fire, which opened last night.

The city's convention and visitors bureau has prepared a self-guided, two-day Hunger Games Tour. The CVB even recommends a hotel: The Marriott Marquis, where multiple scenes were shot.

Braver souls might consider the Hunger Games Unoffical Fan Tours, which run Adventure Weekends recreating the book and film trilogy's creepy competition. The weekends include themed accommodations, survival training, a gala banquet, themed food, archery tag, and a Hunger Games simulation. Details of what exactly the simulation entails are scarce—all the better to keep participating Tributes on their guard.

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Movie Buff's Dream Getaway: 20 Film Settings Around the World in 90 Days

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Imagine having Breakfast at Tiffany’s to fuel up for an afternoon adventure in Petra, Indiana Jones-style? Then ending the day with a dreamy sunset on The Beach in Thailand? Hardcore (wealthy) movie buffs can now live out their dreams with a 90-day itinerary by Very First To. The extensive trip—which visits 20 famous film sets across 10 countries—costs a hefty $321,000. But the price tag does come with perks: business-class flights for two for the full three months; overnight stays in lavish hotels like London’s The Savoy and the Hotel Bel-Air in L.A.; and of course, serious bragging rights.

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Video: Europe at Night

NIGHTVISION from Luke Shepard on Vimeo.

A couple of years back I shared a dreamy video of Paris by photographer Luke Shepard on this blog.

He recently released a new video, and dare I say, it's even better.

Luke traveled to 36 cities in 21 countries across Europe and shot more than 20,000 photographs to create this film called Nightvision. He describes it as a "celebration of the brilliant and diverse architecture found across Europe."

See it for yourself.

Lyndsey Matthews is an assistant digital editor at Travel + Leisure.

Video courtesy of Luke Shepard.

Top 5 Mistakes That Led to French Riviera Hotel Jewel Heist

By now you've heard about the theft of $153 million in jewels on Sunday from an exhibition at the Carlton InterContinental Hotel in Cannes, on the French Riviera.

The Carlton (go to 0:55 in the film clip, above) was the setting for the 1955 Alfred Hitchcock thriller To Catch A Thief, starring Cary Grant as a reformed diamond thief who is suspected of returning to his old ways. In the movie, the real thief is nabbed by Grant during a hot pursuit. In real life, the Carlton bijou bandit is still at large.

Here are five reasons why Lucky Pierre, the latest Cat Burglar of Cannes, has so far been successful in what may turn out to be the largest jewelry heist in history.

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A Visual Journey to the Australian Outback

Australian Outback

On my way to Tasmania several years ago, I spent a few days in Sydney and told people where I was headed. More than once, the response was "Be careful, it's like 'Deliverance' down there." I then flew to Tazzie's capital city, Hobart, before heading out to Freycinet National Park, on the eastern coast. "Be careful," the Hobart locals told me, "it's like 'Deliverance' out there."

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Q+A with Screenwriter Dan Fogelman

The Guilt Trip

For most, a cross-country road trip with Mother would end in tears or bloodshed (or both). But for screenwriter Dan Fogelman (Crazy, Stupid, Love; Cars), one he took inspired this month’s The Guilt Trip, starring Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand. Here, Fogelman reveals a few parent-approved pit stops.

Q: What were some highlights from the road?
A: We drove to Memphis to see Graceland—you have to do that. I tried to stay on Route 66 to go through small towns; it’s like stepping into the 1950’s.

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4+1 Good Reasons to Visit Latin America

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November 21 through 25, a.k.a. Thankgsiving Weekend 2012, is a good time to be in Latin America. It's warm, your weird aunt probably won't be there, and you don't have to eat bone-dry turkey leftovers for days. It is also when Festival 4+1 takes place.

The 4+1 film fest is held simultaneously in Bogotá, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Rio de Janeiro, and Madrid, which is where the good people of Fundación Mapfre, the event's organizers, are based.

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You Only Live Thrice: Bond Film "Skyfall" Opens

Looking back at the James Bond film franchise—it turns 50 this year—we realized 007 has a thing for revisiting places where he’s nearly died. Case in point: Istanbul. The setting of this month’s Skyfall (opening nationwide this week), it’s where he once dodged villains at Hagia Sophia and almost drowned in the Bosporus. Oh, James, will you ever learn?

Istanbul
007 Visits:
3
Brushes with Death: 6
Babes Bedded: 2
Baddies Killed: 2
Bond’s Hotel of Choice: Pera Palace, Jumeirah $$$

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