GREECE – Kanoni, Villa Sylva // For Your Eyes Only (1981)
A pool party full of beautiful Bikini girls at a villa so magnificent as its view at the Ionian Sea. Alas!, there is just no way to enter that mansion. Or is there?
Why Bond was here
In For Your Eyes Only, the British government hired two archeologists to dive for a sunken submarine, that is equipped with a secret communication system. When the archeologists get assassinated by Cuban hitman Hector Gonzales (Stephan Kalipha), 007 (Roger Moore) is called for duty. He travels to a Spanish village close to Madrid to sneak into Gonzales’ playboy mansion.
And what a place it is: beautiful girls dwell at the pool like the nymphs from Torquato Tasso’s “Aminta” linger around hunting goddess Diane. But be aware of the nymph named Sylva:
“Oh woe! This heart of mine is full
of bloody wounds; and cruel Love
has a thousand darts in Sylva’s eyes.
Cruel Love, Sylva more cruel and heartless
than the beasts.”
“Aminta” by Torquato Tasso
How you gonna get there
Sylva is the eponym to the villa, where the movie had been shot. It can’t be found on Spanish soil, but on Greece’ Ionian island Corfu. Most parts of For Your Eyes Only had been filmed here, so Corfiot landmarks filled in for both Greece and Spain. The mansion is called Villa Sylva and is situated well-hidden on the Kanoni promontory just south of Corfu’s main town Kerkyra. When coming with either car or bus from Kerkyra, the entrance to the villa is just after the parking lot of the conspicuous Corfu Holiday Palace Hotel. Corfu city bus line No. 2 runs frequently and stops right in front of the hotel.
Good to know
Villa Sylva dominates the apex of Kanoni and thus offers a nice panoramic view over Pontikonisi island and Vlacherna monastery. But covering some acres, it also has access to the sea on the Eastern shore of Kanoni. For those interested, a week at Villa Sylva ranges from 24.500 to 45.500 US-Dollar – and only by request.
Frugal, erm, visitors need a lot of courage to enter without booking. Neither from the beach or the neighboring hotel access is possible: There is both a tight fence and a narrow valley between the two properties, also dogs are on patrol. The brave have to come from the main entrance and then turn right at the little maintenance shack. Shortly after, stone-carved steps appear to the left and lead to the pool. Its the same spot, where Bond’s sneaking in and – after being discovered – rushing out had been filmed.
We really tried hard to get to this one. Came from the beach: locked up. Came from the hotel: fences and dogs. Asked for entry at the main gate: No response. Then just walked in? Yes, sir! We never felt so bondish, as we were tiptoeing our way towards the pool. Luckily, the barking dogs were locked away some place else.
© 2015 Huntingbond (1,3,4), © 1981 Danjaq, LLC and United Artists Corporation (2)