Casino Royale: Bond Lands in the Bahamas

Daniel Craig as James Bond in Casino Royale.

Daniel Craig as James Bond in Casino Royale (2006).

Vitals

Daniel Craig as James Bond, “vacationing” British secret agent

Bahamas, July 2006

Film: Casino Royale
Release Date: November 14, 2006
Director: Martin Campbell
Costume Designer: Lindy Hemming

Background

After “shooting” up an embassy and causing an international scandal, Bond is ordered by M to go “stick his head in the sand” and think about his career. Appropriately, given the history of the Bond canon, our hero heads for the Bahamas via a chartered flight, booking a spur-of-the-moment villa at The One and Only Ocean Club. Given that overnight stays at the One and Only rarely fall under $1,000 per night, this is hardly a man who is really giving too much concern about the prospect of unemployment.

Nor does his arrival give that impression. Bond steps off the plane looking like a million bucks in a sharp suit that is a rare find for many reasons. Some complain that the suit’s fit, especially the jacket, is too bulky, but Bond is just getting used to refinement and luxury. Let’s cut him some slack!

What’d He Wear?

Unusual for linen, Bond arrives in Nassau wearing a light gray two-piece suit. Matt Spaiser also wrote about this suit previously on The Suits of James Bond.

The jacket has large peak lapels, which roll down to the center button of the 3-button front. The hip pockets are flapped and straight. The cool sea breeze blows through rear double vents, keeping Bond cool. As I mentioned, the jacket has a large fit with a full chest, accentuated by the straight shoulders and roped sleeveheads. Final details include 4-button cuffs and a full lining, also unusual for a linen suit.

Dan makes quite an impression on the locals when landing in the Bahamas.

Dan makes quite an impression on the locals when landing in the Bahamas.

The trousers are a matching light gray linen with eight 2″ belt loops around the waist, open side pockets, and jetted rear pockets that close with a button. In keeping with the jacket, the trousers have a straight and full cut through down the legs to the 2″ cuffed bottoms. This cut is very comfortable for linen, letting air breeze through without the fabric clinging to your skin and defeating the purpose.

crGray-pants1

The belt Bond wears with the trousers is black leather with a silver 1-eyelet rectangular clasp.

Bond wears a very distinctive shirt in these scenes. While it appears to be just a standard white shirt as he descends from the plane, it is revealed to be a much more stylish short-sleeve shirt, a smart choice for such a warm climate. The white is actually a tonal white-on-white track stripe. There are large spread collars that fasten with two buttons, but Bond wears it open neck.

Men typically wear long-sleeve shirts with suits, but exceptions can be made in warm environments or situations where the jacket will be soon removed. This covers both parameters.

Men typically wear long-sleeve shirts with suits, but exceptions can be made in warm environments or situations where the jacket will be soon removed. This covers both parameters.

Bond comfortably wears the shirt with no undershirt. It is not fitted, but it looks very good hanging on Craig’s torso with only a single horizontal seam across the back.

Additional sporty features are the widely cuffed short sleeves and the buttoned epaulettes.

The epaulettes (or "shoulder straps", in British parlance) give Bond's shirt a military touch.

The epaulettes (or “shoulder straps”, in British parlance) give Bond’s shirt a military touch.

Some have vehemently complained that the short-sleeve shirt is also too “un-Bond”. First off, Bond is a fictional character so let’s all just take a step back. Secondly, he’s in the Bahamas. In July. You’re lucky that he’s wearing a suit. He’s not wearing a tie, and it’s a casual suit, so let him wear a shirt that looks good. If you can go to the Bahamas and get a Victoria’s Secret model to do a double-take, then you can decide what he wears next time.

However, Bond does make a faux pas with his shoes, wearing a pair of dark brown suede 2-eyelet derby-laced chukka boots. What’s the problem here? A black belt and brown shoes? Even dads know not to do that. The shoes are likely John Lobb, as he also wears Lobb Luffields in the casino scene. This is possibly the John Lobb “Sandon” model, a chukka boot available in dark brown circa 2006. He appears to wear a pair of thin taupe dress socks, much like the ones Don Draper wears when he heads off to California in the second season of Mad Men.

The glimpse we get of Bond's shoes and a pair of Lobb's Sandons.

The glimpse we get of Bond’s shoes and a pair of Lobb’s Sandons.

Bond’s sunglasses are one of two pairs of Persols he wears in the film. This particular style is Persol 2244-S and, according to the James Bond Lifestyle page, it is “constructed from a metal front joined to acetate arms by satin finish metal plates. It is characterized by a dynamic double bridge and by the exclusive Meflecto system with two cylinders.” Bond wears option 834/33, fitted with a gunmetal gray satin metal frame and brown lenses.

Bond's Persols work well with both the suit and just the casual shirt.

Bond’s Persols work well with both the suit and just the casual shirt.

Bond also wears two Omega watches in Casino Royale, the first of which being the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean “Big Size” 2900.50.91 worn in these scenes. Also featured on the James Bond Lifestyle, this is more of a sport watch than we’re used to seeing Bond wear. It has a steel case with a black dial and black bezel and is worn on a large black rubber strap. The watch has a power reserve of 44 hours and is water resistant down to 2,000 feet. The watch is protected by a domed anti-reflective, scratch-resistant sapphire crystal.

We don't see much of Bond's watch in these scenes, but at least we know he wears a seat belt. Safety first.

We don’t see much of Bond’s watch in these scenes, but at least we know he wears a seat belt. Safety first.

Go Big or Go Home

Yes, Bond oozes cool all throughout the scene, coming off the plane in a sharp suit and sunglasses… his little trick with the valet parking… the easy way he solicits information from the pretty desk clerk with just a wink and a credit card…

However, my friends and I legitimately laughed when Bond showed up driving a rented Ford in the Bahamas. Granted, it’s a Mondeo and not a Taurus and there is the 40+ year Bond-Ford relationship, but still… I don’t know. It doesn’t fit my idea of the Bond image. I guess this is my version of the short-sleeve shirt gripe.

Not quite a DB5...

Not quite a DB5…
Still good-looking for a Ford, though.

How to Get the Look

This is a very specific ensemble with some replicas out there, but it would be tough to pull off the exact look Bond sports in the film. It is one of the few outfits in the film with almost no background information available.

Bond finds a rare casual look that works just as effectively both with and without the jacket.

Bond finds a rare casual look that works just as effectively both with and without the jacket.

  • Light gray linen suit, consisting of:
    • Single-breasted 3-roll-2 button jacket with peak lapels, flapped hip pockets, 4-button cuffs, and rear double vents
    • Flat front trousers with belt loops, open side pockets, button-fastened jetted rear pockets, and cuffed bottoms
  • White-on-white track striped short-sleeve shirt with large 2-button spread collar and buttoned epaulettes
  • Black leather belt with silver rectangular single-prong buckle
  • Dark brown suede 2-eyelet John Lobb “Sandon” chukka boots
  • Taupe dress socks
  • Persol 2244-S gunmetal gray satin metal framed sunglasses with brown lenses (option 834/33)
  • Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean “Big Size” 2900.50.91 on a large black rubber strap

Iconic Alternatives has a great rundown of affordable options to channel this and many other 007 outfits.

Do Yourself a Favor and…

Buy the film.

Footnotes

I’m not sure who made the light gray linen suit, which gets positive-to-mixed reactions from sartorial Bond fans. The folks at Baron Boutique make and sell their own reproductions of it, however. I don’t own one, but for only $329, it would probably be worth it for such a unique-looking suit.

For more info about this suit and a discussion among fans about it, check out Matt Spaiser’s blog The Suits of James Bond.

14 comments

  1. Hal

    The complaint that the short sleeved shirt is ‘un-Bond’ is really a complaint that its very un-Roger Moore. Short sleeves are actually very Bond.

    Ian Fleming, many of whose quirks his creation inherited, was a big fan of short sleeved shirts, even with suits. He said he hated dirty cuffs.

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    • luckystrike721

      Hal,
      I totally agree. I think it’s very sharp, appropriate, and Bond-friendly. The people who say Craig’s look in this scene is un-Bond are the same ones who excuse Moore’s safari suits as “a sign of the times”.
      As you mentioned, Fleming certainly did have some “quirks”… I think the one sartorial suggestion of his I have to turn my nose up at is in the Thunderball novel. According to Fleming, Bond wears “a very dark blue lightweight single-breasted suit… cream silk shirt… black knitted silk tie” as well as “his only concession to the tropics”, a pair of black saddle-stitched sandals. I can’t picture this, but I can’t imagine it looking good? Other than that, Fleming outlined a smart, masculine, and strong dress pattern for Bond.
      Have you ever been able to find a suit like this? I’d love to get one myself.

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      • Hal

        I’ve never seen a suit quite like this one. It may have been made for the film, of course, and be a one off. The colour and peak lapels mark it as something special. It isn’t as sharply tailored as some suits but, given it is designed for the heat, a looser cut doesn’t seem wrong to me. I have seen it suggested that this is supposed to show Bond’s change during the movie, however – him learning to appreciate the finer details.

        As for the Thunderball outfit, a navy suit and black silk tie certainly can work together in an evening outfit. I’d tend to think of a white shirt with that, rather than cream but I guess that could work. I agree, however, that, whilst possibly comfortable in the heat, sandals don’t sound a stylish option.

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  2. teeritz

    Another great write-up, LS! The 45.5mm Planet Ocean that DC wore in the film really bugged me. This was at the height of the Big Watch Craze (which sadly still exists to a great degree, despite many brands scaling back the size of their watches in recent years) and, despite how muscled-up Daniel Craig got for the role, I always felt that he should have worn the smaller 42mm model, which is still a decent-sized watch. Given the fact that Craig has his own collection of classic wristwatches, predominantly Rolex vintages, the use of the larger Planet Ocean seemed to me more an attempt by Omega to make sales of this bigger watch. I had (and still do. Wearing it as I write this) the 42mm Planet Ocean and at the time of “Casino Royale’s” release, I saw a slight spike in sales of the 45.5mm model among my customers, regardless of their height and build. I tried to convince some of them, especially the shorter and more slenderly-built guys, to go for the 42mil Planet Ocean, but it was hard to sway them.
    By the time “Quantum of Solace ” was released two years later, DC was wearing the 42mm Planet Ocean and, for once, Bond copied me instead of the other way around.
    I can’t help but think that Daniel Craig may have had a hand in the decision to equip Bond with the smaller version, since I had seen pictures of him wearing it in real life in between Bond films.

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  4. Howard

    Does anybody know where to buy the white short sleeved shirt featured in Casino Royale described as: White-on-white track striped short-sleeve shirt with large 2-button spread collars and buttoned epaulettes?

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  7. Lee

    You could argue that the Ford Mondeo rental car was chosen by “Bond” so as to pass unnoticed, nothing too flash, nothing too secret agent. However, you then see the types of cars in the hotel car park, Range Rovers and Jags etc… maybe he could have stretched to a more executive type vehicle. As previously mentioned, there is a Ford history with the Bond films and this was the first time we’d see the “new” Mondeo, this model was built pre-full scale production just for the film and I have to say, is a very nice example but the car’s exterior is of the premium range (Titanium) , the interior is very basic Zetec (noticeable by the silver fascia on the radio and cloth trim on seats). The colour “tonic blue” was also been discontinued a few years later.

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  11. Ian Favata

    Not sure about the watch in the earlier scenes. The one he wears driving into the resort looks a hell of a lot like a Breitling Superocean II 42mm. The strap on the Breitling models with the holes in them is called a Seawolf (I could be wrong about the strap name) but most Swiss watch producers copyright designs on every piece, including straps. Anybody care to fill me in if they know better? Sorry, I’m kind of a watch geek and don’t know much about Omega watches except that they are well made and stylish much like Breitling.

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