PHOTO 00 - more info... - The Peak, Hong Kong
I love Grandpa's original shot of this photo so much. I felt I just had to try and re-enact it a tiny bit. A lot of people online told me that this was 'The Peak' in Hong Kong.
So I headed up the mountain on the cable car and started to search for a family that might match Grandpa's original. This family in the new photo were kind enough to play the roles. Thanks so much to all of them. 'The Peak' lookout was totally rebuilt after Grandpa took the original photo so I had to just accept that the new one would be different and enjoy the view.
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PHOTO 02 - more info... - JFK Airport, New York, USA
Being at an airport not in a mad rush was a nice change. I ventured out to JFK on the air-train and wandered around in the sunshine imagining what Grandpa was doing many years before. From looking at this photo he didn't seem too rushed. He might have been taking a shot of the building in the background - the TWA building, designed by Eero Saarinen. Or maybe just of a lonely yellow cab in the snow. Such great composition. On The Trip I noticed that most airports had changed a lot. It's almost impossible to get the same angle as Grandpa did as the terminal has totally changed. I tried to retake this one but a photo sent into this site lined up way better than I could get today. Scroll down to see it below. If you wander out of terminal 4 and head to the right you'll get pretty close to where Grandpa stood.
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PHOTO 03 - more info... - Top Empire State, New York, USA
If you're going to the top of the Empire State building to re-take a photo try not to go on a Saturday. It's mayhem. So many excited people, ready to have their big New York moment. I wonder how Grandpa was? I'm not sure if he had to elbow his way to the front to get his photo. I gradually worked my way to the front and tried to get the same buildings, the same angles. They all look similar from up there. This trip is so wonderfully weird, it feels like Grandpa is there with you as you try to jostle into the exact spot he was.
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PHOTO 04 - more info... - Lake Thun, Leissigen, Switzerland
Drove around in 'Sally' the rental car half the day trying to find the right bay on Lake Thun. After a few hours I had half given up and stopped for a break on the water. Turns out I parked right into this Photo.
I drove around a few more bends, climbed over a freeway, onto some railway tracks and got this one as the light faded. The mountain in the background gives it away. I think Grandpa was poking his camera out the window of a train but the climbing over train tracks thing was probably more fun. I was relieved to get this one. Staring at it years ago I never thought we'd find it. Thanks to everyone who helped.
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PHOTO 05 - more info... - Walchebrücke Bridge, Zurich, Switzerland
Pretty sure Grandpa took this photo from a tram. It's on the Walchebrücke bridge in Zurich. I have no idea how he got this shot so perfect, hanging out of a tram but he did. The woman in the shot just lining up with the tower in the background, right in the middle of frame. Lovely. I caught the tram back and forward a bunch of times but no luck. I ended up taking it from the footpath with a slow shutter speed to get the blur. I definitely creeped out a few Swiss people.
This was probably closest to Grandpa's original shot.   Facebook comments
PHOTO 06 - more info... - Romano's, Burrano, Italy
I had an amazing experience in Burano - an island just outside of Venice. The restaurant is called Trattoria da Romano. Turns out it's semi famous. Celebrities go there and have for years. Everything they have is so delicious I bet even the soap in bathrooms tastes good. The owner was there and he and the other waiters sat down with me and were so unbelievably kind. They all remembered the waiter in Grandpa's photo and missed him dearly. That was amazing but then the owner told me about the old books that the restaurant had kept that patrons sign, going back many years. Grandpa's signature could be in one of these books. I sat and drank wine and ate beautiful seafood and searched through the illustrations and notes from famous people. I sat where Grandpa sat and enjoyed the atmosphere that felt just as warm as in Grandpa's original shot. I hoped to find his signature in one of the books but no luck. It didn't matter, this was the closest I'd felt to Grandpa in years. Incredible - thanks Romano's in Burano.
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PHOTO 07 - more info... - Aare River, Olten, Switzerland
After some timely tip offs from this site I found this photo in Olten, just outside of Zurich. There is a weird new bridge in the shot now but this is the spot. After thinking about climbing a train bridge to try and get the right angle I remembered that I had no idea what the health insurance is like in Switzerland. I decided to get up early the next day and catch the train instead. I slept in the hire car and woke right next to the river - The Aare. It was stunning. I had to get in. I had a bath in the river, holding onto long branches as the strong current took me away form the bank. Then I rode the train back and forward as many times as I thought I could get away with. Hiding out in the bathrooms to avoid the ticket inspectors and get the new shot. Sorry Switzerland. 'Olten' to 'Bahnhof Olten', one stop - €7 each way!
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PHOTO 08 - more info... - 5th Ave & 33rd, New York, USA
I knew this was in New York somewhere but couldn't find it. Then, after retaking a few of Grandpa's Photos on top of the Empire State building I walked out at street level and there it was. There's construction here in the new photo but it was pretty amazing to stand where Grandpa stood. The little plaque on the wall, still there. The rest still ever changing.
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PHOTO 09 - more info... - Central District, Hong Kong
After totally missing this photo on the Trip my good friend Josh 'Photographer' Davey was kind enough to get this one. So lucky and great to have him on board. Of all the people I know I had no doubt he'd have any trouble getting on the roof of the hotel where Grandpa stayed. Of course, it looks toatlly different now. But check out the line of the mountains in the background. He nailed it. Thanks Mate.
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PHOTO 10 - more info... - Via Alcide De Gasperi, Sarezzo, Itlay
I received some great emails locating this one in Sarezzo. By catching the train from Interlaken down to Milan in the hope of following Grandpa's footsteps I hoped, to also see, a bit of the alps. Turns out they dug a really great tunnel so I saw a lot of tunnel. Before and after the darkness was great. I stayed in a hostel in Milan for a few days. Wandered into the hills on a bus - train - bus to Sarezzo to find this Photo. After trekking around for a while I finally walked into Photo 10. I can't explain it but there's something great when you happen across one of the places in the photos. It's like going back in time if only for a second.
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PHOTO 11 - more info... - Le vele di vanezia, Venice, Italy
Some of the photos like Photo 22 of St Marks Square were obvious for a lot of people. But others like this one were a little tougher. It was great to piece together Grandpa's little journey around Venice. As I wandered out of St Marks Square there was Photo 11 just few a few archways away. Lots of tourists but I sat on those steps and ate one more ham sandwich waiting for the light to fall over what is now a Hard Rock Cafe. The lighting in the new Photo isn't even close to Grandpa's beautiful shot but a beautiful spot none the less.
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PHOTO 12 - more info... - Tibidabo, Barcelona, Spain
I imagined this one was somewhere out in the hills, isolated, on someone's rooftop. Maybe over looking what is now, probably a defunked amusement park. When I was in Australia, the idea of finding it felt semi impossible. I had no idea. But numerous people pointed out that it was in Barcelona on top of a hill - Tibidabo Amusment park. I decided it would be a great idea to ride a bike up, avoid the train, really see the city properly. A bike is always a great way to see any city. Unless it's 1 million degrees in the shade and up a mountain. Thank god it had a lock as I was able to ditch it half way up the mountain at a train station. Quick train, tram, bus, then - great view. Grandpa was in front of a stunning old church. The amusement park is still there but they moved the ferris wheel. Cruising down that hill on a bike as the sun set was better than the way up. I'm sure Grandpa soared down mountains on bikes too.
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PHOTO 13 - more info... - Bahnhofstrasse, Interlaken, Switzerland
This is right in the middle of bustling Interlaken in Switzerland. I think it may be a haven for rich people as it is a tiny town in the hills but full of seemingly rich foreigners. Maybe this is where you come to get your James Bond style Swiss bank account? The restaurants closed at 8pm but the watch and jewelry places stayed open all hours. I guess that's why Grandpa was here in his work as a buyer for a jewelry company. A Swiss valley, an island for people who know about jewels at any time of day.
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PHOTO 14 - more info... - Lake Thun, Faulensee, Switzerland
I found the church in the background of this photo and worked backwards. It's on the edge of Lake Thun near Faulensee, Switzerland. I asked a couple of very kind Swiss people to help me with being a blurry figure and we got close. Thanks, random passers by, much appreciated. Sitting here watching the sun go down over the mountains was pretty great. If you get anywhere near Lake Thun don't miss it.
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PHOTO 15 - more info... - The Ritz Hotel, Lisbon, Portugal
After a few 'interesting' encounters with various hotels, I walked in prepared to get this new photo at The Ritz Hotel Lisbon. I rehearsed my spiel, had multiple cameras ready, I even put a collared shirt on, I was ready to convince someone. Turned out they were the most easy going of them all. A huge, beautiful old hotel. I briefly told the lady at the front desk my story and she said - no problems go straight up to the top level and take as many photos as you like. I had a great night out with some funny German guys straight after this. Wish I could have spent longer in Lisbon. Great city, good choice Grandpa, good choice.
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PHOTO 16 - more info... - The Peninsula Hotel, Hong Kong
This one in Hong Kong was really deceiving as the hotel still has a fountain and a big sign out the front. Lots of the same elements but many are different. I wonder if this is where Grandpa stayed? I found out that many of these shots are all within walking distance. Grandpa must have been wandering, enjoying the sunshine. It was great to wander around with him, kind of.
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PHOTO 17 - more info... - Tejo River, Lisbon, Portugal
A few people had sent photos showing that this is above the Tejo river in Lisbon. To retake it I'd have to luck out and fly into Portugal the same way. As we boarded, I tried to make friends with the air hostess's and even the Pilots but I think they thought I wanted to get into the cockpit. In our 911 era this is a big no-no. My lack of Portugese didn't help. We flew over the same river Grandpa flew over, Lisbon on the horizon. I took the photo with the planes engine in the bottom left but the angle wasn't that close. I don't think the pilot understood what it was about. Felt pretty special all the same. Just great to fly where Grandpa flew, go where he went. The new photo here is pretty different to Grandpa's original but I can tell you it was pretty dam close and that's nuts considering I had no idea where this was. There are also some great shots from other people in the album on Facebook.
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PHOTO 18 - more info... - Top Empire State, New York, USA
My first go at retaking this photo at the top of the Empire State building was a bit of a disaster. I didn't take hard copies of the original photos with me. I thought I could simply access them on my phone via this site. Turns out there is no signal that high up so I was working from memory. The Chrysler Building left of frame was a big help. My second trip up was better. I had hard copies, versions saved on my phone and stared at it for so long that I could probably get close to Grandpa's viewpoint from memory.
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PHOTO 19 - more info... - Piazza Nicola Demidoff, Florence, Italy
The good people on this site gave me the street location in Florence for this one. I wouldn't have found it otherwise. I wandered into the Piazza Nicola Demidoff and it looked right. I took a few photos and checked it to discover that the tiles were different and it just wasn't right. I was mortified for at least 8 minutes. Wondering how the hell I'd find this photo now. Then I spun around and there it was. NB: must read all instructions and helpful tips from people online before worrying that all is lost.
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PHOTO 20 - more info... - Interlaken West Train St, Switzerland
This is outside of Interlaken West train station, Switzerland. Grandpa seemed to take a whole bunch of the photos from his journeys either into or out of this station.
The rain poured down as I wrestled with a tripod, 3 cameras, and a hastily attached umbrella to re-take this photo. I looked a bit ridiculous but it was fun all the same.
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PHOTO 21 - more info... - London Circuit, Canberra, Australia
Such a great shot. I originally thought this may be Italy or Europe somewhere. I even found out that Grandpa went to Israel. Turns out this is Canberra. Australia's much made fun of Capitol city. What was he up to? Fiddling with his camera in the passenger seat of a car? Or carefully lining up everything, waiting for the lady to cross, right in the middle of the road. I day tripped to Canberra, found the spot and tried to do the same but Grandpa certainly had a way.
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PHOTO 22 - more info... - St Marks Square, Venice, Italy
I camped out for a couple of days in St Marks square, Venice - trying to get the angles and the light just right. Turns out the shadows are different in summer and winter - Grandpa must have been there in the colder months. Fine with me though. The whole ordeal forced me to hang out in St Marks Square for a few days. Pretty incredible. I saw lots of good 'scams' on my travels but the piegeon guys in St Marks' are pretty good. They herd the pigeons every day with cheap bird seed, developing a flock. Tourists want a picture with pigeons on their shoulders, for some reason and the guys sell bird seed to the tourists. Absolute genius.
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PHOTO 23 - more info... - Interlaken West Train St, Switzerland
The guy in the local Patagonia store put me on to the best (and cheapest) pizza in town. Right near this photo at Interlaken West train station. Here a beer is cheaper than water. So I holed up in a tiny pizza place in the back of the Swiss mountains with a pizza and a beer, contemplating the best place to park the rental car 'Sally' to sleep in that night. Lovely.
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PHOTO 24 - more info... - Via Ricciarelli, Volterra, Italy
Finding the location in this photo seemed near impossible. It could be in so many places. The cars licence plates helped a little. 'SI' at the start means the car is registered in the Italian province of Sienna. But cars travel. Amazingly, a few people had sent me the location in the nearby province of Pisa. It was in a tiny fortified town in the hills, called Volterra. One of the other photos - Photo 01 was really tough (and is still missing). A few people had suggested it might be in Volterra too. Having this photo - Photo 24 as a definite was a relief as I wouldn’t be traipsing around Itaian hills on too much of a wild goose chase. I could head to Volterra knowing this would be there, and just enjoy the view. I did wonder what the hell Grandpa was doing in a tiny mountain town in the hills of Italy anyway? Maybe he was just traveling through on his way to Rome? Maybe he just heard how beautiful it is.
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PHOTO 25 - more info... - Romano's, Burrano, Italy
It was tough to get all the angles right as I excitedly tried to get these kind waiters in place for this shot. I didn't get it that close to Grandpa's but it didn't matter. It was truly amazing to sit where Grandpa sat and meet the guys at Romano's in Burano. Even some of the photos on the back wall are still there which blew my mind.
Check out Photo 06 too, one of the only photos that Grandpa is actually in.
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PHOTO 26 - more info... - Zurich Airport, Swizerland
Zurich airport is lovely. I should know after wandering round there for 6 hours. I even bought a plane ticket to Geneva just to get through security. I looked and looked and had given up. The whole airport has been rebuilt so I was happy I tried. Then, I showed the photo to a guy who told me "Yeah that's the old terminal 1, they don't use it anymore it's behind a fake wall". Where? The old terminal 1 was empty and construction blocked the spot where Grandpa would have stood. So the new photo isn't as good but I was pretty happy to find it after being at the airport all day.
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PHOTO 27 - more info... - Darligen, Switzerland
I went back and forward on the train having a bunch of Swiss commuters look at me funny. I had to plant the camera lens on the window trying to get an angle on this one. I think the train windows were different in Grandpa's day. Really hard to know if it's the right spot but I think I got it. Just outside Interlaken, as the train passes Darligen. Sorry about stepping on your foot tall guy behind me. I wonder if Grandpa looked like a weird tourist too? Desperately snapping away.
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PHOTO 28 - more info... - Bridge of Sighs, Venice, Italy
Venice, the Ikea of cities. Feels like the Italians purposefully designed it so you have to see every tiny marvel before you're allowed to find the exit. Your feet hurt but it's worth it. Probably now one of my favorite places - thanks Grandpa. This tiny marvel is the bridge of sighs. I had to wrestle the tourists to get the new shot. I'm getting better at taking photos for people on on their cameras which tends to get them out of the way. Smile. Go in closer. Don't go too low, they hate that.
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PHOTO 29 - more info... - Leonardo da Vinci Airport, Rome, Italy
I had high hopes for Rome Airport. I had been sent such great clues for this one. Pilots had sent me the itinerary of this particular plane via the number on the side. And one person even sent me a shot of Rome airport from that era, matching the tiny Esso sign in the background. We'd found it, but now I had to take the new photo. Thinking that it wouldn't be too hard I wandered and wandered around trying to find the right spot. I still can't believe that this one was found in the first place. Turns out that the airport is being completely rebuilt. This is a good thing but not so great if you're trying to retake one of Grandpa's beautiful photos. I found the same place and there are a few pics on the Facebook album.The new photo looks nothing like Grandpa's beauty but it's where he took it all the same. Thanks for sending me to Rome though Grandpa, worth every second. And thanks to all the people who helped find Photo 29.
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PHOTO 30 - more info... - Nathan Rd, Hong Kong
Rush, rush, rush. So many photos to get in Hong Kong. I walked along Nathan road scoping this one out all day. Wondering where to get into a cab. I decided to use the cab ride to the airport the next day to retake it. It's all changed so much there's no real way of lining it up but It was fun to try though. And try to explain the whole thing to the cab driver. I think he wanted to be in the photo.
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PHOTO 32 - more info... - General-Dufour-Strasse, Biel, Switzerland
Biel is really pretty. I rode round on bikes with my new AirB&B friend Dani. She even took me up one of the mountains. It's a different, wonderful planet up there, like something out of a 60's technicolor movie. This photo was right in the middle of the town of Biel. The church tower giving it away. Unfortunately, there isn't a person being a traffic light these days.
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PHOTO 33 - more info... - Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy
Such a beautiful view here if you spin around the other way as the sun goes down, it's like a postcard. Pretty good view the way Grandpa took it too. Beautiful city Florence. Amazing streets, art and people. I even saw a kind of fake Da Vinci museum. Well... it was real but a bit of a tourist trap I think. Da Vinci's contraptions on display were genius none the less. I missed the major museums as I had to visit an Italian hospital - all the walking earnt me a foot infection. Visiting an Italian hospital - probably just as entertaining.
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PHOTO 34 - more info... - Elite Hotel, Biel, Switzerland
Thanks to the Elite Hotel in Biel for allowing me access to their rooms for this one. My new AirB&B friend, Dani helped explain (in Swiss) why I needed to get into a room and take photos. They were very accommodating. Thanks Dani, thanks Elite Hotel.
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PHOTO 35 - more info... - Kowloon bus station, Hong Kong
The bus stop is still there, and the buses, but the Kowloon post office in Hong Kong seems to be long gone. No tuk-tuks beautifully lined up either. I wonder if Grandpa got a day off in Hong Kong and just wandered. It was great to do the same.
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PHOTO 36 - more info... - From Mandarin Hotel, Hong Kong
Another Josh "Photographer" Davey special - one of the photos from Hong Kong that I had missed and my friend was kind enough to take for me on his travels. I mentioned to Josh that taking these shots might be tough. Mainly, as Hong Kong looks totally different to Grandpa's versions but he still managed to nail it. Should have sent him to Europe to find that missing canal shot - Photo 01. or See the new photo 36.
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PHOTO 37 - more info... - Nydeggbrücke Bridge, Bern, Switzerland
I doubled back to Zurich to pick up my new girl friend - Sally, a 2008 Alfa Romeo hatch-backy thing. Can't say I didn't embarrass myself driving her around. After a few stalls and having to constantly say out loud the side of the road I'm meant to be driving on, it all worked out. If you are behind a bad driver in your city, just think - maybe they are just an idiot. Raced through Bern to get this photo. On to Interlaken. I had to sleep in the back of 'Sally' that night. First time I've ever truly been thankful for Starbucks. It's the only place to urinate at 11:30pm in Bern when you don't have a hotel. Nice job capitalism.
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PHOTO 38 - more info... - Grand Hyatt Hotel, New York, USA
With a few new clues and great tips online, I was able to find this photo. Grandpa must have stayed in The Hyatt Grand Central facing the Chanin Building. It's a huge hotel and despite how busy it was, with hundreds of guests, they were happy to let me into a vacant room to take some photos. I wasn't lucky enough to get a room that had the same view that Grandpa had. The angle of the new photo is off but it doesn't matter, we found it! Scroll down to see my attempt.
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PHOTO 39 - more info... - Domain Carpark, Sydney, Australia
This was one of Grandpa's photos that I always loved. It's great that this photo is more abstract than most of the shots he took. He could do the stunning landscape shots and also sneak in an unexpected one too. I hardly thought someone would find where it was taken - thank you! The Domain carpark walkway under Sydney has changed as much as the city. Once again it was great to stand where Grandpa stood and imagine him ignoring the crowds, ignoring the norm and point his Voigtlander at another beautiful shot.
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PHOTO 40 - more info... - Lake Genava, Geneva, Switzerland
Before heading to Geneva, I found what I thought was a good place to park in Interlaken, a good spot to sleep in the back of 'Sally' the rental car. I woke in the morning and it turns out, I'd parked in front of a primary school. There was a field, and parking that wasn't someone's driveway - I thought it was a good spot in the darkness. Didn't look creepy at all - a guy hanging round the front of a school in the morning, climbing out of the rear hatchback door. Sorry Interlaken Primary School. I then had to drop off Sally before my day trip to Geneva. A few tears, train to Geneva. This one is from the Pont du Mont-Blanc bridge.
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PHOTO 41 - more info... - Nathan Rd, Hong Kong
In Hong Kong I stayed in a bustling high rise building called 'Chung King Mansions' - full of tiny hostels and many weird, noisy people. Such a vibrant city. Humid is an understatement. These little side streets were just down the road so the location was perfect. I told friends where I stayed afterwards and they mentioned that many people get robbed or even killed in Chung King Mansions. Such a wonderfully deceptive name. Although I had no problems.
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PHOTO 42 - more info... - Mr's Macquarie's Chair, Sydney Australia
Grandpa's photo of the half built Opera house took me to Mr's Macquarie's Chair on Sydney Harbour. I'd been there before but never really appreciated it. So many beautiful places in every city. As tourists we can appreciate them as they are so new and different. Often as residents we forget how beautiful they are. Anyway, point being - hang out at Lady Macquarie's Chair in Sydney around sunset, it's stunning.
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PHOTO 43 - more info... - The Peak tram, Hong Kong
Hong Kong has changed so much, and I discovered that even the cable car up to 'The Peak' has changed too. That is, they've moved it, the whole thing, tracks and all. One of the older cable cars from Grandpa's day is on display at the top of the mountain that you can walk through. The new photo 43 maybe a slightly different angle to Grandpa's original, oh and the driver yelled at me for trying to stand up to take it. To his credit it's a pretty steep climb.
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PHOTO 44 - more info... - Elite Hotel Biel, Switzerland
This is right out the front of The Elite Hotel in Biel. The old Metro Station is now a clothing store called The Metro. Migros is still there and killing it, part of the Migros Empire now. In lots of Migros branded businesses. Migros, Migros Bank, Migros Insurance, Migros Pharmacy, Migros Magazines, Migros Electronics, Migros Cafe. I think in a few more years there wont be any other shops just your house and then the Migros Empire outside.
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PHOTO 45 - more info... - Elite Hotel Biel, Switzerland
Big thank you to my new friends at The Elite Hotel for this one. If you're staying in Biel there is no better place to stay. Well, it looked pretty great. They were good enough to give me access to the rooms and the roof to get a few of the photos. Pretty cool to see the room Grandpa stayed in all those years ago. I wonder what he got up to in Biel? I know what I was doing - riding bikes around and going to a tiny concert with some Swiss people. Nice one Grandpa.
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PHOTO 46 - more info... - 39th & Park Ave, New York, USA
The clock above the entance to Grand Central Station gave this one away. Looks like Grandpa went for a walk with the Voigtlander again. I waited all day for the shadows to fall the same way, but it turns out the new buildings around Grand Central Terminal changed all that.
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PHOTO 47 - more info... - Le Richmond hotel, Geneva, Switzerland
Le Richmond Hotel was good enough to let me up to their penthouse suite to retake this one. If you're in Geneva and have a few extra francs, this is the place to stay. The room was amazing. What's not amazing is that I lost all the digital photos from Geneva. Luckily I was also taking each shot on the same type of camera Grandpa used - a Voigtlander Bessamatic. So I had a backup. I took the new photo from a bit higher than Grandpa's orginal. The view equally as amazing.
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PHOTO 48 - more info... - From The Ritz Hotel, Madrid, Spain
Grandpa seemed to stay in some fancy Hotels. All up until now had been really accommodating, I guess the guys at The Ritz Hotel in Madrid were too. They did make me wait for a few hours which was fine. I think the €37 drink at the bar while I waited, that they suggested, may have been a bit much. I think not being able to speak the local language didn’t help my cause. I may have just sounded like I wanted a free room for the night rather than just 5 minutes to retake this photo. Thanks Ritz Hotel for making the effort. I ended up in a room to the side of the hotel which is a bit different to Grandpa's shot but the Palace Hotel is still there to line up the letters in the background.
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