“They always ask the same thing,” said Maryam d’Abo wryly. “What was it really like to kiss Timothy Dalton?” I had met the onetime Bond girl—remember cello-wielding Kara Milovy in The Living Daylights?—for drinks at the Corinthia Hotel London. (Red wine for her, martini for me.) And we weren’t alone: d’Abo was accompanied by her fellow 007 alumna Carole Ashby, a Moore-era Bond girl twice over, with memorable roles in Octopussy and A View to a Kill.

They were both charming company. Ashby is a saucy seaside postcard come to life, only with more sequins; d’Abo was more serious at first, but relaxed as the wine gets to work on her jet lag. After all, she had arrived from Mustique only a few hours prior.

In 1987, The Living Daylights star Maryam d’Abo (pictured here with Timothy Dalton as 007) was all over the silver screen. Now she’s having cocktails with Bond super-fans at London’s Corinthia Hotel.

Longtime pals, it was quickly clear they belong to an elite, sexy sorority; the pair treated the “Bond girl” label as a winking badge of pride. It’s in part thanks to the mother hen–like Barbara Broccoli, daughter of franchise starter Albert “Cubby” Broccoli and a firm defender of Bond’s legacy. “She’s my best friend,” Ashby said, while d’Abo admitted she helped to create the documentary Bond Girls Are Forever only because Barbara gave her blessing.

Barbara and Eon Productions Ltd., the producers of the Bond films, have been partly responsible for arranging my adventure; they have collaborated with luxury-travel specialist Black Tomato on a series of spectacularly programmed vacations that invite anyone, tuxedoed or otherwise, to experience their own 007 fantasy.

Carole Ashby, right, was one of the stars of 1983’s Octopussy. Roger Moore played Bond.

Just 60 such trips are available, and costs will range from an eye-watering $18,500 to roughly $74,000 per person, depending on the schedule. In addition to cocktails with Bond girls, experiences can include stunt training with Lee Morrison, Daniel Craig’s stunt guru, or a boat chase down the Thames on the same Superhawk 34 that appears in The World Is Not Enough. How about water-skiing around Lake Como, in an homage to Casino Royale, or sailing on a vintage yacht along the Côte d’Azur to the Casino de Monte-Carlo?

My mini–Bond movie is a three-day trailer for the full-blown adventure, and starts at home, where a Globe-Trotter suitcase is hand-delivered to my apartment. It contains scripts, call sheets, and an itinerary that starts in London.

Boating around Lake Como in a stylish Riva: not a bad way to pay homage to Casino Royale.

My first rendezvous is with the beret-wearing Meg Simmonds, a longtime American expat who is the go-to resource for Bond’s gadget archive. Simmonds started as an assistant to producer Michael Wilson, a major photography collector, and segued into safeguarding the props, posters, and ephemera around Bond.

It was a novel practice when she started, in the 1980s. “I went into the locked archive, and there was a pipe that had been leaking onto all the negatives,” she recalls, still horrified. That sort of thing wouldn’t happen under Simmonds’s watch. She rattles through an assortment of intriguing props, always wearing archivist’s gloves: the weapon from The Man with the Golden Gun and the car-controlling mobile phone from Tomorrow Never Dies.

It’s the passports that are most intriguing—props made for Dalton, Craig, and Pierce Brosnan with Bond’s birthday slowly ticking down to keep him youthful.

“They’re real passports,” Simmonds stage-whispers. “And I did have someone from the passport office call me and ask, since we’d finished filming, could they have one back.” She smiles. Not a chance.

Bond aficionados can now follow his trajectory along the Côte d’Azur, sailing to the Casino de Monte-Carlo on a vintage yacht.

From there, Simmonds and I head out for lunch. As we walk through the streets of London, our Bond-educated guide points out key locations used in the films, such as the new Raffles hotel at the Old War Office, where Fleming himself once worked. We sat down at Rules, which describes itself as the oldest restaurant in London, at M’s favorite table, and enjoyed our first martini of the day. (Spoiler alert: there were several.)

Then it was off to the N.Peal boutique on Burlington Arcade, where Bond shopped for cashmere. Upstairs, it has a shrine to Bond that displays suits made from dead-stock material, such as those Moore once sported in the 1970s. I try one on, but it looked better on him.

Then it was time for another martini, this one from Erik Lorincz, the former head bartender of the American Bar at the Savoy and an awards-hogging cocktail jockey. He’s worked behind the scenes on several Bond films, often helping extras learn how to hold a jigger or hard-shake a cocktail like a pro. Stirring a martini, Lorincz says, makes it more chewy. “You can bite into it,” he explains. Shaking makes it thinner, lighter, and easier to drink. I opt for the former, and Lorincz produces a bartender’s holy grail: a bottle of Kina Lillet, the discontinued spirit used in the original Vesper recipe. “It makes for a walnutty, ice-cold snifter. “That would cost you $700 per drink at a bar,” he says, taking a sip.

Shaken, stirred, whatever: there will be many, many martinis. Daniel Craig and Ana de Armas in No Time to Die (2021).

It’s time for more martinis at the new Vesper Bar inside the Dorchester, which makes the next day’s early start rather difficult. (Among the endless 007-endorsed products, there’s no hangover cure, at least not yet.)

I’m driven to a racetrack somewhere near Milton Keynes, and as soon as I enter the facility, the camera on my phone is covered with stickers, San Vicente Bungalows–style. “Too many prototypes,” says my instructor, former professional driver Ed Moore. Although mostly I spot buses trundling incongruously around the track, testing their roadworthiness alongside the Aston Martin Vantage that will be our ride for the day.

Moore has trained both Brosnan and Craig to look more natural on camera behind the wheel. He became close with the former, who even asked him to come to California and train his friends to drive their sports cars. “On the first day, he said to me: I’m not James Bond. I’m an actor, so don’t expect too much from me,” says Moore. Craig was more focused and determined, although once they’d completed the curriculum, he asked Moore to spend a few hours teaching him how to ace doughnuts.

Craig in No Time to Die. Lee Morrison, his stunt guru for the film, is now training Black Tomato clients.

My experience involved a series of different courses, each primed to improve certain skills: handling hydroplaning or coping with high-speed driving. (The max we managed was 162 m.p.h.) At the end of the day, Moore gave me a chance to put all my newfound circuit-handling skills together by tackling a hairpin-bend-infested track built to resemble an Alpine road. It was even used in Casino Royale: Vesper Lynd (Eva Green) crashed badly, and Moore points to the repairs to the tarmac.

After spending that evening with d’Abo and Ashby, it was off to France—by Eurostar, not private plane—where my suite at the Crillon even featured a James Bond decal on the shower door. I headed out for a private tour of Bollinger, the still-family-owned champagne house that was closed entirely to outsiders until several years ago; even now, it offers only a glimpse behind the curtain to select V.I.P.’s.

A private tour of Bollinger, the family-owned vineyard that was closed entirely to outsiders until several years ago, is available to only a select few.

My guide, Caroline Brun, says that the partnership between Bond and Bollinger, the producer of his champagne of choice, dates back 40 years. One of the family members became friendly with Cubby Broccoli and struck up a handshake deal to supply it for Bond. It horrified the matriarch, Lily Bollinger, a formidable woman who ran the firm for decades after being widowed young. It had royal warrants to the British Crown, she allegedly said, pearls in hand, but he is a voyou, or thug. “We create champagne for gentlemen, not the starlets of Hollywood,” explains Brun. “But then the demand for Bollinger skyrocketed, and Madame Bollinger … she changed her point of view.”

She whisks me from cellars to the vieilles vignes (old vines) plots, two tiny, precious vineyards free of phylloxera; they produce barely three barrels of champagne per year. Bollinger’s cooperage is noteworthy, too—it’s the only such one remaining in the region. Its walls are festooned with dog-eared Bond posters. There’s one for The Living Daylights, and I hope to spot Maryam, but she was replaced by a faceless waitress pouring champagne for Dalton on a yacht. I doubt she’d worry—she’s a red-wine drinker, anyway.

As he says, Mark Ellwood focuses on “froth in all its forms.” He has written for AIR MAIL about the turmoil inside Moda Operandi. He is also a columnist for Bloomberg Pursuits, the creator and a co-host of Bloomberg’s Travel Genius podcast, and the author of Bargain Fever: How to Shop in a Discounted World