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Where do Bollywood stars recharge on holiday?

With the festive season under way, Bollywood’s jet-setting stars have already started flying off to their favourite holiday destinations. From skiing in Gstaad and shopping in Dubai to sunbathing in the Tuscan sun or tucking into London’s gourmet food, here’s a look at some of their preferred travel spots.

Kareena Kapoor Khan: Gstaad

The Alpine village of Gstaad first gained prominence among international jet-setters and home buyers thanks to the prestigious Le Rosey finishing school. Photo: Gstaad Saanenland Tourismus
The Alpine village of Gstaad first gained prominence among international jet-setters and home buyers thanks to the prestigious Le Rosey finishing school. Photo: Gstaad Saanenland Tourismus

Snow-swathed Gstaad is where Kareena Kapoor Khan likes to holiday each year with actor-husband Saif Ali Khan and their two children, Taimur and Jeh. The actress, 42, fell in love with the upscale Swiss town after tying the knot in 2012 and going there on honeymoon. It has been the site of their annual family holidays ever since.

Bollywood’s relationship with Switzerland isn’t new, though. It goes back decades — and the countless film scenes that have captured the country’s beautiful vistas have further fuelled its popularity.

In the Bernese Oberland region of the Swiss Alps, Gstaad’s cross-country slopes are a major magnet for the rich and famous. Its soaring mountains, ski regions such as Wispile and Rinderberg, top-notch pistes and towering glaciers have long made it a holiday favourite for royalty and celebrities alike. The family’s favourite place to stay is the Gstaad Palace hotel.

Priyanka Chopra: Tuscany

Florence in Italy is a centre of Renaissance art and architecture. Getty Images
Florence in Italy is a centre of Renaissance art and architecture. Getty Images

Priyanka Chopra and husband Nick Jonas are big fans of Tuscany. Regarded as one of the most romantic destinations in the world, this central Italian region brims with art and culture. Its capital, Florence, hosts some of the world’s most famous examples of Renaissance art and architecture, including Michelangelo’s David, Botticelli’s works in the Uffizi Gallery and the Duomo basilica. Tuscany’s natural attractions include the stunning Apennine Mountains, the island of Elba’s beaches on the Tyrrhenian Sea and Chianti’s olive groves and vineyards.

During their last holiday to the region, the couple posted several videos and photos on Instagram. They were seen enjoying quality time inside their Tuscan villa with a lush green lawn and rolling hills as a backdrop, cooking pasta, frolicking next to the swimming pool and dancing to Dean Martin’s Volare.

Akshay Kumar: Cape Town

Bo-Kaap in Cape Town has brightly coloured buildings. Photo: Flickr / David Stanley

Akshay Kumar is a self-professed family man who loves taking his wife Twinkle and children Aarav and Nitara on long holidays.

The Kumars are fond of Cape Town, often visiting the port city on South Africa’s south-west coast, which is perched on a peninsula beneath the looming Table Mountain. The region offers myriad charms. One can take rotating cable cars to reach the mountain’s vertiginous flat top and soak in panoramic city views, the bustling harbour and boats sailing for Robben Island, the notorious prison that once held Nelson Mandela.

The family also enjoy exploring the region’s verdant vineyards, sampling its gastronomic offerings and driving around its scenic landscapes.

Sonam Kapoor: London

London's Bond Street is lit up for Christmas. PA
London’s Bond Street is lit up for Christmas. PA

Sonam Kapoor loves the vibe of cosmopolitan London, with its stunning public parks, gardens, museums, theatres, eye-catching architecture, glamorous nightlife and award-winning restaurants.

The Veere Di Wedding star, also known for her bold sartorial choices, is often spotted in London sampling its gastronomic delights or shopping at luxury boutiques with family and friends. The actress, 37, also posts prolifically about her outings on her Instagram account, where she has 34 million followers.

Such is the new mum’s love for London that she has bought a charming pied-a-terre in the city with her husband, footwear entrepreneur Anand Ahuja. Embellished with Indian artefacts and done up according to the principles of vaastu shastra, the home has been featured in several magazines, along with its house-proud owners.

Shah Rukh Khan: Dubai

It’s little secret that the superstar’s favourite holiday spot is Dubai, which he refers to as his second home. Also known as Badshah or the King of Bollywood, Khan, aged 57, owns a beachfront villa on Palm Jumeirah in the emirate and has previously said he enjoys visiting the Spice Souk, Skydive Dubai and various beaches.

September 18, 2013 - Dubai, UAE - *General Caption* Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan (also Shahrukh Khan) is photographed backstage at Atlantis after promoting his new film Chennai Express. Khan is in Dubai filming his new film Happy New Year.Photos by Clint McLean for The NationalArts&Life
Commissioning editor: Olga Camacho
Writer: Christine Iyer
Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan loves spending time in Dubai, which he calls his second home. Clint McLean / The National

In Dubai’s latest tourism campaign, Creating the Future With Shah Rukh Khan, the star invites viewers to experience the city’s landmarks, including the Museum of the Future, Jumeirah Al Qasr, The Pointe, Ain Dubai and Dubai Harbour. He also takes the viewers on an immersive tour of Al Seef and Atlantis Dubai.

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