Every once in a while, I get an email for a project that results in an opportunity to shoot Parkour in a ridiculous location. So when the guys at WormApp asked me if I had any ideas for cool, abandoned places, in Europe, that might be good for a video shoot I got to googling. It wasn’t too long until I found Kupari, a beach resort complex of five hotels, abandoned since the 80s and looking amazing for parkour. A few days later, myself and Brad from Worm, were on a flight to Dubrovnik to go and scout the place. What follow are my favourite images from that scout.
After being shocked upon driving in to the area at the scale of the hotels and the fact that they are all, completelt abandoned, we hopped out the car and made our way into this first hotel.
We decided to give each of the four hotels codenames, so we could talk about them more easily. Due to the prolific graffiti tagging in this one, we called it ‘Lurkers’
The feeling of being in here was both beautiful and eerie. The foliage slowly reclaiming the building where the light hits, created wonderful colours and tones.
We walked through this lower area that must have been some kind of cafe or restaurant, and made our way up the stairs.
Through layers upon layers of rubble, all various hotel rooms now empty.
To the roof of Lurkers, where we could finally get a better view of Kupari bay itself. From Left to right we named the hotels…
– All Inclusive (The inverted pyramid looking one)
– ETM (The largest hotel at the back)
– Parliament (The smaller old style hotel with the orange roof)
– Lurkers (The hotel we are on).
A photo Brad took of me as we explored, everywhere you looked was a photo opportunity.
Looking down from the roof of Lurkers, I could already see that with a broom and some manpower, this place would be amazing for parkour.
Such a stunning view, it must have been an amazing hotel in its heyday.
Looking up at Lurkers, I thought about the gap across this corner. Totally doable and it would make an amazing shot.
After leaving Lurkers, we made our way back to the car for a break. It was 32 degrees in the shade and walking around was completely exhausting. We’d have to contend with the heat even more upon the actual shoot.
We moved over to Parliament, which was a much more classical style of building.
This staircase was quite epic looking, and I considered if it would be possible to have someone jump across the gap at the top, in a Wes Anderson style shot. It felt quite ‘Grand Budapest Hotel’ to be honest!
Moving through the hotel, I also found this area with jumps out of the windows to the left onto the balcony.
This was the first ‘must have’ shot we found in Kupari. This wonderful looking circular window, could be a perfect opportunity to have an athlete frontflip out onto the ground below. It was a bit of a scary proposition, the window is not that big, the drop is a little high and of course its to concrete.
From there, we moved to the next hotel, ETM. Walking up to it, I got really strong Jurassic Park vibes.
The first thing we found in here was this staircase gap, from left to right. It was the second ‘must get’ we found and by this point, Brad and I had pretty much agreed that we had to come back and shoot the proper film here.
Exploring ETM some more, we also made our way into this swimming pool. The roof had fallen in and now all the girders were exposed above. ‘I think someone could stride along those you know’ I suggested.
We then climbed so many stairs, too many stairs for how hot it was, and made our way to the roof.
It was an interesting shape, but we found a few options for movement and a gap or two that would look great on video.
Finally we took a walk through All Inclusive and found a few remaining bits. All Inclusive, despite its ironic name, actually has the least options for parkour, but the roof was going to look epic for the end of the video.
After a successful scout, we made our way to Dubrovnik, where our accomodation was. I hopped out on the drive there to get this photo. I was basically hanging off the other side of a road barrier, on the edge of a cliff to take this.
The streets of Dubrovnik.
Finally we chilled by the marina as the sun set.
A successful scout, Brad and I knew we would be back to shoot the full project.