The blooms of summer are upon us, dear reader, and with the haze of heat and sunshine, desire is naturally on the rise. Excited eyes will rove, followed soon by heart and body. We have been proffered a delectable morsel — a fresh season, another tantalising glimpse into the lives of the storied Bridgerton clan. Like bees to blossom or moths to a flame, we are powerless to resist the allure of the new and exotic. You, gentle reader, may follow this story across the soft mists of time, but make no mistake: where goes the ton, we are all wont to follow. 

Just as Lady Whistledown’s letters make a formidable impact on her readers, the impact that screen tourism has on destinations cannot be underestimated. Bridgerton is back and with that, we explore the benefits that this blockbuster  — which is turning viewers to visitors in droves — is bringing to some of Simpleview’s clients and how other destinations can make the most of the opportunities that film tourism can bring. 

Fantasy Fever, Film, Fortune

In a recent LinkedIn post, Seren Welch, Screen Tourism Expert and Destination Consultant — and, of course, a speaker at our upcoming Simpleview EMEA Summit in Bristol this September — acknowledged what we all know: that Bridgerton fever is back. As viewers around the globe watch the latest season unfold (heaving bosoms strictly optional), Seren observes that the success of the show — as one of the top three performing titles on Netflix, of all time — has likewise influenced the fortunes of the destinations in which it was filmed. As Seren notes, Netflix viewers are 2.4 times more likely to visit a location after seeing it on screen, a phenomenon that seems to be playing out in real-time as the locations shown in the series have seen almost instant increases in both visitors and revenue on the back of each new season. 

Screen Time with Maximum Impact 

In her post, Seren made mention of the many locations that are featured in the filming of this new season, with multiple Simpleview clients — including Bath, Brighton, Lincolnshire, and Greenwich — among them. It’s well-known that Bath’s Holburne Museum serves as the residence of Lady Danbury while eagle-eyed viewers long ago worked out that Brighton’s Theatre Royal acted as the refined backdrop of the concert hall in series one, episode seven. In the countryside of Lincolnshire, Grimsthorpe Castle was recently transformed into the resplendent home of newcomer Lord Hawkins while Greenwich’s Old Royal Naval College also features prominently in this latest series.

But leaving fiction and fantasy behind for facts and figures, let’s take Bath as a concrete example of the impact that film tourism can have on a location. Seren highlights the fact that — on the back of it being featured in the series — the region recently reported that the Bridgerton phenomenon has directly contributed over £5 million to the local economy, with visitors flocking to the town to view as-seen-on-screen sites like the Royal Crescent and the aforementioned Holburne Museum. As a destination, Bath has capitalised on this popularity by using its site to highlight tour options plus content that enables visitors to plan their very own Bridgerton-style stays. 

But this, of course, is just the fortune that the filming of one single fantasy has brought to one place. And so, if the intrigue of learning how filming can benefit your destination is simply too much, join us at this year’s Simpleview EMEA Summit for more insights from Seren, plus:

  • Plenty of fantastic sessions lined up from some amazing speakers, including the British Film Commission and VisitBritain 

  • A deeper dive into the rising trend of screen tourism with a number of sessions designed to discuss this big topic with experts in the field — identifying ways you can start to harness the benefits of film tourism, as well as consider the after effects of a blockbuster in your destination