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In the new Peacock series The Resort, William Jackson Harper stars as one half of a married couple spending their anniversary on the Yucatán. That is, until their relaxing vacation is cut short when they wind up involved in a murder mystery. Filming took place in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, which seems like a jackpot for an actor. Or is it? “It is a mixed bag. Sometimes it is great—we would have locations on the beach,” says Harper. “And then other times we would be deep in a very hot, buggy jungle all day. Some locations were awesome and others were rough.”
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Still, the shoot gave William Jackson Harper one of his all-time favorite travel moments, deep in the rainforest. Harper chatted about that moment, as well as catching people watching his smash show The Good Place on planes, a special New Year’s Eve in the Moroccan desert, and the traveler behavior he abhors.
A highlight of filming in the Caribbean:
Shooting in Puerto Rico, we went to this place called El Yunque National Forest. I think it was one of the top five experiences of my life, just getting to walk this really intense trail leading you up a hill along some waterfalls. There's a slot canyon at the top of a hill that me and some friends found and swam in. There were flowers on the trees that we could eat, and we had this great guide who took us on these really out-of-the-way trails. I'd never done a hike like that before, and it was also so temperate and cool and comfortable while we were scrambling up rocks and diving in waterfalls. It was just a blast.
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His preferred manner of transportation:
My favorite mode is probably a train. It's an easier way to get your dog placed, and it skips the hassle of getting to the airport and going through all the screenings and all that stuff. It's really taxing. I prefer to just be able to show up and get on the train.
How he spends flight time:
It's equal parts sleeping, watching movies that I should have already watched, and reading. I'm a really nervous flier, and reading brings my nerves down a bit. I find that I'm able to just concentrate a little bit more, whereas if I'm reading at home, sometimes I'll get in my favorite chair or in the bed and I'm asleep. It's a wrap! Whereas on a plane, I'm too nervous to sleep too much. And then I'll watch a lot of movies. I'll binge shows with my partner at home, but I'll watch movies on the plane.
Whether he’s ever witnessed fellow passengers binging The Good Place:
It’s happened a couple of times. More recently, I’m flying with a mask, so they don't know that I'm sitting there watching them watch The Good Place. I'm like, “Oh, okay. I guess people are really digging this show, still!”
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One of the coolest trips he’s ever taken:
My partner and I went to Morocco and spent New Year's in the desert. We actually took a little surfboard out on the sand dunes and slid down them, and rode a camel. I've never had an experience like that, and I could probably do that once a year. That was a lot of fun.
His other favorite filming location to date:
I've gotten to work in London once before—that was fun. London is a bizarro version of New York in a lot of ways. It feels like an alternate dimension for me, so it's interesting to explore it with that New Yorker sensibility. I think there's a certain kinship between the people in those two cities. Also, while it's a very different culture, we share a language, and so I can engage with it more readily than in a place where I don't speak the language, which is just about anywhere else. Being able to understand what's being said around you, and how people are reacting to things, is fun.
The hotel amenity he cares a lot about:
A good gym. When I'm going for work, the last thing I want to do is land and then try to figure out a way to keep up my workout regimen, so if I'm staying in a hotel and the gym is good, that just takes a huge load off my mind. I can't go too many days without working out—it's for my mental health at this point. I really, really need that.
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PRINCE WILLIAM and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge are expected to jet off to the US this year, just months after the couple embarked on a costly tour of the Caribbean to mark the Platinum Jubilee.Prince William announced via the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's official Kensington Royal Twitter account that the second edition of the Earthshot Prize Awards will be taking place in the US this year.
The best hotel he’s ever stayed in:
I got to say El Embajador in the Dominican Republic. It was gorgeous and they had a pool and spa. It was super, super nice, but the thing that was really cool was they had a huge circular bathtub in pretty much every room. I rarely take baths, but that was luxurious.
His travel pet peeves:
Folks that talk too loud and too much. People that are on vacation and just drunk and rowdy. Laughing too loud at jokes that are just not funny. Stop it! Sometimes people go on vacation and leave their manners at home, and I really hate that. Just the typical ugly American stuff, I guess. It gets on my nerves pretty bad.
The strangest place he’s been recognized:
I was actually at a random restaurant in the Netherlands, a pancake restaurant, and this waiter came out and said, “Hey, hey. The Good Place, right? I like it. Is a very good series.” And I was like, oh, cool, alright! When I'm in the States, it happens every now and again, but when I'm traveling, I really don't expect it so it always throws me for a loop when it happens.