“Zärtliche Chaoten II” – exploring Gran Canaria 32 years later

The critics hated the movie – the cinemas loved it (as it really cashed in a bunch). As a sequel to the first movie Zärtliche Chaoten (“Tender Slobs” – the movies never made it to English-speaking countries, I guess), director Holm Dressler released a movie in 1988, which is still having very high popularity in Germany and German-speaking country. The only connection between the movies are the three key cast members – the stories do not base on each other. While the first movie was majorly playing in Bavaria and Austria, a major part of Zärtliche Chaoten II was recorded in Grand Canary / Gran Canaria, Canary Islands. 32 years later, in 2020, I felt to have a look if I can still spot a couple of the original settings nowadays.


Zärtliche Chaoten II – The Story & Cast

The movie starts in 2043. Frank Nordmann and Xaver Prielmayer, who both work at a patent office in Munich, are pissed of their very contolling boss, Dr. Kneitz. Both are visited by a weird inventor. His latest invention is a time machine. Frank decides that this is their chance to change their faith and finds out that Cleo Kneitz, has become pregnant in 1988 during her layover as a stewardess on Gran Canaria. They set the time machine short before landing of the plane. Just when they time travel is about to start, a security guard, Ronny, is entering the room and is thus completing the trio.

However, Cleo Kneitz is rather spending time with her lover on a boat and thus leaves her luggage with Sandy Wagner. Frank and Xaver prevent her to become pregnant and just find out very late that they followed the wrong girl.

The Cast

As said, the movie got rather bad critics, but was loved by the people. One amazing part of the movie is the cast. The three main characters are Thomas Gottschalk, who was extremely popular in Germany at film release, Helmut Fischer and Police Academy-cast Michael Winslow. Sandy Wagner is played by Deborah Shelton and there is even a role for David Hasselhoff. The English-speaking characters played their role in English and were dubbed before the movie release.


Zärtliche Chaoten II on Gran Canaria – Overview Map

Here are the places I visited:


Zärtliche Chaoten II on Gran Canaria Now & Then

The fist scene in Spain, where you can spot the movies is Maspalomas beach, where the trio is landing via parachute. Xaver is landing in a hotel pool. I skipped the beach and could not find out, where the pool was located – you have to say that Gran Canaria touristic center Maspalomas changed drastically over the last 32 years.

All major pictures in this posting are screenshots of the original movie. Thus, they are of course copyrighted by the production companies, Roxy Film GmbH & Co. KG Munich, KS Film Karl Spiehs Grünwald and the ZDF national television. The smaller pictures are the ones I took during my trip. 

There are, however, 161 pictures in major size in a dedicated album on the travel galleries to have a better view of my pictures as well.


Hotel Costa Canaria / Fashion Show

The first scene which I tried to spot on the islands is right after landing. The trio organized some runs along a road and spots a fashion show advertisement at a hotel called Hotel Costa Canaria. They subdue the male models and grab their clothing, thus now having something to wear, before they have to flee.


The hotel has been driven by Iberostar for quite a while, but is now an adults only by Bull Hotels (still named Bull Costa Canaria). It is located in San Agustin, a couple of kilometer away from Bahia Feliz (see below). The road scene has in fact been recorded in front of the hotel, you see the GC-500 road in the background. I could not validate whether the hotel in fact also hosted the fashion show recording – the area is highly and densely fenced, so that there is no good view into the hotel garden.


Hotel Bahia Feliz

Bahia Feliz is the key location of the movie, Hotel Bahia Feliz is the crew hotel of Sandy Wagner. They wait for her in the lobby for her (which due to the wrong luggage tag they believe her to be Cleo Kneitz) and book the room next to her.

Due to the Covid-19 policy, I could not try to go for one or two nights in that hotel, which still exists. It is, however, in fact called TUI Blue Orquidea. In the movie, the trip from Costa Canaria to Bahia Feliz is at most a few hundred meters – in the real world, it is a five kilometer drive. The hotel did have some renovation – and I also took a short look inside – but if you watch it from the beach area, you can still spot exactly where Ronny, Frank and Xaver tried to protect Sandy. There are a lot of scenes recorded around the hotel, see the next two sections as well.

Bahia Feliz is indeed a nice spot and feels to be a good relax – it is, however, one of these places, which are massively touristic – are there any locals in there?


Xanadu / Restaurant Scene

In the evening, Sandy is having dinner. A couple of people like the hotel director get immediately attracted by the beautiful being. One of the key characters in that scene is a local guitar player, who is performing The Legend of Xanadu.

The small square is still existing and apart from that there is now a glass window (likely against the wind from where Sandy enters the scene, it is still more or less an unchanged setting. It is not located in the hotel premises, but right opposite the road. The two restaurants have changed slightly, though. I checked the Bahia Grill, which is doing solid tourist-style meals and is rather located where Sandy was sitting. Frank, Xaver and Ronny’s table was rather at the other restaurant today, the El Bellotero, which also seems to be a rather touristic location nowadays. There is an restaurant called El Toro as well – but I haven’t checked out if they are one of the original location drivers.



Taxi Scene

I called this section Taxi Scene, as the first time it occurs in the movie, the three main characters arrive at Hotel Bahia Feliz by taxi – but the same location is for example used when the police director is meeting Sandy for the annual reception of the consule (section below).

The souvenir store you see on the lower picture is not existing an more, but apart from that you definitely do not need a time machine to visit this part of Bahia Feliz – it almost feels like a one-to-one copy of the roundabout thirty years ago. The only difference was some Christmas decoration due to December time – on the other hand, I was particularly amazed that for example the same rental car company is still driving the same office since 32 years.


Annual Reception at the Consule

The police director is inviting Sandy to the annual reception of Consule Wasserbach. For that, you see this front of the hotel or place, where the invitees are checked.

It took me surprisingly long to find this place – as it is in fact the Santa Catalina – a Royal Hideway Hotel in Las Palmas, in which I stayed during my December 2020 in Gran Canaria. Funnily, you nowadays access the hotel from the opposite direction and there have been a couple of renovations of the hotel, which is a real beauty opened in 1890.

Another fun fact: the reception itself has not been recorded in Las Palmas, but in Maspalomas / Meloneras, the touristic center of the island. You easily see that in the screenprint below, which clearly shows the Maspalomas Lighthouse.

The building you see in front of the light tower is in fact the back of Hotel Faro (which is nowadays a Lopesan Hotel). I could only estimate the location of the movie recording – but I strongly believe that it is located in the park of the Riu Palace Oasis Hotel in Melonaras nowadays. You cannot fully have a look into their grounds, so that it is just quite vague.


Car Chase

During the annual reception of the consule, Sandy meets Michael Trutz von Rhein (played by David Hasselhoff) and agrees to follow him to his yacht. The three main male characters follow him – Frank in a police car and Ronny and Xaver in a double-seated go kart. I just have some strong assumptions where all the scenes have been recorded, but I could at least confirm the location of these four lane road scene.

The route looks very different nowadays, as the Av. Alfereces Provisionales has been reconstructed and is just a two lane boulevard now with a wide pedestrian walk. But, for example, you can still see the stairs on the hill as you see in the screenshot above. Unfortunately, it is not too easy to park there, so I just had some quick snaps.

The road leads to the Maspolamas Beach area. Frank is heading into a different direction from here (see below), while Ronny steers the kart into the main touristic beach area. I am not fully sure about the exact scenes, as this main square has been quite renovated as much as many beach areas around. Some parts could also have been recorded in the area which is nowadays the Boulevard de Faro.

For sure, the scenes when the two are finally driving through masses of tourists, are done at the Playa de Ingles boardwalk. They end up in the Malibu Spelunke, which is still a German bar-style restaurant and is now called Peters Strandarena.


Yacht / Harbor Scene

Frank’s trip following Sandy and Michael end up at a harbor area. Michael parks the car while Frank is unconcentrated and ends up on top of a truck.

The red and white building you see in the first screenshot is the Hotel The Puerto de Mogan nowadays. It is located in Puerto de Mogan, which is a some 30 kms Westbound trip from Playa del Ingles – and by the way the likely most beautiful and picturesque place I visited during my Gran Canaria trip. The spot where the truck was located is in fact right opposite and nowadays part of a paid parking lot.

Michael guides Sandy to his yacht – if you visit Puerto de Mogan today, you will easily reconcile the areas – everything is more or less the same like in 1988.

They depart with the yacht and you see a petrol station and a light tower in the background – they still exist nowadays (just the petrol brand has changed) are are located right opposite the harbor building. The light tower hosts the Beach Club Faro restaurant nowadays. After Frank has saved Sandy, following the yacht with a water trike, he is arrested by the police. The scene has obviously been recorded at the stairs you see in the pictures.

By the way: the boat which has been fixed at the recording location could indeed have been an old 1988 one – but it was indeed not the original one. I was just curious and scanned the boats in the harbor – but spotting a boat which could have been the original one would have been just too much luck. At least Ronny is still leaving his signature in that place – the authorities warn you of trick gamblers.



After Sandy is taking Frank from the prison, they are spending the day together. I reconciled the breakfast scene, which was was quite easy to locate finally.

While the waiter is serving the couple, you see the Maspalamas Light tower again as well as very characteristic fence.

This is undoubtedly recorded at the bar/restaurant El Senador, which is located right at Meloneras Beach. The location is quite unique – and there is even the good, old fence in the background.


Las Palmas Airport

Last, but not least, Frank and Xaver travel “back to the future” from a phone booth at Las Palmas Airport. Frank also says farewell to Sandy. The spot is of course the same one as in 1988 – but there have been some renovation and also the parking facilities are significantly upgraded.

When Frank is traveling back in time again, you see some shots of the apron of Las Palmas airport. The scenery has changed significantly less in the meantime.


Zärtliche Chaoten II on Gran Canaria – Gallery

In order to give you a better view on the pictures, here are all my 161 pictures from my movie in major quality, to be found in the travel galleries:


Zärtliche Chaoten II – My Playlist

For the trip, I set up a Spotify playlist (Amazon Music is unfortunately too poor and just offers a fraction of the tracks) – maybe it gives you an additional Zärtliche Chaoten II feeling:


Zärtliche Chaoten II on Gran Canaria – My Thoughts

It was really fun to do this trip and spot all the old locations. It tells you a lot about Gran Canaria that it was that comparably easy to reconcile a lot of the original recording locations. Hope you have enjoyed this posting – maybe you do a similar trip based on one of your favorite movies as well?

Last, but not least…

Even though I did all the research by myself and only used the internet (mainly google maps) and the original movie, I have been inspired by this German website, which went on a similar mission in 2009. Thanks a lot for giving me the idea of following the footsteps of this legendary story.



Canary Islands

Here are all my postings about the Canary Islands.


German Artists

Here are all postings dealing with German Artists: