April 16, 2011

Enjoying CANNES, France, Without the Stars

CANNES.1
Cannes's old city, Le Suquet, is a good place to explore. It's best to avoid Cannes, though, during the city's film festival, from May 11-22 this year.

Though Cannes is best-known for its annual film festival, there's more to do in this French Riviera city than watch movies. It offers great night life, beautiful walks along the seafront and delicious fresh produce.
Cannes is best seen on foot, and with all the main meeting venues so close together, there's no reason to use any other form of transport.....If it's your first time in Cannes, shop the block. Take a walk along the Boulevard de la Croisette and inspect the luxury shops like Chanel and Dior. From there go to Rue d'Antibes, Cannes's most famous main shopping street.
About 15 minutes away is the Forville market, selling fresh fruit and local cheese and bread. - via Wall Street Journal

What it's like: Though Cannes is best-known for its annual film festival, there's more to do in this French Riviera city than watch movies. It offers great night life, beautiful walks along the seafront and delicious fresh produce.

Alamy
Cannes's old city, Le Suquet, is a good place to explore. It's best to avoid Cannes, though, during the city's film festival, from May 11-22 this year.
High-end hotels like the Carlton and the Martinez provide an excellent setting for meetings, and it's a great place for high-end shopping, with chic shops on the Boulevard de la Croisette and the Rue d'Antibes catering to the whims of the rich and famous.
It's also a very convenient city for conferences, with most places within easy walking distance of each other.
According to the tourist office, there are 120 hotels, 300 restaurants and 500 boutiques within a two-kilometer radius.
However, don't expect to find too many vacancies during the Cannes Film Festival, which runs from May 11 to 22 this year. In fact, business travelers may decide to avoid the city altogether until the festival is over.
Cannes is best seen on foot, and with all the main meeting venues so close together, there's no reason to use any other form of transport.
Getting there: The nearest airport is Nice Côte d'Azur, which is just west of central Nice and 13 kilometers from Cannes. Take a taxi from the airport or book a limousine (try http://cannes.airport-shuttle.com).
Where to stay:Hotel Martinez: This five-star hotel, which dates from 1929, overlooks La Croisette, the famous promenade. A traditional hang-out of Hollywood stars, the Martinez is also just 10 minutes' walk from the Palais des Festivals, the city's major congress center and venue for the film festival. A disadvantage for business travelers is that there's an extra charge of €15 euros an hour to use the business center, though Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel.
Double rooms start around €165 during low season.
73, La Croisette. Tel. +33 (0)4 92 98 73 00
Hotel Renoir: This is a charming four-star hotel on a peaceful street just five minutes from the shops and the beach. Recently renovated, the hotel offers secretarial services like faxing and photocopying. Though the rooms have broadband access, there's an extra charge of €8 an hour. Guests are enthusiastic about the hotel's service and location but say its private beach can be overcrowded at peak times. Rates from €113.
7, Rue Edith Cavell, Tel. +33 (0)4 92 59 41 00
Hotel La Villa Cannes Croisette: Good value for money if you're one a tight budget. The hotel, formerly known as California's Hotel, has an outdoor pool and a beautiful garden, and it's just a few minutes away from the seafront. Rooms from €105.
8, Traverse Alexandre III, Tel. +33 (0)4 93 94 12 21
Where to eat: Le Caveau Provençal, tucked just behind the Palais des Festivals, will do you half a dozen oysters for about €13 and has good, reasonably priced white wine to go with them. The service is very efficient, making it ideal for a quick meal between meetings.
45, Rue Félix Faure, Tel. (+33) 04933 90633.
La Palme d'Or: Under chef Christian Sinicropi, this restaurant in the Hotel Martinez is one of Cannes's culinary highlights. It has two Michelin stars and a 17/20 rating in the Gault Millau guide. Tel. +33 (0)4 92 98 74 14.
Best bar for after-work drinks:Try the Le Sparkling et le Bar For You, which is open seven days a week from noon to 2.30 a.m. 6-8 Rue Frères Pradignac. Tel. +33 (0)4 93 39 71 21
Where to meet: Major shindigs, including the Cannes Film Festival, take place at the Palais des Festivals (www.palaisdesfestivals.com). But all the major hotels are used for business meetings.
Need Wi-Fi? The Hotel Intercontinental Carlton Cannes (58, La Croisette, +33 (0)4 93 06 40 06), and the Hotel Le Canberra (120, Rue d'Antibes, +33 (0)4 97 06 95 00) both offer free Wi-Fi in public areas.
What to do in your time off:
If it's your first time in Cannes, shop the block. Take a walk along the Boulevard de la Croisette and inspect the luxury shops like Chanel and Dior. From there go to Rue d'Antibes, Cannes's most famous main shopping street.
About 15 minutes away is the Forville market, selling fresh fruit and local cheese and bread.
Many local farmers are happy to let you sample before you buy.
If you're interested in perfume, the Musée International de la Parfumerie is a must-see, demonstrating the whole process of scent-making from raw materials to the finished product.
The museum also has a collection of items connected with perfume and makeup.
If you have a whole afternoon free, take a tour of Cannes's old city, Le Suquet, and visit the Musée de la Castre, a museum in a medieval castle, which has a collection of Mediterranean and African artifacts and a bit of Cannes history. Tel. +33 (0)4 93 38 55 26
Or pay a visit to the Thermes Marins de Cannes for spa treatments using sea water. 47, Rue Georges Clémenceau; Tel. +33 (0)4 92 99 50 10; www.lesthermesmarins-cannes.com,

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