Today’s post seems fitting given that the Cannes Film Festival is going on right now and that we’ll be visiting this beautiful place one month from today. Perched on the Côte d’Azur (what we call the French Riviera), Cannes is more than just a collection of resorts and beachside cafes.
Cannes was established in the 10th century as a Roman outpost. Roman tombs and an 11th-century tower remain in the old part of town, known as “Le Suquet.” At the end of the 19th century, railways were built to the coast which brought travelers from around Europe to the nearly year-round sunshine of Cannes. The area became an even hotter tourist destination after World War I, especially for American writers and artists moving to Europe in the 1920s.
F. Scott Fitzgerald bought a home there, later bringing Cannes to his readers through his novel Tender is the Night. His home has since been converted into the luxury Hotel Belles Rives.
It is little wonder that so many vintage travel posters feature Cannes and the Côte d’Azur.
My perfect weekend in Cannes would include bicycling the oceanfront paths, taking a boat ride to St. Tropez, sandal shopping on the Rue d’Antibes and getting a sunset cocktail at Le 360 Bar overlooking the water. We’re skipping the luxury hotels in favor of an Airbnb apartment just steps from the beach. Maybe we’ll take what we saved on lodging to the Casino Palm Beach… what happens in Cannes, stays in Cannes?
As far as packing, I’m thinking:
It is rainy in Geneva tonight, so maybe I’ll watch Alfred Hitchcock’s Cannes-based film To Catch a Thief and pretend I’m already there… for now, a few links:
- On the French Riviera, Fitzgerald Found His Place in the Sun (New York Times)
- 10 Ways To Live It Up on the French Riviera (CNN)
- Women Earning Cannes’ Respect at 2015 Festival (USA Today)