There’s extra to Cannes than the Movie Competition

The 70th Cannes Movie Competition is about to shine a highlight on this fashionable metropolis on the Côte d’Azur. For nearly two weeks (Might 17 to 28) movie makers, producers, celebrities and an entire load of wannabes will descend in droves to be a part of this world well-known occasion. Oh, the glamour and the glitz.

Nevertheless except you might be a part of the glitterati it is best to know that you’re unlikely to have any entry to this invite-only occasion and even get lodge room within the metropolis. And in any case, celebrities have develop into so adept at getting out and in of vehicles with out having to mingle with the general public that the probabilities of assembly and even recognizing somebody you recognise could also be distant.

Having mentioned that, competition huge wigs, conscious of how the general public has been excluded, have since 2011 organised movie screenings on the Cinéma de la Plage, which happen every evening beneath the celebrities.

How did Cannes develop into so fashionable?

In bygone days, it was a mere fishing village. It turned residence to a neighborhood of rich monks whose very presence attracted plundering pirates who got here and went as they happy.

Street in old Cannes

Picturesque avenue in outdated Cannes

So a army fortress was constructed. It included a church and chateau, which in the present day is a primitive artwork museum. The fortifications have gone now to make method for dwelling area however you may nonetheless see a relic on the entrance of the church.

Through the years there have been wars and even a plague which in 1579 decimated the neighborhood. Lastly the 18th century introduced peace and stability and by 19th century there was a peaceable invasion by the British who introduced wealth and aristocratic fashion.

Lord Brougham was pivotal to this. A former British Chancellor he merely fell in love with Cannes when he visited in 1834. So he stayed and constructed himself a villa on the Croix des Gardes. It wasn’t lengthy earlier than posh Brits and Europeans adopted primarily to flee to the solar. Since then the town has remained the trendiest scorching spot on the Côte d’Azur.

For those who search for from the port you will notice their fashionable white properties that look vivid towards the darkish inexperienced mountains.

Cannes - view from old town

Cannes – view from the outdated city

Essentially the most historic space is Le Suqet and inside it’s the oldest avenue within the metropolis – the climbing, winding cobbled lane Rue Saint-Antoine. You’ll be able to comply with it to the highest passing cute eating places and bars on the way in which to the outdated city, with the Notre-Dame d’Espérance church, and the massive Cannes signal that marks the zenith. The views over metropolis, the ocean and the pink Estérel mountains past is just idyllic.

The preferred place to take a leisurely stroll is alongside La Croisette. This pretty promenade curves with the coast the place sandy seashores are ignored by upmarket shops and eye-widening palatial resorts


Cannes is huge on luxurious procuring and the (nearly predictable) big-name manufacturers are on La Croisette – you recognize those: Chanel, Dior, Yves St Laurent and so forth. As you stroll to Rue d’Antibes the marginally extra reasonably priced retailers comparable to Zara and Façonnable pop up.

Rue Meynadier is choc filled with boutiques and although it could look touristy, a few of them been there for half a century. Comply with your nostril to quantity 22, to Fromagerie Ceneri which has been there since 1968. The aroma that escapes from this pleasant cheese store is so robust as a result of not solely do they promote their produce, they mature their very own cheeses too.

For groceries of a country and positively Provencal nature, head for the Forville market on Place du Marché. It’s good for many who are self-catering or just for a picnic on a seaside.

In any case rubbing shoulders with the locals and looking is a captivating method to spend a day. Whereas there, purchase and eat Socca – a sometimes Provencal dish – in situ. It’s made with chick pea flour on spherical (50 cm) tins and cooked in a highly regarded wood-fired oven for about six minutes, till the highest is golden. Or strive Ache Bagnat which is a spherical fish roll. Or Pissaladière which is a pizza base with sautéed onions and anchovies.

Potted historical past of the Movie Competition

The Movie Competition was propelled into being by Jean Zay, the French Minister of Nationwide Schooling. It was supposed to debut in 1939. All the pieces was prepared however the outbreak of World Struggle II and the metropolis was occupied by the Germans. The conflict lasted six lengthy years and the story goes that the liberation by the Individuals in 1944 famously concerned the American actor Mr. Douglas Fairbanks Jr, who captained a US naval ship.

By 1952 the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès now situated on the high of Boulevard de la Croisette the place as soon as stood a on line casino, turned the everlasting residence for the competition. In 1955 the Palme d’Or (Golden Palm) award for finest movie was launched.

This contemporary six storey constructing with its well-known pink carpet and Allée des Stars – the Cannes’ stroll of fame – are good for putting a pose and your individual private photograph shoot.

The Palme d’Or image alludes to the palm tree in Cannes’ coat of arms which, in flip, comes from the coat of arms of Lerins Abbey, from the time when Cannes belonged to the Lerins monks. The story goes that Saint Honorat got here to snake infested Lerins Islands he climbed up the palm tree whereas the ocean lined the island and drowned all of the snakes.

To study extra about Cannes and the Movie Competition, we suggest the Cannes & Cinema, Competition Palace and As soon as upon a time: Cannes guided excursions.

Cannes well-known film-related Murals

Cannes - film mural - Buster Keaton

Buster Keaton

You may get a way of competition at any time of the yr as a result of Cannes is a superb open-air shrine to its movie competition. One of many pleasures of ambling round city is coming throughout the superb film-related murals.

There are 15 of them dotted across the neighbourhoods. All of them loom giant on large buildings and the most important is on 2 quai Saint-Pierre which is a collage of 100 years of cinema. It’s enjoyable to pick the characters comparable to R2-D2, Mickey Mouse, a dancing Fred Astaire and even Batman. Little doubt you’ll spot a number of others.

Cannes - film fresco bus station

Mural at Cannes Bus Station


Catch a ferry to the fortress on Sainte Marguerite Island and take a look at the royal prisons (watch the video). The Man within the Iron Masks (identification unknown) was incarcerated on the island for 11 years within the late 17th century alongside Protestants who had been incarcerated in the course of the 17 and 18th centuries for therefore known as spiritual crimes. Right here they suffered for his or her religion to the purpose of insanity and even dying. King Louis XIV thought this technique would encourage wayward pastors to recant and certainly be an instance for the remainder of the Protestant inhabitants.

Cannes - ferry to St Marguerite

Ferry from Cannes to St Marguerite island

Cannes - St Marguerite - courtyard

Outdated fortress on St Marguerite island

Cannes - St Marguerite - courtyard with fountain

Outdated fortress on St Marguerite island

View of Cannes from St Marguerite

View of Cannes from St Marguerite island

The place to Keep

There are two pretty resorts situated on the palm-lined La Croisette Boulevard: The Intercontinental Carlton which seems to be dazzling with its Belle Epoque facade and the long-lasting Artwork Deco styled Lodge Martinez with its three eating places and personal seaside. They provide views over the Med are each near the procuring areas and eating places.

There are much less grand resorts, that however provide clear, nice lodging and nice service. Two newcomers to city are the implausible worth all-inclusive idea lodge Okko Cannes – designed to really feel like an airport lounge and the nice worth compact, and the notably quirky Ibis Types which seems to be implausible with its superstar themed decor all through. Whilst you sleep chances are you’ll effectively have Marilyn Monroe wanting down on you.

Nevertheless, at peak occasions and particularly in the course of the Competition it’s unlikely you can find a room in Cannes as these are booked method upfront.

We discovered two implausible options not removed from Cannes: the country stylish Lune de Mougins and the impossibly romantic providing Tiara Yaktsa in Théoule-sur-Mer reached by way of the twisty N8 highway on the French Riviera.

Getting there:

Cannes is served by Good Worldwide airport round 24 Km (15 miles) from the city centre. Easyjet flies from London Luton, Stansted and Gatwick airports with costs from £131 return.

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