Calm, cool and collected – Cannes is the absolute darling of the Côte d’Azur. While it’s perhaps best known as the venue of its iconic film festival, this French Riviera hotspot keeps its ultra-glam lifestyle running 365 days per year. The city is certainly one of the most eye-catching in the Mediterranean and it springs to life with a wonderful Old Town, historic harbor and clutch of offshore islands.
Meanwhile, the magnificent architecture, seafront hotels, couture shops and designer bars inject the exclusive city with its much-adored personality. Attracting everybody from A-listers to yachties, Cannes is one of the world’s most elegant and sophisticated destinations and it brings us to the height of the good life in an instant.
Where to Stay
Immersed in Mediterranean sunshine along the sparkling seafront, the Intercontinental Carlton has seen more than its fair share of movie stars, artists and royalty. Every inch of this mythical hotel is recalled in Old Hollywood and it’s impossible to miss the beautiful Belle Époque façade that rises above the boulevard. Step inside and the regal feeling doesn’t skip a beat with soaring pillars, cool marble and shimmering chandeliers. A grand total of 343 rooms and suites offer a wealth of space with light and breezy touches, vintage furniture and warm cream tones throughout.
The prestigious suites are certainly worth booking and many are named after starlets of a bygone era. On the seventh floor, you can find the impeccable two-bed Grace Kelly Suite with its own private terrace, jacuzzi tub and silky fabrics. Meanwhile, the four-bed Sean Connery Suite has a private life and panoramic sea views. Perfectly placed beneath the cupolas, these rooms are a vision of loveliness, with beautiful salons framed by fresh cut flowers, floor-to-ceiling picture windows, refined décor, and marble bathrooms with double basins and deep tubs.
Be sure to check out our Luxury Hotel Guide to Cannes for more star-studded options.
Where to Dine
Perhaps the most celebrated restaurant in Cannes, La Palme d’Or has been welcoming guests since its opening in 1986 and it continues to be the only establishment in the city to boast two Michelin stars. The beautiful space enjoys an enchanting setting on the Bay of Cannes where chef Christian Willer leads the way in an extraordinary culinary experience that creatively brings out the best in Mediterranean cuisine.
Impeccable service accompanies phenomenal seafood creations such as spider crab, scallops and wild turbot, whereas the meats are no less exceptional with black Angus and veal leading the way. The prestigious establishment in the Grand Hyatt Cannes bows down to the rustic unpretentious flavors that make French cuisine so special, yet presents them in such a careful and beautiful way that it seems to hark back to Cannes artistic calling.
Check out our Dining Guide to Cannes for a comprehensive breakdown of the finest restaurants in the city.
What to Do
As iconic as just about anywhere else in the French Riviera, the Boulevard de la Croisette is the city’s main promenade that’s lined with historic 5-star hotels ad designer shops. While the beautiful coastal views, nearby Estérel Mountains and tall palm trees make for a lovely stroll at all hours of the day, it especially twinkles at night when it’s lit up by bright lights and packed with street performers and buzzing terraces.
Beach days are a quintessential component of the Cannes experience, and it’s hard to beat the Z Plage Beach Club. This exclusive stretch of coastline belongs to the Grand Hyatt Martinez Hotel and boasts more than 400 sun loungers, a seaside bar with a refreshing selection of delicious cocktails and a restaurant that blends local products with globally inspired flavors.
The lively atmosphere and super stylish clientele are heightened by the infinity blue waters and sandy shores, making it one of the best places to bask in the glory of the Côte d’Azur. For a more tranquil experience, the peaceful islands of Ste-Marguerite and St-Honorat offer a sublime contrast to the frenetic town.
What to Pack
Appearances count in Cannes – and not only during its legendary film festival. From Ferrari to Porsche, Chanel to Hermes, no matter when you find yourself in Cannes, there’s never a shortage of brand names. While you won’t necessarily need to pack sleek tuxedos and full-length ball gowns, you’ll certainly want to keep to stylish and polished. Ideal for glamorous night events, this Jimmy Choo Celeste Feathered Silk Clutch gives a nod to current trends, while the classic construction has a vintage-inspired tone. Elsewhere, the Santos de Cartier Watch is as iconic as it gets, as the design of the Santos is generally accepted as one of the first (if not the first) watches designed specifically for the wrist. Today Cartier remains a simple and timeless essential in the world of watches and is the most refined touch for any outfit.