As a summer of Mediterranean cruising begins to fade and thoughts turn to balmy Caribbean waters, the Cannes Yachting Festival kicks off the end of season celebrations in style. This 42nd edition of the annual festival will be held over the 10th to 15th of September and is expected to attract some 51,000 visitors, 638 yachts, and 542 exhibitors. Known as the go-to show for viewing the very latest and coolest yachts to enter the market, this year will feature 122 world debuts and a total of 219 yachts entering the show for the first time.


Many of the most exciting yachts in attendance are to be found in the dedicated Superyacht Extension which can accommodate yachts up to 180 feet/55 metres in length. Admirers of the finer things in life should also check out the Concours D’élégance contestConcours D’élégance contest which is now in its fifth year. This parade of vintage motor and day boats under 12 metres in length celebrates the golden age of yachting with prizes awarded according to the quality of restoration, design of the boat, rarity of the model, and even the elegance of the crew. This year’s event takes place on Saturday 14 September at 4 pm.

Those who wish to indulge in a spot of shopping should visit the Luxury Gallery in the Palais des FestivalsLuxury Gallery in the Palais des Festivals where the world’s finest watches, jewellery, fashion, furniture, and high-end technology will be on show. Amongst the prestigious brands attending this year’s festival will be MissoniHome, Philippe Heim, Acqua dell’Elba, Marmi Strada, and Carter & White.


Enjoy the very best the festival has to offer with the Riviera CardRiviera Card which gives entry to two adults and includes an exceptional package of luxurious extras. Highlights include a guided tour of the festival by boat, complimentary transfer by helicopter from the airport either directly to the show or flying over the picturesque Lérins islands, and lunch at the panoramic restaurant on the Roof of the Palais des Festivals. Ticket holders will also have access to the VIP clubs, priority access to courtesy vehicles from official supplier and festival sponsor, Porsche, and a VIP sea shuttle service between the two exhibition areas.


This year the festival will once again be split between two venues; Port CantoPort Canto will host the world’s biggest exhibition of new sailing yachts while Le Vieux Port in the heart of CannesLe Vieux Port in the heart of Cannes will be devoted to motor yachts. These two sites will be well-connected by maritime shuttle boats running approximately every 15 minutes and regular land shuttles which will both be free of charge.


With a wealth of new yachts on show, choosing which to see can be tricky. Amongst the largest yachts attending this year is the brand-new 163 foot/50 metre Cecilia which was launched last year by Italian superyacht builders Wider Yachts. This stunning aluminium yacht boasts 5 comfortable guest suites, a helipad, beach club, spa and fully-equipped gym.

Thrill seekers will love the Mangusta GranSport 45 which is making its international debut at Cannes this year. This fast 148 foot/48 metre yacht has been built in classic Mangusta style with sleek, racy exterior lines and stunning, light-filled interior spaces by Alberto Mancini. Three MTU 16V M96L engines give her an impressive top speed of 26 knots and a range of 3500 nautical miles when cruising at 11 knots.


Cannes is very well connected with flights landing at the nearby Nice Côte d’Azur International Airport
from all over the world. From there the Cannes Yachting Festival recommends taking a 7 minute helicopter flight with their partner Azur Hélicoptère directly to the event location. Cannes is also served by the SNCF train from Paris which takes approximately 5 hours. For those who wish to drive there is ample parking at the Port Canto venue where you can take advantage of rapid transfers by boat or land to the Le Vieux Port.


Visitors to the Cannes Yachting Festival are spoilt for choice when it comes to where to stay. A magnificent option is the Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic on the Croisette promenade close to the festival which boasts unrivalled sea views, decadent spa, and a unique Christian Dior Suite which was created in collaboration with the designer himself. Even closer to the Palais des Festivals where the event takes place is the Five Seas Hôtel which is frequently described as one of Cannes’ best-kept secrets by those in the know. The rooftop pool is perfect for post-festival lounging while the hotel restaurant, SeaSens, boasts a Michelin star. The hotel was also awarded ‘Best Luxury Design Hotel of Europe’ in the World Luxury Hotel Awards a couple of years ago.


The Festival is open each day from 10am to 7pm with the exception of Friday 13th of September when opening hours are extended to 10pm and Sunday 15th of September when the venues close at 6pm. Tickets are available to purchase online in advance from €15 for one person, €25 for two people, and €40 for four people. Those who wish to upgrade can purchase a VIP ticket for two people for €225.50 for one day or €577.50 for the full 6 days of the event, or a Riviera Card valid for two people with a host of amazing experiences included for €1144.